Graduate Curriculum

The Masters of Science in Packaging Engineering requires the completion of 27 course credits and a 3-credit Masters Project totaling 30 credits. A final oral examination and report based on the Masters Project (16:731:593) is required. The MS degree requirements are delineated below:

  1. Of the required 30 credits, a minimum of five 3 credit courses must be Packaging Engineering graduate courses (16:731:5xx) and one 3 credit course must be Master Project (16:731:593).
  2. Candidates are expected to earn grades of B or better in their coursework to be in good standing. A 3.0 GPA must be maintained throughout the course of study. A student whose grade point average falls below 3.0 will be dropped from the graduate program.
  3. No more than three credits of grades C or C+ may be used in meeting the 30 credit requirement.
  4. The final oral exam will consist of a written report based on the Master Projects (16:731:593), and a presentation of the report to a faculty committee via a public forum. An advisor from the graduate faculty in Packaging Engineering Program will supervise the project.
  5.  Upon the written approval of the program, a graduate student may reduce the courses requirement to four Packaging Engineering graduate courses.

Graduate courses offered in the Packaging Engineering Program can be categorized as four groups. Group #1 consists of all Packaging Fundamentals courses, and groups #2 to #4 are clustered by three specialized areas: Packaging Materials; Packaging Design and Packaging Applications. These courses are listed in the following table.

Group 1: Packaging Fundamentals

Group 2: Packaging Materials

  • 16:731:521 Polymeric Packaging Materials (3) *
  • 16:731:524 Processing of Plastics for Packaging Development (3)
  • 16:731:525 Advanced Packaging Materials (3) *
  • 16:731:527 Stability and Recyclability of Packaging Materials(3)*

Group 3: Packaging Design

  • 16:731:532 Anti- Counterfeit Strategy and Product Protection (3)
  • 16:731:545 Packaging and the Environment (3) *
  • 16:731:547 Packaging Laws and Regulations (3) *
  • 16:731:549 Packaging Value Chain (3) *
  • 16:731:551 Advanced Packaging Printing (3)

Group 4: Packaging Applications

  • 16:731:571 Principles and Practice of Packaging Development (3) *
  • 16:731:573 Packaging Barrier and Protection Properties (3) *
  • 16:731:575 Advanced Pharmaceutical Packaging (3) *
  • 16:731:577 Regulatory Oversight in Pharmaceutical Packaging (3) *

Note: * represents the proposed new courses

To fulfill the MS degree requirements, students should take at least three courses from the Packaging Fundamentals group and at least two courses from one of the specialized areas. The Packaging Engineering program, however, encourages students to take more courses in other specialized packaging areas or relevant courses offered by other programs within the Graduate School.

Course Descriptions

  • 16:731:501 Fundamentals of Packaging Engineering (3) – Physical and chemical properties of packaging materials; design manufacture, performance and evaluation of packages
  • 16:731:511 Instruments for Analysis of Packaging Materials (3) – Analytical methods for packaging including spectrophotometry and chromatography. Material identification and characterization. Migration and permeation measurements.
  • 16:731:512 Packaging Distribution and Dynamics (3) - Various dynamics engineering disciplines for packaging distribution such as acceleration, vibration, mechanical shock and others.
  • 16:731:521 Polymeric Packaging Materials (3)-  Overview of material properties in polymer and packaging applications.
  • 16:731:524 Processing of Plastics for Packaging Development (3) – Processing of packaging plastics, extrusion, coating, film, containers. Effects of processing variables on morphology and performance.
  • 16:731:525 Advanced Materials (3)-  Understand and apply fundamental concepts in  the discipline of  packaging materials; Physical and chemical properties of packaging materials; design manufacture, performance and evaluation of packages
  • 16:731:527 Stability and Recyclability of Packaging Materials (3)- Materials characteristics for packaging recyclability and design methods for better reprocessing.
  • 16:731:531 Packaging Invention and Innovation (3)- Various aspects of innovative design processes such as Generation X, Toy, Food and other related packaging.
  • 16:731:532 Anti- Counterfeit Strategy and Product Protection (3) – Theory and applied techniques for anti- counterfeit strategies and product protection for food and consumer products.
  • 16:731:541 Simulation, Modeling and Analysis in Packaging Engineering (3) – Advanced computer aided design techniques and computer simulation for packaging design and evaluation.
  • 16:731:545 Packaging and the Environment (3) - Environmental issues within the packaging industry such as life cycle of different packaging materials and sustainable packaging issues especially in sustainable packaging design. Various sustainable packaging technology, regulations and material characteristics.
  • 16:731:547 Packaging Laws and Regulations (3) - Reviews the laws and regulations governing the manufacture, distribution and sale of food products.
  • 16:731:549 Packaging Value Chain (3)-  a high-level management model of how businesses receive raw materials as input, add value to the raw materials through various processes, and sell finished products to customers
  • 16:731:551 Advanced Packaging Printing (3) – Advanced methods of printing packages including copy preparation, design, electronic imaging, aesthetics, camera use, and effects of package materials. Production of printed packages including quality control, economics, and environmental considerations.
  • 16:731:571 Principles and Practice of Packaging Development(3) 
  • 16:731:573 Packaging Barrier and Protection Properties (3)- Permeability and shelf life within the food packaging industry subject; the overall concept of shelf life, testing, analysis and case study in the food packaging industry.
  • 16:731:575 Advanced Pharmaceutical Packaging (3) - Interdisciplinary subjects within the pharmaceutical industry including all technical aspects, regulations, and supply chain.
  • 16:731: 577 Pharmaceutical Packaging: Regulatory Oversight in Pharmaceutical Packaging (3)- The emphasis will be on regulatory oversight of pharmaceutical packaging, the regulations, the agencies either influencing or enacting legislation and guidelines.
  • 16:731:560 Packaging Seminar (1) – Presentations of detailed studies on specialized aspects of packaging.
  • 16:731:562 Selected Topics (3) – Selected topics of interest to graduate packaging students
  • 16:731:580 Professional Internship Packaging (3) – Supervised professional experience in the field of packaging offered through corporations and other businesses throughout U.S.
  • 16:731:590 Independent Study in Packaging (3) – Special investigations of unique packaging problems
  • 16:731:591 Research (1-6)(F) - various issues within the packaging field and through this course, the research will be conducive to solve current packaging issues.
  • 16:731:592 Research (1-6)(S) - various issues within the packaging field and through this course, the research will be conducive to solve current packaging issues.
  • 16:731:593 Masters Project (3)-  Special project to conduct individual research and innovative in the field of packaging.