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Systems Science Masters Program

Program Overview

The Systems Science M.S. program emphasizes the systems theories and methodologies taught in the current Systems Science Ph.D. Program. Students choose a combination of Systems Science courses plus approved courses in associated disciplines. Concentration areas include (but are not limited to) the faculty research areas. Upon completion of the program, students will understand a wide variety of systems ideas, be able to use them in modeling and analysis, be able to tap methods and ideas from a variety of disciplines, and will gain expertise in problem solving and in being integrative thinkers.

Admissions

1. Admission is based on the applicant's academic transcript, 2 letters of recommendation, a statement of interests and objectives, and other background material considered individually by an admissions committee, in line with general University admission policies. The GPA requirement is 3.0 for undergraduate and 3.0 for graduate. GRE/GMAT scores are recommended but not required. Students admitted to the Ph.D. Program (either Option) need to submit a GO19D to be admitted to the Master's program.

2. Advising. At the time the decision to admit is made, the Director assigns the student an adviser who will assist the student in planning a program of study and research. The adviser is responsible for assisting the student in his/her program up to the point that the Comprehensive Examination Committee (CEC) or Thesis Committee is appointed. At that time, the Chair of the CEC, or the Chair of the Thesis Committee becomes the student's adviser.

Degree Requirements

The full list of university requirements for master’s degrees can be found in the PSU Bulletin (see http://pdx.smartcatalogiq.com/en/2014-2015/Bulletin/Graduate-Studies/Degree-requirements/Master-s-Degree). Additionally, Systems Science requires that the student complete a minimum of 45 graduate credit hours. During the first year, a master’s student should prepare a proposed program of study in consultation with his or her adviser. Among the 45 hours required, 24 credits must come from letter-graded courses (pass/no-pass grades are not applicable) listed under Systems Science in the PSU catalog (p. 609) numbered SySc 510-599 or SySc 610-699. The remaining 21 credits can be satisfied through one of three options:

Thesis option

An additional 12 credits that can be letter-graded Systems Science courses (numbered as above), approved courses from other departments (see http://www.pdx.edu/sysc/approved-courses-ms-sysc), up to 3 credits of SySc 507 (Seminar) with a pass grade, and/or up to 4 Systems Science by-arrangement credits. The student must also complete 9 thesis credits and write a master’s thesis. A student selecting the thesis option must form a thesis committee of at least three faculty members, including a core faculty member from Systems Science, and must develop a master’s thesis proposal within 5 years of admission to the program. The student must complete and defend the thesis within 7 years of admission to the program. 

Examination option

An additional 21 credits that can be letter-graded Systems Science courses (numbered as above), up to 3 credits of SySc 507 (Seminar) with a pass grade, approved courses from other departments (see http://www.pdx.edu/sysc/approved-courses-ms-sysc), and/or up to 4 Systems Science by-arrangement credits. The student must form a comprehensive examination committee with three members, including a core faculty member from Systems Science. The student must pass two written exams, each covering a minimum of 16 credit hours of coursework, within 7 years of admission to the program. 

Coursework-Only option

An additional 8 letter-graded Systems Science courses (numbered as above), plus 13 credits of courses that can be Systems Science courses (numbered as above), approved courses from other departments (see http://www.pdx.edu/sysc/approved-courses-ms-sysc), up to 3 credits of SySc 507 (Seminar) with a pass grade, and/or up to 4 Systems Science by-arrangement credits. All letter-graded courses must have at least a B grade to be counted, and their cumulative GPA must be at least 3.25. The student must complete all credits within 7 years of admission to the program.

Applications to graduate with the master’s degree are due by the first Friday of the anticipated term of graduation. Students choosing the coursework-only option should notify the Systems Science office when they are finishing their last course, so that staff can prepare the program completion form.

    Completing the Degree

    When the student has completed all requirements for the degree (in the final term) he/she applies for graduation at the Graduate Studies website:

    http://www.pdx.edu/ogs/application-awarding-masters-or-doctoral-degree

    The SySc office prepares the GO-17M for the student.  The student is not allowed to transmit the GO-17M once any signatures are on it.

    All application for graduation deadlines are on the Graduate Studies website:

    http://www.pdx.edu/ogs/graduate-candidate-deadlines