University of Texas at Austin

CSEM Master's Program

While the Computational Science, Engineering, and Mathematics (CSEM) program offers both MS and PhD degrees, we are primarily a PhD track program. We admit a limited number of Master's students each year and do not have funding available for Master's students.

The requirements below do NOT apply to students in the 5-year CS/CSEM integrated BS/MS program. For sample degree plan for the 5-year program, please see the Integrated 5-year BS CS / MS CSEM Program page.

Specific Requirements

Students entering the Master's program are expected to have an undergraduate degree in engineering, computer science, mathematics, or a natural science such as physics or chemistry.

The master's degree can be earned with approved coursework and optionally, a report or thesis. The student may fulfill any of the following options:

  • Thesis option: 30 credit hours
    • 24 credit hours of approved coursework
    • 6 credit hours of thesis preparation
  • Report option: 33 credit hours
    • 30 credit hours of approved coursework
    • 3 credit hours of report preparation
  • No Thesis/No Report option: 36 credit hours
    • 36 credit hours of approved coursework without a thesis or report

Regardless of the option chosen above, the course of study must include 24 credit hours of approved coursework chosen from the three CSEM concentration areas: Area A (applicable mathematics), Area B (numerical analysis and scientific computation), and Area C (mathematical modeling and applications):

  • Courses must be taken on a letter-grade basis
  • At least six (6) hours in Area A
  • At least six (6) hours in Area B
  • At least six (6) hours in Area C

All requirements of the Graduate School must also be fulfilled. No more than 20% of the hours listed on the Master's Program of Work may be taken on the CR/NC basis (Thesis and Report courses are not included in the 20%.) Any upper-division coursework must be approved by the Graduate Advisor (and is subject to limits set by the Graduate School.

The student's overall grade point average must be 3.0 (B) or better.

Policy on Master's Reports and Theses

No university document distinguishes clearly between a report and a thesis in terms of length or scope.

CSEM policy: A report is a library project, reviewing what scholars have said about a particular topic, and a thesis is an original contribution to knowledge in which a novel analysis or argument is offered, a problem is analyzed using a new or previously untried framework, or data about a subject is collected and analyzed. The work required to produce the document is expected to be equivalent to 3 credit hours for a report and 6 for a thesis.