Master's Co-Op Program

Prospective Master’s Co-Op students can fill out the required Master's Co-Op Program Application (not currently taking submissions).

Subsequently, students should complete the application and produce all required documents, including resume, transcript, statement of purpose, and advisor approval (students must have an advisor identified prior to a final program-admission decision being rendered). Students may utilize 12 credit hours of non-degree graduate coursework to fulfill program requirements and/or otherwise strengthen his/her application. For any questions or issues, please contact Tina Alsup, Program Information Specialist for the Office of Professional Practice.

GPA Requirements: Students shall have an undergraduate GPA ≥ 3.00 for admission to the Master’s Co-Op Program. However, students with an undergraduate GPA falling below this index may petition for admission under probationary status by agreeing to terms set forth by the Graduate Committee. In addition, students falling below this index who have previously completed graduate coursework with a cumulative GPA ≥ 3.00 may petition for non-probationary admission.

Funding: The Office of Professional Practice makes no guarantee of funding, should issues arise with industrial or personal monetary support. However, individual faculty may provide research funding at their discretion.

Costs of Research: The student, in concert with his/her advisor, should make arrangements for research costs associated with industry-hosted projects. However, if the student performs his/her research within the sponsoring department, cost center fees should be paid through research contracts or incentive accounts, rather than gifts, as these activities are research as opposed to instruction.

Intellectual Property of Research: Generally speaking, all research, data, and intellectual property that the student generates while acting as a function of their graduate studies belongs to Purdue Research Foundation irrespective of the place of research (i.e. company site). As students may be concurrently working, it is up to the student to make provisions with their employer to resolve issues with regards to their job duties and graduate studies in terms of intellectual property requirements.

Site of Research: The student may perform research off-site at an industrial facility. It is up to the student to make provisions for this, including intellectual property and/or research agreements with their employer.

Residency: Purdue currently has no on-campus residency requirements associated with the awarding of a Master’s Degree. However, students choosing to participate in the Master’s Co-Op Program must spend at least two (2) semesters in residency at the West Lafayette campus—that is, students must attend live, in-person courses for at least two (2) semesters. Students may fulfill this requirement by commuting to campus to attend classes at their appointed meeting time.  

Continuing Registration Requirement: The student must be continually registered (for at least 1 hour), excluding summer sessions. Failure to do so may result in the student needing to reapply to the Program.  If the student is not registered for at least 1 credit hour, he/she cannot use Purdue facilities.

Class and Credit Hour Requirements: Part-time students will have to satisfy all requirements, including 120 credit hours for PhD. Six (6) courses are needed for an MS and 10-12 courses total for a PhD. Up to 30 total credit hours can be applied from a previous MS to a PhD, with the balance fulfilled by research credit.

Teaching Requirements: There are no teaching requirements set forth by the Office of Professional Practice (OPP) for students participating in the Master’s Co-Op Program. However, individual academic departments may have teaching requirements that supersede this directive.

Time Limits on Degree Completion: In accordance with Section VII.B.1.A of the Purdue University Policies & Procedures for Administering Graduate Student Programs, there is a 5-year rule for course validity. After this period, courses must be reviewed by the graduate committee to determine applicability, which is done by petition to the graduate committee. The 5-year rule applies even to courses at Purdue and in continuing registration. After 6 years in the PhD program and 3 years for the MS program, the student must petition the Graduate Committee for continuance in the program. The committee will review the student's record to determine progress and intent of completion, considering the part-time status. After 8 years, regardless of degree goal, a second petition must be made to satisfy Purdue requirements. Normative times to completion are 8 years for PhD and 5 years for MS considering half-time status.

Managing Cost and Research Time: Students wishing to reduce the cost of their Graduate education may alternate semesters with a high number of credits (paying the flat rate for all registrations exceeding 8 credit hours) with semesters with a low number of credits (i.e. one credit). However, those students registering for research credits should make certain that their registration is reflective of their efforts.

Management of Class and Work Schedules: Students may complete Distance Learning courses during work rotations in order to more quickly progress towards degree completion. However, students should consult with their advisor to ensure their relevancy and importance in regard to the student’s plan of study. Students must complete a minimum of two work terms/sessions to successfully complete the Master's Co-Op Program. 

Master’s Co-Op Course Registration: Students are required to register for the zero-credit Co-Op Course during academic sessions (Fall, Spring, Summer) spent on work rotation. The registration fee for this course is currently $400. Students are strongly encouraged to consult with their Academic Advisor, Department Business Office, and Purdue University Student Health Services – Health Insurance Office for information and advice on if/how their participation in the Mater’s Co-Op Program may affect their financial aid, scholarships, and/or health insurance premiums.

Program Schedules: There are five approved schedules for the Master's Co-Op Program, shown below. Please note that Plan A is not available to international students. 

Master's Program Schedule



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