Masters of Science in Aerospace Engineering (Thesis Option)

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The Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs will advise the student regarding his/her academic program during the first semester, or until the student selects a Graduate Advisor. When a student selects a Graduate Advisor, the student must submit a Graduate Advisor Form to the Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs. In situations where two faculty members are actively involved in advising a student, the student may have a Graduate Advisor and a Graduate Co–Advisor. After the student selects a Graduate Advisor, the responsibility of advising the student in regards to his/her academic and research programs will reside with the Graduate Advisor until the student graduates. The Graduate Advisor or Co–Advisor must be a faculty member of the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE) Department.

A graduate student is strongly discouraged from changing graduate advisors. When an unavoidable circumstance arises and warrants consideration for a change, the student and his/her Graduate Advisor must meet with the Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs to resolve the issue before the student may select another Graduate Advisor.


In order to obtain a Masters of Science degree (thesis option) in Aerospace Engineering, a student must:

  • complete at least 30 total credit hours
  • complete at least 21 credit hours of lecture courses
  • complete at least 6 credit hours of AE 6099
  • complete at least 9 credit hours of lecture courses in the MAE department, at least 3 credit hours of which is at the 6xxx level
  • complete at least 3 credit hours of mathematics, statistics, or computer science; AE/ME: 5830 Applied Computational Methods may be used to satisfy this requirement
  • complete at least 6 credit hours of 6xxx lecture courses
  • complete thesis (see below)
  • pass oral examination (see below)
  • meet seminar requirements (see below)

No course below the 5xxx level may be applied to the degree requirements. A graduate student accumulating 10 or more credit hours of C and F grades shall no longer be a candidate for an advanced degree from Missouri S&T.

In order to earn a graduate degree, all students must achieve a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher in all graduate work taken at Missouri S&T, as well as for all graduate courses listed on the program of study (Form 1 for master’s students and Form 5 for doctoral students).


The thesis is a document embodying the results of the student’s original investigation under the guidance of his/her Advisory Committee. It is expected that this document will yield scholarly products, typically one or more articles worthy of publication in high-quality archival journals. The student’s Advisory Committee will examine the student’s thesis closely for both scientific content and format. The thesis must be formatted appropriately. Formatting specifications and further information regarding theses are available at Formatting Resources.


The oral examination is an oral defense of the student’s thesis. When the thesis is completed, the student distributes a copy to each member of his/her Advisory Committee and arranges a time and place for the oral examination. Each Advisory Committee member should be allowed to examine the thesis for at least seven working days before the oral examination. In order for the student to pass the oral examination, every member of the student’s Advisory Committee must vote affirmatively. Further information regarding the oral examination is available in the Graduate Catalog.

All graduate students are required to attend the Department Seminar Series. 


  1. Register for classes, after consulting with your Graduate Advisor, before each semester. If you do not have a Graduate Advisor, the Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs will act as your academic advisor until you select a Graduate Advisor. It is expected that you will select a Graduate Advisor before the end of your second semester at the latest. Once you select a Graduate Advisor, you submit the Graduate Advisor Form‌‌ to the Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs.
  2. Select, in consultation with your Graduate Advisor, your Advisory Committee. This committee will consist of at least three faculty members, including your Graduate Advisor. At least one half of your Advisory Committee must belong to the graduate faculty. The Chair of the Advisory Committee is your Graduate Advisor.
  3. Complete, in consultation with your Graduate Advisor, Graduate Form 1. This form lists all of the courses you have taken and plan to take, as well as your Advisory Committee members. Your Graduate Form 1 must be submitted to the Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs within the semester in which you take your 9th graduate credit hour. If there are any changes in your coursework or Advisory Committee, you must submit Graduate Form 1A. This form should be done once you are absolutely sure there will be no further changes. The Graduate Form 1 (thesis) Checklist‌‌ can be used to aid this process.
  4. Submit the Application for Graduation by the end of the fourth week of the semester in which you will graduate (second week if you plan to graduate in the Summer semester) to the Office of the Registrar.
  5. Select the date, time, and place of your oral examination, in consultation with your Graduate Advisor. Note: you must be enrolled the semester in which you take your oral examination. Your Graduate Advisor reports the results of your oral examination by submitting Graduate Form 2 to the Associate Chair for Graduate Affairs.
  6. Submit a final copy of your thesis to the Office of Graduate Education.

The following pre-graduation checklist can be used to plan the final steps of your program: Graduation Checklist MS Thesis