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PhD in Industrial Engineering

College of Engineering

Industrial Engineering is multifaceted, offering you many divergent paths for your career to follow from industry, to research, to academics. In fact, the National Science Foundation and Academy of Engineering have projected significant shortages of scientists and engineers by the early 2020s. With a PhD in Industrial Engineering from WNE, you will gain advanced knowledge and skills in demand by industry, including production planning, systems, quality, and cost analysis as you create value for yourself and your employer. You will contribute to the body of knowledge in the field as you conduct research leading to your dissertation. You will learn to apply data-driven decision making and new tools and techniques to solve engineering challenges both known and yet to be imagined throughout industry. You have the option to complete the PhD in Industrial Engineering 100% online. This is an excellent option for working professionals interested in pursuing their program part-time at our nationally ranked and recognized university.

Why Choose PhD in Industrial Engineering?

Studying full- or part-time, you have the opportunity to advance in your career as you undertake signature work in your chosen area of focus. At the start of the program, the department chair will serve as your advisor. Later, you will select an advisor from our expert faculty. You will have access to state-of-the art laboratories and academic resources as you learn about research methods in industrial engineering. Studying at Western New England University puts you at the center of a nationally ranked university, as well as one that is ranked Best Undergraduate Engineering Programs by US News & World Report.

What Will You Study?

The PhD in Industrial Engineering at Western New England is a thesis-based, research-oriented degree for candidates who intend to pursue careers in Organizational Management, Research and Development, Research Management, or Academia. The program is intended to be versatile and tailored to support individual research initiatives. Course requirements are established solely by the doctoral committee. Areas of PhD research at WNE include Manufacturing, Advanced Production and Inventory Modeling, Supply Chain, Advanced Manufacturing Systems, Quality Control and Analysis Systems, System Risk and Safety, as well as a wide breadth of topics that are defined by the student and advisor. Through a combination of coursework, milestone examinations, and independent research culminating in your dissertation, you will gain the foundation and depth of industrial engineering theory and practice, a breadth of knowledge across multiple areas of specialization.

Admissions Requirements

Candidates for the PhD in Industrial Engineering should possess a master’s or bachelor’s degree in Industrial Engineering or closely related discipline with a GPA of 3.5 or greater (4.0 scale). Students seeking admissions to the PhD program will have an undergraduate academic record that demonstrates outstanding performance.

A GRE score* from the last five years is required, with scores that place the student in the 60% percentile in each of the three areas of testing.

Candidates having scores below the established GPA and GRE requirements will be considered on a case-by-case basis upon petition and discussion with the IEEM Department Chair.

Additional admission requirements include the following:

  • Evidence of completion of a probability and statistics course with a grade of at least a “B”
  • Competence in at least one structured programming language (R, Python, C++, etc.)

Candidates whose primary language is not English will be required to demonstrate proficiency in English.

*The College of Engineering will consider waiving the GRE requirement based on progressive industry experience, academic performance, a recommendation from a research advisor, and an interview. The interview can be scheduled at any point during the application process by emailing Dr. Christian Salmon, Department Chair for Industrial Engineering and Engineering Management, at christian.salmon@wne.edu.

Admissions Process

How are Courses Offered?

Course Delivery: In-class or online*
Total Credits: 57-72

Options for attending courses include fully in-class, fully online, as well as hybrid in-class/online to accommodate work and family. All lectures will be captured and available for online review. The program will capture all lecture-based presentations using the echo360 lecture capture system.

If you are interested in completing the program fully online, you will have an initial consultation with the Department Chair to discuss your goals and how an online approach could work for you, with particular attention to dissertation requirements. Once enrolled in program, you will be paired with a faculty advisor who will be a content expert in their field based on your research interests.

*International candidates will be required to attend in-class sessions in order to be in compliance with student visa requirements.


The personal attention you’ll receive from our faculty is unparalleled. They’ll become your mentors, learning partners, and colleagues during your education. Not only will you work with them in the classroom, but you’ll also have the opportunity to collaborate with faculty with established research and international standing. Additionally, many of our faculty have strong research ties with industry. Their wide-ranging interests are in areas such as supply chain management, discrete event systems, human factors, risk analysis and management, and reliability.


Program Goals & Philosophy

Program Philosophy
It is the philosophy of the program to graduate students who have the ability to create, evaluate, improve, design, and improve complex human technological systems. Additionally, students will demonstrate the ability, through dissertation research, to contribute to the body of knowledge in the field of industrial engineering.

Program Goals
The goal of the program is to prepare graduates with the appropriate technical depth and breadth of knowledge so that they may be successful educators, researches, and practitioners in the analysis and improvement of complex human technological systems. The program will follow three principles in pursuit of this goal. In addition to passing the required coursework, students must also pass a comprehensive examination to demonstrate a mastery of Principles 1 and 2.

Principle 1: Provide a Solid Foundation and Depth in Industrial Engineering Theory and Practice

A solid fundamental understanding of a field is essential in order for students to be considered an expert in that field. It is these fundamentals that a student will need to expand upon in order to contribute new knowledge to the field of industrial engineering.  We place an emphasis on the fundamentals of the analysis and improvement of complex human technological systems and an emphasis on the modeling and analysis of such systems.

Principle 2: Provide Breadth Across Multiple Types of Human Technological Systems

Principles, tools, and fundamentals of industrial engineering have been rooted in engineering and manufacturing systems. These tools have also been successfully applied to other systems such as service and transportation/logistical systems. Today industrial engineers can be increasingly found in banks, hospitals, amusement parks, airlines, and a variety of delivery agencies. On the surface, these industries appear different however; they all involve people, materials, information, equipment, energy, and capital.

Principle 3: Contribute to the body of Knowledge in Industrial Engineering

A requirement of any Doctorate of Philosophy program in Engineering is the expectation that graduating students will contribute to the body of knowledge in their chosen field by conducting research. This will be demonstrated by graduating students successfully completing a doctoral dissertation. Students conducting dissertation research will be guided by a selected advisor and advisory committee. Students must pass a dissertation approval examination in order to ensure they are prepared to conduct research. Upon the successful completion of research, graduating students will document the research results in a dissertation. Dissertations will be defended in front of advisory committees.

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  • International Students

    Leaders with engineering backgrounds are needed around the globe to manage people and resources. The College of Engineering enjoys a growing reputation among international students for the caliber of our graduate programs. Learn more about our support for international students.

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