Best Online Master’s in Industrial Engineering Degrees
| Staff Writers
Are you ready to find your fit?
Industrial Engineers are in high demand. Start your career by earning one of the 25 best online master’s in industrial engineering!
Are you fascinated by the integration of complex systems and their operations? Are you interested in developing your leadership skills while also exploring product design, management, and implementation? Can you imagine yourself leading teams of whip-smart innovators?
If this sounds like you, look no further. These are the 25 Best Online Master’s in Industrial Engineering degrees in the nation!
Top 10 Best Online Master’s in Industrial Engineering Degrees
Explore our featured online programs and find the right match for you today.
What kind of online masters in industrial engineering should you get?
Though all of these programs will give you a solid foundation in industrial engineering fundamentals, they all vary a bit in emphasis, scope, and requirements. While some stress the importance of interdisciplinary study, bringing in business and management elements, others give you the opportunity to design your academic experience through customizable degree options.
However you choose your program, just be sure to find those that offer the kinds of academic and professional opportunities you require. And look for programs that reflect your areas of interest and career goals.
Finally, if you’re looking for other flexible graduate programs, take a look at our ranking of the Best Online Colleges and Universities. Online education is both an affordable and flexible way to advance your education, experience, and career.
How much money do people make with a master’s degree in industrial engineering?
Because the demand for those with industrial engineering experience and training is so high, the average salaries for these positions are high as well. For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the average annual salary for industrial engineers pushes nearly $86,000 a year.
But with advanced research experience, the kind you get when earning a master’s degree, that number leaps up. PayScale finds that you can earn upwards of $91,000 a year. And both sources note the stability of the field. The need for industrial engineers is expected to grow at least another 10 percent in the next few years alone.
What can you do with an online masters in industrial engineering?
Across many industries and settings, the need for those with specialized experience and training in industrial engineering is high. Whether you want to become a project manager and lead teams of innovative engineers or you want to develop prototypes, software, or new products, one of these degrees will help you get there.
In fact, graduates from these 25 programs have acquired rewarding careers in an array of fields and industries. They have gone on to become:
Quality Control Engineers
Industrial Solutions Engineer
What are the requirements for an online masters in industrial engineering?
These intensive degree programs require at least two years of commitment, some even longer if you study part-time.
During your first year you should anticipate a number of classes that cover the basics. This includes everything from optimization and stochastic operations to design engineering experiments. Your first year aims to give you a sturdy foundation upon which to build.
In your second year you will dive into specialized coursework and research in areas pertaining to your career aspirations. Some schools provide formal areas of specialization while others offer customizable programs through which you can design a degree that reflects your vocational goals.
Finally, we’ve been sure to note the ins and outs of every program, including thesis requirements, research opportunities, and more.
What are the best online master’s in industrial engineering degrees?
While some of these programs are offered through large, research-based universities, others are offered through smaller polytechnic schools. Despite the differences, all the programs share the same thing in common: they offer the best online graduate programs in industrial engineering.
Here at College Choice we set about determining the best schools through our exhaustive research process. First we looked at all industrial engineering programs across the nation, seeking out only those providing the degree online. Then we considered crucial factors such as student retention rates, academic reputation, return on investment, financial aid opportunities, and more.
Located in sunny Los Angeles, the University of Southern California stands out among the rest. It is the oldest private research university in the state, and a leader in academic performance. The Viterbi School of Engineering is ranked #2 among other online graduate programs in engineering, according to U.S. News & World Report.
Kicking off this list, USC takes the #1 spot for its online Master of Science in Industrial and Systems Engineering. You’ll complete a total of 30 credit-hours. After taking 12 credits in required coursework, you’ll have the option of three upper-level electives. A few of those options include:
Optimization Methods for Analytics
Quality Management for Engineers
Markov Models for Performance Analysis
Performance Modeling with Simulation
You’ll take your online classes through DEN@VITERBI, a distance learning platform at USC. Your courses will be streamed in from on-campus classrooms. You’ll be able to watch them either live or at a later, more convenient time. This technology also lets you interact with professors via telephone or instant messenger.
