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In response to the growing demand from nuclear industry in Virginia, Virginia Tech restarted its nuclear engineering program (NEP) within the Mechanical Engineering Department, and began again to offer undergraduate and graduate nuclear engineering courses. A graduate Nuclear Engineering Certificate is offered along with the PhD, MS & MEng degrees.
NEP draws on expertise and courses from the Mechanical and Materials Science and Engineering Departments in Computational Fluid Dynamics in nuclear materials, and expertise from the Physics Department in neutrino physics and accelerated driven system. Affiliate programs include the School Public and International Affairs (SPIA), and the Department Science and Technology Studies in nuclear policy as well as the College of Veterinarian Medicine for its activities in radiation therapy and diagnostics.
Earning an MS degree requires completing a 30-credit-hour program subject to the following requirements. Except as indicated, courses must be taken for a grade, not Pass/Fail. MS students must submit a Plan of Study before completing the first semester registered as a MS student. No grade below B- is allowed for any core course.
1. Master of Science Courses: A minimum of 21 graded credit-hours of courses must be taken including the following:
a. Core Courses (15 graded credit-hours) which include four required courses and one mathematics/statistics course:
12 credit-hours of required courses:
- (1) NSEG 5124 Nuclear Reactor Analysis
- (2) NSEG 5204 Nuclear Fuel Cycle
- (3) NSEG 5604 Radiation Detection and Shielding
- (4) either NSEG 5424 Reactor Thermal Hydraulics
- or MSE 5384G Advanced Nuclear Materials
A minimum of 3 graded credit-hours of a mathematics or statistics course from an approved list of courses.
b. Elective Courses: Six credit-hours of any science, engineering or mathematics 5000-level, or higher, courses as approved by the Advisory Committee are required. However, if only six credit-hours of NSEG 5994 are applied toward the degree instead of nine credit-hours (see Research Requirements below), the student must take an additional 3 credits of any science, engineering or mathematics 5000-level, or higher course, as approved by their Advisor, to satisfy the requirement for a total of 30 credit-hours for the M.S. degree.
The graded course work may include 5984/6984 Special Study. However, a student cannot exceed a maximum of 6 credit hours of 5974, 5984, and 6984.
2. Master of Science Research Requirement: A minimum of 6 credit-hours of NSEG 5994 Research and Thesis, not to exceed 9 credit-hours, must be completed.
Additional Requirements: All students must satisfactorily pass an oral final examination, write and successfully defend a thesis.
Seminar Program: All students must participate in the nuclear engineering program seminar series.
Ethics: Beginning Fall 2014, all graduate students must meet the Graduate School's Ethics requirement.
Course work From Another Institution (MS and MEng): Per the Graduate School, not more than 50% of required graded course work from another institution may be transferred. All transferred course credits must have the grade of "B" or higher and must have been earned while enrolled as a graduate student. Transfer work is evaluated/approved when the Plan of Study is submitted. All transfer credits must be accompanied by transcripts which verify grades. Course descriptions are also required. Transfer courses on the Plan of Study must be approved by the student’s Advisory Committee.
It is anticipated that students will complete the MS program in two years following undergraduate studies in a nuclear-related field, or with a minor in a nuclear-related field. If a student already has a B.S. in Nuclear Engineering, they are expected to complete the MS program in less time, perhaps in as few as three semesters.
No courses below the 5000-level will be accepted for graduate credit.
- Transcripts. Include a scanned copy of your college transcripts with your online application, then arrange for an official copy to be sent to us after you receive an offer of admission.
- Letters of Recommendation. Check to see whether your department requires letters of recommendation from references. If so, you can include their email addresses in your online application, or have them send paper copies directly to your program’s department.
- Application Fees. Degree-seeking students must include a $75 fee with their application, though check to see if you qualify for a waiver or reduced fee.
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