Graduate Catalog

Francis College of Engineering

The education of engineers in state-of-the-art areas of advanced technology and the UMass Lowell's commitment to national and regional economic development are the major premises upon which the graduate programs in the College of Engineering are based. These programs are intended to produce engineers whose education not only develops expertise in the design, development and production of products, but also an understanding of the management involved in the creation of new products, companies and service organizations. Thus, the graduate programs in engineering are intended to educate engineers capable of keeping abreast with the rapidly changing technology that characterizes the high technology economy of the Northeast and for research careers in academia, industry and government. These graduate programs lead to degrees of Master of Science in Engineering, Master of Science, Doctor of Philosophy, and Doctor of Engineering. The College is led by Joseph Hartman, Ph.D., Dean of the Francis College of Engineering.  The graduate programs for the College are overseen by James A. Sherwood, Associate Dean of Graduate Studies.

On this page you will find:

Graduate Programs Offered

The Master of Science in Engineering (M.S. Eng.) degree awarded in the following fields:

The Master of Science (M.S.) degree awarded in the following fields: 

The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree awarded through the College of Engineering in the following options:

The Doctor of Engineering (D.Eng.) degree awarded through the College of Engineering in the following options:

The intent of the Doctor of Engineering/Doctor of Philosophy (D.Eng./Ph.D.) programs is to prepare engineers for leadership and research positions in industry, academia and government. The doctoral programs include advanced graduate course work in engineering and allied subjects and research culminating in a doctoral dissertation. The Ph.D. degree is oriented more towards academic research, while the D.Eng. degree is oriented more toward industry. 

A total of 63 credit hours of graduate level courses are required for both the Ph.D. and D.Eng. degrees.  These credits are composed of the following components:

  • The Ph.D. degree must involve a traditional research-based dissertation, plus:  
    • A minimum of 30 approved credit hours of graduate-level engineering including associated science and math courses.
    • A minimum of 21 credit hours of doctoral dissertation.
    • The balance of the remaining 12 credits can be a mix of graduate-level engineering including associated science and math course and dissertation credits at the discretion of the department, faculty advisor and dissertation committee. 

  • The D.Eng. degree must involve a dissertation, which can be either a traditional research-based dissertation or an industry-based project, plus:
    • 33 approved credit hours of graduate-level engineering including associated science and math courses.
    • 21 credit hours of doctoral dissertation.
    • 9 credit hours of approved management-type courses.

In addition to this 63 semester hours of approved graduate courses and dissertation:

  • The student must have a minimum grade point average of 3.25 to graduate.
  • The student is required to take and pass the doctoral qualifying examination. 

Dissertations which are industrial in orientation should use the D.Eng. degree, based upon discussion with the supervising faculty advisor.  Students may elect either degree designation with the consent of the faculty advisor, subject to the requirements of each degree.

Options are offered in the following areas:

  • Computer Engineering
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Plastics Engineering
  • Civil and Environmental Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Energy Engineering (jointly administered by Mechanical Engineering and Chemical Engineering)
Rules and requirements vary slightly with the administering department.

Common Admission Requirements

Admission to the program will be based on review by Graduate Admissions and by the Admissions Committee of each administering Department.  Applicants are required to submit the following items to Graduate Admissions:
  • Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores
  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) exam scores are required for international students 
  • Three letters of recommendation.
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Application fee
  • Application form
  • Official transcripts. 
Doctoral programs in the College of Engineering may also require a BS or MS in Engineering or a closely related field.
Depending on the option selected, students may be required to make up prerequisites which they lack in comparison to the equivalent Engineering curriculum at the University of Massachusetts Lowell. 

Transfer Credits

  1. A student with a master’s degree in Engineering or a closely related field may apply to have coursework for the master's degree up to a total of 24 credits.  
  2. A student with graduate-level work completed at a credited US or Canadian university may apply for transfer of up to 24 semester credits in acceptable graduate engineering courses (with grade of B or better) towards the doctoral program, upon approval by the Department Graduate Coordinator.
  3. In cases where a student has an M.B.A., or has completed the Business Administration Minor for Engineering students, in addition to a B.S. in engineering or a closely related field, portions of the management component of the Doctor of Engineering program may be waived upon review by the administering department. 
Note: Students may be required to make up prerequisites which they lack in comparison to the equivalent Engineering curriculum at the University of Massachusetts Lowell.

