Curriculum - Metallurgical and Materials Engineering - Montana Tech

Metallurgical and Materials Engineering

Degrees and Options

Students can pursue degrees at the undergraduate and graduate levels. We offer a Bachelor of Science degree in Metallurgical and Materials Engineering, and Master of Science Degrees in Metallurgical and Mineral Processing Engineering and in Materials Science and Engineering. Montana Tech also offers a Ph.D. degree in Materials Science. Information on the graduate programs is available on the Graduate School homepage.


In their first and second years, undergraduate students take a general education core composed of courses in chemistry, physics, mathematics, social sciences, and humanities. During these years, students also take introductory coursework in Metallurgical and Materials Engineering to form a strong foundation for the upper level M&ME core courses and electives. Read about the curriculum »


With guidance from their academic advisors, students can select technical electives to suit their individual interests and career objectives. Technical electives in mineral processing and extractive metallurgy include energy resources processing, materials handling design, flotation, primary & secondary resource processing, precious metal processing, materials recycling and remediation, advanced pyro-processing, and  iron and steelmaking. Materials-related electives include courses in biomaterials, composite materials, electrical, optical and magnetic properties of materials, mechanical behavior of materials, failure analysis and design life, metal casting and solidification. Many cross-disciplinary elective courses are offered; examples include advanced thermodynamics, computer applications, thermodynamic modeling, and SEM/EDX.


Design courses are integrated throughout the curriculum. The design experience begins in the first semester of the freshman year, where students learn to use various types of software to solve and present engineering problems. The number of design-orient courses progressively increases as the student advances through the program.

The entire M&ME program is laboratory intensive with emphasis on hands-on learning.  In the mineral processing and extractive metallurgy laboratories, students learn basic principles of equipment operation, how to properly set up and conduct experiments, and how to interpret and utilize experimentally derived data to size equipment, develop process flowsheets, and perform cursory economic analyses. In the materials realm, principles are demonstrated in laboratory courses that deal with microstructure analysis, fundamentals of physical metallurgy, and materials engineering.

In years 3 and 4, students expand upon their design experience through a series of process unit operations courses, transport phenomena, and thermodynamics.  Students also take materials courses in ceramics, corrosion, materials characterization and an assortment of restricted (track-dependent) and free technical electives.  

The program culminates in the senior year with a two-semester capstone senior design experience. Students are challenged to apply their cumulative knowledge of engineering fundamentals, process and materials engineering, safety, and communication skills to solve a “real world” engineering problem.