Home to the largest student body in the nation, Texas A&M University is one of the state’s paramount academic institutions. It is a designated land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant university, the only institution in the state to hold all titles. The Dwight Look College of Engineering accounts for over 20 percent of its Texas A&M’s student body.
The online Master of Engineering in Industrial Engineering at Texas A&M divides its curriculum into three parts: four courses in general industrial engineering, three courses in modeling techniques, and three elective courses. This is a non-thesis degree. Rather, students complete an oral defense. A sampling of some classes includes:
Data Analytics, Models, and Tools
Optimization Models and Tools
In addition to this online program, students at Texas A&M can complete a number of online graduate certificates. Some of these include Certificates in Systems Engineering, Engineering Management, and Engineering Systems Management. Each of these involve four online courses.
A national leader in science and technology, Georgia Institute of Technology is organized between six academic colleges. The College of Engineering was founded in 1888 and offers over 10 unique degree options in engineering. This year, U.S. News & World Report ranked Georgia Tech the #1 Industrial Engineering department in the nation.
Your primary topics will be modeling, analysis, and problem solving at Georgia Tech’s online MS in Industrial Engineering. The curriculum is designed to prepare students to work in manufacturing, warehousing, or supply chain systems. Over the course of 30 credit-hours, you’ll take classes such as:
Design and Analysis Experiments
Each year, the Georgia Tech Industrial Engineering program accepts around 20 students. This includes both on-campus and distance learning students. Georgia Tech has fantastic resources for veterans through the GT Veterans Resource Center. Military personnel can access campus events, tuition benefits, and students support.
Originally founded as a college of science, technology, and agriculture, Purdue University has stayed true to its roots. Located in West Lafayette, IN, Purdue’s College of Engineering is one of the oldest academic colleges within the university. The engineering program has been home to Neil Armstrong and 22 other astronauts.
If you are an online student in Purdue’s Master of Industrial Engineering Program, you will pursue the non-thesis degree option. The curriculum covers four core areas: Human Factors Engineering, Operational Research, Manufacturing Systems Engineering, and Production Systems Engineering. Some specific courses from this program include:
Stochastic Models in Operations Research
Economic Decisions in Engineering
Industrial Robotics & Flexible Assembly
You’ll have a number of options for funding your master’s degree. Most graduate students apply for an Industrial Engineering Fellowship, which provides you with a varying range of tuition help. Others apply for teaching assistantship positions within the department. Either way, you’ll have options to offset your tuition costs.
A touchstone for higher education, New York University is a private research institution in Manhattan. It is a world-renowned university and has produced numerous Nobel Laureates. It’s no surprise, then, why U.S. News & World Report listed NYU as having the thirteenth Best Online Graduate Engineering Program in the nation.
The MS in Industrial Engineering at NYU Tandon School of Engineering sets you up with a solid core curriculum that covers the basics. Captured within your 30 credit-hour program, you’ll also dabble in upper-level courses in manufacturing, simulation, and analytics. Here’s a closer look at some of your classes:
Human Capital Engineering & Analytics
A number of factors make the online Industrial Engineering program at NYU stand out. For one, it hosts the NYU Tandon Online Mentorship Program, which connects you with other online students for support throughout the degree process. You’ll also have access to the Wasserman Career Center and the NYU CareerNet to match you with potential jobs.
One of the three research universities in the North Carolina “Research Triangle,” North Carolina State University is located in Raleigh. It is a designated land-grant, sea-grant, and space-grant institution. NC State is known for its strong academic reputation in engineering and science, among other things.
The online Master of Industrial Engineering program at NC State University is student-focused. Because you’ll be learning from a distance, no final thesis or oral exam are required. You’ll take a total of 33 credits in a range of core topics, from human factors to systems analysis and optimization. More specifically, your first-term course load might look like this:
Applied Engineering Economy
Automated Systems Engineering
Theory of Activity Networks
While this is not required, NC State University offers a number of competitive paid internships through the Cooperative Education Program. This means you can take alternating semesters of classes and work experience. Graduate students who do this tend to find jobs at a higher rate because they leave with work experience.
