The Graduate Studies Program hosted an online webinar detailing answers to frequently asked questions during the application process. Watch the recording here.
Graduate Studies - About the Program
Texas A&M University at Qatar offers two graduate degrees in chemical engineering: a Master of Science (M.S.) and a Master of Engineering (M.Eng.). At this time, we only offer graduate degrees in chemical engineering. Master of Science (M.S.) The Master of Science requires a minimum of 32 semester credit hours of approved courses and research. Master of Engineering (M.Eng.) The Master of Engineering degree requires a minimum of 30 semester credit hours of approved courses and requires no research credit hours. For More Information Chemical Engineering Graduate Program — All academic aspects of the chemical engineering graduate degrees are handled by the Chemical Engineering Program. Visit this page for details on the academic requirements of the chemical engineering graduate degrees. Graduate Admissions — The admission process is coordinated by the Office of Research and Graduate Studies. Visit this page for more information on admissions and application requirements.
- The Basics
It’s important to understand the foundations of graduate education at Texas A&M University. Below are the basics that govern graduate education.
Who Are You?
The key to many of the processes and procedures depends on what kind of student you are. Texas A&M at Qatar has the advantage of being home to two categories of graduate students; depending on what campus they are admitted to.
College Station Student – If you were admitted to the main campus you are a “College Station student” (sometimes you’ll be called a “main campus student”). Department on main campus is ultimately responsible for you but our graduate studies office can assist you in many areas.
Qatar Student – If you were admitted to the Qatar campus, you are a “Qatar student”. Right now only chemical engineering has a program so all of our Qatar students are chemical engineering majors. Program on the Qatar campus is responsible for student but respective home department on main campus is also involved. Again the graduate studies office here can assist you in many areas Some processes and procedures will vary depending on whether you are a College Station or Qatar student.
Who Does What?
The Office of Graduate Studies OGS (located on main campus)
Whether you are a College Station or Qatar student, you fall under the umbrella of the Office of Graduate Studies on main campus. OGS sets the minimum requirements for a degree and how that degree is awarded. They are the official holder of your graduate student records and all documents (degree plan, thesis, etc.) eventually ends up in their office for approval and filing.
Graduate Studies Services (located at the Qatar campus)
This is the office on the Qatar campus that facilitates all interaction between the Qatar campus and the academic programs located here. We assist and provide guidance to all graduate students at the Qatar campus in their progress towards degree. We collect official documents for transmittal to main campus as well as keep records for each student. We also are responsible for all graduate assistantships or other employment issues as they pertain to graduate students. In order for us to serve this role you must keep us updated on all your activity at the Qatar campus.
Academic Department/Academic Program
Depending on what category of student you are (see above) you are a student in an academic department (main campus) or its corresponding academic program (Qatar campus). Departments are sometimes referred to as “home departments”. These departments/programs can set more strict requirements and processes for degree progression and awarding. It is important that you understand that there are OGS requirements and those of the department/program you are a student in. Faculty members of the programs at the Qatar campus are directly linked to their respective home departments.
- Qatar Graduate Studies Office – firstname.lastname@example.org
- Chemical Engineering Program – email@example.com
College Station Students
- Chemical Engineering Department Graduate Advisor: Towanna Arnold
- Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Graduate Advisor: Tammy Carda
- Mechanical Engineering Department Graduate Advisor: Missy Cornett
- Petroleum Engineering Department Graduate Advisor: Eleanor Schuler
- College of Science: This will depend on what department in the college you are associated with so work directly with you faculty advisor on the Qatar campus.
- Degree Requirements
As noted above, both the university (via OGS) and your respective department/program have certain requirements you must meet and restrictions on what courses you can take and more importantly what you can use on your degree plan. Whether you are a College Station or Qatar student you must adhere to these requirements.
That said, it is EXTREMELY IMPORTANT you know about these and follow them.
University Requirements University requirements are the minimum requirements you must follow to be awarded your degree. You can find them in the Texas A&M University Graduate Catalog and these will depend on the degree you are pursuing; a Master of Science, Master of Engineering, or Ph.D.
Important Note for College Station MS Students Regarding Distance Learning Courses M.S and Ph.D. students are only allowed to use distance education courses for up to 25% of those courses used on their degree plan. Distance education courses are those that have a 7XX section number assigned to them. M.Eng. students are allowed to take all their courses via distance education since the M.Eng. distance program in petroleum engineering is an approved program.
Department/Program Requirements These requirements will be different for each department/program you are a student in. Most departments have information available online. Below are links to what is currently available. If you are unsure about this or unable to find anything please contact your faculty advisor.
College of Science
This will vary depending on the department you are a student in. Please contact your faculty advisor directly.
- Degree Plan
So what is your degree plan?
Your degree plan is many things but the easiest way to think about it is that it literally is “what you plan to take while you progress toward your degree.” Make sense?
