Master's Degree Requirements

The integrated bachelor/master of engineering program is intended to integrate work at the undergraduate and graduate levels and prepare graduates for entry into the engineering profession at an advanced level or for further graduate study. The school offers master’s degrees in chemical engineering, civil engineering, electrical engineering and mechanical engineering.

See the application guidelines for the admissions procedure. See also the 2016 Master of Engineering Student Handbook.

General Application Requirements

Applicants who are not Cooper Union graduates are expected to have a superior undergraduate record and to have given evidence of ability for independent work. Students are accepted on an academically competitive basis subject to the availability of an advisor and of suitable available facilities. Students are accepted into the graduate program in their major either with a “thesis” or “undeclared” classification. Undeclared students have to declare whether they plan to pursue the thesis or non-thesis option by the time they complete 9 credits. Students may complete the degree requirements as part-time or full-time students in consultation with their advisor.

Cooper Union Undergraduates A Cooper undergraduate degree does not guarantee admission to the graduate program. To be considered for admission to the master’s program, one must be a currently enrolled Cooper Union undergraduate, with a minimum 3.0 grade point average according to the major. A Cooper Union undergraduate may declare the intent to complete an integrated degree in the second semester of the junior year or apply to the graduate program (Master of Engineering) in one of the degree- granting departments during the second semester of the senior year.

Students should consult the respective departments regarding specific policies or requirements for admission into the graduate program.

Graduates of Other Colleges The School of Engineering may admit outstanding students or qualified practicing professionals, on a tuition basis, into the master’s degree programs. To be considered for admission, a student should have completed an engineering baccalaureate program that is accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). In addition, an essay is required of all applicants who were not Cooper Union graduates. Applicants must submit official transcripts. Graduates of foreign institutions whose native language is not English are required to submit scores of the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Admitted students may be required to register for advanced engineering courses to make up for any deficiencies.

Degree Requirements

The Albert Nerken School of Engineering offers both thesis and non-thesis Master of Engineering degrees.  A minimum of 30 graduate level credits beyond the baccalaureate degree must be completed at The Cooper Union (in addition to resolving possible undergraduate deficiencies) for both the thesis requiring M.E. Program and the non-thesis M.E. Program. All graduate level credits, including possibly cross-listed upper level undergraduate credits, must be approved by a student’s academic advisor(s). A complete program of study is designed by the student with the assistance and approval of the academic advisor(s) and filed in the Office of the Dean of Engineering.

Each student is required to submit a thesis or project in their area of study, equivalent to a maximum of six credits (graduate level), for partial fulfillment of the master of engineering requirements. This project must be discussed with and approved by an advisor prior to being started. The thesis or project must be successfully presented orally by the student and submitted in written form.

Each of the engineering departments may have additional specific guidelines for the requirements for the M.E. degree. See links for Masters Program found under each department.

Thesis Requirements

The 30 credits offered for the thesis program degree must satisfy the following distribution:

  • Major: Complete a minimum of 12 credits of graduate level courses in a chosen field
  • Complete a minimum of 12 further credits of graduate level courses.
  • Thesis Project:  6 credits

Non-Thesis Requirements

The 30 credits offered for the non-thesis program degree must satisfy the following distribution along with a special project requirement:

  • Major: Complete a minimum of 18 credits of graduate level courses in a chosen field
  • Complete a minimum of 12 further credits of graduate level courses

Special Projects requirement can be fulfilled in one of two ways:

  • Complete a graduate level independent study course (up to 3 credits)
  • Submit a report to the Dean’s office of other course work that satisfies requirements for a graduate level course in which a grade of “B” or higher was received. This report will have to meet structure and formatting requirements specified by the Dean’s office. Each of the engineering departments may have more specific guidelines for the Special Projects requirement report.

When the special projects requirement is completed this form should be filled out and submitted, along with any report, to the Dean’s office.

Other General Requirements

Grade Requirement A minimum overall grade point average of 3.0 is needed in all courses used to satisfy the 30 credit master’s degree requirement.

Appropriate Excess Credits Taken as an Undergraduate For Cooper Union baccalaureate holders, any credits of graduate level, taken as undergraduates in excess of their bachelor’s degree requirement, may be applied to the master’s degree, subject to the above cross-listing requirements and advisor approval.

Time Limitation For students that began their program prior to the Fall 2014 semester, the requirements for the master of engineering program must be completed within two years of admission except for extraordinary circumstances that require the express consent of the dean or associate dean of engineering. Requests for such extension must be presented in writing to the Office of the Dean in the final semester of the second year. Thesis advisor’s approval is also required. Master’s students who receive approval to extend their studies beyond two years will be assessed a maintenance of matriculation fee of $3,000 per semester.

Graduate Tuition & Fees

See the tuition and fees page.

Fellowships One source of funding available to students wishing to pursue graduate study in engineering is the Enders Fund, governed by the will of Henry C. Enders and administered by the New York Community Trust. This fellowship is available to engineering graduates of The Cooper Union who have satisfactorily completed all required chemistry courses in the ChE curriculum and plan to do graduate work in chemistry, chemical engineering, chemistry-based environmental engineering, or chemistry-based bioengineering. Recipients are selected by the joint faculties of chemistry and chemical engineering.

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.