Space Studies

Dagmar Beck
Program Director
dkbeck@rice.edu

David Alexander
Faculty Co-Director
dalex@rice.edu

Andrew Meade
Faculty Co-Director
meade@rice.edu

The professional master's degree in Space Studies is a collaboration between the Wiess School of Natural Sciences and the George R. Brown School of Engineering, and is geared to help individuals increase their knowledge of space engineering and related science, program management, and policy. The program includes advanced engineering, biological, and physical science classes and introduces students to economics, public policy, and management disciplines, which impact space commercialization and national policy. It focuses on training engineers and scientists interested in program management, providing them with the tools to face the complex challenges inherent in US space policy, human and robotic space exploration, science in space exploration, and technology development.

The degree in Space Studies is 1 of 5 degrees in the professional science master’s (PSM) program at Rice University housed in the Wiess School of Natural Sciences. It focuses on training students in Space Engineering and Science with the intent of creating new opportunities for those students interested in working in the space technology industry or related government entities, e.g. NASA, as well as governmental relations positions in non-profit organizations, industry and academic institutions. These master’s degrees are designed for students seeking to gain further technical core expertise coupled with enhanced management, communication, and leadership skills, instilling a level of scholastic proficiency that exceeds that of the bachelor’s level, and creating the cross-functional aptitudes needed in modern industry and government.  

In addition, a coordinated MBA/MSSpS degree is offered in conjunction with the Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business. 

Space Studies does not currently offer an academic program at the undergraduate level.

Directors

David Alexander
Andrew Meade

Professors

Christopher M. Johns-Krull
Adrian Lenardic
Erzsebet Merenyi
Marcia O'Malley
Tayfun Tezduyar
Frank Toffoletto

Associate Professors

Ramon Gonzalez

Assistant Professors

Stephen Bradshaw
Hadley Wickham

For Rice University degree-granting programs:
To view the list of official course offerings, please see Rice’s Course Catalog
To view the most recent semester’s course schedule, please see Rice's Course Schedule

Description and Code Legend 

Note: Internally, the university uses the following descriptions, codes, and abbreviations for this academic program. The following is a quick reference: 

Course Catalog/Schedule 

  • Course offerings/subject codes: Courses from various subjects may apply toward the graduate degree.

Department Description and Code

  • Physics and Astronomy: PHYS

Graduate Degree Description and Code

  • Master of Science in Space Studies degree: MSSpS

Graduate Degree Program Description and Code

  • Degree Program in Space Studies: SPST