At the graduate level, the Mechanical Engineering program aligns academic course work with research to prepare scholars in specialized areas within the field.
Areas of specialization range from automatic controls, energy systems, fluid mechanics, heat transfer and solid mechanics to biomechanical engineering, MEMS and design. Through course work and guided research, the program prepares students to make original contributions in Mechanical Engineering and related fields.
Stanford is consistently ranked among the world’s top institutions for post-graduate Mechanical Engineering studies. The National Research Council’s last study of American doctoral programs ranked Stanford No. 1 in Mechanical Engineering, while US News and World Report’s graduate school rankings have named Stanford’s ME program at No. 2. Incoming graduate students work one-on-one with faculty who are at the forefront of technological innovation.
A master’s degree program leading to the MS is offered in Mechanical Engineering, and a master’s degree program leading to the MS is offered in Engineering with a choice of the following fields of study: Biomechanical Engineering, Product Design and an individually designed major. The department also offers two post-master's degrees: Engineer and Doctor of Philosophy.
The master’s program consists of 45 units of course work taken at Stanford. No thesis is required, although many students become involved in research projects during the master’s program, particularly to explore their interests in working towards a Ph.D. degree. Students whose undergraduate backgrounds are entirely devoid of some of the major subject disciplines of engineering (for example, applied mechanics, applied thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, ordinary differential equations) may need to take some undergraduate courses to fill obvious gaps and prepare themselves to take graduate courses in these areas. Such students may require more than three quarters to fulfill the master’s degree requirements, as the makeup courses may only be used as unrestricted electives (see item 4 below) in the M.S. degree program. However, it is not the policy to require fulfillment of mechanical engineering B.S. degree requirements to obtain an M.S. degree.
The master’s degree program requires 45 units of course work taken as a graduate student at Stanford. No thesis is required. However, students who want some research experience during the master’s program may participate in research through ME 391 Engineering Problems and ME 392Experimental Investigation of Engineering Problems.
Students are encouraged to refer to the most recent Mechanical Engineering Graduate Student Handbook provided by the student services office. The department’s requirements for the M.S. in Mechanical Engineering are as follows:
|ENGR 341||Micro/Nano Systems Design and Fabrication||3-5|
|ME 203||Design and Manufacturing||4|
|ME 210||Introduction to Mechatronics||4|
|ME 220||Introduction to Sensors||3-4|
|ME 218A||Smart Product Design Fundamentals||4-5|
|ME 218B||Smart Product Design Applications||4-5|
|ME 218C||Smart Product Design Practice||4-5|
|ME 218D||Smart Product Design: Projects||3-4|
|ME 250||Internal Combustion Engines||3-5|
|ME 310A||Product-Based Engineering Design, Innovation, and Development||4|
|ME 310B||Product-Based Engineering Design, Innovation, and Development||4|
|ME 310C||Project-Based Engineering Design, Innovation, and Development||4|
|ME 318||Computer-Aided Product Creation||4|
|ME 323||Modeling and Identification of Mechanical Systems for Control||3|
|ME 324||Precision Engineering||4|
|ME 348||Experimental Stress Analysis||3|
|ME 354||Experimental Methods in Fluid Mechanics||4|
|ME 367||Optical Diagnostics and Spectroscopy Laboratory||4|
|ME 385||Tissue Engineering Lab||1-2|
|ME 391/392||Engineering Problems||1-10|
|Or other independent study courses may satisfy this requirement if 3 units are taken for work involving laboratory experiments|
Candidates for the M.S. in Mechanical Engineering are expected to have the approval of the faculty; they must maintain a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 in the 45 units presented for fulfillment of degree requirements (exclusive of independent study courses). All courses used to fulfill mathematics, depth, breadth, approved electives, and lab studies must be taken for a letter grade (excluding seminars, independent study, and courses for which a letter grade is not an option for any student).
Students falling below a GPA of 2.5 at the end of 20 units may be disqualified from further registration. Students failing to meet the complete degree requirements at the end of 60 units of graduate registration are disqualified from further registration. Courses used to fulfill deficiencies arising from inadequate undergraduate preparation for mechanical engineering graduate work may not be applied to the 45 units required for completion of the MS degree.
As described in the "School of Engineering" section of this bulletin, each department in the school may sponsor students in a more general degree, the M.S. in Engineering. Sponsorship by the Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME) requires (1) filing a petition for admission to the program by no later than the day before instruction begins, and (2) that the center of gravity of the proposed program lies in ME. No more than 18 units used for the proposed program may have been previously completed. The program must include at least 9 units of graduate-level work in the department other than ME 300A,B,C, seminars, and independent study. The petition must be accompanied by a statement explaining the program objectives and how it is coherent, contains depth, and fulfills a well-defined career objective. The grade requirements are the same as for the M.S. in Mechanical Engineering.