One of the largest public universities in the nation, Arizona State University is home to over 71,000 students. It consistently ranks as the Most Innovative School in America, according to U.S. News & World Report. ASU Online is a force in distance-learning programs. It offers over 150 different degrees to undergraduate and graduate students.
The Ira A. Fulton School of Engineering offers ASU’s online Master of Science in Industrial Engineering. You’ll focus on three core areas: information systems engineering, operations research, and quality engineering. The curriculum covers nine total classes, each lasting 15 weeks. Some of these include:
Simulating Stochastic Systems
Applied Deterministic Operations Research
Web-Enabled Decision Support Systems
When it comes to online learning ASU knows what’s best. After all, it enrolls over 25,000 students fully online. You’ll go through an orientation course to learn the ropes of online learning, and then you’ll be connected to the myriad resources available. You’ll find online tutoring, disability resources, library services, and career services through ASU Online.
Located in Lubbock, TX, and one of the state’s premier research institutions, Texas Tech University specializes in science and energy. The Whitacre College of Engineering is listed in the top 100 in the nation. Texas Tech has also been recognized as one of the “Best Colleges for Minorities in STEM” by Forbes.
Within this interdisciplinary Master of Science in Industrial Engineering, you’ll encounter five concentration areas: Engineering Management, Ergonomics and Human Factors Engineering, Manufacturing and Quality Assurance, Operations Research, and Statistics. The curriculum for the distance learning program is exactly the same as on-campus with classes like:
Principles of Optimization
Simulation Models for Operations Analysis
Risk Modeling and Assessment
Decision Theory and Management Science
This master’s program will be delivered through the TTU Worldwide eLearning platform. Texas Tech University has an impressive spread of fully online programs. Your classes will look different depending on the instructor, but most are designed via synchronous or asynchronous instruction.
A leader in public education, the University of Florida ranks in the top ten in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report. Students choose from 16 academic colleges. The Wertheim College of Engineering was established in 1910 and remains UF’s largest professional school.
This Master of Engineering in Industrial & Systems Engineering degree is offered through the UF EDGE program, which stands for UF Electronic Delivery of Gator Engineering. You can complete this in any location around the world. You’ll take advanced classes that cover both research and application. Some classes include:
Decision Making under Uncertainty
Discrete Optimization Theory
In addition to the core degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering, you can choose to specialize. UF offers the following areas: engineering management, manufacturing and logistics systems engineering, operations research, quality engineering, or an interdisciplinary degree. This is a great way to cater your degree to a specific sector of engineering.
The University of Central Florida is a fast-growing public institution based in Orlando. It maintains close ties to the US space program and specializes in engineering and technology. The College of Engineering and Computer Science was founded in 1966, making it the first professional college of UCF.
You’ll join a department of 195 other engineering master’s graduates at UCF Online. The Master of Science in Industrial Engineering emphasizes design and improvement above all else. That’s why you can specialize in areas like systems engineering and simulation modeling. Some classes that you’ll select from include:
Real-Time Simulation Agents
IEMS Research Methods
Total Quality Improvement
Experimental Design and Taguchi Methods
UCF maintains a wide network of research partners. Among them are the National Science Foundation, the US Department of Energy, and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. That’s just one of many reasons why graduates end up working at places like NASA, IBM, Mitsubishi, and other highly-regarded locations.
A public university with the highest ranking of research productivity, Clemson University is part of the bedrock of higher education in South Carolina. It consists of seven academic colleges and enrolls over 24,000 students. The student-to-faculty ratio, both on campus and online, is an impressive 18:1.
