Science Coursework Structure

All MSE graduate students must complete 30 credit hours including three core MSE courses (9 credits), two required courses from one of the MSE tracks (6 credits), at least two electives from the elective list for that track (6 credits), and at least three breadth electives (9 credits).  All graduate students must declare a track from the list in the coursework section by the second semester.  With the approval of their advisor, the student can change tracks, but all coursework requirements of a track must be completed prior to graduation.    Independent Study and MSE Fundamentals will count as breadth electives.  Pass/fail courses do not count toward the degree.

Special topics or new classes that fit the student’s degree plan can become part of the MSE program by petition. Generally, additions to or substitutions of the core courses are strongly discouraged, change to the track courses are possible but will receive scrutiny and track electives are most easily modified.

MSEN 5000 Fundamentals of Materials Science and Engineering (Boot Camp) will be offered to new incoming graduate students starting August 7th.  It is an intensive 2 week course designed to bring students up to speed in knowledge of key materials science topics prior to the beginning of the fall semester.  Boot camp credits will count toward the breadth elective requirement.

Look up course descriptions in the course catalog: https://catalog.colorado.edu/.

Please be aware that graduate level classes are not necessarily offered every semester or every year.


A. Required Core Courses For All Tracks (3 Courses = 9 Credits)

  • Structure and Bonding of Materials fulfilled by Organic Materials: Structures and Functions (CHEM 5261)
  • Materials Thermodynamics fulfilled by Materials Thermodynamics (MSEN 5370)
  • Kinetic Processes in Materials fulfilled by Nanomaterials (MCEN 5228, section 009)

B. Required Track Specific Courses (2 Courses = 6 Credits)

  • Track 1. Electronic, Magnetic and Photonic Materials:
    • Solid-State Physics
    • Quantum Mechanics
  • Track 2. Soft Materials:
    • Soft Condensed Matter
    • Polymer Chemistry
  • Track 3. Structural Materials:
    • Elasticity
    • Fracture Mechanics
  • Track 4.  Materials For Energy:
    • Solid-State Physics or Inorganic Chemistry
    • Quantum Mechanics
  • Track 5. Biomaterials:
    • Biomaterials
    • Polymer Physics
  • Track 6. Computational Materials Science:
    • Solid-State Physics or Inorganic Chemistry
    • Quantum Mechanics

C. Track Specific Electives (2 Courses = 6 Credits)

  • Track 1. Electronic, Magnetic and Photonic Materials:
    • Introduction to Nanoscience (MCEN 5228)
    • Chemistry of Solar Energy (CHEM 5271)
    • Nanotechnology (CHEN 5838)
    • Principles of Electronic Devices (ECEN 5335)
    • Crystals, Nanocrystals and Device Applications (ECEN 5005)
    • Introduction to Optical Electronics (ECEN 5645)
    • Active Optical Devices (ECEN 5626)
    • Photovoltaic Devices (ECEN 5005)
    • Introduction to Magnetic Materials and Devices (PHYS 5520)
    • Electron and Thermal Transport in Solids (MCEN 5228)
  • Track 2. Soft Materials:
    • Advanced Mechanics of Materials (CVEN 5161)
    • Principles of Continuum Mechanics and Elasticity (CVEN 5131)
    • Organic Functional Materials: Structures and Properties (CHEM 5261)
    • Polymer Engineering (CHEN 5460)
    • Colloids and Interfaces (CHEN 5845)
    • Photopolymerization (CHEN 5838)
    • Biological Interactions to Biomaterials (CHEN 5805)
    • Materials, Chemistry, and Properties (CHEM 5251)
    • Materials Chemistry and Structure ( MCEN 5024)
    • Mechanical Behavior of Materials (MCEN 5044)
    • Mechanics of Composites (MCEN 5183)
    • Materials in Medicine (MCEN 5228)
    • Mechanics of Soft Matter (MCEN 5228)
    • Soft Condensed Matter (PHYS 7430)
    • Biomechanics (MCEN 5228)
    • Structure and Dynamics of Polymers (MCEN 6228)
    • Introduction to Soft Matter (PHYS 7810)
  •  Track 3. Structural Materials:
    • Advanced Mechanics of Materials (CVEN 5161)
    • Advanced Mechanics of Materials 2 (CVEN 6161)
    • Materials, Chemistry, and Properties (CHEM 5251)
    • Introduction to Finite Elements (CVEN 5511)
    • Biological Interactions to Biomaterials (CHEN 5805)
    • Polymer Physics (CHEN 5450)
    • Mechanical Behavior of Materials (MCEN 5228)
    • Solid Mechanics (MCEN 5023)
    • Mechanics of Composites (MCEN 5181)
    • Biomechanics (MCEN 5228)
    • Structure and Dynamics of Polymers (MCEN 6228)
    • Materials Science for Composite Manufacturing (ASEN 5222)
    • Vibrations in Mechanics and Physics (ASEN 5519)
    • Soft Condensed Matter (PHYS 7430)
    • Theoretical Mechanics (PHYS 5210)
    • Non-Linear Dynamics (PHYS 5220)
    • Introduction to Soft Matter (PHYS 7810)
  • Track 4.  Materials For Energy:
    • Introduction to Nanoscience (MCEN 5228)
    • Surface Science (CHEM 5571)
    • Chemistry of Solar Energy: Electricity and Fuels (CHEM 5271)
    • Materials, Chemistry, and Properties (CHEM 5251)
    • Polymer Engineering (CHEN 5460)
    • Nanotechnology (CHEN 5838)
    • Colloids and Interfaces (CHEN 5835)
    • Principles of Electronic Devices 1 (ECEN 5355)
    • Crystals, Nanocrystals And Device Applications (ECEN 5005)
    • Principles of Energy Systems and Devices (ECEN 5555)
    • Photovoltaic Devices (ECEN 5005)
    • Materials Chemistry and Structure (MCEN 5024)
    • Energy Conversion and Storage (MCEN 5228)
    • Theory of Solid State (PHYS 7440)
    • Electron and Thermal Transport in Solids (MCEN 5228)
  • Track 5. Biomaterials:
    • Advanced Mechanics of Materials (CVEN 5161)
    • Principles of Continuum Mechanics and Elasticity (CVEN 5131)
    • Organic Functional Materials: Structures and Properties (CHEM 5261)
    • Biological Interactions to Biomaterials (CHEN 5805)
    • Polymer Engineering (CHEN 5460)
    • Colloids and Interfaces (CHEN 5835)
    • Photopolymerization (CHEN 5838)
    • Materials Chemistry and Structure (MCEN 5024)
    • Materials, Chemistry, and Properties (CHEM 5251)
    • Mechanical Behavior of Materials (MCEN 5044)
    • Mechanics of Composites (MCEN 5183)
    • Soft Condensed Matter (PHYS 7430)
    • Biomechanics (MCEN 5228)
    • Structure and Dynamics of Polymers (MCEN 6228)
    • Introduction to Soft Matter (PHYS 7810)
    • Biochemistry (CHEM 5711)
  • Track 6. Computational Materials Science:
    • Introduction to Finite Elements (CVEN 5511)
    • Introduction to Nanoscience (MCEN 5228)
    • Materials, Chemistry, and Properties (CHEM 5251)
    • Molecular Simulations (CHEN 5838)
    • Molecular Modeling and Simulation (CHEN 5838)
    • Linear Algebra (CSCI 2830)
    • Numerical Computation (CSCI 3656)
    • Theoretical Mechanics (PHYS 5210)

