Doctor of Philosophy in industrial engineering

Focus on research

The faculty and students conduct research in most areas of industrial and manufacturing systems engineering and bring annually more than $3 million in federal, state and industrial research grants. The department has a rich history of conducting research with strong emphasis on addressing real-world problems. This is attributed mostly to our prime location (in Southeast Michigan, the epicenter of U.S. automotive industry) as well as recruitment of faculty with substantial industry and consulting experience.  

Is the program right for you?

The department is always seeking applications from students with strong academic ability, research skills, originality and a desire to achieve. It is expected that the students have already obtained an master's degree in industrial engineering, applied engineering statistics, operations research, or a closely related discipline. Students with strong industrial experience and a proven record of accomplishment in conducting research and publishing in scholarly journals and in proceedings of technical conferences will be given a priority.  

The global executive track

The Global Executive Track (GET Ph.D.) is a unique new program designed to accommodate the busy schedule of working executives.  Candidates in this program must meet our stringent admission requirements which are defined in detail on the Global Executive Track homepage. Upon completion of this track, the candidate earns a Ph.D. in industrial engineering. For more information on this program, please see our homepage, or contact Program Director Dr. Ratna Babu Chinnam. 

University requirements

Applicants should ensure that they meet the following minimum university requirements for admission to a doctoral program. These requirements apply to both domestic and international students.

  • Baccalaureate and master's degree from an accredited institution or a degree equivalent to a four-year U.S. baccalaureate from a college or university of recognized standing. 
  • G.P.A. of 3.5 or international equivalent for the upper division of the undergraduate course work.
  • Undergraduate major or specialized work in the proposed doctoral major field.  

International students: english proficiency and transcripts

  • As an international student, you are required to meet the university's English proficiency requirement and must be no more than two years old.
    • TOEFL minimum score: A minimum score of 550 TOEFL (PBTT). If you take the Internet-based TOEFL (IBTT), a minimum score of 79 is required. The Wayne State University code for the TOEFL test is 1898.
    • Duolingo English Test minimum acceptable score is 125
    • IELTS minimum score: a 6.5, overall band score, is required. Our Institution Reporting Code is 1898.
    • PTE Academic minimum acceptable PTE score is 58.
    • Michigan English Test (MET) minimum acceptable score is 64.
    • Provisional admission through the English Language Institute (ELI) - International students who meet the admissions requirements for an academic program (such as standardized test scores and minimum grade-point average) but do not meet English language proficiency requirements may be eligible to receive provisional admission to Wayne State through ELI. Students will study full time in the ELI program until they meet the university's English proficiency requirements. Visit for more information, or email ELI Director Bruce Morgan, at
  • All international applicants for the Winter 2020 term and beyond, the Graduate School will now accept credential evaluations from any of the following service providers:

To prevent fraud and inconsistencies in evaluations, any other international transcripts will be considered unofficial and can only be used for an application review/temporary admission status. Admitted students who enroll and attend Wayne State University will get a cost reimbursement. View full instructions.

By expanding credential evaluation services, international applicants will be able to choose the agency that best fits their needs when requesting their official transcript report. Note: as previously required, credential reports still remain the official transcript for bachelor degrees conferred at non-U.S. institutions.

In addition, the Office of Graduate Admissions has implemented deadlines for receipt of credential evaluation reports:

  • Fall – July 31
  • Winter – November 30
  • Spring/Summer – April 30

Additional departmental requirements

Applicants should also ensure that they meet the following additional requirements from the department. Along with your application, you need to submit a Statement of Purpose, GRE and TOEFL (for international students) Scores, Transcripts, Resume/CV, Copies of publications, and 3 Recommendation Letters. Students with a track record conducting research, publishing papers (Journals, Conferences etc.), and industry experience will be given a priority.

  • Graduate degree in engineering or a related discipline (e.g., operations research, MBA, information systems or mathematics)
  • G.P.A. of 3.5 or international equivalent for the graduate course work.
  • GRE test scores (there are no set limits or minimum scores; applicants are evaluated based on their overall credentials). For reporting your GRE scores, the institution code for Wayne State University is 1898.
  • Exceptions to these requirements may be made under special circumstances such as with strong academic & publication record (Journals, Conferences).
  • No additional application required for Graduate Assistantships for new students. All program applicants will be considered if your application is complete and submitted by the deadline.

Application fees

We understand the financial hardships that many applicants might be facing, in their home countries or caused by the global pandemic. Unfortunately, we are not able to waive the application fee as it is a University wide application fee and not a department application fee. If selected for admission, we can review available options for fee payment at that time. 

Application deadlines

  • Fall (begins in August)- February 1
  • Winter  (begins in January) - September 1

Selecting advisor 

While it is not it necessary to find a supervisor before starting application process and mention the name of him or her in the application process through the statement of purpose, you are expected to clearly articulate your strengths, compatibility with the program, and research interests.

For more information

For additional information, visit our faculty pages or browse recent Ph.D. dissertation abstracts


Dr. Alper Murat, Chair, Doctoral and Research Program

Dr. Qingyu Yang, Graduate Program Director and Chair of the Doctoral and Research Program

Mark Garrison, Ph.D. Office Manager