The online Masters of Engineering in Industrial Engineering at Clemson University focuses on supply chain logistics. The program started in 2008 and has since earned huge respect. You’ll take ten classes in total. The first five will establish your core engineering skills, and the next five will let you focus on supply chain issues. Here’s a sampling:
Foundations of Quality
Supply Chain and Logistics Modeling
Health, Safety, and the Environment
The online services at Clemson University make distance learning a seamless process. You’ll use Canvas as your online platform. This technology allows you to learn via web conferencing, instructional videos, interactive displays, innovative assessment tools, and more.
The University of Texas at Arlington is a public research university that makes up the largest student enrollment population in North Texas. It hosts the third-largest College of Engineering in the state, with over 7,000 engineering students. Within the College of Engineering, UT Arlington offers 11 undergraduate degrees and 14 master’s degrees.
You’ll find six concentration areas nestled within this MS in Industrial Engineering: Operations Research and Applied Statistics, Manufacturing Systems, Logistics, Enterprise Systems, Enterprise Management, and Ergonomics. This curriculum is highly research-oriented. You’ll have the choice between a thesis or non-thesis option. Some courses you’ll take are:
Production Systems Design
Planning and Control of Enterprise Systems
Automation and Advanced Manufacturing
Research activity at UT Arlington’s College of Engineering is at a all-time high. Last year, engineering faculty were given over $28 million in funded grants. This was a 30 percent increase from last year. In fact, the College of Engineering accounts for almost half of the entire university research expenditures.
One of Iowa’s flagship institutions, Iowa State University takes the cake for research in the state. It is based in Ames, IA. It became the first land-grant university in the nation in 1858 and maintains that designation to this day. Iowa State University maintains a strong engineering department, with nearly all of its specialties ranking in the top 30 nationally.
Your curriculum at Iowa State University will be divided into five categories: engineering management, operations research, manufacturing processes, human factors, and enterprise computing. Aside from your core courses, you’ll take a class in one of each of these five areas. Here’s what that might look like:
Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing
Simulation Modeling and Analysis
Iowa State University knows what it takes to match up graduate students with their futures. In a university study of Industrial Engineering graduates between 2011 and 2016, 95 percent of graduates were either employed or pursuing additional education immediately after earning their degree. Most students found work in manufacturing.
A land-grant university with a history that spans back to 1878, Mississippi State University specializes in agriculture and applied science. It has a main campus in Starkville, MS, but also maintains campuses in Meridian, Biloxi, and Vicksburg. The engineering program was recognized by the National Science Foundation for its research and development.
You’ll choose a major within the MS in Industrial Engineering program right out of the gate. You’ll have a choice between Industrial Systems, Operations Research, Manufacturing Systems, Management Systems Engineering, or Ergonomics. This degree can be completed as a thesis track or a non-thesis track. Some examples of coursework include:
Process Improvement Engineering
Production Control Systems
Mississippi State University makes online education a breeze for engineering graduate students. Your online platform will be delivered through Blackboard, and you’ll receive additional software for any specific needs you have, whether that’s in statistical modeling or systems simulation.
The first established university in the state, the University of Arizona was founded in 1885. Nationally, its online graduate program in engineering ranks at #33, according to U.S. News & World Report. Over 43,500 students attend the University of Arizona.
You’ll get both technical skills and business basics with the online MS in Industrial Engineering. This curriculum gives you lots of options. After completing your coursework, you can decide between taking additional classes, defending a thesis, or assembling a hands-on project. Regardless, your coursework might look like this:
Traffic Modeling & Simulation
Distributed Multi-Paradigm Simulation Systems
Students and faculty alike are making huge strides in research within the Systems & Industrial Engineering department at the University of Arizona. Currently, some ongoing projects involve ADOT Emergency-Intellidrive, Computer Integrated Manufacturing, Solar Power Systems, and more.
A historical public university in Alabama, Auburn University started as a male-only college in 1856. It became coeducational in 1892. AU was Alabama’s first public land-grant university and maintains this status today. The Samuel Ginn College of Engineering enrolls around 4,000 students.
