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Master of Science in Applied Physical Science

Format: In person on the Statesboro Campus or the Armstrong Campus in Savannah
Credit Hours: 30-36
Entry Terms: Fall and Spring

Prepare to become a leader in the business aspects of science. Georgia Southern’s Master of Science in Applied Physical Science (MS-APS) is a terminal professional degree that prepares you for the workplace. Gain real-world experience in applying physical science to the business, government, and nonprofit sectors. This master of applied science program deepens your understanding of the science used in your field, giving you a solid grounding in business fundamentals and communications. You can choose between a terminal non-thesis or a terminal thesis option, and select an interdisciplinary concentration area in:

  • Material science
  • Pharmaceutical science

Application Deadline

Priority deadline for applications:

  • Fall semester start: March 1
  • Spring semester start: October 15

Applications received by the deadline will receive full consideration for admission and graduate assistantship positions. Our entering classes will consist of 12 students. Students with a bachelor’s degree in any area of science are considered for admission, but degrees in chemistry and physics are preferred.

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Faculty in the departments of chemistry and physics carry out research on a wide range of topics which encompass the traditional areas of chemistry and physics.  Departmental faculty are involved in a variety of interdisciplinary research areas that do innovative work in cutting-edge topics such as Cancer Research, Coastal Plain Science, Materials Science, and Computational Science.  Students in this program will be able to conduct research on a variety of instrumentation such as NMR, mass spectrometry, x-ray crystallography, and EPR and will choose one of three interdisciplinary concentration areas Pharmaceutical Science, Materials and Coating Science, or Environmental Science.

Pharmaceutical Science Concentration 

Students will prepare for careers in the pharmaceutical industry.  Emphasis areas include design and synthesis of pharmaceutical materials, regulations and policy of new drug development, and the process of submitting new pharmaceutical intermediates. ­

Materials and Coatings Science

The concentration area in material sciences focuses on modern materials science which includes polymers and coatings, biologically-inspired materials, and hybrid (nano)composites.  These materials manifest themselves in diverse areas, such as information technology, alternative energy and healthcare.

Program Learning Outcomes

  1. Theory and Knowledge of Industrial Science: Upon completion of the program, applied physical science masters students will describe the basic structure of the chemical industry, analyze green chemistry principles, formulate the relationship between the chemical product and its value in the marketplace, and explain the forces for change and innovation of the chemical industry.
  2. Critical Thinking and Project Management: Upon completion of the program, applied physical science masters students will be able to gather and analyze relevant information, evaluate alternatives, and implement creative and effective solutions.
  3. Communication: Upon completion of the program, applied physical science masters students will demonstrate oral and written communication skills as expected of a future professional in the field such as scientific oral presentations to a wide range of audiences, write successful grant proposals, and write science reports and journal articles.

About Our Location

Georgia Southern University’s main campus is located in Statesboro, Georgia, a university town of around 30,000 people, known for hospitality, friendliness, and a year-round mild climate. Statesboro offers the charm and safety of a small town but has the amenities of a larger city, such as varied shopping centers, cafes & restaurants, and entertainment options such as a cinema and outdoor parks. Statesboro is about one hour by car from Savannah. The Armstrong Campus is located on Savannah’s southside, just minutes from downtown and the beaches of Tybee and Hilton Head Islands. Florida is two hours away and metropolitan Atlanta can be reached in about three hours.

How to Apply

Are you interested in the Master of Science in Applied Physical Science at Georgia Southern University?  If so, this page describes our admission requirements and how to apply to our program.

Where do I start?

To obtain more information on the graduate program and to register your interest in graduate studies at Georgia Southern, go to the College of Graduate Studies. At this website, please complete the requested information. You will be asked to create a login name and password.

What are the requirements for admission?

The graduate program in physical sciences prefers a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 on all undergraduate work, but students with a lower GPA may be admitted to the program at the discretion of the graduate committee. Students entering this program are expected to have broad training in the chemical and physical sciences and therefore, a bachelor’s degree in chemistry or physics is preferred, but students with a bachelor’s degree in any area of science may be considered.

For more detailed information on graduate admissions at Georgia Southern, visit the website of the College of Graduate Studies or download a university catalog.

