Procedures for M.S. Students

A document outlining "Procedures for M.S. Students" is available: 


MS students must take a total of 45 graduate credits and 12 of those credits must be thesis credits (BIOE 503). At least 27 credits of non-blanket courses are required. At least half of the non-blanket courses must be graduate stand-alone courses. The remaining courses can be the 500 component of 400/500 slash courses. Note: blanket courses are courses with a zero as the second number, e.g., BIOE 507. Thesis credits (BIOE 503 or BIOE 603) do not count as blanket credits.

A program of study form must be approved by the student’s committee and filed with the graduate school by completion of the second term.  The program of study defines the student’s path to completion of coursework, and, once approved, it becomes the obligation of the student to complete the requirements as formulated.

Advisor Selection

Students should select a research advisor during their first term at OSU. It the student’s responsibility to identify and contact faculty members to set up a meeting to discuss research opportunities. In addition to meeting with faculty, it can also be helpful to meet with graduate students, attend lab meetings and visit the lab. At the end of the term, students should submit an Advisor Selection Form listing their top three choices for preferred advisors. The selection process will be finalized by the start of the next term.  The student must sign a “letter of intent” to work with the specific advisor. This agreement is binding except in extraordinary circumstances.  If a student believes a change of advisor is warranted they are encouraged to talk with the Graduate Program Coordinator. 


The principal authority over a student's program resides with the student's Master's Committee.  This committee is responsible for assuring that University and School requirements are satisfied and administering the final oral examination. The Committee consists of at least 4 members:

  • the student's major professor;
  • one other BIOE faculty member;
  • the student's minor professor, or if no minor is selected, committee member may be from graduate faculty at-large; and
  •  the Graduate Council Representative.

The committee is originally formed, with approval from the major professor, at the student's invitation.  The Graduate Council Representative is selected from a list generated by the online GCR list generation tool.  The GCR is required to attend the final examination (thesis defense). 


The thesis demonstrates the student's mastery of knowledge in his/her chosen field.  It must present innovative research or a novel application of a known methodology to appropriate problems.  A conscientious survey of pertinent literature is a prerequisite to an acceptable thesis.  The research topic must be approved by the major professor, and the research title must be registered with the Graduate School.  MS candidates must complete a final oral comprehensive examination, which includes a thesis research presentation and defense and questions on pertinent academic subjects. The student cannot schedule a defense exam with the Graduate School until the major professor approves the thesis for distribution to all committee members.  Once approved, the student must submit a copy of the thesis to each committee member and complete the Exam Scheduling Form with the Graduate School at least two weeks prior to the intended defense date.