You’ll choose between a thesis or non-thesis option for your MS in Industrial Engineering. Either way, this program consists of 30 credit-hours. Beyond your core classes, your extra credits can either be devoted to research or electives. Here’s a sneak-peek into some of your coursework:
Linear Programming and Network Flows
Advanced Engineering Statistics
Stochastic Operations Research
Auburn University knows that student satisfaction is in the details. The faculty members in this department all hold advanced degrees from highly regarded schools. Auburn University also has one of the highest percentages of female engineering students in its program at 35 percent. Graduates have gone on to work for NASA, Delta Airlines, Honda, and more.
The University of Michigan-Dearborn is a regional campus of the University of Michigan. UM Dearborn houses a strong College of Computer Science and Engineering. Graduate students can choose from 18 online master’s programs. Over 94 percent of UM Dearborn students are Michigan residents.
UM-Dearborn offers an MSE in Industrial & Systems Engineering. The curriculum requires 30 credit-hours and is designed for engineers with a few years of experience in the field. You’ll have six options for specializing. Among them are Ergonomics, Quality Systems Design, Program Management, and more. A sampling of classes includes:
Decision Support and Expert Systems
If you’re more interested in research, you can opt into the master’s thesis track. In that case, you would take less credit-hours in one of the concentration areas. The thesis-track option is a great choice for students hoping to pursue additional education after their master’s degree.
A land-grant and sun-grant university based in Stillwater, Oklahoma State University is a stand-out institution in terms of best value and academics. The College of Engineering, Architecture, and Technology houses 14 unique engineering departments. Over 23,000 students attend OSU annually.
Once you are admitted into Oklahoma State University’s online MS in Industrial Engineering and Management program, you’ll select a specialty track. Your four options include: General Industrial Engineering, Engineering Management, Operations Research, or Supply Chain & Logistics. Your 33 credit-hours will consist of classes like:
Probability and Statistics for Engineers
Integrated Manufacturing Control Systems
Discrete Systems Simulation
Supply Chain Strategy
Within the Industrial Engineering & Management department, students and faculty are conducting groundbreaking research. The research projects are organized under the following categories: Energy, Transportation, Healthcare, Data Mining and Analytics, Optimization Under Uncertainty, and Discrete Optimization.
Known as the oldest public university in the state, New Mexico State University was founded in 1888. Its main campus is located in Las Cruces, though it has branch campuses in Alamogordo, Carlsbad, Dona Ana County, and Grants. NMSU was recently recognized as one of the top 25 institutions for its promotion of Latino representation in STEM fields.
The MS in Industrial Engineering at New Mexico State University is offered 100 percent online. You can complete this degree in one of two ways: the project option or the course-only option. Either way, the curriculum consists of 30 credit-hours. All online students return to the main campus in Las Cruces for a final oral exam. Classes along the way include:
Systems Engineering and Project Management
Integrated Manufacturing Systems
Advanced Quality Control
New Mexico State University is ready to meet you and your needs, whatever they are! If you want to connect with other graduate students, you can join the NMSU chapter of the Institute of Industrial Engineers. If you want some work experience, you can take advantage of the co-op program. Make this program work for you!
A Tier One university that excels in science and engineering, Louisiana Tech University is located in Ruston, LA. It maintains impressive research partnerships with organizations like the National Science Foundation, the Department of Defense, and more. The College of Engineering houses nearly 30 percent of the overall student body.
At Louisiana Tech University, you’ll earn an MS in Engineering with a concentration in Industrial Engineering. Besides being delivered fully online, you also have the choice to complete this degree via coursework only, thesis, or practicum options. Each track requires 36 credit-hours. Your first term of classes might look like this:
Economics and Decision Making
Six Sigma and Quality Control
Engineering Computational Methods
It’s worth mentioning right off the bat that Louisiana Tech University is the most affordable program on our list. The average net price of this program is just $9,497. This year, the program was recognized by SR Education Group for being one of the Best Online Colleges for Value.
