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Nuclear Engineering Graduate Degrees

The University of Idaho College of Engineering offers graduate degree programs in nuclear engineering. The programs prepare students for productive careers in research, industry or academia. Areas of specialization include nuclear fuel processing, materials, radioactive waste treatment and management, thermal behavior and measurement, nuclear systems design and modeling, and applications of nuclear process heat.

The goal of degree programs is to provide superior education opportunities for engineers and scientists in nuclear engineering and to prepare them for successful careers in research, industry, government, and education. In partnership with the Idaho National Laboratory (INL), Idaho State University (ISU) and Boise State University (BSU); a broad spectrum of courses, faculty expertise and facilities are available to the student.

Nuclear energy is the largest source of emission-free energy in North America. Nuclear power plants produce no greenhouse gases or controlled air pollutants such as sulfur and particulates. The use of nuclear energy in place of other energy sources helps to keep the air clean, preserve the Earth's climate, avoid ground-level ozone formation and prevent acid rain.

A critical shortage of nuclear engineers is being realized in the United States. Recent interest in enhancing pollution-free nuclear power for electricity, hydrogen production, industrial and medical applications, and national security; coupled with retirements in an aging nuclear workforce, are fueling the shortage.

Degrees Offered

The graduate degrees offered in the University of Idaho Nuclear Engineering Program are the Master of Engineering in Nuclear Engineering (M.E.N.E.), Master of Science in Nuclear Engineering (M.S.N.E.) and the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Master of Engineering

The Master of Engineering degree is a design-oriented degree. A master's thesis is not required. The degree requires a minimum of 30 credit hours and normally takes three to four semesters to complete.

Master of Science

The Master of Science degree is a research-based degree culminating in a master's thesis. Students completing this degree would be well prepared to work in research, industry or academic settings. The degree requires a minimum of 30 credit hours, and normally takes 6 credits of thesis, and normally takes three to four semesters to complete.

Doctor of Philosophy

The Doctor of Philosophy degree is an advanced research-based degree. The results of the research done are summarized in a publishable doctoral dissertation. The research completed in this degree is expected to be original and innovative, and make a unique contribution to the field. Students completing this degree are well prepared to work in a research-oriented position, such as those at national laboratories, industries or universities. The program requires a minimum of 78 credit hours beyond the bachelor's degree and normally takes three to five years to complete.

The University of Idaho's Nuclear Engineering Program offers a Graduate Certificate in the subject area of Nuclear Criticality Safety to students who successfully complete 12 credit hours (four courses) of rigorous focused study.

For additional information, the Graduate Student Handbook is available for download, or contact Richard Christensen, Director, U of I Nuclear Engineering Program at 208-533-8102 or


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Idaho Falls, ID 83402

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Center for Advanced Energy Studies

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995 MK Simpson Boulevard
Idaho Falls, ID 83401