Master of Science in Industrial Engineering Overview

The processes used to manufacture everything from consumer products to refined materials are undergoing a dramatic evolution, driven by technological innovations and increasing demands for efficiency. The online Master of Science in Industrial Engineering can help you optimize the next generation of manufacturing operations and supervise production processes. You’ll examine production control methods that are essential for advanced positions in the field, developing practical skills that can be applied to projects of any scale.

The online master’s in industrial engineering program offers an in-depth exploration of the technical skills that are essential to keep production processes running efficiently and safely. Developed by our faculty of industry experts and groundbreaking researchers, the curriculum delves into business fundamentals like cost estimation and financial modeling that can help engineering leaders improve performance on the production line. You’ll be prepared to establish best practices in every stage of the product life cycle with strategic decision making and quantitative analysis.

Tailor Your Path to an Industrial Engineering Master’s Degree

The online industrial engineering master’s program also features the opportunity to choose from a broad selection of electives as you build your academic plan. Choose from three paths to fulfill your requirements by completing a hands-on project, researching and defending a thesis, or completing additional coursework.

You can shape the flexible online program to match your interests and career goals. Learn to lead best practices by developing your knowledge of crucial areas such as:

  • Traffic modeling
  • Automation
  • Supply chain management
  • Quality assurance
  • Simulation modeling and analysis
  • Cost estimation
  • Computer-integrated manufacturing (CIM)

Prepare for a Career in Taking On Industry Challenges

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, opportunities are growing fast for industrial engineers. The BLS projected a 10% increase in positions in this field between 2019 and 2029, outpacing an average of 4% for all occupations.

These versatile professionals advance their careers by improving manufacturing and other processes in a variety of organizations. The leading sectors for the employment of industrial engineers are:

  • Aerospace product and parts manufacturing
  • Semiconductor and other electronic component manufacturing
  • Engine, turbine, and power transmission equipment manufacturing
  • Navigational, measuring, electromedical, and control instruments manufacturing
  • Medical equipment and supplies manufacturing

In a world of globalized manufacturing and supply chains, industrial engineers have a vital role in developing efficient processes and preparing organizations for long-term growth. The BLS predicted that changes in the US health care system, including the adoption of new technology, will also drive greater demand for experts in the field. Completing an online industrial engineering master’s program can provide you with the advanced skills you need to take advantage of these professional opportunities.

The flexible requirements for the online MS in Industrial Engineering can be completed in several different ways, allowing you to choose a course of study that best supports your professional goals. After completing nine units of core classes, you can choose to earn the rest of the required 30-33 required units through a range of electives offered by the Department of Systems and Industrial Engineering (SIE) as well as a thesis or project. By the end of your second semester, you’ll submit your academic plan for approval by the department. The program can be completed in just 1.5 to 2 years — even if you’re also working full-time.

You must meet the following requirements to earn your master’s in industrial engineering online:

Required Courses:

  • SIE 530 Engineering Statistics
  • SIE 540 Survey of Optimization Methods OR SIE 545 Fundamentals of Optimization
  • AND One Course from 56X or 58X series

Students then select from one of the following options:

Project Option (30 units)

A three-unit project may be selected with approval of the faculty advisor. The project option requires a written report and an oral presentation. The report is prepared under the guidance of the major professor and is reviewed by members of the examining committee prior to the oral presentation. The three-member examining committee consists of the major professor and at least two other members of the faculty selected on the basis of the student’s coursework and field of interest. Students will either defend their master’s report on campus, or will have to arrange for a teleconference defense.

The topic should have practical significance and require application of graduate-level course material. The report typically involves the application of new methodologies to an actual industrial problem. The final examination for this option is the same as that required for the thesis option. The remaining elective credits (18) for a total of 30 units will be selected with the approval of an advisor and the Graduate Studies Committee.


Thesis Option (30 units)

This option requires 24 units of coursework, followed by six units of thesis research (SIE 910). This option is perfect if you’re looking to work directly with a faculty member to create an original thesis. Thesis work is an excellent complement to course work and constitutes a valuable opportunity to develop an appreciation for and understanding of advanced engineering research. You will only be permitted to select the thesis option with an outstanding academic record.

Your thesis will be prepared under the guidance of the major professor and reviewed by members of the examining committee prior to the oral presentation, which will take place on-campus or via teleconference. The examining committee will consist of the major professor and at least two other members of the faculty selected based on your chosen area of interest. Other members of the department may also choose to examine the thesis.

The remaining elective units (15) for a total of 30 units will be selected with the approval of an advisor and the Graduate Studies Committee.

Coursework Option (33 units)

This option requires 33 units of credit to complete, three more than the 30 required for the other options.

Additional coursework will be decided between you and your faculty advisor. Not all of our 600-level courses are offered online each semester. Please check with the department and your faculty advisor before registering.

Required Courses (9 units)

Elective Courses (15-24 units)