This is where the Office of Graduate Studies really becomes involved in your graduate education. They are the official “keepers” of your academic record, including your official degree plan (and any changes you make to your degree plan), your thesis title (if applicable), and graduation. Essentially all paperwork ends up in OGS.
The first step in completing your degree plan is to assemble your graduate committee. This committee will guide and advise you throughout your graduate career.
- M.S. your committee should be comprised of at least one faculty member (preferably the chair) whose research closely matches your research interests.
- M.Eng. Your committee responsibilities will most likely fall to the graduate advisor of your particular department or program.
You should consult with the committee chair and members to decide the courses you plan to take from your first semester to your last.
You may use the GSI form to more easily map out different plans. Once you and your committee/advisor are satisfied with your degree plan you will need to submit the GSI form to the Qatar graduate studies office. We will then assist you in inputting your degree plan into the Online Degree Plan Submission System. Once entered and submitted, your online degree plan will be routed electronically for approval through your committee members, then your home program and/or department, and finally by OGS.
It’s really not too complicated so do your best to get this done by the end of your first semester or you will have a registration hold placed on your record and not be able to get the courses you want to take.
- Registration and Holds
You are ultimately responsible for registering for your required courses. You should always consult your graduate faculty advisor/committee.
The best and easiest way to do this is to complete your degree plan, because;
- It is the plan for your courses during your academic career.
- You will have registration holds placed on your record after your first semester of classes if your degree plan is not completed.
It is simply in your best interest to get your degree plan done as soon as possible.
How Do I Register?
The registration process is subject to a registration calendar – the window of time in which you are allowed to register for (or drop) courses. Depending on whether you are a Qatar student or a College Station student, the registration calendar will vary.
Your first semester, you will need to meet with your faculty advisor to determine what courses you would like to take as there will be prescribed set of courses you’ll need to start with.
If for some reason you miss the registration deadlines for either campus you need to contact your department/program to request a “forced registration”. For Qatar student you will need to fill out a request form and submit it to the Office of Records after getting program approval. For College Station students you will need to contact your home department graduate advisor to request this.
How to Register for Distance Learning Courses
Students are not allowed to register for distance learning (7xx-section) courses on their own through the Howdy portal. Petroleum students must email the graduate advisor in petroleum engineering department, Eleanor Schuler, to register for any PETE distance learning courses. To register for distance learning courses in any other department you must contact that department directly.
- Missing Degree Plan
You didn’t get your degree plan filed like you were supposed to. Now you won’t be able to register. Your degree plan has to have made it to OGS for approval or this hold will appear. It gets worse. It can take time to get your degree plan to this stage so you may not be able to register by the first day of class, which means you may see late registration fees eventually applied to your student account when you FINALLY are able to register. If you see this hold, you need to get your degree plan submitted ASAP and notify QGS.
- Missing Admissions Documents
This hold is usually a result of something missing from your original application to graduate school. It could be an official transcript, a passport copy or an expired passport, official test scores, etc. Another often overlooked item missing is your degree statement. This is sometimes part of your transcript but occasionally it is a separate document so double-check that you have this item and have given it to QGS. If you have this hold you need to contact the admission processing folks on main campus.
- English Language Proficiency
All international students must meet English Language Proficiency requirements (see ELP). You usually do this through test scores (GRE Verbal, TOEFL or IELTS). If you forget to have these scores reported to TAMU you will certainly see this hold. Notify QGS if you see this and be prepared to get these scores reported ASAP.
- ISS Check In/Orientation
This hold usually only shows up for main campus students as International Student Services requires all international students to check in. You may never have been to main campus, however, so you should let QGS know and they will notify ISS.
- Health Center/Immunization
Similar to ISS holds, this usually only shows up for main campus students. Please notify QGS so that we can get this hold removed.
- Past Due Student Balance
Students are ultimately responsible for ensuring that their tuition and fees are paid in full and on time. If you don’t, you’re going to see this registration hold and the only way to have it removed is to make payment arrangements. If you are a main campus student you need to contact Student Business Services. If you are a Qatar campus student you should contact Finance.
- Grad Assistantships and Employment
Many graduate students at Texas A&M at Qatar are employed as graduate assistants or graduate student workers. Here’s a few terms that help explain.
Graduate Assistant (Research) or GAR – works on a faculty research projects.
Graduate Assistant (Teaching) or GAT – supports the teaching mission of the university by assisting in lectures or in the teaching labs.
Graduate Assistant (Non-Teaching) or GANT – supports the teaching mission of the university by assisting in grading, tutoring, and teaching preparation.
Graduate Student Worker – a graduate student may be hired by an academic program or an administrative office on campus, however this is rare.
Important Note: Graduate Assistants are required to enroll full-time and maintain a 3.0 GPA or higher to keep their assistantship. Full-time is 9 hours in the fall and spring and 6 hours in the summer.
