All admitted students receive the benefits of the KAUST Fellowship which support students for the duration of their graduate studies. The benefits of the KAUST Fellowship include:
- Full tuition support
- Monthly living allowance (ranging between $20,000-30,000 annual, depending on qualifications and progression through degree programs)
- Medical and dental coverage*
- Relocation support
The Master’s Degree (M.S.) is awarded upon successful completion of a minimum of 36 credit hours. A minimum GPA of 3.0 must be achieved to graduate. Individual courses require a minimum of a ‘B' for course credit. Students are expected to complete the M.S. degree in three semesters and one Summer Session. Satisfactory participation in every KAUST's Summer Session is mandatory. Summer Session courses are credit-bearing and apply towards the degree.
Placement Exam - all admitted students without an MS are required to take a written assessment exam when they arrive on Campus. The purpose of the assessment is to determine whether students have mastered the prerequisites for undertaking graduate-level courses taught in the program.
Cultural Orientation - duration 1 week
Academic Orientation - duration 1 week
Course Requirements - 24 Credits. The Students must successfully complete a set of courses specified by the respective academic program guide - total of 24 credits.
Each Program is administered by a Graduate Committee and a Graduate Chair. Courses for each program will be listed at the 100 (non-credit), 200 or 300 Level.
M.S. Thesis option
Students wishing to pursue the thesis option must apply by the ninth week of their second semester for a thesis and must have at least a 3.2 cumulative GPA. A minimum of 12 credits of Thesis Research (297) is required. Students are permitted to register for more than 12 credits of M.S.
M.S. Non-Thesis option
complete a minimum of six credits of Directed Research(299). Students must complete the remaining 6 credits through one or combination of the options: Internship or, Broadening Experience Courses or, PhD courses
The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) Degree is designed to prepare students for research careers in academia and industry. It is offered exclusively as a fulltime program. There is a minimum residency requirement at KAUST of three and a half years for students entering with a B.S. Degree and two and a half years for students entering with a M.S. Degree. A minimum GPA of 3.0 must be achieved on all doctoral coursework. Individual courses require a minimum of a ‘B-’ to earn course credit.
Securing a Dissertation Advisor
The selected Dissertation Advisor must be a full time program-affiliated Assistant, Associate or Full Professor at KAUST. The student may also select an advisor from another program at KAUST. This advisor can only become project-affiliated for the specific thesis project with program level approval. Project-affiliation approval must be completed prior to commencing research.
Successful completion of Program Coursework
In addition to the coursework requirements, the student must successfully complete the required Ph.D. qualification milestones to progress towards Ph.D. candidacy status. These milestones consist of the subject-based qualifying examination and Ph.D. Proposal Defense
Passing the Qualifying Examination
All students entering the Ph.D. program with a B.S. Degree must take this examination within two years of their admission. Students admitted to the program with an M.S. Degree must take this exam within one year. Students who fail the subject-based Qualifying Exam with no retake or fail the retake will be dismissed from the University.
Preparing, submitting and successfully defending a Doctoral Dissertation
The Dissertation Proposal Defense is the second part of the qualification milestones that must be completed to become a Ph.D. Candidate. Ph.D. students are required to complete the Dissertation Proposal Defense within one year after passing the qualifying exam. The Dissertation Proposal Defense includes two aspects: a written Research Proposal and an oral Research Proposal Defense.