Graduate Course Advising

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Preliminary Advisor 

Each student is assigned a preliminary advisor upon admission. The preliminary advisor will:

  1. Work with the student to decide course work that should be taken during the first year of graduate study.
  2. Help with any general questions a student may have about the program, opportunities for research, or funding.
  3. Help the student find an academic advisor for their MS thesis or Ph.D. dissertation (may be the same as prelimary advisor).

Academic Advisor

As early as possible in their first semester students should meet with MAE department faculty members to find a common area of research or technical interest with the purpose of deciding a preference for a thesis/dissertation topic and advisor. The advisor must be a member of the Graduate School Faculty. 

Students should discuss regularly with their advisors, who must approve all course selections as well as provide thesis or project supervision.

Advising Policies & Forms

Informal Courses

Informal courses include Individual Problems (MAE 501) and Graduate Internship (MAE 598), which are taught on an informal basis.

Individual Problems (MAE 501): Requires a complete narrative description on the Informal Course Form, which includes the signatures of the student, instructor, and the Director of Graduate Studies, and should be submitted to the MAE Graduate Coordinator during registration time.

Graduate Internship (MAE 598): To register for three credits you would need to be working at least 20 hours per week at the company. To be registered, complete Internship Credit Request Form for MAE 598:

To earn credit at the end of the semester you will need to provide Dr. Salac a short document (~1-2 pages) outlining what you have actually done. Your direct supervisor at the company needs to sign this document.

A maximum of six (6) credit hours of informal courses may be applied toward the minimum 30 credit-hour requirement for the Masters degree. Excluding those credits applied towards the Masters degree, a maximum of 6 additional credit hours of informal course work may be applied towards the minimum 72 credit-hour requirement for the Ph.D. degree. 

Full-Time Status

If registering for less than 12 credits (9 for GA/TA/RA), students must fill out the full-time status form.

Advisor will sign the form and submit the signed form to MAE graduate office for further approval. Master’s students can be certified for a maximum of 2 semesters. To apply for an additional semester at the master’s level, a written request and progress update from your major advisor must be submitted.

International students can also fill out the Reduced Course Load due to Final Semester form with ISSS.

Regularly Offered Courses by Research Area

This is a sample of regularly offered classes in different research areas. Courses with * are offered every other year. The semester that a course is offered may change yearly. Note that some courses may be in multiple areas. A current listing of courses can be found online.

It is highly suggested that all students take MAE 507: Engineering Analysis 1 and MAE 508: Engineering Analysis 2.

The courses can be split into four major tracks:

  1. DO: Design and Optimization
  2. DCM: Dynamics, Control and Mechatronics
  3. FTS: Fluid and Thermal Sciences
  4. M&M: Bioengineering, Computational and Applied Mechanics, and Materials
Design (DO) Dynamics (DCM) Fluid/Thermal (FTS) Bio/Comp/Mat'ls (M&M)

Dynamics, Controls and Mechatronics


  • MAE 509: SP TP: Introduction to Probability for Engineers
  • MAE 536: Random Vibrations and Stochastic Structures*
  • MAE 543: Continuous Control Systems
  • MAE 554: Road Vehicle Dynamics
  • MAE 571: System Analysis
  • MAE 593: Robotics I
  • MAE 600: SP TP: Data Assimilation*
  • MAE 673: Vibration Control of Structures*
  • MAE 674: Optimal Estimation Methods
  • MAE 700: SP TP: Adaptive Control* 
  • MAE 701: SP TP: Celestial Mechanics*


  • MAE 513: Mobility and Manipulation*
  • MAE 525: Spacecraft Dynamics and Control
  • MAE 562: Analytical Dynamics
  • MAE 566: System Identification*
  • MAE 567: Vibration and Shock*
  • MAE 576: Mechatronics
  • MAE 594: Robotics II
  • MAE 670: Nonlinear Control*
  • MAE 671: Nonlinear Systems*
  • MAE 672: Optimal Control Systems*
  • MAE 680: Stochastic Filtering and Control Theory
  • MAE 698: SP TP: Random Matrix Theory and Its Applications
  • MAE 700: SP TP: Dynamic Programming* 

Path to Graduation