Ph.D. with Manufacturing Focus

Course Requirements

Note: Course descriptions can be found in the University Bulletin.

Core Group - all courses in this group must be taken

  • IE 550: Manufacturing Systems
  • IE 571: Product Design, Manufacturing Specifications, and Measurements
  • IE 527: Additive Manufacturing, or IE 560: Manufacturing with Materials, or IE 597K: Machine Process Design and Theory

Domain Groups - a minimum of three courses must be taken from the domain groups; there is no restriction on the number of courses taken from each group

Domain I: Design and Manufacturing Processes

  • IE 546/M E 546: Designing Product Families
  • IE 560: Manufacturing Processes and Materials
  • IE 563: Computer-Aided Design for Manufacturing
  • IE 572: Discrete Part Metrology
  • IE 597X: Weld Design and Performance
  • IE 597X: Manufacturing Process Engineering
  • IE 597X: Global Manufacturing

 Domain II: Manufacturing Systems and Automation

  • IE 551: Computer Control of Manufacturing Systems
  • IE 556/M E 556: Robotic Concepts
  • IE 567: Distributed Systems and Control

Domain III: Computational Methods and Analysis

  • IE 522: Discrete Event Systems Simulation
  • IE 540: Manufacturing Systems Simulation
  • IE 582: Information Technology for Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • IE 597X: System Informatics and Statistical Learning in Quality Engineering

Grade Point Average Requirements

A grade point average (GPA) of 2.0 (C) or higher must be achieved in each of the above six courses with the student averaging a GPA of 3.33 (B +) or higher in the courses.

Ph.D. Qualifying Exam

The qualifying examination is offered twice a year, fall and spring. Students are advised to take the exam after completing two semesters in the department. The qualifying exam can be taken only after completing the six courses in the core group and the domain groups and meeting the GPA requirements. The exam has three components: an in-class written exam, a take-home examination, and an oral exam. A student is expected to pass all these components in order to successfully pass the qualifying exam. The process will be as follows:

  • In-class written exam: This component consists of one examination per core requirement course. Each student will have two hours to complete each exam. The examination will be closed book/closed notes. 
  • Take-home exam: Each student will select one domain question from the questions submitted by the manufacturing faculty. The domain courses taken by the student will all be represented in the pool of domain questions. Each student will have two days to complete this examination.
  • Oral exam: Each student will make a 15-minute oral presentation on the same topic selected by the student for the take-home exam, followed by an oral exam by the manufacturing faculty. 

The possible outcomes for all three components of the qualifying exam are:

  • Pass
  • Fail: If this is the first time that the student has not passed, then the student may take the exam one more time. If the student fails the exam for a second time, the student has to leave the program.

If Student Passes the Qualifying Examination

The Graduate School will be notified of the names of those who pass the qualifying examination. In addition, the student can officially select an adviser and other members of his/her doctoral committee, after passing the English Proficiency Examination. Informal selection of an adviser can be done at any time after the student starts his/her graduate program.

If Student Fails the Qualifying Examination

A student is allowed to take the qualifying examination only two times. No student will be permitted to continue in the Ph.D. program after failing the examination twice.

Please note: It is urged that the comprehensive examination is taken as soon as possible after passing the qualifying examination and the English Proficiency Examination.

It is strongly recommended that students schedule the comprehensive examination within 18 months after passing the qualifying examination.

Doctoral Committee

English Proficiency Examination

Comprehensive Examination

Dissertation Requirements

Final Defense

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Home of the first established industrial engineering program in the world, the Harold and Inge Marcus Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering (IME) at Penn State has made a name for itself in the engineering industry through its storied tradition of unparalleled excellence and innovation in research, education, and outreach.

We are Innovators. We are Makers. We are Excellence in Engineering. We are Penn State IME.

The Harold and Inge Marcus Department of
Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

310 Leonhard Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-4400

Phone: 814-865-7601

FAX: 814-863-4745