This is a named option within the Mechanical Engineering M.S.

The Department of Mechanical Engineering M.S. named option Automotive Engineering is an accelerated on campus degree program (completed in 12 months) geared toward preparing students for a career in the automotive industry. With a strong emphasis on in-cylinder energy conversion processes, graduates of this program will be poised to immediately participate in engine development programs in the automotive, heavy duty, or recreational engine sectors. The coursework includes 12 credits of thermofluid processes, 12 formal credits in other relevant topics, and a 6 credits of summer practicum that pairs a hands-on laboratory course with a hands-on modeling course. The summer practicum coalesces information from coursework by applying it to internal combustion engines in a hands-on environment.

For more information on the Automotive Engineering named option see the program website.

Fall Deadline December 15
Spring Deadline This program does not admit in the spring.
Summer Deadline This program does not admit in the summer.
GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) Required.
English Proficiency Test Every applicant whose native language is not English or whose undergraduate instruction was not in English must provide an English proficiency test score and meet the Graduate School minimum requirements (
Other Test(s) (e.g., GMAT, MCAT) n/a
Letters of Recommendation Required 3

Students with a strong background in mechanical engineering or a related field with interest in furthering their education in mechanical engineering are encouraged to apply for admission to the department. Applicants accepted into the program generally have an undergraduate grade point average well above the graduate school minimum of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale. All applicants are required to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE). Applications are evaluated on the basis of previous academic record, GRE scores, letters of recommendation, and a personal statement. For more information on admission requirements see the program’s website

Graduate School Resources

Resources to help you afford graduate study might include assistantships, fellowships, traineeships, and financial aid. Further funding information is available from the Graduate School. Be sure to check with your program for individual policies and processes related to funding.

Program Resources

Students in this program are NOT eligible for teaching assistant, research assistant, or project assistant positions as this is an accelerated coursework ONLY degree.

Federal Loans

Students who are U.S. citizens or permanent residents may be eligible to receive some level of funding through the federal direct loan program. These loans are available to qualified graduate students who are taking at least 4 credits during the fall and spring semesters, and 2 credits during summer. Private loans are also available. Learn more about financial aid at their website


For information on International Student Funding and Scholarships visit the ISS website.

Minimum Graduate School Requirements

Review the Graduate School minimum academic progress and degree requirements, in addition to the program requirements listed below.

Named Option Requirements


Face to Face Evening/Weekend Online Hybrid Accelerated
Yes No No No Yes

Mode of Instruction Definitions


Minimum Credit Requirement 30 credits
Minimum Residence Credit Requirement 18 credits
Minimum Graduate Coursework Requirement Half of degree coursework (15 credits out of 30 total credits) must be completed graduate-level coursework; courses with the Graduate Level Coursework attribute are identified and searchable in the university's Course Guide (
Overall Graduate GPA Requirement 3.00 GPA required.
Other Grade Requirements Students must earn a C or above in all formal coursework.

Students may not have any more than two incompletes on their record at any one time.
Assessments and Examinations None.
Language Requirements No language requirements.

Required COURSES

A minimum of 24 formal course credits are required (minimum of 15 credits in Mechanical Engineering taken at UW-Madison), at least 3 of these credits must be numbered 700 or higher.

M E 903 Graduate Seminar (Two semesters are required and must be taken the first two semesters.)0
A minimum of 12 credits (4 courses) must be taken from the courses listed:
Thermal Systems Modeling
Air Pollution Effects, Measurements and Control
Internal Combustion Engines
Intermediate Thermodynamics
Intermediate Fluid Dynamics
Heat Transfer
Applied Combustion
Intermediate Gas Dynamics
Computational Fluid Dynamics
Topics in Thermodynamics
Advanced Heat Transfer I-Conduction
Combustion Processes
Advanced Experimental Instrumentation
Chem Kinetics of Combust Systems
Turbulent Heat and Momentum Transfer
During the summer term, students are required to enroll in Independent Study for the following:
M E 699 Advanced Independent Study (Engine Testing Practicum)3
M E 699 Advanced Independent Study (Engine Computational Fluid Dynamics Practicum)3

Graduate School Resources

Take advantage of the Graduate School's professional development resources to build skills, thrive academically, and launch your career. 

