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Best Online Masters in Chemical Engineering

chemical engineering
chemical engineering masters

Are you interested in pursuing a chemical engineering master’s program? 

Smart. A master’s in chemical engineering could open up a world of opportunities for you.

You can work in any of the following fields:

  • Research & development,
  • Manufacturing
  • Environmental engineering
  • Education

What exactly is a chemical engineering master’s program?

A master’s in chemical engineering is an advanced degree. It focuses on the application of chemistry, physics, and mathematics. You will solve complex problems related to chemical processes.

You will delve deeper into core courses such as:

  • thermodynamics
  • transport phenomena
  • chemical kinetics
  • reactor design
  • advanced chemical engineering thermodynamics

You will also take elective courses that cater to your interests. You can specialize in a particular field like:

  • materials science
  • renewable energy
  • biotechnology
  • chemical engineering analysis
  • chemical engineering process modeling

One of the significant benefits of pursuing programs in chemical engineering is the vast array of career opportunities.

You will gain hands-on experience in:

  • using advanced computational tools
  • experimental techniques
  • problem-solving skills for tackling real-world problems

One of the key features of a chemical engineering master’s program is its research component.

Research in chemical engineering may involve collaboration with other fields. These include:

  • biology
  • physics
  • materials science

This research component lets you contribute to the knowledge base of the discipline. 

A chemical engineering master’s program is a tempting option because it allows you to specialize in the area that interests you the most.

You can take elective courses in areas like materials science, environmental engineering, or polymer engineering.

Are you ready to learn about the best online programs in chemical engineering? Let’s take a look at the best chemical engineering masters programs!

See Also: 20 Most Affordable Online Schools in Chemical Engineering


So how do we find the best chemical engineering graduate schools? It’s simple.

We have a time-tested four-part formula designed for ranking the best colleges in the nation. We prioritize four major factors:

  • Earnings Potential
  • Affordability
  • Student Satisfaction
  • Selectivity

Reliable research and well-harvested data are the main ingredients in our recipe for success. We don’t make recommendations based on personal opinions, or financial incentives. Our revenue and content are separate. Sponsored schools have no impact on our rankings.

The only way to make it onto one of our lists is to have an incredible academic program! If you want to know more we encourage you to check out our methodology page. 

Check out our ranking of the 10 Best Master’s Programs in Chemical Engineering!

See Also: 40 Fastest Online Master’s Degree Programs

Best Online Masters in Chemical Engineering



UC Berkeley Online Master's in Chemical Engineering

Without a doubt, a top chemical engineering graduate school is UC Berkeley.

UC Berkeley is a public research university that serves over 42,000 students. It has affordable in state tuition and some of the best degree program options for busy learners.

At Berkeley, graduate work in chemical engineering emphasizes original research in innovative areas of applied science.

The Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering department is home to premier research programs. These are in:

  • separation processes
  • heterogeneous catalysis
  • molecular thermodynamics

Faculty are esteemed pioneers in emerging fields like:

  • theoretical chemistry
  • nanotechnology
  • the development of optical, polymeric, and semiconductor materials

In addition to participating in research, students take foundational courses. These are designed to provide intellectual breadth and fundamental scientific knowledge.

See Also: 10 Affordable Online Master’s in Material Science & Engineering



South Dakota School of Mines & Tech

You will find another one of the top chemical engineering graduate schools in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota. The South Dakota School of Mines and Technology advances excellence in science and engineering.

The school first opened to provide instruction in mining, the region’s primary industry. 

Students pursuing an MS degree in Chemical Engineering here have two options. There is a thesis option and an executive track.

In the 30-credit hour thesis option, students complete 24 coursework credits (13 core requirements, 11 electives). There are also six thesis credits.

The executive program emphasizes industrial needs. Students must take one course in technology management. Students who choose the non-thesis option may take classes either on campus or online. 

The core curriculum for all MS candidates includes a series of advanced courses. For the chemical engineering degree, you’ll take classes like:

  • Applied Engineering Mathematics
  • Chemical Engineering Transport Phenomena
  • Reactor Design
  • Advanced Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics
  • Transport Phenomena: Heat
  • Transport Phenomena: Momentum
  • Transport Phenomena: Mass
  • Computations in Transport Phenomena
  • Heterogeneous Kinetics
  • Applied Electrochemistry
  • Bioseparations

All students complete a final exam in the field of chemical engineering.

Applicants to this chemical engineering degree must submit:

  • a $35 application fee
  • transcripts from all U.S. institutions attended
  • a GRE score report
  • three letters of recommendation

You don’t have to have a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering. However, you may need to take additional courses upon enrollment.

SD Mines also offers an Accelerated Master’s program. This allows students to complete both a BS and an MS in chemical engineering in five years. 



Georgia Tech Online Masters in Chemical Engineering

The Georgia School of Technology opened in 1888. In 1948, the university changed its name to the Georgia Institute of Technology. 

Based in Atlanta, Georgia Tech now enrolls more than 29,000 students. It offers over 400 student organizations. The chemical engineering degree is one of the best for aspiring chemical engineers.

