The M.S. degree is perceived to be scholarly or fundamental and is well suited to students who wish to prepare for a professional career and also to measure their ability to pursue a Ph.D. without commitment of extra time beyond that required for an M.S.
Students completing the M.S. degree will write a thesis based on a research topic chosen by the student and a professor who serves as the academic adviser. The topic is chosen based on mutual interests and needs. Course work typically focuses on subjects related to the research topic. The corresponding thesis, independently written by the student as a single author, must be approved by the adviser as well as two additional committee members from the department’s faculty (Master’s Committee). A thesis defense will be presented to this committee.
In addition to the Institute requirements and those listed above, the M.S. requires a total of 30 credits, 6 of which come from the thesis. All courses used to earn the master’s degree must be taken at the 4000- or 6000-level. No 4000- level (or 6000-level) courses used to complete undergraduate degree requirements may be counted towards the completion of a graduate degree.