Master of Science in Industrial Engineering (MSIE) | NC State ISE

Master of Science in Industrial Engineering

The MSIE involves some depth of study in a specified area of concentration and requires a research thesis. It prepares you for success as a researcher working for consulting firms, industrial organizations or the government. It’s a research-oriented degree that prepares you for entry into our Ph.D. program and you get priority for assistantship awards.

The MSIE degree involves some focused study in a specified area and requires a research thesis.


Statistics courses are not required for the MS degree. But, most ISE faculty will require you to have some advanced coursework in statistics. Entry-level competence in statistics (ST 507, ST 511, ST 513 and ST 515) is required for many graduate courses in Industrial Engineering. Many students include statistics courses in their minor. Those courses that are commonly taken include ST 516, ST 708, ST 711, ST 730 and ST 731. See the Guidelines for Minors in Statistics for additional information.

Your Thesis

  • For general requirements, see the NC State’s Thesis and Dissertation Guide
  • Don’t wait until you have completed all your coursework before beginning your thesis research. Students who make timely progress on their thesis during their first year in residence have a reasonable expectation of completing it in less than two years
  • Planning your thesis research should begin in the first semester in residence
  • Actually performing the research may begin early in your program, and “directed study” courses (ISE 637 and ISE 639) are legitimate alternatives to formal coursework which you can begin to do preliminary (pilot) research under faculty supervision
  • A written proposal approved by your advisory committee is recommended before definitive thesis research is begun
  • There will be an oral examination of your thesis. If you fail the oral examination you shall be granted one opportunity to pass a second oral examination

Scheduling your Final Oral Examination and Thesis Review

The Graduate Secretary will request approval to schedule the Masters Oral Examination from the Graduate School when:

  1. You have finished all coursework or
  2. You are in the final semester of completing all your coursework
  • You must be registered in the semester that the oral exam is held
  • The Request for Approval to Schedule Masters Oral Examination Form should be completed and given to the Graduate Secretary at least two weeks before the date of the oral exam
  • When you schedule your final oral examination, you must provide a half-page abstract of the research, in the approved format, to the Graduate Secretary
  • Please familiarize yourself with the ETD System. Everything is explained in detail on the Graduate School’s ETD Process page.

Your Final Oral Examination and Thesis Review

  • The final oral examination is open to all interested students and faculty
  • Usually, you present a 30- to 45-minute presentation on your thesis research
  • A session may follow your presentation where your advisory committee ask questions about your work
  • Some revisions to your thesis may be required
  • After you have received an unconditional pass of your final oral examination (signatures of all committee members on the title page of your thesis required), the Graduate School’s thesis editor will review your thesis for conformity to the requirements of the Thesis and Dissertation Guide
    • The Graduate School thesis editor’s review is by appointment only
    • Appointments with the thesis editor must be made at least one week in advance
    • At the time of thesis review, you must also submit your title page bearing the original signatures of all members of your advisory committee

Submitting Your Thesis to the Graduate School

The procedure for electronic thesis submission is detailed in ETD – Thesis and Dissertation Guide. You should download and complete the MSIE Degree Checklist (PDF 80KB). Also, during your final semester of coursework, you should have your Graduate Services Coordinator notify the Graduate School that you are eligible to graduate. This must be done no later than four weeks before the last day of classes. To receive a diploma (at graduation) you must apply through MyPack Portal.

 Got Questions? Please contact our Graduate Services Coordinator |  |  919.515.6410.