MSCM Degree Requirements

The Department of Construction Science offers a thesis and non-thesis option for completion of the Master of Science in Construction Management (MSCM). The MSCM – Thesis Option requires 32 credit hours of course work, as well as the preparation and defense of a thesis based on independent research. The MSCM – non-Thesis Option requires 36 credit hours of coursework and successful completion of a written comprehensive final examination. The requirements for each option are summarized below.

MSCM – Thesis Option

General

A minimum of 32 semester credit hours of approved courses and research supporting a thesis is required for the Master of Science in Construction Management (MSCM) – Thesis Option. The university places limitations on these credit hours in addition to the requirements of the Department of Construction Science and the College of Architecture. All university requirements are found in the Texas A&M University Graduate Catalog under the heading “The Degree of Master of Science.” The student is responsible for proposing a degree plan that meets all university, college, and department requirements.

Degree Plan

The student must convene an advisory committee of no fewer than three members of the graduate faculty. At least two of the members must be from the Department of Construction Science and at least one member must be from outside of the Department of Construction Science. The advisory committee, in consultation with the student, will develop a proposed degree plan. The proposed degree plan must be approved by all members of the advisory committee and the Graduate Program Coordinator in the Department of Construction Science. The degree plan must be submitted for approval no later than the end of the student’s second semester of study. Without an approved degree plan, the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies will block the student from further registration. The degree plan must conform to the Department’s MSCM - Thesis Option degree requirements.

Core Course Requirements (9-15 Credit Hours)

The Core Course requirements represent the foundational level of construction knowledge that is expected by all graduates from the Department of Construction Science. All of the Core Courses are required; however, COSC 606 and COSC 608 may be waived with sufficient evidence on the student’s transcript that similar coursework has been completed previously. If either or both of these courses are waived, they will be replaced with the same number of credit hours of Construction Science electives. The degree plan may include a minimum of nine and a maximum of 15 credit hours of core courses. The required COSC Core Courses are:

COSC Core Courses

Credit Hours

COSC 601 Construction Practices

3

COSC 602 Construction Estimating

3

COSC 603 Construction Scheduling

3

1COSC 606 Electrical and Mechanical Construction

3

1COSC 608 Structural Principles and Practice

3

Total

15

1These courses may be waived with approval of the student’s advisory committee.

Research Course Requirements (14 Credit Hours)

The Research Course requirements provide an adequate background for the student to conduct the independent research that forms the basis of the thesis. These courses are required and may not be replaced in the degree plan.

Required Research Courses

Credit Hours

1MATH/STAT/COSC Elective

3

COSC 681 Graduate Seminar

2

COSC 690 Theory of Research

3

COSC 691 Research

6

Total

14

1This course is selected in consultation with the student’s advisory committee. Possible courses include MATH 606, MATH 613, MATH 619, MATH 645, STAT 651, STAT 652, STAT 653, STAT 658, STAT 659, STAT 661, STAT 673, and PSYC 301.

Non-COSC Elective Requirement (3 Credit Hours)

At least three credit hours are required from courses outside of the Department of Construction Science. The student selects the non-COSC course in consultation with the advisory committee. Additional non-COSC electives may be selected in order to complete one of the optional certificate plans available through the College of Architecture or the Mays School of Business. It is the student’s responsibility to propose a degree plan that conforms to the requirements of the optional certificate plans, if selected.

COSC Electives (0-6 Credit Hours)

The student may take a maximum of 6 credit hours of elective courses from the Department of Construction Science; however, if the student is required to take all 15 credit hours of the Core Course requirements, then no credit hours of COSC electives are required. The total combination of Core Courses and COSC Electives must not exceed 15 credit hours. Available COSC Electives include:

COSC Electives

Credit Hours

COSC 620 Construction Company Operations

3

COSC 621 Advanced Project Management

3

COSC 622 Construction Economics

3

COSC 624 Construction Business Development

3

COSC 628 Construction Law and Risk Management

3

COSC 631 Advanced Construction Productivity and Lean

3

COSC 642 Construction Information Technology

3

COSC 644 Advanced Construction Systems

3

COSC 648 Graduate Capstone

3

COSC 650 Construction Visualization

3

COSC 663 Sustainable Construction

3

COSC 670 Facility Asset Management

3

COSC 684 Professional Internship

3

COSC 685 Directed Studies

3

 

Proposed Degree Plan (32 Credit Hours)

The MSCM – Thesis Option is designed to be completed in two academic years (or four semesters). The actual time to completion is dependent upon the student’s progress in the required coursework and proposed research. The following is a typical plan for completion:

Fall – Year 1

CH

 

Fall – Year 2

CH

COSC 601

3

 

COSC 603

3

COSC 602

3

 