Master of Science in Engineering, Biomechanical Engineering
The Master of Science in Engineering: Biomechanical Engineering (MSE:BME) promotes the integration of engineering mechanics and design with the life sciences. Applicants are expected to have an additional exposure to biology and/or bioengineering in their undergraduate studies. Students planning for subsequent medical school studies are advised to contact Stanford's Premedical Advising Office in Sweet Hall.
Students wishing to pursue this program must complete the Graduate Program Authorization form and get approval from the Student Services Office. This form serves to officially add the field to the student's record. This form must be filled out electronically on Axess. The Mechanical Engineering Department does not have a coterminal Biomechanical Engineering Master's program.
|ME 239||Mechanics of the Cell||3|
|ME 280||Skeletal Development and Evolution||3|
|ME 281||Biomechanics of Movement||3|
|ME 287||Mechanics of Biological Tissues||3|
|ME 337||Mechanics of Growth||3|
|ME 381||Orthopaedic Bioengineering||3-4|
|ME 385||Tissue Engineering Lab||1-2|
|ME 387||Soft Tissue Mechanics||3|
All courses except unrestricted electives must be taken for a letter grade unless letter grades are not an option. A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required for degree conferral.
The master's program in Design focuses on the synthesis of technology with human needs and market viability (both profit and nonprofit models) to create innovative products, services and experiences. This program is offered by the Department of Mechanical Engineering. It provides a design thinking education that seeks to create design leaders who can transform organizations into cultures of creativity and innovation. Students completing the program will earn a Master of Science in Engineering degree with a concentration in Design (MSE-Design). Students complete the core product design courses in their first year of graduate study at Stanford before undertaking the master's project in their second year.
Please check with the Mechanical Engineering Department Student Services Office for updates on degree requirements.
Students must complete the following courses. Students making unsatisfactory degree progress by the end of the first year, at the faculty's discretion, may not advance to the second year (Masters Project Year). A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 and 54 units are required for degree conferral.
|ME 203||Design and Manufacturing||4|
|ME 277||Graduate Design Research Techniques||3-4|
|ME 391||Engineering Problems (Instructor: Nicole Kahn)||3-4|
|ME 313||Human Values and Innovation in Design||3|
|ME 316A/316B/316C||Product Design Master's Project *||2-6|
|Approved Electives - including at least one d.School class **||24-34|
ME 316A Product Design Master's Project and B/C are taken sequentially for three quarters during the second year. ME316B & C are listed on the d.school website as Design Garage: A Deep Dive in Design Thinking. Students in the program take this sequence for 2-6 units (typically 4 unit) per quarter.
Students may choose classes (at the 200 level or higher) from any of the schools at the University to fulfill their elective requirement. However, electives that are not already pre-approved must be approved by the student's adviser via petition prior to enrollment. Electives should be chosen to fulfill career objectives; students may focus their energy in engineering, entrepreneurship and business, psychology, or other areas relevant to design. Taking a coherent sequence of electives focused on a subject area is recommended. For example, the patent, negotiation, and licensing classes (ME 208Patent Law and Strategy for Innovators and Entrepreneurs, ME 265 Technology Licensing and Commercialization) constitute a sequence most relevant to potential inventors. Students interested in social entrepreneurship should apply to the d.school course ME 206A Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability,B, Extreme Affordability.
Note: All required and approved electives must be taken for a letter grade, if offered, unless prior approval is granted to take a class CR/NC.
Pre-approved electives list
The following courses are pre-approved for fulfilling the elective requirement for the Masters Degree in Engineering - Design. Electives not on this list must be approved via petition prior to enrollment. Electives must be taken for a letter grade unless prior approval is obtained.
|ME 218A/218B/218C||Smart Product Design Fundamentals *||4-5|
|ME 238||Patent Prosecution||2|
|ME 208||Patent Law and Strategy for Innovators and Entrepreneurs||2-3|
|ME 212||Calibrating the Instrument||1|
|ME 265||Technology Licensing and Commercialization||3|
|ME 297||Forecasting for Innovators:Technology, Tools & Social Change||3|
|ME 315||The Designer in Society||3|
|MS&E 273||Technology Venture Formation||3-4|
|STRAMGT 353||Entrepreneurship: Formation of New Ventures||4|
|STRAMGT 356/366||The Startup Garage: Design||4|
Students who opt to take ME 218A/B/C-Smart Products as one of their pre-approved electives should take the sequence during the first year.
