The basic requirements of the program include completion of a minimum of 30 semester hours, including 18 hours of core courses, six to ten hours of thesis research and six to nine hours of approved electives. Students must maintain at least a 3.0 grade point average. Students may be required to repeat courses for which they receive a grade below B-.
Following the first year of coursework, the student must successfully pass a comprehensive examination that is administered by the thesis advisory committee. This exam will aid the committee in determining if the student has learned sufficiently from his/her coursework and is adequately prepared to pursue and complete the research project. Under the guidance of a thesis advisor (chair of thesis committee) the student must complete a laboratory research project involving original research. This research will be reported in a thesis, and the student will defend the thesis research before the advisory committee.
International students may also be required to successfully pass English language courses. These courses will be determined after evaluation by the English Language Institute and consultation with the MS program administrators. English language courses will NOT count toward the 30 credit hours necessary for the master’s degree.
Full-Time vs. Part-Time
A minimum of nine (9) credit hours is considered full-time. International students and students receiving funding that applies to tuition waivers must be registered for a minimum of nine credit hours each semester.
Students are allowed to participate in the program on a part-time basis. A minimum of three credit hours must be taken in Fall and Spring semester. The graduate school has a time limit of four years for the completion of a master’s degree.