COSC 691

3

COSC 690

3

 

non-COSC Elective

3

COSC 681

1

 

Total

9

Total

10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Spring – Year 1

CH

 

Spring – Year 2

CH

COSC 606 (or COSC Elective)

3

 

COSC 691

3

COSC 608 (or COSC Elective)

3

 

COSC 681

1

MATH/STAT/COSC Elective

3

 

Total

4

Total

9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MSCM – non-Thesis Option

General

A minimum of 36 semester credit hours of approved courses are required for the Master of Science in Construction Management (MSCM) - non-Thesis Option. In lieu of a thesis, successful completion of a comprehensive written final examination is required. The university places limitations on these credit hours in addition to the requirements of the Department of Construction Science and the College of Architecture. All university requirements are found in the current Texas A&M University Graduate Catalog under the heading “The Degree of Master of Science.” The student is responsible for proposing a degree plan that meets all university, college, and department requirements.

Degree Plan

The student’s advisory committee will consist of at least one member of the graduate faculty. This member will be either the Graduate Program Coordinator in the Department of Construction Science, or a member of the graduate faculty appointed by the Graduate Program Coordinator. The student and advisor will develop a proposed degree plan which must be approved by the Graduate Program Coordinator. The degree plan should be submitted for approval no later than the end of the student’s second semester of study. Without an approved degree plan, the Office of Graduate and Professional Studies will block the student from further registration. The degree plan must also conform to the Department’s MSCM - non-Thesis Option degree requirements.

Core Course Requirements (9-15 Credit Hours)

The Core Course requirements represent the foundational level of construction knowledge that is expected by all graduates from the Department of Construction Science. All of the Core Courses are required; however, COSC 606 and COSC 608 may be waived with sufficient evidence on the student’s transcript that similar coursework has been completed previously. If either or both of these courses are waived, they will be replaced with the same number of credit hours of Construction Science electives. The degree plan may include a minimum of nine and a maximum of 15 credit hours of core courses. The required COSC Core Courses are:

COSC Core Courses

CH

COSC 601 Construction Practices

3

COSC 602 Construction Estimating

3

COSC 603 Construction Scheduling

3

1COSC 606 Electrical and Mechanical Construction

3

1COSC 608 Structural Principles and Practice

3

Total

15

1These courses may be waived with approval of the Graduate Program Coordinator.

COSC Electives (15-21 Credit Hours)

The student must take a minimum of 15 and a maximum of 21 credit hours of elective courses from the Department of Construction Science. The total combination of Core Courses and COSC Electives should not exceed 30 credit hours. Available COSC Electives include:

COSC Electives

CH

COSC 620 Construction Company Operations

3

COSC 621 Advanced Project Management

3

COSC 622 Construction Economics

3

COSC 624 Construction Business Development

3

COSC 628 Construction Law and Risk Management

3

COSC 631 Advanced Construction Productivity and Lean

3

COSC 642 Construction Information Technology

3

COSC 644 Advance Construction Systems

3

COSC 648 Graduate Capstone

3

COSC 650 Construction Visualization

3

COSC 663 Sustainable Construction

3

COSC 670 Facility Asset Management

3

COSC 684 Professional Internship

3

COSC 685 Directed Studies

3

Non-COSC Electives Requirement (6 Credit Hours)

At least six credit hours are required from courses outside of the Department of Construction Science. The student selects the non-COSC electives in consultation with the advisory committee. Additional non-COSC electives may be selected in order to complete one of the optional certificate plans available through the College of Architecture or the Mays School of Business. It is the student’s responsibility to propose a degree plan that conforms to the requirements of the optional certificate plans, if selected.

Proposed Degree Plan (36 Credit Hours)

The MSCM – non-Thesis Option is designed to be completed in two academic years (or four semesters). The actual time to completion is dependent upon the student’s progress. The following is a typical plan for completion:

Fall – Year 1

CH

 

Fall – Year 2

CH

COSC 601

3

 

COSC Elective

3

COSC 602

3

 

COSC Elective

3

COSC 603

3

 

non-COSC Elective

3

Total

9

 

Total

9

 

 

 

 

 

Spring – Year 1

CH

 

Spring – Year 2

CH

COSC 606

3

 

COSC Elective

3

COSC 608

3

 

COSC Elective

3

non-COSC Elective

3

 

COSC Elective

3

Total

9

 

Total

9

Graduate Course Descriptions

COSC 601 Construction Practices

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Materials and methods of construction with emphasis on the design and construction process; includes structural steel and other metals, foundation materials, precast and tilt wall concrete, concrete reinforcement including pre-stressing, wood dimension lumber framing, and heavy timber framing.

