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Students interested in pursuing Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Degrees often express concerns about potential in-person time commitments associated with these programs. Fortunately, a wide range of online master’s degrees in Chemical Engineering exists, and this page will guide individuals through some of the highest quality and most affordable schools and programs available. Whether still finishing a bachelor’s degree or already working in the chemical engineering field and seeking the next step, any of these programs can offer career and personal advancement, all in a format flexible enough to meet scheduling needs

Online Chemical Engineering Masters Degrees

Table Of Contents

Featured Online Programs

Southern New Hampshire University

PROGRAM: Online Masters Degrees

Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit, accredited institution with more than 3,000 on-campus students and over 60,000 online students, making us one of the fastest-growing universities in the country. Founded in 1932, we’ve been relentlessly reinventing higher education ever since and have gained national recognition for our dedication to helping students transform their lives and the lives of those around them.

We’re proud to provide affordable, accessible education that students can pursue on our 300-acre campus in Manchester, NH, over our innovative online platform or at our regional centers in Manchester, Nashua, Portsmouth and Salem, NH, and Brunswick, ME.

SNHU has earned the Best Buy and Best of Business – Best Online Degree awards and is consistently ranked as a top Military Friendly® School by G.I Jobs®.

Best Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Programs

Identifying the top programs among the myriad chemical engineering master’s options across U.S. schools can pose a challenge. Evaluation of factors such as teaching faculty quality, research and laboratory facilities, available courses and specializations, student resources, and more is essential. A comprehensive college education significantly impacts academic and personal growth. Using their distinctive ranking system, OMC teams have assessed colleges nationwide to compile a list of institutions offering the finest online chemical engineering master’s degrees.

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College Name & AddressTuitionGraduation Rate
University Of Virginia
1827 University Avenue, Charlottesville, Virginia 22903-2628
University Of Florida
Tigert Hall, Gainesville, Florida 32611
Villanova University
800 Lancaster Avenue, Villanova, Pennsylvania 19085-1699
Lehigh University
27 Memorial Drive West, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania 18015
Columbia University
West 116 St and Broadway, New York, New York 10027
Stanford University
Stanford, California 94305
University of Southern California
University Park, Los Angeles, California 90089
Rutgers University New Brunswick
83 Somerset St, New Brunswick, New Jersey 08901-1281
North Carolina State University
2101 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27695-7001
Michigan State University
East Lansing, Michigan 48824-1046
Auburn University
Auburn, Alabama 36849
Syracuse University
900 South Crouse Ave., Syracuse, New York 13244
Illinois Institute Of Technology
10 West 35th Street, Chicago, Illinois 60616
Clarkson University
8 Clarkson Ave, Potsdam, New York 13699
Missouri University Of Science And Technology
300 W.13th Street, Rolla, Missouri 65409
Kansas State University
919 Mid-Campus Drive, Anderson Hall, Manhattan, Kansas 66506
University Of Illinois, Chicago
601 S Morgan, Chicago, Illinois 60607
University of North Dame
400 Main Building, Notre Dame, Indiana 46556
Vanderbilt University
2101 West End Avenue, Nashville, Tennessee 37240

Source – Integrated Post Secondary Education Data System & University Data
*Tuition rates are for in-state and per year. Program specific rates may apply.
**NA – data not available

Understanding an Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Program

An online Master’s in Chemical Engineering program delves into advanced topics, including chemical process engineering, thermodynamics, and materials science. The curriculum usually includes core courses and electives, providing flexibility. Students engage in interactive learning environments, collaborative projects, and remote access to resources. Credit requirements vary but often range from 30 to 36 credits, and some programs may include a capstone project or research component. This online learning experience equips graduates with specialized knowledge for impactful contributions in the field of chemical engineering.

