The Catholic University of America

Graduate Studies

Overview

Graduate programs in the School of Engineering emphasize both theory and application of advanced engineering principles. The goal of the school is to produce professional engineers, scientists and researchers who can contribute significantly to society through their professional, scientific and research activities.

Admission

Admission to the School of Engineering follows the general university regulations. Presented below are general admission regulations pertaining only to the graduate degree programs of the School of Engineering. Information on admission for graduate study may be found at http://admissions.cua.edu/graduate, and general information about graduate study at CUA can be found at http://graduatestudies.cua.edu (links to the online application are at both sites). There may be specific requirements for admission to particular programs, which can be further discussed by the department offering the program. Admission to all graduate degree programs is made by the Dean of the School of Engineering upon the recommendation of the chair/director of the appropriate graduate program.

International Students

International students from countries where English is not the primary language must take the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Students who achieve score of 580 or higher on the paper-based test or 237 or higher on the computer-based test will be given regular admission provided their academic background is satisfactory. All international students whose TOEFL scores are lower than 580 on the paper-based test or 237 on the computer-based test will be given provisional admission provided their academic background is satisfactory. Prior to registration for courses, they will be evaluated for English language skills by CUA's Intensive English Program. Depending on the results, students may be required to take intensive classes in English to strengthen their skills. Subject to the approval of their academic adviser, students can take intensive English classes concurrently with a reduced number of School of Engineering graduate engineering courses. Upon satisfactory completion of any required intensive classes in English, students will be given regular admission.

Doctoral Degree Programs

The minimum grade point average (GPA) required for admission to the doctoral degree programs is 3.4 for master's level courses and/or 3.0 for bachelor's level courses. There is no provisional admission for doctoral programs.

Master Degree Programs

The minimum requirement for admission to the M.S.E. degree program is a baccalaureate degree from an accredited university. The minimum requirement for admission to the master's degree program of a particular department is an undergraduate degree from an accredited engineering program. Additional requirements may apply based on undergraduate performance. The minimum GPA required from regular admission to master's degree programs is 3.0 for bachelor level courses. Provisional admission can be granted to students with a GPA less than 3.0. Provisional admission will be converted to regular admission after the student passes a set of approved graduate level courses with a minimum GPA of 3.0.

Grade Point Average for Graduation

A minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 in course work taken in the School of Engineering is required for graduation in all graduate programs.

The Master's Degree

The university's "General Requirements for Graduate Study for the Master's and Licentiate Degree" apply to all master's degree programs offered in the School of Engineering. There are two exceptions: the competency in a foreign language and the comprehensive examination are not required. The minimum requirements for the master's degree are the successful completion of an approved program of study consisting of at least 30 semester credit hours. Individual programs may require more than 30 semester credit hours. Two options are available to earn the required semester hours:

  • Non-Thesis Option: A student may complete the required semester credit hours through graduate course work with a cumulative grade point average of at least 3.0.
  • Thesis Option: A student may write a master's thesis whose topic is approved by the appropriate graduate program. If this option is selected, the student will register for a total of six semester credit hours of master's thesis guidance. Upon approval of the written thesis, six semester credit hours will be posted to the student's academic record and will be counted toward the total number of semester credit hours required for the master's degree program. The remaining number of semester credit hours of graduate course work must be completed with a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0.

Joint Master Degree Programs

All graduate programs in the School of Engineering participate in joint degree programs with one another, allowing students to earn two master's degrees. The student must satisfy all requirements for both degrees and may be allowed to designate up to four approved graduate courses to help satisfy the requirements for both degrees. Typically, this would reduce the number of graduate engineering courses required to earn both master's degrees from 20 courses to 16 courses. Contact the office of the dean of the School of Engineering for more information.

The Doctoral Degree

The university's "General Requirements for Graduate Study" for the doctoral degree apply to all doctoral programs of the School of Engineering, with one exception: the foreign language competency is not required. The requirements for a doctoral degree (Ph.D. or D.Engr.) of the school include:

  1. A minimum of 53 semester hours of graduate work in a program of study prepared and approved in consultation with an advisor;
  2. The successful passing of a comprehensive examination upon completion of the graduate course work
  3. The approval of a dissertation proposal submitted and presented by the candidate; and
  4. The approval and successful defense of the dissertation in an oral examination conducted as specified by university procedures.

Transfer of Credit

Up to six semester credit hours of graduate work earned at another accredited institution with a GPA of 3.0 or above may be applied toward course requirements for master's degrees upon the recommendation of the appropriate graduate program and with the approval of the dean of the school.

Up to 24 semester credit hours of graduate work earned at another accredited institution with a grade of 3.0 or above may be applied toward course requirements for the doctoral degrees upon recommendation of the appropriate graduate program and with the approval of the dean of the school. For students who earned their master's degrees at CUA, up to 30 semester credit hours of course work with a grade of 3.0 or above may be applied toward the course requirements for the doctoral degrees.

Graduate Degree Programs

We offer a personalized learning and research environment and a dedicated full-time faculty that is on the cutting edge of research, complemented by adjunct faculty members who are leaders in professional practice. For full-time graduate students, the financial opportunities include teaching and research assistantships and fellowships. For working professionals, the classes are convenient and the tuition competitive with private universities in the Washington area. Our strong ties with local research institutions foster collaborations and enable our faculty to bring research experience into the classroom. There are many government agencies, research laboratories, and industrial headquarters in the Washington area, which results in excellent opportunities for internships, training, research collaboration and professional employment.

Master of Science Degrees

Doctor of Philosophy

 

Graduate Brochures

We pride ourselves on being a small, private, Catholic engineering school with a personal touch, thanks to our dedication to teaching, our small class sizes, small student-to-teacher ratio and close interaction between faculty and students. All full-time faculty members hold doctoral degrees and are prolific in funded research and publications. Our strong ties with local research institutions and industries foster collaboration and enable our faculty to bring research and professional practice into the classroom. We offer master's and doctoral programs in biomedical engineering, civil engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering and computer science. A master's degree is also offered in engineering management.

Class Locations

Engineering Management classes are held at the Crystal City Crowne Plaza Hotel or on the CUA campus in northeast DC. The degrees offered at off campus sites have been approved by the governing board of CUA and are equivalent to those given on campus.

The State Council of Higher Education for Virginia has certified the CUA School of Engineering to operate in Virginia. Courses leading to the M.S.E. degree are offered at the Crystal City Crowne Plaza Hotel in Arlington, VA. The Crowne Plaza Hotel is only a block from the Crystal City Metro Station, and parking is provided free in the basement of the hotel.

The CUA Campus is located in Northeast Washington beside the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. The Brookland-CUA Metro stop is conveniently near the Pangborn engineering building.