What will I learn?

The program objective of the Materials Science program is to educate students in the classroom and laboratory so that their technical skill set and knowledge is enhanced through laboratory research and didactic courses such that graduates have the ability to contribute to organizations that perform research or contribute to the research enterprise through education, policy or manufacturing.

The Materials Science MS Program at the University of Alabama in Huntsville is an interdisciplinary masters program that "focuses on the general application of mathematical and scientific principles to the analysis and evaluation of the characteristics and behavior of solids, including internal structure, chemical properties, transport and energy flow properties, thermodynamics of solids, stress and failure factors, chemical transformation states and processes, compound materials, and research on industrial applications of specific materials." The University of Alabama in Huntsville MS in Materials Science is not part of the tri-campus program. Students receiving a masters in materials science may be based in one of several departments including chemistry, physics, chemical engineering and mechanical engineering. In the majority of cases, students receive their masters in materials science as part of their doctoral program. Students are encourage to pursue the thesis option as it enhances the student's technical skill set, exposes them to new research opportunities and makes them more attractive to employers.

Materials Science students will

  • Acquire a comprehensive knowledge of materials science at an introductory graduate level
  • Perform semi-independent research (M.S. Plan I students)
  • Develop project management skills

Research in Materials Science focuses on the fundamental relations that exist between the structure of materials on the one hand, and properties and the methods for synthesizing and processing these materials on the other; otherwise known as the materials triangle. The material may be a metal, a ceramic, or a polymer, and it may be dispersed in the solid, liquid or gaseous state. Depending upon the desired application, the structure of the material may have to be investigated at the nuclear, atomic, molecular, granular, or larger length scales. The property that is determined by the structure may be mechanical, electrical, magnetic, optical, thermal, chemical, or biological. Synthesizing may be done by thermal, mechanical, photochemical, electrochemical, or biological processes. Many basic academic disciplines can be fruitfully applied to the solution of materials science problems. Among them, we note particularly chemistry, physics, biology, and engineering. Faculty members guiding students in the Materials Science Program represent all four of these areas.

Plan I

This plan requires 24 semester hours of graduate coursework, which must include a core .

Plan II

This plan requires 33 or more semester hours of graduate coursework in Materials Science or a related discipline to include the 15 semester hour Materials Science core.

Which department am I in?

College of Engineering

Study options

Full Time (Plan I - 28 Semester Hours; Plan II - 33 semester hours)

Tuition fees
US$24,430.00 per year
Start date

10 January 2022, 17 August 2022, 9 January 2023


College of Engineering

Engineering Building,

301 Sparkman Drive,



35899, United States

Entry requirements

For students from United States

A minimum grade point average of a 3.0 on the undergraduate record

For international students

Applicants must have

  • earned a baccalaureate degree in engineering from institutions with ABET-accredited programs (not required for MS in Operations Research),
  • earned a minimum 3.0/4.0 grade point average for their baccalaureate work
  • earned minimum GRE scores of 145 (Verbal) and 155 (Quantitative)

In addition, students admitted to the graduate Materials Science Program are assumed to have background training in chemistry, mathematics, physics, and possibly biology and engineering, depending upon the student's research interests.

Applicants must meet the following minimums on the TOEFL or IELTS. TOEFL (iBT): all sub-scores greater than or equal to 18 OR IELTS: all sub-scores greater than or equal to 6.0

*There may be different IELTS requirements depending on your chosen course.


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