Graduate Program

The Department of Mechanical Engineering offers programs leading to a degree of Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering.

Requirements for a Degree

There are three options for the degree of Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering (MSME):

Thesis Option: 31 credit hours

  • 15 to 18 credit hours of course work in engineering
  • Up to 3 credit hours of course work in supporting areas
  • 6 credit hours of thesis
  • 6 credit hours of MA 507 and MA 508
  • 1 credit hour of EG 501

Project Option: 34 credit hours

  • 18 to 24 credit hours of course work in engineering
  • Up to 6 credit hours of course work in supporting areas
  • 3 credit hours of project
  • 6 credit hours of MA 507 and MA 508
  • 1 credit hour of EG 501

Course Option: 33 credit hours

  • 21 to 27 credit hours of course work in engineering
  • Up to 6 credit hours of course work in supporting areas
  • 6 credit hours of MA 507 and MA 508

A maximum of six credit hours of directed independent study (ME 592) may be counted toward the degree.

Supporting areas include mathematics, natural sciences, basic medical sciences, computer sciences, statistics, business, as well as engineering. The following graduate courses are pre-approved as courses in supporting areas:

  • CIS 506: Information Systems in Organizations
  • MGT 540: Survey of quantitative Methods
  • ISC 545: Management Information Systems
  • MA 567: Operations Research
  • ST 540: Statistics in Research I

The thesis or project candidate must present a satisfactory oral defense of the written report. Should the student present an unsatisfactory defense, a second attempt will be allowed not sooner than 12 weeks after the first attempt. A second unsatisfactory defense will result in dismissal from the program.

An engineering senior at the University of South Alabama who has completed 96 semester hours with a GPA of 3.00 or better may, with approval of the Director of Graduate Studies, enroll in graduate engineering courses in accordance with Graduate School policies.

Core Requirements

MSME students must complete at least one course from each of the three core areas below. ME 575 can count toward the requirements as either a solid-mechanics or a fluid-mechanics course, but not both. A student in the Course Work option or in the Project option must take a fourth core course which may be selected from any of the three core areas.

Solid Mechanics:

  • ME 538: Finite Element Analysis
  • ME 571: Advanced Engineering Dynamics
  • ME 573: Vibrations of Continuous Systems
  • ME 575: Continuum Mechanics
  • ME 583: Applied Elasticity

Fluid Mechanics:

  • ME 520: Advanced Fluid Mechanics
  • ME 560: Compressible Fluid Flow
  • ME 575: Continuum Mechanics

Thermal Sciences:

  • ME 540: Advanced Heat Transfer
  • ME 551: Classical Thermodynamics

Satisfactory Progress Requirement

During the first two semesters (excluding the summer semester) in the MSME program,

  • a full-time student must complete the following courses: MA 507, MA 508 and at least two core courses (see list above);
  • a part-time student must at least complete MA 507 and either MA 508 or a core course.

A maximum of two grades of "C" may be applied to meet this requirement. Students who fail to fulfill the satisfactory progress requirement will not be allowed to continue in the program.