The Department of Mechanical Engineering offers programs of study leading to the degrees of Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering and Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.). The Ph.D. program is administered by the College of Engineering. These programs offer high-level graduate courses and a close student-faculty interaction. The master's program requires 30 semester credit hours of study, including at least 24 course credits and 6 credits of research for the thesis option. All students except graduate and research assistants may elect to write a thesis or choose a non-thesis option. The main objective of the M.S. graduate programs is to provide a balance of theory and practical knowledge needed either to practice in the profession or to advance to a doctoral program.