Materials Science Ph.D. Program

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Materials Science

 The course work, examinations, research and dissertation necessary to fulfill the requirements for the Ph.D. in Materials Science are prescribed by the Materials Science Department, the School of Engineering, and the Graduate School. The Ph.D. is administered by the Graduate School and certain procedures must be followed to ensure fulfilling all requirements.
The Ph.D. in Materials Science requiring 60 units of course work (academic or research) beyond the Bachelor’s degree, a Screening Examination, a Qualifying Examination, an original investigation (research), a written dissertation, and a final oral dissertation examination.
MASC 501: Solid State
MASC 503: Thermodynamics of Materials
MASC 504: Diffusion and Phase Equilibria
MASC 505: Crystals of Anisotropy
MASC (EE) 471: applied Quantum Mechanics for Engineers
MASC 561: Dislocation Theory and applications
CHE 501: modeling and Analysis ofChemical Engineering Systems
MASC 590 or 790: Research
MASC 794 a,b,c,d: Doctoral Dissertation
*Electives may be selected only from Materials Science, Chemistry, Mathematics, Physics, Geological Sciences, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or Mechanical Engineering, and must be from the 500-level or above.  Electives must be pre-approved by the Graduate Advisor.  Detailed descriptions of each of these courses can be located in the Course Catalog.

A student is officially admitted to candidacy for the Ph.D. degree if the student has successfully: (a) passed the Screening Examination, (b) completed a minimum of 24 units, (c) passed the D.Q.E.

Screening Exam

At the end of the second semester of full time graduate study (normally end of May/beginning of June), Ph.D. students are required to take the Ph.D. Screening Examination. This is a written examination of basic undergraduate/first year graduate chemical engineering and it is intended to test the knowledge of the students in fundamentals of chemical engineering.  The decision to permit the student to become a Ph.D. aspirant is based on the screening examination, the overall academic performance and the successful definition of a research topic.

The Doctoral Qualifying Examination (D.Q.E.)

 At the completion of the course requirements and no later than 2 semesters after passing the Screen Exam, Ph.D. aspirants are required to take the Doctoral Qualifying Examination (D.Q.E.). The primary function of the D.Q.E. is to verify the aspirant’s ability to perform original and creative research, and to report upon it.  The examination consists of two parts:
a.  A written research proposal in acceptable format to be distributed to the five member committee by the aspirant at the initiation of a month-long examination period. This document should consist of a detailed discussion of the proposed research project including literature surveys, past research accomplishments and future plans. It is expected that a substantial portion of the proposition is generated by the student himself.
b.  An oral defense of the above proposal before the entire committee. The student is responsible for scheduling the oral examination at the convenience of the members of the committee.
Both portions of the D.Q.E. must be completed within one month. All committee members must be present for the oral portion of the D.Q.E. More than two votes are sufficient to record the examination as a failure. The D.Q.E. may be repeated only once at the discretion of the committee, in a period not less than six months and not later than one year after the date of the first examination. After passing the D.Q.E., the student is normally expected to be on campus full time.

More information about the screening exam and the qualifying exam is located in the Ph.D Student Handbook.