D. Breadth Electives (3 Courses = 9 Credits)

Chosen with approval of Ph.D. research advisor and committee.  Independent Study and Fundamentals of Materials Science and Engineering (Boot Camp) can count as breadth electives.

Applicability of the Student Rules, policies and procedures

1.(1) The student procedures apply, except as otherwise indicated in the rules for this course.

Academic Conduct Essentials module

2.(1) Except as stated in (2), a student who enrols in this course for the first time irrespective of whether they have previously been enrolled in another course of the University, must undertake the Academic Conduct Essentials module (the ACE module).

(2) A student who has previously achieved a result of Ungraded Pass (UP) for the ACE module is not required to repeat the module.

English Language competency requirements

3. To be considered eligible for consideration for admission to this course an applicant must satisfy the University's English language competence requirement as set out in the University Policy on Admission: Coursework.

Admission requirements

4. To be considered for admission to this course an applicant must have—a relevant bachelor's degree, that aligns with one of the specialisations of this course, or an equivalent qualification, as recognised by UWA.

Admission ranking and selection

5. Where relevant, admission will be awarded to the highest ranked applicants or applicants selected based on the relevant requirements.

Articulations and exit awards

6.(1) This course has the following exit awards:

  • 72220 Graduate Certificate in Biological Science (24 points)
  • 72320 Graduate Diploma in Biological Science (48 points)

(2) A student who withdraws from the Master of Biological Science course before completing it, but after completing 24 points at Level 4 or Level 5, which includes the course core units, may apply to the Faculty to be awarded the Graduate Certificate in Biological Science.

(3) A student who withdraws from the Master of Biological Science course before completing it, but after completing 48 points at Level 4 or Level 5, which includes the course core units, may apply to the Faculty to be awarded the Graduate Diploma in Biological Science.

Course structure

7.(1) The course consists of units to a total value of 96 points (maximum value) which includes conversion units to a value of 24 points, course core units and specialisation units. The course comprises the following specialisations:

(2) Units must be selected in accordance with the course structure, as set out in these rules.

(3) Students who have completed a bachelor's degree that aligns with the chosen specialisation in the course are granted credit for conversion units up to a value of 24 points.

Satisfactory progress

8. A student who does not pass units to a value of at least half the total points value of units for which they are enrolled, or who fails the same unit twice, will not have made satisfactory progress.

9. A student who has not achieved a result of Ungraded Pass (UP) for the ACE module when their progress status is assessed will not have made satisfactory progress even if they have met the other requirements for satisfactory progress in Rule 8.

Progress status

10. A student who fails to make satisfactory progress under Rule 8 is assigned a progress status of 'Excluded' unless the Faculty decides otherwise in light of exceptional circumstances.

11. A student who does not make satisfactory progress in terms of Rule 9 is assigned the progress status of 'On Probation', unless they have been assigned a progress status of 'Suspended' or 'Excluded' for failure to meet other satisfactory progress requirements in Rule 8.

Award with distinction

12. To be awarded the degree with distinction a student must achieve a course weighted average mark (WAM) of at least 80 per cent in—

(a) all units above Level 3 attempted as part of the course that are awarded a final percentage mark;

(b) all relevant units above Level 3 undertaken in articulating courses of this University that are awarded a final percentage mark;

and

(c) all units above Level 3 completed at this University that are credited to the master's degree course.

Additional rules
Research project

13. Students who request approval to undertake a research project as options in this course must—

(a) have a weighted average mark of at least 65 per cent in at least 24 points of Level 3 units in their UWA undergraduate major. These units must be relevant to the master's specialisation;

or

(b) have a weighted average mark of at least 65 per cent in at least 24 points of Level 3, 4 and 5 units completed within the course; or equivalent as recognised by the Faculty.

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