MS in Materials Science & Engineering

Columbia Engineering’s program in Materials Science and Engineering offers graduate studies leading to the Master of Science (MS) Students interested in materials science and engineering enroll in the materials science and engineering program in the Department of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics.

Program Requirements

Candidates for the Master of Science degree in Materials Science and Engineering will follow a program of study formulated in consultation with and approved by a faculty adviser. Thirty points of credit are required at a minimum. All degree requirements must be completed within five years. A candidate for the terminal masters degree is required to maintain at least a 2.5 GPA. Students enrolled in the MS/PhD Track program must maintain a 3.0 GPA.

Applicants for admission are required to take the Graduate Record Examinations.

MS students must complete the Professional Development and Leadership Course, ENGI E4000, as a graduation requirement. PhD candidates are strongly encouraged to complete ENGI E6001–6004 and should consult their program for PDL requirements.

Required Courses

Candidates for the Master of Science degree in Materials Science and Engineering will follow a program of study formulated in consultation with and approved by a faculty adviser.  30 points of credit (typically ten three-point courses) are required for the degree.  The requirements include

  • 18 points, MSAE 4000-, 6000-, 8000- level courses (max three points of research)
  • Six (6) points, approved electives (see following list) or MSAE courses
  • Six (6) points, general electives

Of the 30 points of credit required for the MS degree, 18 points of MSAE4000-, 6000-, or 8000- level courses must be included.  Only three points of research (MSAE6273 or other research course) may be used to satisfy the MSAE point requirement.  A minimum of six points of MSAE courses must be taken in the first semester.  Furthermore, it is expected that 15 of the first 24 points taken will be in MSAE courses; any exceptions must be approved by a faculty adviser.

Six points of electives may be chosen either from MSAE courses, or from the following list of approved electives; a course not on the approved list can be counted only with prior, written approval.  

Six points of electives may be chosen freely.  These electives may include MSAE courses, approved electives, other electives, or an additional three points of research, with a maximum of six points of research counted towards the degree requirements.  No undergraduate courses (3000-level or below) may be counted towards the degree. 


If a candidate has already taken one or more of these courses at Columbia University, substitutions from the Electives list must be approved by consultation with their faculty adviser and approval of the program committee. The remaining 12 points will be chosen from elective courses.

The remaining 12 points will be chosen from elective courses list in the 2022-2023 Bulletin.

Similar courses not listed here may be considered by petition, addressed to the APAM Department Student Services Coordinator.

Students interested in a specific focus in Metallurgy or other materials fields should consult their faculty adviser for relevant course listings.

Concentration in Materials Theory and Simulation (MTS)

Computational materials science is a pervasive topic in disciplinary areas of materials science and engineering, as well as in solid state physics, solid state chemistry, earth science, and beyond. The Materials Theory and Simulation (MTS) concentration within the Materials Science and Engineering MS degree program provides students sufficient preparation to begin independent research in this emerging area.


Professional Degree - Metallurgical Engineer

For for engineers who wish to do advanced work beyond the level of the MS degree, but who do not desire to emphasize research, please learn more about our Professional Degree: Metallurgical Engineer


Have a question? Feel free to reach out to our Student Services Coordinator or contact a Materials Science & Engineering Masters only or CVN Advisor.


Graduate Admissions