Curriculum for an Online Master of Chemical Engineering Program

The program’s curriculum is designed to equip graduates for academic and professional progress. Since chemical engineers often handle hazardous materials, the coursework delves into chemical engineering principles, system optimization, operations management, leadership, applied mathematics, energy, and related topics. Most master’s programs adhere to accreditation agency guidelines, typically ABET for chemical engineering degrees. Courses cover advanced chemistry, biology, and physics, including design processes, engineering management, and methods. Some students may undertake a thesis as an original research project, while non-thesis options are also available.

The program curriculum can vary among institutions; nevertheless, certain core courses are commonly included in the coursework, such as:

  • Statistical Thermodynamics: The study of statistical thermodynamics trains students to understand how molecular behavior can be applied to understanding and predicting the behavior of large quantities of a compound.
  • Mathematics for Chemical Engineers: Mathematics plays a prominent role in understanding chemical processes, so it isn’t uncommon for master’s degrees in chemical engineering to incorporate advanced mathematics courses.
  • Chemical Kinetics: This branch of chemistry focuses on understanding and predicting the rate at which a chemical reaction occurs. Kinetics courses help students better understand thermodynamic principles, which measure the direction of energy transference but not the rate.
  • Advanced Transport Phenomena: A course in Advanced Transport Phenomena will train students to understand and address issues relating to energy transference and fluid mechanics.
  • Reactor Design: One of the important courses in chemical engineering is Reactor Design. In this course, students are taught about reactor selection, reactor conditions that affect the outcome of chemical reactions, how to control the reactor conditions using digital computers, and overall operating conditions.
  • Polymer Science: Polymer Science is a field that deals with material science concerning polymers such as plastics and elastomers. In this course, students learn about polymer chemistry and polymer characterization, such as chemical structures, morphology, etc.

The chemical engineering master’s degree imparts various skills to students, such as:

  • Streamlining and improving chemical processes for efficiency.
  • Applying principles to optimize energy utilization and chemical reactions.
  • Developing and optimizing processes for the production of chemicals.
  • Understanding the properties and applications of materials in engineering.
  • Addressing pollution control and sustainable practices in chemical processes.
  • Applying engineering principles to biological systems for pharmaceutical or biofuel production.
  • Identifying and mitigating potential hazards in chemical processes.
  • Using software tools to simulate and analyze complex chemical systems.
  • Planning, executing, and overseeing chemical engineering projects.
  • Conducting independent research and contributing to advancements in chemical engineering

Types of Master’s Degrees Chemical Engineering Students Can Obtain

Chemical engineering students pursuing master’s degrees can choose from diverse programs offering specialized knowledge. An online master’s in chemical engineering is interdisciplinary, covering product development, chemical plant operations, and design. There are two types of programs in chemical engineering: Master of Engineering, enhancing existing engineering skills through process development and technical management analysis, and Master of Science (MS) in chemical engineering online, focusing more on theory and research.

The Master of Engineering (M.Eng.)

The Master of Engineering (M.Eng.) in Chemical Engineering is a two-year full-time program customizable to individual needs and professional aspirations. With concentrations like Biochemical Reactors, Electrochemical Deposition, and Environmentally Benign Manufacturing, it offers a thorough grasp of contemporary chemical engineering. It is ideal for those pursuing technical roles or professions in the field.

Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Chemical Engineering

A Master of Science (M.Sc.) in Chemical Engineering prepares students for careers in engineering or related fields, providing specialized knowledge. It is a solid foundation for doctoral studies, particularly for those aspiring to become engineering professors or researchers. The coursework encompasses core engineering courses, enhancing communication skills and technical processes for career advancement.

