Degree Requirements

Some of the requirements for an MS degree are general requirements, common to all programs in the department of systems and industrial engineering. However, each area of specialization (i.e., systems engineering, industrial engineering and engineering management) has specific requirements.


1. Students must earn at least 30 units of graduate credit in courses numbered 5XX, 6XX or 9XX. Credit for SIE 695A, SIE 900, SIE 920 and SIE 930 may not be counted toward the MS degree.

2. The majority of coursework must be taken within the systems and industrial engineering department. Per your faculty adviser's approval, two courses may be taken outside of SIE. At most, 3 units of SIE 599: Independent Study may be applied toward the MS degree, subject to prior approval by the Graduate Studies Committee. The committee considers such factors as there being no course in the university that would serve the same purpose, as well as the expectation that a tangible product (such as a final report) will be available for evaluation by the committee. Students must complete the independent study course form and submit to the SIE Graduate Studies Committee prior to registering for SIE 599. Additionally, the topic of study must regard an area of academic study and should not be directly related to the student’s research topic.

3. Each student enrolled in an MS degree program is expected to gain in-depth knowledge within a particular area of study and complementary knowledge from a related area. To meet this expectation, the student's Plan of Study must contain a primary and a secondary area of concentration, each consisting of courses related to a common theme. The primary and secondary areas must include at least 9 units and at least 6 units, respectively, of SIE graduate-level courses. Up to 3 units of thesis or project work may be used to satisfy the concentration requirements. In general, SIE courses whose three-digit course numbers share a common middle digit are related to a common theme. However, an area of concentration need not satisfy this general rule to be approved by the Graduate Studies Committee. In cases where the primary and secondary areas of concentration might not be readily apparent, the student can facilitate the Graduate Studies Committee's review of the Plan of Study by providing a brief statement explaining the nature of the intended areas of concentration.

4. All MS students must choose one of the options listed in Section 2.4. Students wishing to pursue the doctoral degree are encouraged to choose the thesis or exam option. The University of Arizona requires that all requirements for an MS degree must be completed within six years.


Systems engineering (SYE) majors must include SIE 550, SIE 554A, and either SIE 520 or SIE 530 in their Plan of Study.

Industrial engineering (INE) majors must include SIE 530 and either SIE 540 or SIE 545 in their Plan of Study. INE majors must also complete one course from the SIE 56X or 58X series.

Engineering management (EMG) majors must include SIE 567, SIE 515, SIE 522, SIE 557 and SIE 514 in their Plan of Study.


  • An MS student shall submit his/her Plan of Study after 12 course hours of study taken while enrolled in the SIE department. Students failing to meet this requirement will be notified required to complete the Plan of Study immediately. A student who has not completed his/her Plan of Study by this time may be dismissed from the program.
  • MS students must take all core courses for their degree within their first four semesters of study.
  • An MS student shall submit a progress report to his/her adviser by the end of each academic year (last day of final exams in the spring semester). A progress report form will be provided to students by the SIE student academic specialist in April of each year for this purpose. Based on this input, the Graduate Studies Committee determines whether or not the student is making satisfactory academic progress. If the Graduate Studies Committee determines that the student is not making satisfactory progress, they will state a set of requirements and corresponding deadlines for the student to achieve to remain in the program. Students not meeting these additional requirements may be recommended to the department head and Graduate College for dismissal from the program.

University of Arizona College of Engineering