How do I apply?

The application process is easy. Just follow this link and initiate an on-line application. The cost for the application is $50. After completing this on-line form, the application must be supported by transcripts, GRE scores, two letters of recommendation, and a statement of your career goals and research interests . International students should submit scores from the TOEFL exam (Test of English as a Foreign Language), and have transcripts evaluated by World Education Services (WES).

In order to make it easy for us to follow your progress, we strongly recommend that you correspond with the graduate program director (Dr. Michele Davis McGibony) early in the application process. The graduate program director can give you many useful tips and answer any questions about your application. Although your online application will trigger steady correspondence from the university, it is the graduate program director in physical sciences that can give you the most personalized attention and the most accurate information regarding a final decision on your application.

Professional Science (PSM)

The Master of Science in Physical Science degree will prepare students for careers in applied chemistry, applied physics, and engineering businesses and industries. In the Professional Science (PSM) track, emphasis is placed on blending core knowledge and applied skills in physics and chemistry with an understanding of business and an internship experience.   This degree track is designed to meet criteria for certification as a Professional Science Master’s degree, which is a growing trend in the terminal Master’s field and as such has a national organization, the National Professional Science Master Association.  This degree will give students interested in industrial and business careers an opportunity to become familiar with other possible careers available to them beyond the traditional careers for which they were trained as undergraduates.

Students in the Professional Science (PSM) option must complete 36 hours of coursework.

These courses are organized as follows:

Required Science Core (9 credits) 

  • Industrial Science (3 credits)
  • Scientific Inquiry and Ethics (3 credits)
  • Statistics (3 credits)

Required Business Core (9 credits)

  • Leadership (3 credits)
  • Project Management (3 credits)
  • Technical Communications (3 credits)

Required Electives (15 credits)

Any three science courses (9 credits each) at the 5000G or 7000 level and any two non-science electives (6 credits) as approved by advisor and graduate committee.

Internship or Industrial Project (3 hours)

A final project (usually conducted in the summer between year 1 and year 2 of the program) will be accomplished in a real working environment with timely goals and deliverables.  This project may be conducted on-campus or in off-campus with an industrial company.  After completion of the project, the student will present the results of this project that will be evaluated by members of the graduate committee.


The thesis option is the more traditional option for earning a science master’s degree.  Students who elect to complete the Master of Science in Applied Physical Science program under a thesis option will also choose one of the two concentration areas and will enroll in the same three Core science classes as students in the non-thesis track.

The major difference for the thesis option curriculum is the replacement of 15 non-science hours 12 hours of science courses and the replacement of the final internship or industrial project (3 hours) with a written thesis document which must be defended.  This curriculum requires a total of 24 hours of coursework and a research thesis.

Students in the thesis option must complete 30 hours of coursework.

These courses are organized as follows:

Required Core (9 credits) 

  • Industrial Science  (3 credits)
  • Scientific Inquiry and Ethics (3 credits)
  • Statistics  (3 credits)

Required Electives (12 credits)

  • Any four science courses (3 credits each) at the 5000G or 7000 level as approved by advisor and graduate committee.

Research Courses (9 credits)

  • Thesis Research  (6 credits)
  • Thesis  (3 credits)

In addition to 30 hours of coursework, a student in the thesis option completes a written thesis describing and interpreting the results of an independent research project. Each thesis student is advised by a committee of at least three graduate faculty members, one of whom is the major advisor or committee chair. At the end of the student’s course of study, a public exit seminar describing the thesis must be presented before the Department of Chemistry and Physics and then defended before the thesis committee.

Graduate Assistantships

Qualified students admitted to the master’s degree in applied science program will be awarded a graduate assistantship (GA), which includes a tuition waiver and a stipend. A graduate assistant will help instruct undergraduate students in a general chemistry lab or an organic chemistry lab.

Download Teaching Assistantships Information


Contact Info

Graduate Program Director
Dr. Michele Davis McGibony
Department of Chemistry
Phone: (912) 478-5919

Graduate Committee
Dr. Li Ma
Phone: (912) 478-5950

Dr. Marshall Ming
Department of Chemistry
Phone: (912) 478-5681

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Last updated: 12/21/2023