COSC 602 Construction Cost Estimating

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Determination of quantities for various types of construction materials and works including earthwork, foundations, structural systems, mechanical and electrical systems, and building finishes; methods used for pricing of construction works including labor, materials, equipment, sub-contractors, overhead and profit; use of various types of cost data catalogs available in the industry.

COSC 603 Construction Scheduling

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduction to commonly used techniques and computer applications for the planning, scheduling, monitoring, and controlling of construction projects; includes key scheduling techniques such as Gantt Chart, CPM, PERT, LSM, and EVM; practical scheduling practices such as tracking, controlling, and forecasting trends of schedules, cost control, and reporting. 

COSC 606 Mechanical and Electrical Construction

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Building environmental systems with a major emphasis on the design and control of the heating, ventilation and cooling systems, plumbing and drainage systems, electrical, fire and lightening protection, and lighting; design opportunities, calculations, equipment selection and economics as they relate to design and construction.

COSC 608 Structural Principles and Practices

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Investigations into practical applications of structural design including the analysis and design of structural members in steel and concrete; surveys and studies of various structural systems.

COSC 620 Construction Company Operations

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Running a construction company; strategic planning; business planning; organizational theory; competitor analysis; risk management; financial analysis; human resources; management information systems; leadership; codes of ethics; best practices.

COSC 621 Advanced Project Management

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Theoretical, practical, and strategic development in the management of contemporary construction projects; advanced techniques used in scheduling and evaluating progress in construction project control; exploration of state-of-the-art management principles and practices, and development of additional insights. 

COSC 622 Construction Economics

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Foundation in Life Cycle Cost Analysis computation within the context of current issues in environmental sustainability and evidence-based thinking; lean construction as a strategy to overcome the hurdle of first cost.

COSC 624 Construction Business Development

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Acquisition of new work in the construction industry; understanding available project delivery systems; competitor analyses; acquisition procedures including response techniques for complex requests for proposals; understanding concepts of sales and marketing, branding, backlog, and business development budgeting in construction.

COSC 628 Construction Contracts and Risk Management

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Advanced construction law, contracts, and risk management applicable to construction management; identification of common disputes and construction risks among the owner, design professionals, and contractor; analysis of construction contracts with an emphasis on troublesome provisions and solutions; demonstration of tools of negotiation and dispute resolution; ethics in construction.

COSC 631 Advanced Productivity and Lean

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduction to lean history, concepts and methods; deduction of basic training modules in lean project delivery; application of lean management in construction projects.

COSC 642 Construction Information Technology

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Exploration of emerging technologies for the construction industry including hardware and software systems such as BIM, RFID, Wireless/Mobile, information systems, construction specific programs, and information strategy planning; using information strategy planning by owners and contractors to effectively enhance the management of business entities and projects in construction.

COSC 644 Advanced Construction Systems

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Theoretical, practical, and strategic development in contemporary construction systems; exploration of state-of-the-art innovations in environmental control systems, structural principles and practices; integration of innovations with information technologies, and development of additional insights.

COSC 650 Advanced Construction Visualization

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduction to the theory and application of 3-D computer models in the design/build construction process; creation, positioning in 3-D space, and linking of building components to a database record; creation of a wide range of construction related information useful in controlling project quality.

COSC 663 Sustainable Construction

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Contribution of materials and methods to meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs; overview of international, national and local programs promoting sustainable construction; characteristics of the components of successful sustainable construction projects; theories and practices through case studies.

COSC 670 Facilities Asset Management

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Fundamentals of facility asset management and property management including concepts, theories, and principles of design, construction, accounting, finance, and management of the built environment; an overview of a project throughout its entire life cycle from various perspectives including the owner, users, designers, constructors and facility management personnel.

COSC 681 Seminar

Credit 1. 1 Lecture Hour.

Discussion and review of degree requirements, career opportunities, and current research activities in construction management. 

COSC 684 Professional Internship

Credits 3 to 6. 3 to 3 Other Hours.

Approximately 400-600 hours with a construction or construction-related company that exposes the student to construction-related activities; an initial report, monthly progress reports, a final report, and a final completion letter are required.  Prerequisites: Graduate classification; approval of graduate coordinator; approval of internship coordinator.

COSC 685 Directed Studies

Credits 1 to 6. 1 to 6 Other Hours.

Individual problems in the area of building construction involving the application of theory and practice.  Prerequisite: Approval of instructor.

COSC 690 Theory of Research in Construction Management

Credits 3. 3 Lecture Hours.

Introduction to research, research tools, proposal writing and research reports; emphasis on research planning and design, conducting a comprehensive review of literature, quantitative and qualitative research methodologies, defining research problems in construction science, and the development of research proposals. 

COSC 691 Research

Credits 1 to 23. 1 to 23 Other Hours.

Research for thesis.  Prerequisites: COSC 690 or concurrent enrollment; approval of graduate coordinator.