A BEAM faculty advisor looks on as one of his students explains his research processes

Areas of study

For our engineering mechanics doctoral students, BEAM offers concentrations in the following areas:

  • Solid mechanics
  • Fluid mechanics
  • Dynamics, control, and vibrations
  • Biomechanics
  • Applied mathematics

Each graduate student selects an area of interest and designs a program of study in consultation with a graduate committee.

Ph.D. requirements

Students must earn a minimum of 90 credit hours beyond the bachelor’s degree. A master’s degree is not required for admission to the program. 

Core Courses

  • ESM 5014: Intro to Continuum Mechanics (three credits)
  • ESM 5314: Intermediate Dynamics (three credits)
  • ESM 5024: Intro to Solid Mechanics (three credits)
  • ESM 5054: Intro to Fluid Mechanics (three credits)
  • ESM 5004: Scientific Communication in Engineering Mechanics (two credits)

Math courses

  • MATH 5000-6000 level courses  (See Graduate Manual for approved courses) (three credits)

ESM courses

  • Additional ESM coursework, ESM 5000-6000 level courses (See Graduate Manual for approved courses) (six credits)

Additional coursework

  • 5000-6000 level courses supporting area of Ph.D. research (12 credits)

Seminar

  • ESM 5944 (minimum of four, one-credit hour seminars) (four credits)

Program-specific credits from above: 39 hours

Additional coursework

  • Agreed upon by student and advisory committee: 21 hours

Dissertation research

  • ESM 7994 (Research/Thesis) (30 hours)

Minimum total credits: 90

Restrictions

  • No more than three credits of 4xxx-level coursework can be counted toward the required minimum 34 credits of coursework.
  • No more than three credits of Independent Study (5974 or 6974) can be counted toward the required minimum 34 credits of coursework.
  • A maximum of 15 credits of transfer coursework can be counted toward the required minimum of 34 credits of coursework.

Additional requirements

  • Attend orientation in August. Information will be shared upon your admission to the program.
  • Satisfy the scholarly ethics and integrity requirement
  • Submit the plan of study
  • Pass qualifying exam (students can be exempted from this exam based on their performance in core courses)
  • Pass preliminary exam
  • Pass final defense

Engineering Mechanics Graduate Manual (PDF)

For more details on admissions and degree requirements as well as information on required courses, examinations, and grades, see the graduate regulations manual. This guide is intended to supplement, but not replace, the Virginia Tech Graduate School Catalog.

Forms

BEAM forms