Common Doctoral Degree Requirements

In addition to 63 semester hours of approved graduate credits and thesis:
  1. The student must have a minimum grade point average of 3.25 to graduate.
  2. Students are required to take and pass a doctoral qualifying examination before they are officially classified as a doctoral candidate.

Doctoral Qualifying Examination

  1. The doctoral qualifying examination is administered on a declared schedule, usually twice each year.  The timing and format of the doctoral qualifying examination may vary by department.   
  2. The student is permitted two attempts at passing the doctoral qualifying examination. 
  3. If this first attempt at the doctoral qualifying examination is unsatisfactory, a second and final attempt at passing the exam must occur at the next offering of the qualifying exam. Failure to schedule or to participate in the qualifying exam process as outlined will be considered a failed attempt. 
  4. Students failing the doctoral exam twice will automatically be dismissed from the doctoral program. 
  5. Students who do not take the examination at the prescribed time may lose all their financial support, if any, and may be dismissed from the doctoral program.
  6. The decision of each administering Department regarding whether a student has passed the qualifying exam is final.  

Doctoral Dissertation Proposal

Each student is required to submit and defend a dissertation proposal before a Department Doctoral Committee.  This committee shall be comprised of the departmental faculty advisor and at least two other faculty members.  This committee may or may be the same as the dissertation research committee for the student.  Upon approval by this Department Doctoral Committee, the doctoral graduate coordinator for the department will notify the Vice Provost for Graduate Education and the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies in the College of Engineering that the student is now formally a candidate for the Doctor of Engineering/Doctor of Philosophy degree.  Admission to candidacy status does not guarantee awarding of the doctoral degree. 

Dissertation 

After a student has chosen an area of research and a research advisor, a Dissertation Committee is selected by the student and his or her research advisor in accordance with the policy of the department. The Dissertation Committee shall consist of at least three members, one of whom is the research supervisor and at least two of whom shall be from the student's major department. An outside expert from industry or another university may be a member of the committee, but that individual must possess academic credentials which would qualify him or her to serve as a member of the University of Massachusetts Lowell faculty. The responsibilities of the Dissertation Committee shall be to: 
  1. Approve the research topic; 
  2. Supervise the progress of the dissertation; 
  3. Read, evaluate, and approve or disapprove of the written dissertation; 
  4. Hear, evaluate and approve or disapprove of the oral defense of the dissertation; 
  5. Report the completion of all dissertation requirements to the department and the Registrar's Office.

The Thesis Guide is available on the University Registrar's website: www.uml.edu/docs/thesis_guide_tcm18-3515.pdf.
 

Nontechnical/Management Courses for Doctor of Engineering

D.Eng. students are required to take a minimum of 9 credits of graduate nontechnical/management courses from a list of approved courses offered within the College of Engineering or College of Management.

Approved nontechnical/management graduate courses from the College of Engineering
(3 credits each):
22.576  Engineering Project Management 
26.507  Plastics Industry Organization 
26.514  Statistics for Six Sigma 
26.515  Lean Plastics Manufacturing 
26.537  Business Law for Engineers 
26.540  Commercial Development of Polymeric Systems 
26.590  Survey of Intellectual Property 

Approved management graduate courses from the College of Management (3 credits each):
60.601 Accounting Information for Management Decisions (Pre/Co-requisite 60.501) 
61.501 Business Finance 
63.601 Management Information Systems 
66.511 Global Enterprise & Competition 
66.615 New Venture Creation 
66.516 New Product Development Processes 
66.617 New Venture Practicum 
63.671 Operations Management 
63.672 Global Supply Chain Management 
63.673 Service Management
63.690 Management Quality Control 

Other Doctoral Programs

The Doctor of Philosophy in Physics (Ph.D.) degree awarded through the College of Arts and Sciences in the following fields: 

The Doctor of Philosophy in Chemistry (Ph.D.) degree awarded through the College of Arts and Sciences in the following fields: 

The Doctor of Science (Sc.D.) degree awarded through the College of Health Sciences in the following field: 

Links to Department Sections in This Graduate Academic Catalog: