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Oklahoma State University

MS Degree Program

A M.S. degree in Chemical Engineering from Oklahoma State University signifies that the recipient has demonstrated advanced knowledge of fundamental chemical engineering topics. In addition, an M.S. graduate has exhibited the ability to integrate this knowledge to solve complex quantitative problems in a logical manner.

Objectives

Specific educational objectives have been established for the M.S. degree program, and can be met through a combination of course work, independent study, and other mechanisms (e.g., seminar). These objectives are shown below, along with the criteria used to assess success in achieving them.

Educational Objectives

Outcome Assessments

1. Build upon and expand the student’s undergraduate education by emphasizing depth in thermodynamics, transport phenomena, kinetics, and mathematical modeling

Complete the “core” courses in the M.S. curriculum

2. Expand personal knowledge of the broad range of applications of chemical engineering

Complete three credits of Chemical Engineering Seminar (CHE 6010)

3. Refine the ability to define a research problem and develop a plan for its solution

Complete CHE 5302 Introduction to Scientific and Engineering Research

4. Attain additional knowledge (breadth and/or depth) in topics related to chemical engineering

Complete elective courses related to the student’s career objectives

5. Develop the skills required to work independently to solve unique problems in chemical engineering

Complete an M.S. thesis research project

6. Develop effective written and oral communications skills

Write and defend a M.S. thesis

 

Course Requirements

A minimum of thirty (30) semester credit hours is required by the university for graduation; this requirement is met by the CHE M.S. curriculum, which is summarized as follows:

Items

Course Description

Credit Hours

Core courses

CHE 5123 – Advanced Chemical Reaction Engineering

CHE 5213 – Advanced Transport Phenomena

CHE 5743 – Chemical Engineering Process Modeling

CHE 5843 – Principles of Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics

CHE 5302 – Introduction to Scientific and Engineering Research

14

Seminar

CHE 6010 – Chemical Engineering Seminar

3

Elective

Graduate-approved elective (CHE or other) courses, selected by the student with approval of the student's advisor.

7

Thesis

CHE 5000 – M.S. Thesis

6

 

TOTAL

30

The emphasis in course work during the M.S. degree is on depth of understanding of subject matter and on preparing students for careers in the areas of interest. Depth is obtained through “core” courses that address knowledge that is expected of all chemical engineers, while other courses are targeted toward the student’s research and specific career interests. The core areas include fundamentals and applications of mathematical modeling, thermodynamics, kinetics and transport phenomena. The courses are structured to expand and add depth to the students’ undergraduate knowledge.

Additional “elective” courses must be selected from graduate-approved courses in any department, with the advice and consent of the student’s research advisor. During the fall and spring semesters, students will participate in a seminar class that will give them an overview of – and appreciation for – the wide range of chemical engineering knowledge and applications. Students also complete “research” courses, which includes working with their research advisors on their M.S. thesis research projects.

Students may transfer credit hours taken from another accredited college or university to a graduate degree at OSU.  For the M.S. degree, a student may transfer a maximum of nine credit hours. Transfer credits must have grades of “B” or better, be less than ten years old at the time of the student’s graduation, and approved by the Graduate Program Advisory Committee.

Transfer of Credits and Course Exemptions

Students may transfer credit hours taken from another accredited college or university to a graduate degree at OSU.  For the M.S. degree, a student may transfer a maximum of nine credit hours.  Transfer credits must have grades of “B” or better, be less than ten years old at the time of the student’s graduation, and approved by the Graduate Program Advisory Committee.

Minimum Enrollment

The following outlines the minimum enrollment that is required by the Graduate College.  Additional requirements for international students can be found at the site: Enrollment and Progress towards degree

  • To be considered full time in the fall/spring semester, a student needs to be enrolled in at least nine (9) hours. However, to qualify for an assistantship:
    • A student with an assistantship of 0.50 FTE or greater must be enrolled in at least six (6) hours to be considered full time.
    • A student with an assistantship of less than 0.50 FTE must still be enrolled in nine (9) hours to be considered full time.
  • To be considered full time in the summer, a student needs to be enrolled in at least two (2) hours.
  • In the semester (Fall, Spring, or Summer) during which a student intends to graduate: A student who does not hold an assistantship or who does not need to be declared full time must be enrolled in a minimum of two (2) hours.
  • Any semester that a student who is utilizing physical or faculty resources of the University (to include complete course requirements, creative component work, sitting for comprehensive exams, research leading to a thesis or dissertation, defending a thesis or dissertation, revising a thesis or dissertation, etc.) must be enrolled in a minimum of 2 hours.