Common Specializations for an Online Master’s in Chemical Engineering

Master’s degrees frequently allow students to concentrate their studies on a specific emphasis. When exploring prospective schools, students should take note of the various emphases offered in the field of Chemical Engineering. The following are some common emphases within the Chemical Engineering field:

Area of FocusDescriptionCareers This Concentration Prepares For
Materials Engineering and Material ScienceMaterials engineers focus their learning on blending principles of chemistry, physics, and engineering to develop and maintain products used in biotechnology, energy production, and other similar fields.Materials Engineers, Metallurgical Engineers, and Composite Materials Scientists.
Process EngineeringRaw materials and resources must be refined and processed before they can be used practically. Process engineers will be trained to install and maintain the machinery and operations to achieve these goals.Process Engineers, Chemical Engineers, Manufacturing Engineers, and Industrial Engineers.
Biomedical EngineeringBiomedical engineers often handle a wide range of tasks, but most commonly, they will be in charge of designing artificial organs and limbs, developing and maintaining medical equipment, and researching engineering’s relationship with biological systems.Biomedical Engineer, Medical Device Engineers, and Clinical Engineers.
Computational Fluid DynamicsThis specialization explores the application of numerical simulations to analyze fluid behavior and processes. Students develop expertise in using computational tools to optimize designs, enhance efficiency, and solve complex fluid dynamics challenges in chemical engineering applications.CFD Engineers, Aerospace Engineers, and Environmental Fluid Dynamics Analysts.
Petroleum EngineeringThis specialization focuses on the intricacies of the petroleum industry. Students delve into advanced processes related to oil and gas extraction, refining, and exploration. The program equips graduates with specialized skills for leadership roles in the dynamic and critical field of petroleum engineering.Petroleum Engineers, Reservoir Engineers, and Drilling Engineers

Online Master’s in Chemical Engineering Program Length

Online Master’s in Chemical Engineering programs vary in length, typically 30 to 32 credits, requiring 2 to 3 years. The duration depends on factors such as full-time or part-time enrollment. Many programs accommodate working professionals with part-time options, allowing flexibility. Online formats prioritize adaptability, enabling students to design their degree to fit their intended timeframe.

Accelerated Chemical Engineering Programs

Accelerated programs offer a quicker path to earning a degree, allowing students to fast-track their education. Typically completed in a shorter time frame, these programs require dedication and intensive study. While providing a streamlined route to graduation, students should carefully research and ensure that the accelerated pace aligns with their learning preferences and commitments. Examples of universities offering accelerated programs are:

Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Admission Requirements

When researching different online master’s degrees in Chemical Engineering, students must be aware of the necessary benchmarks they must meet to be permitted to apply. Below are a few standard admissions requirements students may come across when applying to chemical engineering masters programs:

No GRE Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Programs

The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) serves as a standard admissions prerequisite for numerous master’s programs in the United States. However, many colleges have opted to eliminate the GRE requirement. In response to the pandemic, some schools have made the GRE optional for the current and upcoming academic years. Here are two examples of institutions that require no GRE for a master’s in chemical engineering:

Accreditation for Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Programs

Accreditation for Chemical Engineering Graduate Programs ensures that academic standards are met, enhancing program quality. Accredited programs provide students with a recognized and respected qualification, making them more competitive in the job market. This accreditation process assures students that their education meets industry standards, fostering confidence in the program’s quality and relevance. The Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET)5 accredits the master’s degree in chemical engineering.  Additionally, colleges secure regional accreditation through one of the following organizations:

ABET is recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation12, which is a nationally recognized body that helps one track accreditation and recognized universities. The Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs13 is regulated by the U.S. Department of Education, which can provide students with more details about a university’s accreditation status. 
Find out more about accreditation in the Accreditation Guide.

