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Honors Cooperative Program (HCP) Master’s Program

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Our Master of Science (MS), available completely online, is a terminal degree program for those who want to gain advanced knowledge in a focused area of chemical engineering to pursue a career in industry or a professional degree such as medicine, law, education or business.

It is based on the completion of lecture courses focused on a theme within the discipline of chemical engineering.  No thesis is required. No research is required.

A range of MS programs with appropriate course work is available to accommodate students wishing to obtain further academic preparation before pursuing a professional chemical engineering career. This degree is lecture course-based; there are no research or thesis components or requirements. Because it is a terminal MS degree, it is not a prerequisite for nor does it lead to admission to the department’s PhD program.

HCP MS Frequently Asked Questions

What is the HCP MS program?

The Honors Cooperative Program is our part-time Master’s program that allows students the flexibility to complete a MS degree at Stanford completely online. The program also allows the flexibility to work towards a MS degree while continuing professional employment.

How many units can I take in the HCP program?

We recommend HCP students to enroll in up to 7-8 units per quarter at most. However, HCP students can enroll in up to 10 units per quarter. Students must enroll in a minimum of 3 units in each academic quarter (not including summer quarter).

How long does it take for online HCP students to complete the MS?

HCP students usually complete the program (45 units) in 2-5 years.

How will I know if the HCP MS program is right for me?

You can enroll in online Chemical Engineering courses even without being part of the MS degree as long as you meet the courses’ prerequisites. Read more about our Non-Degree Option program, and see all the classes available.

Taking courses can be a good way to decide whether the online learning experience is right for you. If you are accepted into the program, you may be able to apply up to 18 units of coursework towards the degree requirements.

Do online HCP students receive the same MS degree as full-time students?

HCP students receive the same degree as all residential MS students. There is no designation on the diploma. However, the transcript does state "honors coop remote" or "honors coop local" on it. 

How do I learn more about course delivery, course logistics or exams and homework?

Please see the Stanford Online FAQ for more details. 

When should I apply?

For our MS program, applications and supporting documentation from external applicants are accepted on a rolling basis for autumn and spring start. See the HCP Admissions Overview page for the dates when the application will open and close for each quarter.  Offers of admission are valid for one calendar year.

How do I apply?

Visit the Grad Admissions site for more information about the graduate admissions process at Stanford and to apply for graduate admission.

What if I am not admitted into the HCP MS program?

If you are not admitted into the master's program, you can still take online Chemical Engineering courses as long as you meet the courses' prerequisites. Read more about our Non-Degree Option program, and see all the classes available. 

How much are tuition and fees for the HCP MS program?

Tuition and fees are listed on the Stanford Online website.

Is financial assistance available to HCP students?

Offers of admission to our HCP MS program are made without guarantees of financial aid. Those considering pursuing their master’s degree are encouraged to visit Stanford Financial Aid to obtain more information about financing graduate study. Financial aid for graduate students includes loans and fellowship awards, from either external sources such as governmental agencies, industry or private foundations; or from internal university, school and departmental resources. Part-time students who are working full-time are not eligible to receive financial assistance from our department. We encourage you to check with your employer to see if you qualify for tuition reimbursement from your company.

Can Non-Degree Option (NDO) units transfer and count toward the HCP MS degree?

Up to 18 units of coursework taken through NDO may be applied toward the master's degree requirements at Stanford.

Am I eligible to apply to the MS program if I have already earned a master’s degree in Chemical Engineering at a different institution?

Yes; you are still eligible to apply to our HCP MS program. However, in your application you should clearly articulate your reasons for pursuing another master's degree and how this connects to your future career goals.

Can I apply to a residential MS program instead of the HCP MS program in Chemical Engineering?

No; We no longer offer a residential MS program in Chemical Engineering.

May I attend classes on campus, even if they are all offered online?

Yes; HCP students may choose the course delivery option that works best for them.

I am an international student, can I apply to the HCP MS program?

Yes; you are still eligible to apply to our HCP MS program. However, visas are not issued for international HCP MS students.

What are the minimum GPA requirements for admission?

Applicants do not need to meet any minimum grade point average (GPA) to secure admission, and we do not release information about average GPAs of admitted students. Please keep in mind that admission to our graduate programs depends on a combination of factors, and all areas of a student’s application are weighed when applications are reviewed.

Is the GRE required for admission?

The Department of Chemical Engineering no longer requires or accepts GRE scores for admission.

Am I eligible to apply if my undergraduate major is not Chemical Engineering?

Yes; a bachelor's degree in Chemical Engineering is not strictly required.

Are specific prerequisite courses required for admission?

No; we advise prospective applicants to review the ChemE Graduate Handbook (PDF) and the Stanford Course Catalog to evaluate what prerequisites are needed for graduate-level courses in your area(s) of interest.

What courses are available?

You can view the HCP MS courses via the SCPD course catalog.

What is the minimum level of study required of international applicants from an academic institution outside of the U.S.?

Please refer to Stanford Graduate Admissions for eligibility guidelines related to study outside of the U.S.

Will you accept letters of recommendation from industry?

Letters that support your application from industry are highly encouraged. It is ultimately your decision as to which references will best support your application. Your application will still be reviewed regardless of where your letters of recommendation come from. 

What is the process for transferring to the MS program from another institution?

All applicants to the MS program must follow the same application procedure as new applicants. No credits from another institution may be transferred to the MS degree at Stanford.

Can Coterm students transfer to the HCP MS program?

Contact to inquire about transferring to our HCP MS program.

Can MS students transfer to the PhD program?

No; our MS program is not a pathway into our PhD program. Interested MS students would still have to reapply online to the PhD program.

Can HCP MS students transfer to a residential MS program in Chemical Engineering?

No; we no longer offer a residential MS program in Chemical Engineering. 

Can HCP MS students apply for the Knight-Hennessy Scholars Program?

No; Knight-Hennessy is for full-time students only. The HCP MS program only allows for part-time enrollment.

Can HCP MS students live on campus?

No; HCP MS students are not eligible to live on campus.