The program has the following minimum enrollment requirements:

  • All required CHE core courses must be taken during the first year
  • CHE 6010 – Chemical Engineering Seminar must be taken each fall and spring semester

The following is a sample schedule that meets the minimum degree and enrollment requirements.  The student should work with his/her advisor and the Graduate Program Director to determine the best balance of course work and research hours to complete the degree in a timely manner.

Advisory Committee

The advisory committee must include a minimum of three members of the Graduate Faculty with at least two from the School of Chemical Engineering.  The chair of the committee need not necessarily serve as the student's research advisor, but must hold an OSU faculty appointment and have familiarity with the academic requirements of the degree sought.  The general responsibilities of the Advisory Committee include advising the graduate student and assessing the student’s progress as follows:  (1) meeting regularly, (2) assisting with developing the Plan of Study as well as its approval and revisions, (3) assisting with the planning, conducting and/or redirecting of the research, (4) supervising the writing of the thesis, (5) conducting the thesis defense, and (6) approving the final research document. The student and the members of the Advisory Committee should consult regularly to review the progress of the student’s work. 

Graduate students must work collaboratively with their research Advisor, Advisory Committee Chair and/or Graduate Program Coordinator to recommend membership for their Advisory Committee. It would be very difficult, if not impossible, to successfully complete a graduate degree with an Advisory Committee composition that is not supported by the research Advisor. Recommendations for Advisory Committee membership should be based on expertise of the faculty member and his/her ability to positively contribute to the graduate student’s education.  The student should meet with potential Advisory Committee members prior to recommending them to better understand their experience, availability, mentoring style and willingness to serve as an Advisor Committee member.

Plan of Study

The student should develop the Plan of Study with the advisor and committee using the online Plan of Study application (http:// planofstudy.okstate.edu/). The online submission requires approval by the advisory committee and the student's graduate program with final approval by the Graduate College.  The student should meet with the Graduate Program Director to review the Plan of Study, prior to submitting the plan for approval.

The original Plan of Study must be submitted to the Graduate College prior to the end of the second semester (excluding summer sessions) of enrollment in the master’s program. The plan must include all the acceptable graduate work that has been completed and all that will be taken for the master’s degree.

Changes in the Plan of Study can be made with the approval of the advisory committee and the dean of the Graduate College. A final, accurate and approved plan must be filed by the eighth week of the semester in which the degree is to be conferred.

Thesis and Final Examination

Each M.S. candidate must prepare a written thesis and defend it before his/her Advisory Committee as the final examination. The subject of the thesis must be approved by the Advisory Committee and the thesis is prepared under the direction of members of the committee.  The thesis must follow specifications in the Graduate College Thesis/Dissertation Guidelines available at https://gradcollege.okstate.edu/tdg. The style of the document is to be determined by the Advisory Committee and should be reflective of publications in the student’s discipline.  Any graduate student writing a thesis must attend a format workshop prior to submission of their final copy.  The dates for the workshops are on the Graduate College calendar and a webinar version is available.

The student must submit a final draft of his/her thesis to the Advisory Committee at least two (2) weeks prior to the defense date for the final examination.  The defense will be announced within the School and to any outside parties that the student and/or advisor deem relevant.  The candidate will be allotted 20 – 30 minutes to summarize the objectives, methods, results and conclusions of the research. Following the candidate’s presentation, all those in attendance will be permitted to ask questions for a period of time deemed reasonable by the Chair of the Advisory Committee.  After the public questioning, the audience will be excused, and the Advisory Committee will pursue any further lines of questioning deemed appropriate. The student is then dismissed, and the committee deliberates in private. When a decision is reached the committee informs the student of their decision. The committee will normally reach one of the following conclusions:

  • The candidate has completed the CHE M.S. thesis requirement,
  • The candidate must revise the thesis to the satisfaction of the Advisory Committee, with possible reexamination, or
  • The candidate has failed the examination and is dismissed from the M.S. program or converted to the Creative Component option.