Graduate School Policies

The Graduate School’s Academic Policies and Procedures provide essential information regarding general university policies. Program authority to set degree policies beyond the minimum required by the Graduate School lies with the degree program faculty. Policies set by the academic degree program can be found below.

Named Option-Specific Policies

Graduate Program Handbook

The Mechanical Engineering Graduate Program Handbook is the repository for all of the program's policies and requirements.

Prior Coursework

Graduate Work from Other Institutions

With program approval, students are allowed to count graduate coursework from other institutions (up to 12 credits) toward the minimum graduate degree credit requirement and the minimum graduate coursework (50%) requirement. No credits from other institutions can be counted toward the minimum graduate residence credit requirement. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

UW–Madison Undergraduate

With advisor approval, up to 7 credits numbered 400 or above may be counted toward the minimum graduate degree credit requirement. These credits may be counted toward the minimum graduate coursework (50%) requirement if they are in courses numbered 700 or above.  No credits may be counted toward the minimum graduate residence credit requirement.  Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission to a master’s degree is not allowed to satisfy requirements.

UW–Madison University Special

With program approval, and payment of the difference in tuition, students are allowed to count up to 15 credits of coursework numbered 400 or above taken as a  UW–Madison Special student toward the minimum graduate residence credit requirement and the minimum graduate degree credit requirement.  These credits may be counted toward the minimum graduate coursework (50%) requirement if they are in courses numbered 700 or above. Coursework earned five or more years prior to admission is not allowed to satisfy requirements.


The Graduate School regularly reviews the record of any student who earned grades of BC, C, D, F, or Incomplete in a graduate course (300 or above), or grade of U in research credits. This review could result in academic probation with a hold on future enrollment or in being suspended from the Graduate School.

  1. Good standing (progressing according to standards; any funding guarantee remains in place).
  2. Probation (not progressing according to standards but permitted to enroll; loss of funding guarantee; specific plan with dates and deadlines in place in regard to removal of probationary status).
  3. Unsatisfactory progress (not progressing according to standards; not permitted to enroll, dismissal, leave of absence or change of advisor or program).

A semester GPA below 3.0 will result in the student being placed on academic probation. If a semester GPA of 3.0 is not attained during the subsequent semester of full time enrollment (or 12 credits of enrollment if enrolled part-time), this will be deemed unsatisfactory progress and the student may be dismissed from the program or allowed to continue for one additional semester based on advisor appeal to the Graduate School.

Advisor / Committee

All students will be assigned a mechanical engineering faculty advisor who assists them in planning a course sequence that meets degrees requirements and who will discuss career objectives with the students.

Credits per Term Allowed

15 credits

Time Constraints

Master’s degree students who have been absent for five or more consecutive years lose all credits that they have earned before their absence. Individual programs may count the coursework students completed prior to their absence for meeting program requirements; that coursework may not count toward Graduate School credit requirements.


Students enrolled in this program are not permitted to accept teaching assistantships, project assistantships, research assistantships or other appointments that would result in a tuition waiver. Students in this program cannot enroll in other graduate programs nor take courses outside the prescribed curriculum.

Faculty (who may serve as graduate advisor): 

Professors: Ghandhi (chair), Negrut, Nellis, Osswald, Pfotenhauer, Qian, Rutland, Sanders, Suresh, Shapiro, Thelen, Turng

Associate Professors: Eriten, C. Franck, Krupenkin, Miller, Pfefferkorn, Rothamer, Trujillo, Zinn

Assistant Professors: Adamczyk, M. Anderson, Henak, Kokjohn, Min, Pan, Roldan, Rudraraju, Rudykh 

Faculty Affiliates: M. Allen, Bonazza, J. Franck, Holloway, Notbohm, Reindl, Sarlioglu, Scarlat, Schauer, Serverson, Shinners, Thevamaran, Witzenburg

To see all ME Faculty please visit the directory here.