Materials Science and Engineering M.S.M.S.E.

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Learn more about crystal growth, high-temperature materials and coatings, material stability and degradation, and more in the online Master of Science in Materials Science and Engineering program. No matter how you’re planning to put your degree to use, your UCF online education will provide you with opportunities to continue or begin your career in materials science and engineering.

Field of emphasis and research for materials and engineering include: crystal growth, high-temperature materials and coatings, multicomponent interdiffusion, material stability and degradation, shape memory alloys, mechanical behavior, magnetic and optical and electronical materials, thin films, solar cells, sensors, ceramics, powder metallurgy, non-equilibrium processing of materials, nanosynthesis and consolidation, and nanomaterials including quantum dots nanowires and nanocomposites, biomaterials and electronically active materials. The program requires 30 credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree, and you can select a thesis or nonthesis option. At least one-half of the required credits need to be taken at the 6000 level. Prior to completing your first nine credit hours, you should identify an adviser and file your official degree program of study.


The Materials Science and Engineering MSMSE program offers both thesis and nonthesis options with each requiring a minimum of 30 credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree. In general, the program includes 12-15 credit hours of required courses with the remaining courses being electives except for at least six credit hours of thesis work for students in the thesis option.

The thesis option is primarily for those students who can devote a full-time effort to completing an independent research project that leads to a thesis. A student pursuing the thesis option may not register for thesis credit hours until an advisory committee has been appointed and the committee has reviewed the program of study and the proposed thesis topic.

The nonthesis option is primarily designed for part-time and online students and requires 30 credit hours of course work. In addition, students pursuing the nonthesis option are required to take EML 6085 Research Methods in MAE or EMA 6918 Directed Research as part of their 30-credit-hour course requirement to demonstrate their ability to perform independently in research conditions. See the MSE program director for specific details.

All students are expected to identify an adviser and file an official degree program of study prior to the completion of 9 credit hours of study. All programs of study must consist of at least 24 credit hours of required and elective courses, exclusive of thesis and research. At least half of the credit hours in a program of study must be at the 6000 level. The appropriate program of study form can be found at the program website listed above and students should consult with the MSE program director for assistance in filling out the program of study form and approval. Substitutions to the program of study must meet with the approval of the adviser and the MSE program director.

A student with an undergraduate degree outside of the materials science and engineering discipline is required to satisfy an articulation program and may have to take additional prerequisite courses.


  • Mathematics through Differential Equations (MAP 2302)
  • Structure and Properties of Materials (EGN 3365)
  • Mechanics of Materials (EGN 3331) or Thermodynamics (EGN 3343)
  • Experimental Techniques in Mechanics and Materials (EMA 3012C)

Required Courses (15 Credit Hours)

All students must take five required courses unless they hold a materials engineering undergraduate degree, in which case they may substitute an additional elective for EMA 5104.

  • EMA 5104 Intermediate Structure and Properties of Materials (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5106 Metallurgical Thermodynamics (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5317 Materials Kinetics (3 credit hours)

All students must take one of the two following pairs of required courses.

  • EMA 6126 Physical Metallurgy (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6626 Mechanical Behavior of Materials (3 credit hours)


  • EMA 5060 Polymer Science and Engineering (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6319 Colloids and Interface Engineering (3 credit hours)

Students taking the courses in one required pair may also take the courses in the other required pair as electives.

Elective Courses (9 Credit Hours)

All students, both thesis and nonthesis, must take at least 9 credit hours of electives. Additional electives are listed below. Courses should be selected with faculty adviser approval.

  • EMA 5108 Surface Science (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5140 Introduction to Ceramic Materials (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5504 Modern Characterization of Materials (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6130 Phase Transformation in Metals and Alloys (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6136 Diffusion in Solids (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5585 Materials Science of Thin Film (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6516 X-ray Diffraction and Crystallography (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5586 Photovoltaic Solar Energy Materials (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5584 Biomaterials (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6149 Imperfections in Crystals (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5505 Scanning Electron Microscopy (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5060 Polymer Science and Engineering (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6518 Transmission Electron Microscopy (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5705 High Temperature Materials (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6605 Materials Processing Techniques (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5610 Laser Materials Processing (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 5587C Characterization and Reliability of PV Cells (3 credit hours)
  • EML 6085 Research Methods in MMAE (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6515 X-ray and Auger Electron Spectroscopic Techniques (3 credit hours)
  • EMA 6611 Optoelectronics Materials Processing (3 credit hours)

Electives Outside EMA Offerings

  • CHM 5450 Polymer Chemistry (3 credit hours)
  • CHM 5451C Techniques in Polymer Science (3 credit hours)
  • CHM 5715C Materials Processing and Characterization Techniques (3 credit hours)
  • CHM 6711 Materials Chemistry (3 credit hours)
  • EEE 5332C Thin Film Technology (3 credit hours)
  • EEE 5352 Semiconductor Material and Device Characterization (3 credit hours)
  • EEE 6326C MEMS Fabrication Laboratory (3 credit hours)
  • EML 5290 Introduction to MEMS and Micromachining (3 credit hours)
  • EML 5291 MEMS Materials (3 credit hours)
  • OSE 5312 Fundamentals of Optical Science (3 credit hours)
  • OSE 6432 Fundamentals of Photonics (3 credit hours)
  • PHY 5140C Ion-Solid Interactions (3 credit hours)
  • PHY 7423 Physics of Nanostructures (3 credit hours)
  • PHZ 5405 Condensed Matter Physics (3 credit hours)

These Option (6 Credit Hours)

Thesis students must complete an independent research project, and write and successfully defend their thesis that describes the project.

  • EMA 6971 Thesis (6 credit hours)

The College of Engineering and Computer Science requires that all thesis defense announcements be approved by the student’s adviser and posted on the college’s website and on the Events Calendar at the College of Graduate Studies website at least two weeks before the defense date.

Nonthesis Option (6 Credit Hours)

Nonthesis students are required to demonstrate their ability to perform independently in research conditions by completing either EML 6085 or EMA/EML 6918. In addition, they must take another elective beyond the 9 credit hours of electives described above.

  • EML 6085 Research Methods in MAE (3 credit hours) or EMA 6918 Directed Research (3 credit hours)
  • Elective (3 credit hours)

Career Opportunities

  • manufacturing engineer
  • materials consultant
  • materials production researcher
  • metallurgical engineer
  • patent attorney
  • product/process development scientist
  • research scientist
  • technical sales engineer

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