The master’s degree programs in chemical engineering provide students with a deeper understanding of the fundamentals of chemical engineering with a focus on problem-solving and mathematical modeling, through the use of advanced computational tools. The core curriculum is designed to enhance the skills of Bachelors-level chemical engineering so that they are able to model and solve more complex and realistic scenarios. Graduates of the Master's programs excel at numerical methods for solving engineering problems, computational fluid mechanics and transport, process simulation, and optimization.  

Learn more about all of our Master's programs over on our FAQ page.


Master of Science (MS)

The Master of Science (MS) in Chemical Engineering involves both course work and project work. The 144-unit degree is designed to be completed in four academic semesters. Students in the MS program complete a three semester independent project working closely with a research group in the department. These projects are designed to provide students with exposure to a one of the sub-disciplines of Chemical Engineering that is a strength of the department (see Research). Students are required to prepare a final report of the project work to develop written communication skills. Both the MS and the MChE degrees offer technical depth, and an opportunity to develop the computational skills that CMU is known for. The MS provides additional depth and specialization though an independent project.


Master of Chemical Engineering (MChE)

The Master of Chemical Engineering (MChE) is a 96-unit course work degree that is designed to be completed in two academic semesters. The MChE allows for breadth through additional courses taken. The goal of the program is to produce skilled engineers who will have a deeper understanding of the fundamentals of chemical engineering, as well as a broader set of professional skills and exposure to other technical disciplines.


Master of Science in Colloids, Polymers, and Surfaces (CPS)

The College of Engineering and Mellon College of Science jointly offer an interdisciplinary MS degree in the Colloids, Polymers, and Surfaces (CPS). Course work required for the MS in CPS is relevant to many industries, as chemical product manufacture and process development often require applications involving complex fluids that include nanoparticles, macromolecules and interfaces. Examples include industries working with nanotechnology, coatings and pigments, pharmaceuticals, surfactant-based products, cosmetics, pulp and paper, ink, food science, environmental science, agricultural products, polymers/advanced materials, and biomaterials.

Students electing this option must complete 96 units, including the following minimum coursework:

  • 06-705 Advanced Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics
  • or 09-611 Chemical Thermodynamics (mini)/ 09-603 Math Analysis for Chemistry (mini)
  • 06-607 Physical Chemistry of Colloids and Surfaces
  • 06-609 Physical Chemistry of Macromolecules
  • 39-801CPS Lab I: Colloids and Surfaces
  • 39-802CPS Lab II: Polymers
  • 06-608 Safety course

Students may choose to do an independent project and/or other advanced technical electives, with the approval of the CPS program director, to complete the 96 unit minimum requirement. Students in this program are advised by Professor Annette Jacobson, director of the CPS program.

CMU Chemical Engineering turned out to be a great stepping stone into the cosmetics industry.

Prashansa Desai (’14), Senior Chemist, L’Oréal

Affiliated and interdisciplinary master’s programs


Dual degree program: MChE & MS in Technology Ventures

The Master of Science in Technology Ventures equips students with tools and skills to bring high tech ideas to market. Students learn to leverage cutting-edge technologies in order to make a true impact on society.

In partnership with the Integrated Innovation Institute, the dual degree is a two-year bicoastal program that allows Master of Chemical Engineering (MChE) students to also obtain a Master of Science in Technology Ventures. In addition to completing MChE requirements in Pittsburgh, students travel to Silicon Valley for an internship at an established startup and fulfill two academic semesters learning about tech transfer and entrepreneurship at our campus in Mountain View, CA.


Energy Science, Technology and Policy program

Effective solutions to energy problems will come from engineers and technical managers who understand the interdisciplinary challenges of energy, and who are well informed on the broad issues of energy supply, demand, storage, utilization, policy, sustainability, and the environment. The Carnegie Mellon Energy Science, Technology and Policy (ESTP) program addresses this need with a professional engineering master’s degree that is based in engineering, aligned with new discoveries in science, attuned to sustainability and the environment, and informed by a broader perspective in economics and public policy. Depth in the ESTP curriculum is associated with declaring a concentration and taking specialized coursework in one of six engineering disciplines, which include Chemical Engineering. Students must apply and be admitted directly to the College of Engineering ESTP program, and applications are submitted through the program’s website.


Engineering & Technology Innovation Management master’s program and dual degree

Engineering and Technology Innovation Management MS (E&TIM) educates future engineering leaders by coupling technical education with frameworks to lead, foster, and manage technical innovation. A summer internship is an integral element of this interdisciplinary program. The Chemical Engineering MChE degree may be combined with the E&TIM program to form a 21-month dual degree MS program that equips students to drive value creation from technical innovation based on their understanding of technical concepts, innovation management fundamentals and real world implications.


Master of Chemical Engineering and Integrated Study in Computer Science

The Department of Chemical Engineering is pleased to be part of a new four (4) academic semester program with the School of Computer Science that focuses on completion of the Master of Chemical Engineering (MChE) degree integrated with advanced study in computer science. This degree in Chemical Engineering and Integrated Study in Computer Science is a highly competitive degree for chemical engineers with significant prior background in programming and computation. There are a limited number of positions open in this program with admission required by both the Department of Chemical Engineering and the School of Computer Science; thus application to the traditional master’s in Chemical Engineering is also recommended for all applicants.

In addition to graduate study in chemical engineering, students will also learn core and emerging skills in computer science, and the ability to implement and practice advanced computational-based methods applied to engineering.

Students in this program will complete the requirements for the MChE and a minimum of 60 units in Computer Science, including the following required Computer Science courses:

  • 15-513, Introduction to Computer Systems
  • 17-514, Principles of Software Construction: Objects, Design and Concurrency

The remaining SCS courses will be electives toward the integrated degree.

The degree will be conferred by the Department of Chemical Engineering and will be a Master of Chemical Engineering and Integrated Study in Computer Science.


Master of Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Engineering

With a growing interest in cross disciplinary studies at the graduate level as well as industrial interest in hiring students trained at master’s level in pharmaceutical and biotechnology areas, we are offering an advanced 1.5-year program for students to specialize in Biotechnology and Pharmaceutical Engineering by combining strengths in the Department of Biology and Department of Chemical Engineering.


Application deadlines

Fall admissionJanuary 15, 2021

Spring admissionSeptember 15, 2020

Apply now

Enroll in one of our master’s programs