Free Courses for Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Students

Chemical Engineering students can enroll in free courses that enhance their understanding of the field. These courses provide valuable insights into industry professionals’ practices and offer certificates of completion upon finishing. However, it is important to note that these certificates may not hold the same weight as accredited courses and may not be recognized by organizations. Here are a few free chemical engineering courses available:

CourseChemical Engineering Thermodynamics14
Provided byMIT OpenCourseWare
DescriptionThis course focuses on the basic principles of classical thermodynamics and how they are used in analyzing transient closed and open systems. It covers the conditions for equilibrium and stability, emphasizing the molecular-level behavior of mixtures using statistical mechanics.
CourseAP Chemistry: Chemical and Nuclear Reactions 15
Provided byAlison
DescriptionThis course focuses on calculating reactant disappearance rates and representing equilibrium constants for reversible reactions. It includes topics such as assigning oxidation numbers according to specific rules, understanding chemical equilibrium, and exploring equilibrium in physical processes. If students are interested in understanding chemical kinetics, redox equations, and nuclear reactions for the AP chemistry exam, this course is a good fit.
CourseIntroduction to Solid State Chemistry 16
Provided byedX
DescriptionThis course explores the connection between the arrangement of electrons, chemical bonding, and the order of atoms in different types of solids, including metals, ceramics, semiconductors, and polymers (including proteins). It will also cover techniques for characterizing the atomic arrangements in crystalline and amorphous solids. 

How to Pay for an Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Program

Figuring out how to pay for graduate education is one of the more stressful aspects of deciding whether to return to school. Fortunately, there is a wide range of options for students looking to lighten graduate education’s financial burden. Here are some examples of how students can fund their Online Master’s in Chemical Engineering:


Scholarships are funding packages available to students with certain qualifications. They are often only awarded in a single installment, but some scholarships are renewable each semester.


Fellowships are work or research opportunities offered to students on a short-term basis to help them pay for their academics.

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate Assistantships are similar to fellowships and often provide students with the opportunity to start teaching 100- or 200-level courses to undergraduate students. Students on assistantships often receive financial compensation as well as a tuition waiver.


Students who require financial assistance for graduate school are awarded grants. While grants are typically given to them based on their family’s income, scholarships are typically given out based on merit. Universities offering these need-based awards also consider applicants’ test scores and grades


FAFSA, or Free Application for Federal Student Aid, is a form prospective students can fill out and submit to determine their eligibility for financial aid.

Read the Financial Aid Guide for more information on funding higher education.

Scholarships for Online Master’s in Chemical Engineering Students

Scholarships are awarded to deserving applicants pursuing master’s degrees in chemical engineering. These scholarships significantly alleviate program costs, covering tuition fees and travel expenses. Below are some scholarships available for students pursuing a master’s degree in chemical engineering:

  • ABC Wildlife Academic Scholarships17
    ABC Wildlife is an organization that controls and prevents animals in the Chicago area. They believe in diversity in the scientific field, from biology to chemical engineering. To support this mission, ABC Life sponsors a scholarship for women in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Chemical Engineering majors qualify to apply for this award.
    Amount: $1,000
    Deadline: Varies
  • NASF Foundation Scholarships18
    NASF Scholarships are given to U.S. college juniors, seniors, and graduate students majoring in subjects related to surface science, including chemistry, chemical engineering, environmental engineering, metallurgical engineering, materials science engineering, metallurgy, materials science, etc.
    Amount: $1,500
    Deadline: Varies
  • AAUW Return to Learning Scholarships19
    This scholarship is awarded to students who demonstrate excellent academic performance, a keen interest in science and related subjects, and a financial need. It is primarily given to female applicants who are pursuing graduate degrees in STEM or related fields.
    Amount: Varies
    Deadline: Varies

Career Opportunities and Salaries After Graduating

The online master’s in chemical engineering aims to educate individuals into highly skilled professionals in chemical engineering and related domains. Advanced education at the graduate level equips individuals with knowledge applicable across various engineering disciplines. Choosing specializations showcases acquired skills, and graduates can explore diverse career opportunities within this field.

