Master of Science in Engineering: Concentration in Energy Systems

Admission to the Program

Applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree in engineering, or a closely related discipline, with a minimum GPA of 3.0 in upper-division major classes, in addition to meeting general university requirements for graduate standing. The School of Engineering also requires two letters of recommendation from persons familiar with the student’s previous academic work or professional accomplishments. Graduate Record Exam (GRE) scores within the last three years are also required. A minimum score of 550 on the paper exam or 213 on the computer-based TOEFL is required for graduate applicants whose preparatory education was principally in a language other than English.

Advancement to Candidacy

The applicant is advanced to candidacy when the Advancement to Candidacy (ATC) has been signed and approved by the Dean of the Graduate Division.

Written English Proficiency Requirements

Level One

As a preadmission requirement, applicants must have satisfied one of the following:

  1. a score of at least 4.0/6.0 on the GRE or GMAT Analytic Writing Assessment;
  2. a score of at least 4.5/6.0 on the essay test of the paper-based [PBT] TOEFL (a minimum score of 24/30 on the Writing section of the Internet-based test [iBT] TOEFL);
  3. a score of at least 6.5/9.0 on the IELTS writing test, or a concordant score on the Pearson Test of English.

An applicant that does not meet the above requirement may be conditionally accepted to the program but must complete SCI 614 within the first year of attendance at SF State to meet the Level One requirement. SCI 614 does not count toward the 30 unit MS coursework requirement.

Level Two

The Level Two English Proficiency Requirement is satisfied by the completion of a written thesis (ENGR 898) or research project (ENGR 895).


The Master of Science in Engineering is based on 30-semester units of which at least 21 units must be earned from graduate level courses. We expect that the graduate coordinator will work closely with individual students to develop a curriculum plan that ensures academic rigor while at the same time meeting the needs of the student. The curriculum includes 12 units of required engineering courses and a minimum of 6 units of elective engineering courses. A maximum of 6 units of elective non-engineering courses may be applied to the degree requirements with the consent of the graduate coordinator if they are consistent with the student’s overall career objectives as provided in the program of study. There are two options for the culminating experience. One option is to first take a 3-unit research course (ENGR 897), and then a 3-unit thesis course (ENGR 898). The other option is to take a 3-unit applied research project course (ENGR 895).

Engineering (M.S.): Concentration in Energy Systems — Minimum 30 units

Required Courses (12 units)

ENGR 800Research Methodology3
ENGR 801Engineering Management3
ENGR 820Energy Resources and Sustainability3
ENGR 863Advanced Thermal-Fluids3

The aggregate of courses that comprise the core of this concentration is designed to give students a broad foundation in general areas of engineering project management and engineering communications, and in Energy Systems. These courses are aimed to provide our students opportunities for career advancement in their profession.

Elective Engineering Courses (6–15 units)

ENGR 448Electrical Power Systems3
ENGR 458Renewable Electrical Power Systems and Smart Grid3
ENGR 463Thermal Power Systems3
ENGR 465Principles of HVAC3
ENGR 466Gas Dynamics and Boundary Layer Flow3
ENGR 469Alternative and Renewable Energy Systems3
ENGR 865Energy-Efficient Buildings3
ENGR 866Air Quality Engineering3
ENGR 867Energy Auditing and Measurement and Verification3
ENGR 871Advanced Electrical Power Systems3

A program cannot contain more than 9 units of courses with a course number below 700. Some upper division engineering courses may be used as electives if not used in the undergraduate degree program and if approved by the graduate coordinator.

Non-Engineering Electives (0–6 units)

Courses, either graduate or upper-division, selected primarily from science, mathematics, social science, or business, upon approval of the graduate coordinator.

Culminating Experience (3–6 units)

Units selected from one of the options below

Option A

ENGR 897
ENGR 898
and Master's Thesis (thesis may not be started until completion of 12 units of graduate course work and ENGR 897)

Option B

ENGR 895Applied Research Project (project may not be started until completion of 12 units of graduate course work)3