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The Department of Aerospace Engineering offers a Master of Science-Thesis Option (MS) degree in which students complete a minimum of 32 hours on their degree plans, of which 24 hours is formal coursework (including 2 hours of AERO 681 Seminar) plus 8 hours of AERO 691 Research. As part of this research-based degree, students are required to write and defend a final thesis.  The MS-THO requires a committee of three or more graduate-level faculty members, one of which must act as the primary adviser for each candidate. Students admitted into this program must have a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering or an equivalent field (if the degree is not in engineering, leveling courses may be required, possibly even an undergraduate degree.) For more information about applicant qualifications and application deadlines, see the Consideration for Admission page.

Steps to Fulfill Master’s Degree Program

  1. Meeting with faculty advisor to plan course of study for first semester
    • When: Before first semester registration
    • Approved by: Graduate advisor (department head designate)
  2. Establish advisory committee. Submit a degree plan early in the second semester.*
    • When: Prior to the deadline imposed by AERO and no later than 90 days prior to final oral or thesis defense.
    • Approved by: Advisory committee, department head or designate, and Office of Graduate and Professional Studies (OGAPS).
  3. Submit thesis proposal to the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies.
    • When: At least 25 working days prior to the submission of the Request for Final Examination.
    • Approved by: Advisory committee, department head and OGAPS.
  4. Apply for a degree via the Howdy portal, pay graduation fee. 
    • When: During the first week of the final semester.
  5. Check to be sure degree program and advisory committee are up to date and all ELP requirements (if applicable) and coursework are complete and graded.
    • When: Well before submitting request to schedule final examination.
  6. Complete residence requirement
    • When: If applicable, before or during final semester.
    • Approved by: OGAPS.
  7. Submit request to schedule final examination
    • Department Considerations:
      •  i. Schedule a room to hold the defense; ask the Graduate Advising Office for the template to announce the final defense in the department 
      • ii.  Provide an essentially final version of thesis to each of your graduate committee 15 days prior to the defense.
    • When: Must be received by OGAPS at least 10 working days before exam date. See OGAPS calendar for deadlines.
    • Approved by: Advisory committee, department head or chair of intercollegiate faculty, and OGAPS.
  8. If required, upload an approved final copy of thesis as a single PDF file ( and submit signed approval form to the Thesis Office.
    • When: See OGAPS calendar for deadlines.
    • Approved by: Advisory committee, department head or chair of the intercollegiate faculty and OGAPS.
  9. Graduation; arrange for cap and gown.
    • For more information, contact the TAMU University Bookstore.

Students with the ultimate goal of pursuing a PhD should apply directly to the PhD program.