Joint Doctoral Program

Engineering Science (Mechanical and Aerospace)

Program Overview

Degree Learning Outcomes

Graduates with the Doctoral Degree in Engineering Science (Mechanical and Aerospace) will demonstrate:

  • an in-depth understanding of the basic and advanced topics in mechanical and aerospace engineering,
  • the ability to use common tools and techniques in mechanical and aerospace engineering,
  • the ability to create and perform independent research on an original and novel topic in mechanical and aerospace engineering,
  • effective professional skills including oral and written communication, leadership, independence, teamwork, and ethics,
  • the ability to function as part of a multi-disciplinary research team, and
  • the qualifications to be hired in industry or in academia.

Course Requirements

JDP students are required to satisfy course requirements at both institutions. At UCSD, preparation for the Department Qualifying Examination involves ten to twelve graduate courses taken at UCSD. An overall graduate GPA of 3.5 is required for continuation in the program.

Departmental Qualifying / Comprehensive / Ph.D. Preliminary Exam

The Doctoral Qualifying Examination is administered by the student's Advising Committee supplemented, if appropriate, by faculty appointed by the directors of the Engineering Joint Doctoral Program at SDSU and UCSD. The examination will be oral, will cover at least four areas selected so as to ensure appropriate competence in the general areas of engineering science, and will be at the level and content of both SDSU and UCSD courses already completed.

Senate Qualifying / Ph.D. Candidacy Exam

Upon successful completion of the Doctoral Qualifying Examination, a Doctoral Committee shall be appointed by the Deans of the Graduate Divisions of SDSU and UCSD upon the recommendation of the directors of the Engineering Joint Doctoral Program. The Doctoral Committee shall supervise the study and research program of the student. The Chair will be the student's principal dissertation advisor and will determine in consultation with the student when the Senate Qualifying Examination will be held.

The student's Doctoral Committee will administer the examination, which will consist of a presentation of the student's proposed research topic, initial dissertation results, and plans for future research. Upon successfully completing the Senate Qualifying Examination, the student may apply to both institutions for advancement to candidacy for the appropriate doctoral degree. The student must be a candidate at least two semesters (one year) prior to the award of the degree.

Doctoral Dissertation Defense

The Doctoral Committee will administer the final examination, which will consist of two parts: the student's submission of the written dissertation and the student's oral presentation of the dissertation results. The first part of the oral dissertation defense is open to the public while the second part of the dissertation defense involves specific evaluation and discussion with the student's Doctoral Committee.