Mechanical and Aerospace PhD Programs

We offer PhD degrees in Mechanical Engineering or Aerospace Engineering. Students will have the ability to pursue research and complete a dissertation of original research.


  • Research-focused degree program
  • Requires successful completion of 72 graduate credit hours
  • Must maintain at least 3.0 GPA throughout program
  • Key component is dissertation, features original research, typically 24 credit hours effort
  • Major advisor plays important role throughout
  • Nearly all PhD students receive a stipend (RA or TA), plus full tuition scholarship (see Financial Support page for details)
  • Milestones: Qualifying Exam, Preliminary Exam, Dissertation Defense
  • Full-time status: Requires nine credit hours per semester, plus RA or TA
  • Program duration: Typically three plus years from BS degree
  • Informal courses: Up to twelve credit hours are permitted


The selection of the program of courses and the student's dissertation research are under the supervision of a PhD program committee chaired by the student's advisor.

Minimum Requirements

  • At least 48 credit hours of graduate course work
  • 12-24 credit hours of dissertation work, for a total of 72 credit hours

A maximum of six credit hours of the 48 credit hour course requirement may be fulfilled by MS Thesis (six (6) credit hours) or MS Project (three (3) credit hours) completed at the University at Buffalo.

Program Options

Entering with MS Degree Entering without MS Degree Continuing Students

PhD Program for Continuing Students

Students completing the MS program in UB's MAE department who wish to proceed to the PhD program must re-apply following the standard admission procedure.

All applicants to the PhD program must take the GRE before their application to the program. This requirement holds even if the applicant previously earned an MS degree or equivalent at UB or elsewhere and had not taken the GRE.