The committee will notify the Graduate College immediately of results of the final examination. Following satisfactory completion of the final examination, the candidate will make changes in the thesis as required by the committee and by the Graduate College, and submit it in final form signed by the committee to the Graduate College by the semester deadline. The student should submit an electronic copy of the thesis through the OSU electronic submission website. Directions for the website submission are given to the student when he or she submits the Oral Defense Results Form to the Graduate College. The student must also submit an electronic copy of the thesis to his/her Advisory Committee and the Graduate Program Director.  In addition, the student must submit to the Graduate College one paper copy of the approval page with all original signatures and the student's name and CWID number entered at the top of the page. Both the electronic submission and paper approval page must be received no later than the stated final copy submission deadline date (see the Graduate College Calendar for dates).

Non-Thesis Option

The M.S. degree may also be earned by the Non-Thesis option (Plan III with the Graduate College).  A minimum of thirty-two (32) semester credits is required by the university for graduation and is summarized below.  The elective courses must be approved by the student’s advisor.  The CHE 5990 course must be completed and requires the submission of a report (a “mini-thesis”) that must be approved by the Advisory Committee.  The Non-Thesis option is used only in unusual cases and only at the recommendation of the student’s Advisory Committee.  Students in the non-thesis option are not eligible for financial support from the School.

Items

Course Description

Credit Hours

Core courses

CHE 5123 – Advanced Chemical Reaction Engineering

CHE 5213 – Advanced Transport Phenomena

CHE 5743 – Chemical Engineering Process Modeling

CHE 5843 – Principles of Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics

CHE 5302 – Introduction to Scientific and Engineering Research

14

Seminar

CHE 6010 – Chemical Engineering Seminar

3

Elective

Graduate-approved elective (CHE or other) courses, selected by the student with approval of the student's advisor.

13

Creative Component

CHE 5990 – Special Problems

2

 

TOTAL

32

Minimum Performance Requirements

Satisfactory academic performance is required of all students in the graduate program. Minimum acceptable performance is evaluated as follows.

If a student receives a grade of “C” in any CHE course, the student’s performance will be reviewed before the beginning of the next semester or summer term by the Advisory Committee (or Graduate Program Director and Advisor, if an Advisory Committee has not been formed) with input from the course instructor(s).  A decision regarding the student’s retention or dismissal from the program will be made, based on a) overall classroom performance, b) progress to date on the research topic, and c) the faculty’s assessment of the student’s prospect for successful future progress in the graduate program.  Results of this review may include, but are not limited to:

·         Continuation in the program,

·         Required enrollment in remedial course work,

·         Required defense of research progress to date and/or an effective outline of future research plans, or

·         Dismissal from the graduate program

In all cases, any CHE course with a grade of “C” must be repeated at the next offering of the course.  A grade of “C” in a second course will again result in a review of the student’s progress. In all but the rarest cases, a second “C” in a CHE course (or a “D” or “F” in any course) will result in dismissal from the graduate program.  Further, at the completion of 25 or more credit hours in the program, the student must have a cumulative grade point average (exclusive of CHE 5000, 5990 and 6000) of no less than 3.00/4.00.

In all cases where satisfactory performance is in question, the Advisory Committee has the prerogative to alter the degree program of the student.  The student may be reassigned to a “Creative Component” option (see section above).  For such a reassignment the student will not be eligible to pursue the Ph.D. degree in Chemical Engineering at OSU. A Ph.D. candidate may be reassigned to the M.S. program and expected to complete all requirements for that degree.  For such a reassignment, the student will not be eligible to pursue the Ph.D. degree in Chemical Engineering at OSU.