The School of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering at Georgia Tech is one of the nation’s top-ranked engineering programs. It’s also among the largest, oldest, and most diverse.

The school’s Master of Science in Chemical Engineering program offers both thesis and coursework-only options. The thesis must be defended with a 30-45 minute oral presentation.

Both chemical engineering degree options consist of 31 credits. The coursework-only option has more electives (15 credits instead of six credits).

Core courses are the same for each chemical engineering degree. These advanced courses include:

  • Chemical Process Safety
  • Mathematical Modeling of Chemical Processes
  • Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics
  • Mass Transport
  • Transport Phenomena: Momentum and Heat Transfer
  • Kinetics and Reactor Design



Stanford University MS in Chemical Engineering

Stanford University is a private institution. This research university is in the heart of Silicon Valley. It opened in 1891 as a place for discovery, innovation, learning, and discourse. Stanford offers more than 90 graduate fields of study and a 5:1 student-to-faculty ratio. This makes it an excellent choice for aspiring chemical engineers.

Stanford’s MS in Chemical Engineering program is lecture-course based. There are no research or thesis requirements for chemical engineers to worry about.

All courses are online. Students may also choose to attend classes on campus. All aspiring chemical engineers in this program develop a 45-unit thematic program of study.

Course options include:

  • Applied Mathematics
  • Microhydrodynamics
  • Chemical Kinetics and Reaction Engineering
  • Creating New Ventures in Engineering and Science-based Industries Molecular Thermodynamics
  • Advanced Biochemical Engineering

Topical areas of focus may include:

  • applied mathematics, modeling, and numerical analysis
  • optimization and control
  • energy
  • entrepreneurship in science and engineering
  • materials science



Worcester- Polytech

Worcester Polytechnic Institute is in Worcester, Massachusetts. The school’s curriculum blends theory and practice. It offers a rigorous, flexible education that is research project-based.

WPI offers more than 50 degree programs across 14 academic departments.

WPI has an MS in Chemical Engineering. It has a thesis option, a non-thesis option, and a professional engineering option with concentration. Each of the three options requires 30 credit hours.

For the professional track, aspiring chemical engineers choose a concentration. This is in advanced process engineering or bioengineering. These engineering programs are available full and part time.

Core chemical engineering courses include:

  • Mathematical Analysis in Chemical Engineering
  • Kinetics and Catalysis
  • Chemical Reactor Design
  • Thermodynamics
  • Sustainable Energy
  • Advanced Transport Phenomena
  • Chemical Reaction Engineering
  • Fuel Cell Technology

Research project areas for this degree in chemical engineering include:

  • biopolymer interfaces
  • chemical engineering process modeling
  • cellular and metabolic engineering
  • nanotechnology
  • reaction engineering
  • computational chemistry
  • biofuels

A bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering is preferred for these online programs. Degrees in relevant areas like biomedical engineering, physics, and chemistry are also acceptable.

Applicants must also submit:

  • transcripts
  • three letters of recommendation
  • a statement of purpose
  • GRE scores
  • a $70 application fee



University of Minnesota MS Chemical Engineering

The University of Minnesota is No. 9 in research among public universities in the United States. Students are involved in research on zero-gravity flight, DNA repair, and much more. This public institution is one of the best for students looking for online programs in engineering management.

The 30-credit Master of Science in Chemical Engineering blends applied research and advanced coursework. It prepares chemical engineers to succeed in the private and public sectors. 

The degree in chemical engineering online includes classes in:

  • Polymer Science
  • Solid State Devices
  • Chemical Engineering Analysis
  • Advanced Chemical Reaction Engineering
  • Advanced Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics
  • Sustainable Energy
  • Advanced Transport Phenomena
  • Chemical Reaction Engineering

Applicants should have a BS in Chemical Engineering or another engineering discipline.

Students with other undergraduate degrees in areas such as chemistry, biology, and physics may be admitted. They will need to complete additional coursework from this accredited institution or another.

This required courses are in:

  • Material and Energy Balances
  • Thermodynamics
  • Heat and Mass Transfer
  • Separations
  • Reaction Engineering
  • Fluid Mechanics. 

Application deadlines and other requirements vary depending on admit term.



Texas A&M

Texas A&M was the state’s first public university.

These chemical engineer masters programs have thesis and non-thesis tracks.

For the thesis degree in chemical engineering online, students complete 32 credit hours of approved courses and research. Students who select the non-thesis option complete 36 credit hours of approved courses. These are some of the most flexible chemical engineering programs around.

These graduate programs are also hands-on!

Students spend most of their time working in one or two related fields. Students must maintain a 3.0 in all courses to take the final exam.

You will need an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering or a related field to apply. Please visit the website for graduate studies at Texas A&M for more admission requirements.

For the thesis option, the final exam may be written or oral. For the non-thesis option, there is a final comprehensive examination.

In these graduate programs, future chemical engineers complete courses such as:

  • Advanced Transport Phenomena
  • Applications of Thermodynamics to Chemical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering Kinetics and Reactor Design
  • Process Dynamics and Advanced Process Control
  • Advanced Nanostructured Materials
  • Rheology
  • Polymer Engineering

For motivated working professionals seeking convenient but high quality higher education, these chemical engineering programs are a smart choice.



