Master of Science Program


The Master of Science program offered by the School of Aerospace Engineering through the ASDL is a four-term practice-oriented academic and research program. After successful completion of the program a Master of Science in Aerospace Engineering degree is awarded to the student by the Georgia Institute of Technology. This program features a strong emphasis on the practical application of aerospace systems design techniques, methods, and principles that extend well beyond the scope of undergraduate design courses. Material taught in courses for this program is carefully selected and updated by the academic faculty, and comprises the state of the art in the field. Students are challenged with very relevant applications addressing real needs of government and industry partners with whom ASDL maintains strong collaborative relationships. Under the direct supervision of the ASDL academic and research faculty, students are immersed in a realistic research environment that provides unique opportunities to interact with a wealth of subject matter experts, stakeholders, and future employers.

The combination of academic courses and guided research of this program allows students to learn advanced systems design methods while developing technical and non-technical skills sought after by employers.

Employment for graduates of the program typically includes mid-level positions as systems analysts, designers, systems engineers, and consultants in leading government entities and premier industry organizations. Employers of graduates include the Federal Aviation Administration, Boeing, General Electric – Energy, Rolls Royce, Pratt & Whitney, Northrop Gruman, Raytheon, and BAE among others.

Academic Requirements

All academic requirements for the Master of Science degree offered by the School of Aerospace Engineering can be found in Chapter II of the Graduate Student Handbook. Students must complete a total of 33 credit hours of which 6 credit hours correspond to valid mathematics courses.

Students may also opt for a Master of Science program with Thesis where 9 credit hours are allocated to thesis research during three semesters, or for a Master of Science without Thesis where 3 credit hours are allocated to a one-semester research project (Special Problem – AE 8900) and six credit hours are allocated to other valid courses.

Core Courses

The Master of Science program offered through the ASDL prescribes a series of core courses that each student must take. Students take these core courses over the four academic terms as follows:

Fall Term

  • Advanced Design Methods I – AE 6373 (4 credit hours)
  • Aircraft Design I – AE 6343 (3 credit hours)
  • Applied Design Laboratory I – AE 6383 (1 credit hour)
  • Introduction to System of Systems Engineering Principles (3 credit hours)

Spring Term

  • Aircraft Design II – AE 6344 (4 credit hours)
  • System of Systems Engineering Applications – AE 6394 (4 credit hours)
  • AE Graduate Seminar – AE 8801 (1 credit hour), may be taken in first or second semester

Please visit Core Courses for information.

Grand Challenge projects are introduced in Applied Design Laboratory in the fall term. These are open ended problems driven by real needs of industry and government partners. In this class project teams are formed and basic instruction of fundamental techniques takes place. Application of theoretical principles in Aerospace Systems Engineering are applied to a team-based class project. Grand Challenge projects used as the application for this class’s project while preserving team composition. At the end of the second semester, the ASDL External Advisory Board (EAB) critically reviews the Grand Challenge teams during the first day of the annual ASDL EAB review, providing a chance for the students to present to and interact with high-level government and aerospace industry representatives.

In the third and/or fourth term(s) students apply the knowledge they have gained to an individual, special project defined with the help of their advisors. Depending on the nature of the study, industry and government partners may hire students for summer internships.

Other Systems Design and Optimization Courses

  • Optimization for the Design of Engineered Systems – AE 6310
  • Air Breathing Propulsion Systems Design – AE 6361
  • Safety by Design – AE 6362
  • Aerospace Systems Engineering – AE 6372

Updated September 23, 2020