Frequently Asked Questions
- What do you mean by "Manufacturing?"
- How do I choose a Thesis Project?
- I have a specific interest in semiconductor industries; is this curriculum relevant?
- My long-term goal is to eventually return for an MBA. Why should I take this degree first?
- My long-term goal is industry-based research, and I expect to eventually return for a PhD degree. Should I take this degree first?
- How competitive are admissions?
- Do I need any work experience before I can start?
- How old are the typical students?
- What countries do the students come from?
- What background do I need?
- Is my knowledge of English sufficient?
In MST, we mean the entire process of going from customer needs to order fulfillment, with a particular emphasis on the process of creating products on a commercial scale. We focus on the conversion of material into components, and components into products that are delivered into a supply chain. This also encompasses the engineering and business aspects of these industries.
Each year, a number of companies offer projects for our program. We ask for a thorough description of activities and expectations for the project. After these are presented to the cohort, the students, companies, and faculty advisors go through a matching process to fit the projects to the students’ interests.
Most of the material in this degree applies to all segments of the discrete parts and products industries. The physics subjects consider semiconductor and other electronics manufacturing in concert with more traditional mechanical products. However, as noted above, there will be a re-centering of this curriculum on manufacturing at the small scale, to include both microchips and MEM devices as well.
If your long-term interest is to work in a manufacturing-oriented industry, in the end this degree will probably be more appropriate than an SM degree.
My long-term goal is industry-based research, and I expect to eventually return for a PhD degree. Should I take this degree first?
The main distinction between the Master of Engineering and the Master of Science is that the latter is much more research oriented. If you take the MEng option, returning for a PhD is not precluded, but the more appropriate route is the Master of Science.
The MEng degree is targeted at students with a strong interest in manufacturing. Within that dedicated pool of applicants the admissions process is very competitive.
Experience in manufacturing is always a plus, if only in helping you decide that this is the right program for you. We have no specific minimum experience requirement, however, it is desirable given the pace and project-centric nature of the overall program.
As most of our students are continuing directly from their undergraduate programs, the majority of students are in their early 20s. Students also join our program after several years in industry or another degree program, however, so there is a wide age range.
The MEng is a global program, and this is reflected in the student body makeup. At present, owing to both manufacturing trends and the companion SMA MST program (link) many of our students are from Asia, including China, Singapore and India, with another large group from Europe.
The MEng is a mechanical engineering program, and thus certain expectations are inherent in the classes. Nonetheless, a significant number of MEng students have been admitted and successfully completed the degree with very different backgrounds. In general, we need to see undergraduate subjects in the core areas of materials, mechanics, thermal science and/ design, even if not taught as part of a mechanical engineering curriculum.
Since the MEng is a professional degree, with significant project and group work, and with numerous presentations at MIT and at project sites, a good knowledge of English is essential. MIT has minimum language requirements for non-US students, and all graduate students must pass a technical writing test once they arrive; see the Mechanical Engineering application page for details. We typically conduct interviews of all students we are considering for admission, and one key aspect of that interview is English skills.