The Knoxville campus within the wider University of Tennessee System is a public school. It is a sun and land-grant research university and the flagship campus in the UT System. Organized into nine colleges and eleven graduate schools, UT Knoxville enrolls nearly 28,000 students.
UT Knoxville offers the ideal program for those who want to study both industrial engineering and engineering management. This MS in Industrial Engineering degree emphasizes the core components of management, such as project development, leadership theory, and financial supervision. Additionally, the core curriculum covers:
Statistical Methods in Industrial Engineering
Advanced Engineering Economic Analysis
Optimization Methods in Industrial Engineering
Analytical Methods for Engineering Managers
UT Knoxville’s online engineering programs are designed with working professionals in mind. You will take classes at your own pace, meaning this is a highly individualized program. Yet, you will also participate in live lectures, connecting with teachers and students virtually. You’ll also gain access to the University’s exhaustive research archives and library catalogs. All just a click away!
Western New England University is located in Springfield, MA. It is a private university organized into five schools and colleges, including its renowned College of Engineering. Approximately 4,000 students attend Western New England University.
The Master of Science in Industrial Engineering program at Western New England University is a flexible degree that can be earned at either a full or part-time pace. In addition to studying the fundamentals of industrial engineering, such as production modeling and optimization methods, you will also have the opportunity to explore a diverse range of topics, such as:
Lean Production Systems
Multi-Criteria Decision Analysis
Engineering Cost Analysis
As the University has grown throughout the years it has re-established its primary commitments to STEM research and education. Recently, Western New England University has expanded its STEM facilities, specifically within the College of Engineering. This has led to U.S. News & World Report ranking the College of Engineering as being among the top 60 best in the nation.
Located in Corvallis, OR and situated in the Willamette Valley, Oregon State University is a public university. It offers more than 200 academic programs to its 28,000 students. And as a land, sea, space, and sun-grant university, OSU is a respected leader in research development.
Looking for an engineering degree that also focuses on business fundamentals? OSU’s program may be for you. It offers a Master in Industrial Engineering with a focus on technical management and project leadership. That means you will take classes on business and finance foundations in engineering industries and settings. For example, your core classes include:
Introduction to Management for Engineers and Scientists
Project Management in Engineering
Advanced Engineering Economic Analysis
At OSU you will be privileged to take classes specifically developed by leaders in the field of engineering management. And though you’ll study online and from a distance, you will have the opportunity to network within the professional industry. At graduation your diploma is identical to those earned by on-campus students.
Lawrence Technological University is a private school located in the Detroit suburb of Southfield. This university specializes in STEM education and research. Organized into four colleges, Lawrence Tech is home to approximately 4,200 undergraduate and graduate students.
At Lawrence Tech you can earn an MS in Industrial Engineering fully online. Learn how to build more effective and efficient systems and reduce waste in time, materials, and resources. This degree can be earned in as few as 18 months and covers the spectrum of industrial engineering topics, from Six Sigma to product innovation. Core classes cover:
Applied Stochastic Processes
Advanced Optimization Techniques
Engineering Systems Simulation
Though you’ll be studying from a distance and at your own pace, Lawrence Tech’s online platform ensures you have an intimate graduate experience. You’ll still work closely with classmates and faculty members. And you’ll have the opportunity to participate in virtual “office hours,” one-on-one mentoring, and more.
Located in Alabama’s Appalachian region, the University of Alabama at Huntsville is a public school. It is organized into eight schools and colleges through which it offers degrees across all academic levels. UAH is home to more than 9,000 students.
At UAH you can earn a Master’s of Science in Engineering with specialization in Industrial and Systems Engineering. There are a few ways to earn this degree, including a track that requires a substantive thesis or a track that requires more coursework with a research focus. Both, however, have you complete a common core that consists of:
Introduction to Operations Research
Advanced Quality Control
Engineering Economic Analysis
The University of Alabama in Huntsville is renowned in many academic and professional areas. But it is perhaps best known for its strengths and innovations in engineering. UAH is a space-grant institution that partners closely with NASA and houses the National Space Science and Technology Center.
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