Saturday, May 25, 2013

Chemical Engineering

Chemical Engineering

Research in cutting-edge industries, including nanotechnology and biotechnology, and in traditional areas of inquiry depend on chemical engineers to decipher molecular information in order to develop new products and processes. Our graduates work in a broad range of fields and create innovative solutions to important industrial and societal problems. They develop clean and sustainable energy systems, make advances in the life sciences, design and produce pharmaceuticals, and discover and create new materials.
The first chemical engineering curriculum at MIT was offered in 1888 and helped to establish chemical engineering as a discipline. Since then, members of the MIT Department of Chemical Engineering have developed the tools and guidelines to define and advance the field. The department has led the nation in awarding graduate degrees, and its nearly 6,500 living alumni have distinguished themselves as leaders in industry, government, and academia. We maintain strong ties with other departments within MIT and institutions and industries worldwide.

Graduate Education

Graduate study in chemical engineering provides students with rigorous training in engineering fundamentals and the opportunity to focus on specific sub-disciplines. In addition to completing the four core course requirements in thermodynamics, reaction engineering, numerical methods, and transport phenomena, students select a research advisor and area for specialization. Areas of specialization include but are not limited to:
  • Thermodynamics and molecular computation
  • Transport processes
  • Catalysis and chemical reaction engineering
  • Polymers
  • Materials
  • Surfaces and nanostructures
  • Biological engineering
  • Energy and environmental engineering
  • Systems design and simulation
Students also have the opportunity to broaden their education in the technical aspects of the chemical engineering profession and increase their communication and human relations skills by participating in the David H. Koch School of Chemical Engineering Practice, a major feature of graduate education in the department since 1916. The Practice School stresses problem solving in an engineering internship format, in which students undertake projects at industrial sites under the direct supervision of resident MIT faculty. Students receive credit for participation in the Practice School in lieu of completing a master’s thesis.
Graduate degree programs include:
  • Master of Science in Chemical Engineering

    This program enables students to continue their undergraduate professional training at greater depth and with increased sophistication and independence. Students must tackle advanced courses and a thesis project, which together generally take four terms to complete.
  • Master of Science in Chemical Engineering Practice

    The requirements for this degree are similar to those of the Master of Science in Chemical Engineering, with Practice School experience replacing the master’s thesis. Students who have earned a BS in chemical engineering from MIT can meet all the degree requirements in two terms. Students with a BS in chemical engineering from another institution generally require two terms at MIT followed by fieldwork in the Practice School.
  • Doctoral degree

    Candidates for this degree must complete a program of advanced study, a minor program, a biology requirement, and a thesis. Students generally carry out a program of advanced study and research in a specific area of chemical engineering under the supervision of one or more faculty members in the department.
  • Doctor of Philosophy in Chemical Engineering Practice

    This degree program combines advanced work in manufacturing, independent research, and management. The program is built on the research programs within the department and the resources of the David H. Koch School of Chemical Engineering Practice and MIT Sloan School of Management. Students prepare for positions of leadership in industry and build the foundation for an MBA degree. The program generally takes four calendar years to complete and has three major components: Year one is devoted to coursework and fieldwork in the Practice School; years two and three are devoted to research; and the final year is completed in the Sloan School. An integrated project combines the research and management portions of the program.
Students may also choose to participate in other interdisciplinary degree programs affiliated with the chemical engineering department, including Program in Polymer Science and Technology for students seeking a doctoral degree focused on macromolecular science and engineering; and Technology and Policy, which offers a master’s degree focusing on the role of technology in policy analysis and formulation.