OccupationChemical Engineers20
Median Annual Salary$106,260
Job Growth (up to 2032)8% ( faster than average)
Job DescriptionChemical engineers are responsible for designing and developing chemical manufacturing processes. They devise strategies for separating components of gases and liquids and generating electric currents using controlled chemical processes.
OccupationManufacturing and Industrial Engineers21
Median Annual Salary$95,300
Job Growth (up to 2031)10% (faster than average)
Job DescriptionThese professionals develop management control systems to make cost analysis and financial planning efficient. They enact quality control procedures to resolve production problems and minimize costs, which will help them optimize the usage of robots, computer networks, and materials.  
OccupationR & D Engineer 22
Median Annual Salary$118,200
Job Growth (up to 2031)No Data Available
Job DescriptionThe R&D Engineer utilizes research theories, principles, and models to conduct experiments and research activities, contributing to the research and development efforts of the organization. They evaluate the scope of research projects, ensuring timely and budget-conscious completion. Additionally, they summarize research findings and effectively communicate results to internal and external stakeholders.  
OccupationPolymer Chemist 23
Median Annual Salary$73,089
Job Growth (up to 2031)No Data Available
Job DescriptionPolymer chemists spearhead R&D initiatives for innovating polymer products tailored for oilfield applications. They develop novel polymers spanning organic, inorganic, and hybrid materials, with applications ranging from high-temperature stable microelectronic coatings to diverse industrial uses.

Certifications and Licensing for Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Graduates

Professional certifications enable individuals to develop expertise in a specific skill or capability. Upon completion, individuals receive certification, affirming their attainment of requisite professional education, training, and readiness to fulfill specific criteria for their chosen role, such as Chemical Engineer. Graduates of online master’s programs in chemical engineering can pursue various certifications, including:

Safety and Chemical Engineering Education (SAChE) Certificate Program24
This certification equips individuals with a technical background and evaluates different safety regulations applicable to real-world situations. It fosters an understanding of industry-specific concerns and the development of corresponding solutions.

Professional Engineering Licensure25
The Professional Engineers Licensing Certification can determine that individuals exhibit the minimum competency in engineering, signifying fulfillment of the state’s exam, education, and experience prerequisites.

Reliability Engineer Certification26
The Certified Reliability Engineer possesses expertise in applied technologies, encompassing design control and review, estimation, prediction, and failure mode effects and analysis. Additionally, they demonstrate an understanding of human factors in reliability and can develop and administer reliability systems for failure analysis.

Resources for Online Master’s in Chemical Engineering Students

Many resources are available to assist students in advancing their graduate studies. One can explore these supplementary resources beyond their standard curriculum by engaging with and tracking various engineering-related organizations. Individuals pursuing online programs for a master’s in chemical engineering can participate in or turn to the following associations:

  • IChemE 27
    This organization seeks to advance networking and connectivity among the chemical engineering community and hosts members from over 100 countries worldwide.
  • AIChE 28
    Membership with AIChE not only provides students with a connection to a wide network of professionals working in the chemical engineering field but also with access to some of the most recent research regarding chemical processes and methods.
  • American Chemical Society 29
    The organization supports its members by offering educational and career services to enhance their professional growth. They assist students of all ages in their learning journey through scholarships and grants and invest in research and innovation in STEM fields.
  • National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers 30
    The organization’s mission is to create diverse global STEM leaders from minority communities. They collaborate with various businesses, universities, municipalities, and districts to offer local, national, regional, and global support.

FAQs About Online Chemical Engineering Master’s Programs

What is chemical engineering?

Chemical engineering is a branch of engineering that applies principles of chemistry, physics, mathematics, and biology to efficiently use, produce, design, transport, and transform energy and materials. Chemical engineers work in various industries, developing processes for large-scale manufacturing, ensuring environmental compliance, and optimizing the production of chemicals, fuels, and materials.

Is a master’s in chemical engineering worth it?

What is the duration of a master’s in chemical engineering?

Can I pursue a Master’s in Chemical Engineering online while working?

What career opportunities are available after completing a Master’s in Chemical Engineering?

Is it necessary to have a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering to pursue a Master’s?

How important is program accreditation in choosing an online Master’s in Chemical Engineering?