As part of their master's degree program, and in addition to Design Garage (ME316B/C), students are required to take at least one course offered by the Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (the d.School). All d.School courses require applications submitted the quarter prior to the start of class. All d.School classes (with the exception of 'pop-ups') count as pre-approved electives. Suggested classes are found below.
|ME 206A/206B||Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability *||4|
|ENGR 231||Transformative Design||3-5|
|ENGR 280||From Play to Innovation||2-4|
|ENGR 281||d.media 4.0 - Designing Media that Matters||2-3|
|ME 301||LaunchPad:Design and Launch your Product or Service||4|
Students who opt to take ME 206A/B Entrepreneurial Design for Extreme Affordability as one of their pre-approved electives should take the sequence during the first year.
The basic University requirements for the degree of Engineer are discussed in the "Graduate Degrees" section of this bulletin.
This degree requires an additional year of study beyond the M.S. degree and includes a research thesis. The program is designed for students who wish to do professional engineering work upon graduation and who want to engage in more specialized study than is afforded by the master’s degree alone.
Admission standards are substantially the same as indicated under the master’s degree. However, since thesis supervision is required and the availability of thesis supervisors is limited, admission is not granted until the student has personally engaged a faculty member to supervise a research project. This most often involves a paid research assistantship awarded by individual faculty members (usually from the funds of sponsored research projects under their direction). Thus, individual arrangement between student and faculty is necessary. Students studying for the M.S. degree at Stanford who wish to continue to the Engineer degree ordinarily make such arrangements during the M.S. degree program. Students holding master’s degrees from other universities are invited to apply and may be admitted providing they are sufficiently well qualified and have made thesis supervision and financial aid arrangements.
Department requirements for the degree include a thesis; up to 18 units of credit are allowed for thesis work (ME 400 Thesis). In addition to the thesis, 27 units of approved advanced course work in mathematics, science, and engineering are expected beyond the requirements for the M.S. degree; the choice of courses is subject to approval of the adviser. Students who have not fulfilled the Stanford M.S. degree requirements are required to do so, with allowance for approximate equivalence of courses taken elsewhere; up to 45 units may be transferable. A total of 90 units is required for degree conferral.
Candidates for the degree must have faculty approval and have a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 for all courses (exclusive of thesis credit and other independent study courses) taken beyond those required for the master’s degree.
Each university in the Unites States of America sets its own admission standards so there isn't the same criteria for all the students and the university can decide which applicants meet those standards. The fee for each application is between $35 to $100.
After the selections of the universities you want to attend, the best of all would be to contact each university for an application form and more admission information for the international students. Moreover, for a graduate or postgraduate program it's necessary to verify the admission requirements. Some programs require that you send your application directly to their department.
Admissions decisions are based on students's academic record and different test scores, such as TOEFL, the SAT or ACT (for undergraduate programs) and GRE or GMAT (for graduate programs). Admission decision is based on your academic results and motivation.
The Mechanical Engineering Department selectively awards several fellowships to entering graduate students. To be considered for assistance as an entering student, you must submit the Application for Admission to Graduate Study with supporting documents by the December deadline. Notifications regarding fellowships are sent to recipients in March and April.
This prestigious three-year University award is intended for outstanding candidates in graduate study leading to the PhD. The fellowship is selectively awarded to entering graduate students who are pursuing (or plan to pursue) a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. The award provides a quarterly stipend and tuition for eight to 10 units per quarter for 12 quarters. The selection process is demanding, requiring nomination and confirmation by both a department and university committee. Students are nominated for this award and cannot initiate the process.
The School of Engineering and Department Fellowships are awarded to entering ME graduate students. Awards are based upon merit, including undergraduate academic performance and research potential. Recipients receive eight to 10 units of tuition per quarter and a quarterly stipend, for anywhere from three to five quarters.
Research assistantships (RAs) are available to continuing MS and PhD Students, and more rarely, new graduate students. Assistantships are awarded by individual faculty members who have the necessary research funding. Typically, students who have successfully arranged for an RA appointment have secured it by contacting a faculty member directly. Although the majority of Research Assistants are in the PhD program, there are occasional RA appointments available for MS students who have a firm commitment to attaining a PhD.
Research assistants typically receive eight to 10 units of tuition coverage and a salary in exchange for 20 hours of work per week. Some students opt to work fewer hours per week, and their salary and tuition benefits are adjusted accordingly. For the PhD program, incoming students are awarded RA positions based upon the information provided in their admissions application. Current students typically contact faculty members to arrange research assistantships.
Teaching/course assistantships are offered primarily to continuing students and to a very limited number of entering graduate students. TA/CAs typically provide recipients with tuition coverage of eight to 10 units and a salary, requiring 20 hours of work per week. Reduced hours (10 hours per week) may also be available, with salary and tuition benefits adjusted accordingly. TA/CA-ships are offered by faculty members who have been allocated the necessary funds to hire a TA/CA.