Master of Science in Operations Research (MSc)

Degree Requirements

The MSc requires a minimum of 31 credit hours. To earn the MSc in Operations Research, the student must:

  1. Successfully complete five core courses (subject to Restrictions 1 and 2 below) from the following list:
    • OR 501: Introduction to Operations Research
    • OR 504: Introduction to Mathematical Programming
    • OR 505: Linear Programming
    • CSC 505: Design and Analysis of Algorithms
    • OR 506: Algorithmic Methods In Nonlinear Programming
    • ST 516: Experimental Statistics For Engineers II, or ST 512: Experimental Statistics For Biological Sciences II
    • OR 531: Dynamic Systems and Multivariable Control I
    • OR 537: Computer Methods and Applications
    • ISE 537: Statistical Models for Systems Analytics in Industrial Engineering
    • MA/ST 546: Probability and Stochastic Processes I
    • OR 560: Stochastic Models in Industrial Engineering
    • OR 562: Simulation Modeling
    • OR 706: Nonlinear programming
    • OR 708: Integer Programming
    • OR 709: Dynamic Programming
    • MA/ST 747: Probability and Stochastic Processes II
    • OR 760: Applied Stochastic Models in Industrial Engineering
    • OR 761: Queues and Stochastic Service Systems
    • OR 762: Computer Simulation Techniques
    • OR 772: Stochastic Simulation Design and Analysis
    • Restriction 1: At least one of OR 505, OR 506, and OR 709 MUST be chosen.
    • Restriction 2: OR 504 and OR 505 cannot BOTH be used to satisfy this five-course requirement.
  2. Enroll in OR 601 (OR Seminar) for one credit hour during residence. Students are expected to attend the seminar throughout their program.
  3. Successfully complete a master’s thesis (3 to 6 credits of OR 695). Ideally, the thesis will be of sufficient caliber to include publishable research.
  4. Students MAY choose three courses in a minor field of study. A maximum of 6 credits of coursework at the 400 level will be allowed in the minor. A student may, with the consent of his/her examination committee, choose NOT to pursue a minor field of study.
  5. If additional courses are needed to complete the 31-hour requirement, they should come from mathematics, engineering, statistics, computer science, or other STEM disciplines (e.g., econometrics, data science, etc.). Some business courses are also acceptable as electives. Questions regarding electives should be directed to the OR Director or the student’s faculty advisor.
  6. Form a Graduate Advisory Committee, consisting of at least three faculty, and file a committee-approved Plan of Graduate Work with the Graduate School. The Chair (or co-chair) and one other committee member should be a member of the OR Faculty. At least one member should represent the minor field of study.
  7. Pass a Final Oral Examination conducted by the Advisory Committee. The exam will include, but, at the discretion of the committee, need not be restricted to a “defense of thesis.”
  8. Upon passing the MSc final oral examination, each MSc student must have the thesis approved by each member of the student’s advisory committee. The thesis must be submitted to the thesis editor of the Graduate School and must conform to the Guide for Preparation of Theses and Dissertations, a copy of which may be obtained from the Graduate School. The student should be aware of Graduate School submission deadlines for graduation. Submission of theses to the Graduate School is by appointment only (call 919-515-2871).

What is an MSc Degree?

MSc and MS are essentially the same thing. They are both abbreviations for the “Master of Science” or “M.S.” degree.