Program type:


On Campus
Est. time to complete:

4-5 years
Credit Hours:

42 (with prior M.S.) 72 (with prior B.S.)
Lead the way to the next breakthrough innovation in materials science and engineering.
The Doctor of Philosophy degree in Materials Science and Engineering represents the highest level of scholarship and achievement in independent research that culminates in the completion of a dissertation of original scientific merit.

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Why Earn a degree in Materials Science and Engineering?

The program provides strong collaborative links with other universities and industries in the Dallas-Fort Worth region and research organizations throughout the country and the world.

The department addresses the educational and technological challenges of creating, applying and characterizing new materials for manufacturing products in the 21st century.

As part of your graduate studies, you will learn all aspects of modern materials and their characterization, including metals, ceramics, polymers, and electronic and optical materials.

Marketable Skills
  • Identify knowledge gaps in materials science and engineering
  • Expertise with advanced materials characterization techniques
  • Material data analysis using computational tools
  • Material design and property predictions
  • Scientific report writing and communication

Materials Science and Engineering Ph.D. Highlights

With small class sizes, you'll work closely with nationally recognized faculty members on research projects to solve complex problems, many of which lead to exciting internship opportunities.
The high quality of our state-of-the-art lab and research facilities are recognized nationwide.
UNT's Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering offers concentrations in both Mechanical and Energy Engineering and Biomedical Engineering for students looking for a more interdisciplinary experience.
The department has 21 faculty members and 85 graduate students, plus well-equipped laboratories with outstanding technical support.
Our research efforts span size scales from the microscopic to aircraft wings and from atomically precise manufacturing to assembly of hip implants.

The College of Engineering and the Department of Materials Science and Engineering work on innovative, futuristic ideas from the development of stealth, unmanned vehicles to compostable plastic packaging and new energy-efficient lighting materials.

What Can You Do With A Degree in Materials Science and Engineering?

You'll have many opportunities to develop highly marketable skills in areas such as:

  • Aerospace
  • Automotive
  • Biomedical Microelectronics
  • Characterization
  • Chemical Energy
  • Environmental
  • Modeling and simulations
  • Nanotechnology
  • Power

Materials Science and Engineering Ph.D. Courses You Could Take

Bonding, Structure and Crystallography (3 hrs)
Interatomic bonding; amorphous and crystalline structures in metals, ceramics and polymers; point and line defects in crystals; structure determination by X-ray diffraction; basic symmetry operations, point and space groups in crystal systems.
Mechanical Properties of Materials (3 hrs)
Stress, strain and the basics of concepts in deformation and fracture for metals, polymers and ceramics. Analysis of important mechanical properties such as plastic flow, creep, fatigue, fracture toughness, and rupture. Application of these principles to the design of improved materials and engineering structures.
Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials (3 hrs)
Intensive study of the properties of electronic, optical and magnetic materials. Electrical and thermal conduction, elementary quantum physics, bonding, band theory, semi-conductors, dielectrics, magnetic properties, superconductivity, optical properties.
Deformation Mechanisms in Solid Materials (3 hrs)
Discussions on microelasticity and microplasticity of materials. Application of dislocation theory to understand deformation mechanisms related to strengthening. Interactions of dislocation with solute precipitates, dispersoid, grain boundary and barriers are presented. Deformation mechanisms in amorphous and polymeric materials. Micromechanisms of deformation in fatigue, creep, creep-fatigue and strain-rate loading are described.
Phase Transformations (3 hrs)
Thermodynamics, kinetic and structural aspects of metallic and ceramic phase transformations; mechanisms and rate-determining factors in solid-phase reactions; diffusion processes, nucleation theory, precipitations from solid solution, order-disorder phenomena and applications of binary and ternary phase diagrams.
Thermodynamics of Materials (3 hrs)
The zeroth law of thermodynamics, work, energy and the first law of thermodynamics; the second law of thermodynamics, thermodynamic potentials, the third law of thermodynamics, thermodynamic identities and their uses, phase equilibria in one-component systems, behavior and reactions of gases. Solutions, binary and multicomponent systems: phase equilibria, materials separation and purification. Electrochemistry. Thermodynamics of modern materials including liquid crystals.

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