Skip to Main Content

Frequently Asked Questions


Q. I am interested in earning my PhD. Do I need to have a MS degree to apply to the PhD program? 

A. No, it is not necessary to have a MS degree to apply to the PhD program.

Those interested in pursuing a PhD in Chemical and Biochemical Engineering or Environmental Engineering can apply after earning an undergraduate degree or master’s degree, as long as the necessary program requirements are fulfilled.

Q. Is funding and financial support available for graduate students in the department? 

A. Funding is offered to students admitted to the PhD program. Unfortunately, the department does not offer funding to students pursuing their MS degree.

Additional details about funding opportunities is available on the financial support page

Q. I have a non-environmental engineering undergraduate degree. What do I need in order to work toward an advanced degree in environmental engineering?

A. Prerequisites for Environmental Engineering graduate study include Organic Chemistry, Physics, Differential Equations, and Calculus.

The key prerequisites for the Environmental Engineering graduate programs are:

Q. I have a non-chemical engineering undergraduate degree. What do I need in order to work toward an advanced degree in chemical engineering?

A. It will almost certainly be necessary for you to take a number of undergraduate engineering courses in addition to the courses required for the M.S. or Ph.D. degrees. Chemistry and physics majors will need approximately four additional undergraduate courses. Mathematics and biology majors will typically need more than four additional courses. However, each case is handled individually.

The key prerequisites for the Chemical Engineering graduate programs are:

Our graduate core curriculum consists of:

Chemical Engineering Graduate Core Curriculum
ENCH 610 Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics ENCH 300 (Thermodynamics)

Prerequisites: MATH 251 (Multivariable Calculus) & CHEM 351 (Organic Chemistry).
Note: we will permit the student to take these prerequisites at the same time as ENCH 300 (co-requisites).

ENCH 630 Transport Phenomena ENCH 425 (Transport I: Fluids)
ENCH 427 (Transport II: Heat & Mass) Prerequisites: MATH 225 (Differential Equations).
Note: Depending on the student, we may permit the student to take these prerequisites at the same time as ENCH 425 (co-requisites).
Note: Depending on the student, we may permit student to take ENCH 630 at the same time they are taking or auditing ENCH 427.
ENCH 640 Advanced Chemical Reaction Kinetics ENCH 440 (Kinetics)

Prerequisites: ENCH 300 (Thermodynamics), ENCH 425 (Transport I: Fluids).

MATH 404 Introduction to Partial Differential Equations Prerequisites:
MATH 251 (Multivariable Calculus).
MATH 225 (Differential Equations).

Graduate Non-Degree Status: 

Students can take the undergrad classes above as a “Non-Degree Seeking Student.” UMBC allows up to 6 of these credits to eventually count toward a degree.  Graduate Non-Degree students pay graduate rates for their classes regardless of the level of the actual class.  Typically students take classes as a non-degree-seeker for the following reasons:

  • Student has been away from school for a while and wants to make connections for the purpose of receiving letters of reference.
  • Student graduated quite a while ago and wants to try graduate work.
  • Student may not have the best GPA but wants to show they can do well in graduate work.
  • Fun facts about graduate non-degree students: up to six credits of work taken while a non-degree student can be applied towards their degree program if they apply and are accepted as a degree student.
  • The graduate school reviews non-degree applications and will admit anyone who applies with a GPA of 3.0 or better when they received their BS degree.  If the student has below a 3.0 they will ask the department review their file before admitting to graduate classes.

Q. I would like to do part-time work for a graduate degree. Can this be done?

A. Part-time programs are possible; however, the department does not regularly offer evening or weekend courses. Graduate courses are scheduled throughout the day. Financial support is normally not available for part-time students.

Q. What are the tuition charges and additional fees?

A. Current tuition and fee information can be found on the Student Business Services website.

Q. What housing accommodations are available to me?

A. On-campus housing is available in the form of shared four-bedroom apartments, although most graduate students choose to live off campus.

 Learn about more housing options here.

Q: Can I take courses offered outside of the CBEE department toward my Graduate Degree?

A: Yes, students often take courses offered from other departments. The most common courses taken by CBEE students is provided on the list of pre-approved elective courses. Students can request approval from their research advisor or GPD to take other courses that are appropriate for their interests.