Cornell University

Cornell University is in in Ithaca, NY. The College of Engineering here is another fantastic place to earn a chemical engineering online degree.

Cornell’s Master of Science in Chemical Engineering takes two years. It prepares students for non-academic careers in research. It can be used as a stepping stone to a Ph.D. program.

Students may concentrate on areas such as:

  • biochemical engineering
  • advanced materials processing
  • surface science
  • polymers
  • heat and mass transfer
  • engineering management
  • classical and statistical thermodynamics
  • kinetics and catalysis

Cornell is not only a top accredited institution, but it’s also considered an Ivy League school. What better place to earn an online master’s degree than here?



University of Colorado Boulder

CU Boulder is the largest of the four-campus University of Colorado system. In addition to the college of engineering, the school offers 119 fields of study and 236 degree programs. This accredited institution has some of the best online master’s programs.

The MS in Chemical Engineering from CU Boulder has 30 approved credit hours. There is a thesis defense or a comprehensive final exam. The degree takes two years or less.

To complete your higher education in chemical engineering, you’ll take classes like:

  • Seminar in Chemical Engineering
  • Transport Phenomena
  • Intermediate Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics
  • Chemical Reactor Engineering
  • Mass Transport
  • Applied Statistics in Research and Development
  • Research Methods and Ethics
  • Polymer Chemistry
  • Particle Technology
  • Intellectual Property Law and Engineering. 

There are a few primary research areas for the Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering. These include:

  • biomaterials and tissue engineering
  • biosensing
  • biotechnology and pharmaceuticals
  • catalysis and surface science
  • computational science and engineering
  • energy
  • fluids and flows
  • interfaces and self-assembly
  • membranes and separations
  • nanomaterials and nanotechnology
  • polymers and soft materials
  • protein engineering and synthetic biology.

There is a particular emphasis on renewable energy, functional materials, and biological engineering. These online master’s degrees are some of the best.




UCLA’s MS in Chemical Engineering requirements consist of nine courses and a thesis.

Courses for this online master’s degree include:

  • Advanced Engineering Thermodynamics
  • Advanced Chemical Reaction Engineering
  • Advanced Mass Transfer
  • Methods of Molecular Simulation
  • Cryogenics and Low-Temperature Processes
  • Polymer Processes
  • Surface and Interface Engineering
  • Pollution Prevention for Chemical Processes
  • Cell-Material Interactions

The Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering Department is in the UCLA Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science. The faculty in this college of engineering are world-class researchers in their respective fields. They have won national and international awards. 

Applicants to these master’s degree programs must submit:

  • GRE scores
  • three letters of recommendation
  • the departmental supplement
  • a statement of purpose


#11. The Ohio State University 

Location: Columbus, Ohio

Degree: Master’s Degree in Chemical Engineering 

Net Price: $18,694


#12. University of Utah

Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Degree: Master of Science in Chemical Engineering 

Net Price: $13,700


#13. Auburn University 

Location: Auburn, Alabama

Degree: Master’s Degree in Chemical Engineering

Net Price: $32,960


#14. Arizona State University 

Location: Tempe, Arizona

Degree: Master of Science in Chemical Engineering

Net Price: $24,498


#15. University of Maryland

Location: College Park, Maryland

Degree: Master of Science in Chemical Engineering 

Net Price: $23,099


#16. University of Illinois at Chicago

Location: Chicago, Illinois 

Degree: Master of Science in Chemical Engineering 

Net Price: $12,248


#17. University of Missouri

Location: Columbia, Missouri 

Degree: Master of Science in Chemical Engineering 

Net Price: $12,809


#18. Columbia University 

Location: New York, New York

Degree: Master of Science in Chemical Engineering 

Net Price: $33,632


Frequently Asked Questions

What are the admission requirements for a chemical engineering master’s degree?

You will need to have a bachelor’s degree in engineering or a related field. Most programs prefer applicants with a strong academic background in calculus, physics, chemistry, and thermodynamics.

Some universities require a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher. General admission requirements include:

  • an application
  • transcripts
  • letters of recommendation
  • standardized test scores (GRE or GMAT)

The application deadlines vary depending on the university. Check the specific requirements of each program.

Are chemical engineering graduate programs full-time or part-time?

Most chemical engineering master’s programs are full-time, on-campus programs. Some universities offer fully online coursework. They also have blended programs. These combine online learning with in-person classes.

Chemical engineering is a field that often has hands-on laboratory work. According to information from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, chemical engineers can expect to work full-time in their field after graduation. They have high salaries and excellent job stability.

What classes will I take in a chemical engineering master’s program?

A chemical engineering master’s program curriculum includes a range of courses related to chemical engineering. This includes core courses, elective courses, and specialized courses.

The core courses often cover topics such as:

  • polymer science
  • sustainable energy
  • solid-state devices
  • engineering design
  • advanced transport phenomena

Elective courses can vary depending on the program. They often include courses related to environmental engineering, chemical transformations, and more.


Michael Templeton
Managing Editor

Kacey Reynolds Schedler
Contributing Editor