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Frequently Asked Questions

Master's degree

Can I complete multiple degrees at Stanford?

Students may apply for additional master's degrees or for a doctoral degree by submitting the Graduate Authorization Petition to the new program. Please contact the new program for deadlines and other requirements.

Is funding available for master's students?

The MS&E department does not guarantee funding for any master's students. Many students secure fellowships or loans from other sources. While we are not able to guarantee funding for master's students, we are occasionally able to hire a master's student as a course or research assistant. These appointments are generally confirmed at the start of the quarter and are appointed for one quarter only. Please keep in mind that we have over 200 master's students, and are generally able to offer funding to less than 10 percent. Most of these appointments are given to returning (not new) master's students. Master's students are sometimes able to find funding elsewhere on campus, but most departments will support their own students before they will hire students from other departments, so these appointments are not common.

What is the SCPD Honors Cooperative Program?

Students may take courses on a part-time basis as part of the Honors Cooperative Program through the Stanford Center for Professional Development. Students in this program may switch to full-time and back to part-time once each.

Can I take a leave of absence?

Students may take up to two years' leave of absence from the program. Leave of Absence forms must be submitted before the start of the quarter. Students on F1 or J1 visas must have approval from the Bechtel International Center.

May I take elective courses at the Graduate School of Business?

Yes. Please see the Non-GSB Registration page for information on policies, procedures and available courses.

GSB courses taken for GSB standard grading are included in the GPA, and are converted as follows: H = 4.14, HP = 3.56, P = 3.24, and LP = 2.90.

How is enrollment in limited-enrollment courses determined?

Most faculty determine enrollment in limited-enrollment courses based on an application. The application may be posted on the course website or handed out in the first class. A few courses — MS&E 41, MS&E 140, MS&E 240 and MS&E 245G — determine enrollment based on who enrolls in Axess first.

Doctor of philosophy

Can I transfer credit to Stanford?

Doctoral students may transfer up to 45 units from another graduate program if they do not plan to complete a master's degree at Stanford. Complete the Application for Graduate Residency Credit form to have the units transferred.

Do I have to complete a master's degree?

Doctoral students are not required to complete a master's degree. Some students who have not previously earned a master's degree choose to receive either the MS&E master's degree or a master's degree from another department. Students should take courses that satisfy their PhD requirements first, so that they are prepared to take the qualifying exam in the second year.

Can I petition to deviate from the degree requirements?

To petition to deviate from the breadth requirements, please write up what you want to do and why, and bring or email it to student services. To petition to deviate from the depth requirements, mark the change on your candidacy form, have it signed by your advisor and submit it to student services.