University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Frequently Asked Questions

Who will I work with?

You will work closely with your fellow students, your class instructors and your advisor. Course work includes many opportunities for team projects. Each student is matched with a faculty member who serves as advisor and supervises the out-of-class research activities of the student. Our Program strives to provide the facilities, resources and events that foster a vibrant learning environment among students and faculty. See EWRE Faculty and Research Areas for a description of our research activities and facilities.

What are the degree requirements?

Our Program offers the MS and PhD degrees. The MS degree is earned by following one of several requirement paths. The path you select will depend on your undergraduate degree and on your interests.

What courses will I take?

The courses you take will include some that are required of all students and electives that you will choose in consultation with your advisor. With ten faculty in the Program we are able to offer a number of electives each semester. In addition, other Departments in the University offer courses often taken by our students. Course sizes are generally less than 10 students. All students are required to do either a Dissertation, Research Thesis or an Engineering Report depending on their degree path. See EWRE Courses for a list of course offerings.

How will I support myself?

Nearly all of our students receive financial aid. This aid is sufficient to cover living costs in Amherst. For most, this aid comes in the form of a research assistantship which is provided by the advisor. In return for this aid the student is expected to participate in a research project under the supervision of the advisor. For more information, see EWRE Admission.

What is it like to live in Amherst?

Amherst is a lively college town. The University of Massachusetts has an enrollment of approximately 24,000 students, including 5,000 graduate students. The University joins with its academic neighbors - Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke and Smith Colleges - in maintaining the rich tradition of education and cultural activity associated with the Pioneer Valley. Situated in one of the most picturesque sections of the state, the Valley offers a wide array of musical, art, theatre and other cultural resources. Boston, New York City, Cape Cod and numerous other recreational opportunities are located within several hours driving time.