Assistantships are available to qualified students depending on funding. GARs are selected by faculty members and GATs and GANTs are selected by the academic programs. The Qatar Graduate Studies Office manages the hiring process, ensures adherence to university rules and regulations and prepares the offer letter (or contract). Once the contract is signed by the faculty supervisor, administration and student, the Qatar Graduate Studies Office forwards the Human Resources Services, Finance, Building Operations, and Information Technology offices at the Qatar campus.
- Professional Development Opportunities
Texas A&M at Qatar offers a wealth of tools to help you complete your graduate degree. Access those readily available resources and tips through this handy guide.
Frequently Asked Questions
- When can I apply for admissions and what information do I need to provide? Students are admitted each fall semester. Admissions information, including application deadlines and how to apply, can be found online. Once you complete the admission application, you will be sent a login and password to provide transcripts from all previous institutions, GRE scores, a current CV, statement of purpose, three references for recommendation to the program, and verification that you meet the English proficiency requirements. The initial review process will be based on information you upload to our site; however, admission is contingent on verification by our office of all test scores and official transcripts.
- Are there minimum requirements for admission? Admissions decisions are made on a competitive basis that take into account several aspects of a student’s portfolio so there are no minimum requirements in any category. Average GRE quantitative scores are 161 (770 on tests taken before 1 August 2011) and average GPA is 3.65 on a 4.0 scale.
- Is it possible to tell me what my chances are of being accepted before I apply? Regrettably the program does not have the resources to offer pre-screening of applications. It is recommended that you contact the advising staff at your own undergraduate institution for an evaluation of your current record and suggestions regarding where to apply for graduate school. Your undergraduate record, performance on the GRE, any undergraduate research experience, letters of recommendation, and your personal statement are all considered in our decision regarding admission.
- Can I apply and turn in documents after the deadline? Applicants are highly encouraged to meet the admissions deadline to ensure a decision for the semester in they apply. Applications and documents submitted after the deadline will not be considered.
- How much will the program cost? Tuition is approximately $535 per credit hour so students should expect a minimum of $16,000 for tuition costs for the duration of the degree.
- How long will the program take? Full-time students (typically 9 or more credit hours per semester) should expect to graduate in 1.5 to 2 years. Part-time students (typically less than 9 credit hours per semester) completion time will depend on enrollment hours per semester.
- Is financial support available? Graduate assistantships may be available and require a minimum of 20 hours per week of work on a research project or as a teaching assistant. This will qualify the student for full tuition support, a stipend and other benefits. Some additional financial assistance such as fellowship will be available periodically.
- How do I apply for assistantship or fellowship? There is no application for assistantship or fellowship. Both types of support are offered on a merit and competitive basis and are offered to incoming and current students by the program’s graduate committee. It is suggested that anyone interested in assistantship directly contact the faculty that share the same research interest and determine the likelihood of availability at the time of admission. Please visit the program website for information about research efforts.
- What if I have an undergraduate degree that is not chemical engineering? The program has accepted students without undergraduate degrees in chemical engineering. However, receiving a positive decision can be more difficult, as this program builds on the undergraduate education of a chemical engineer. Like with all applicants, the decision depends on courses that you have taken as an undergraduate student, your level of preparation, and any industry experience in the chemical engineering field you may possess.
- How do I select my research advisor? Students are highly encouraged to contact faculty members and learn about their research areas. In addition, new students should become familiar with research activities in the Chemical Engineering Program by attending a series of seminars given by the faculty during the first fall semester. All students selecting research advisors are required to attend all seminars, even if they already have a preferred research area. Students then consult with the graduate advisor and the faculty to choose a research advisor and other committee members.
- How do I obtain a visa to attend Texas A&M University at Qatar? Applicants are not granted a visa until admitted to the program. Once admitted, the Office of Research and Graduate Studies will work with student services to obtain a visa prior to your arrival.
- Is there a Texas A&M University and Texas A&M University at Qatar Exchange Program? Our main campus in the US does offer graduate degrees in chemical, electrical and computer, mechanical, and petroleum engineering as well as science and liberal arts. Many students who are admitted to these programs in the US, spend semesters at Texas A&M at Qatar to work on research. Additionally, the Petroleum Engineering Department on main campus offers graduate degrees via distance education. For admissions information you must contact the respective office of the program you wish to apply to and you must apply to Texas A&M University in the U.S. Texas A&M University (U.S.) departments and colleges:
Living on campus is a great way to get to know fellow students, engage in student life, and get the most from your University experience. If you wish to live on campus and have not already informed Texas A&M at Qatar, please submit your information online as soon as possible. Housing is filled on a first-come, first-serve basis.
Thank you for your interest in the Texas A&M University at Qatar Chemical Engineering Graduate Program. For other questions, please send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be happy to setup a time to discuss the program at your earliest convenience.