The Master of Science in Safety Science degree program qualifies students for specialized positions in a rapidly growing, highly paid and exciting field, and provides job placement assistance upon graduation.  

Master of Science in
Safety Science

Master of Science in Safety Science

The Master of Science in Safety Science degree program qualifies students for specialized positions in a rapidly growing, highly paid and exciting field, and provides job placement assistance upon graduation. Safety is a critical part of aviation, manufacturing and industrial design. This program provides the knowledge and skills necessary to practice occupational health and safety programs in any workplace. Students can concentrate on safety in an aviation environment or a more general occupational safety.

Students admitted to the Master of Science in Safety Science program may learn about the ISASI-Robertson Fellowship in Safety and Crashworthiness here. The fellowship position will be open until filled.

The Master of Science in Safety Science degree is housed in the Department of Behavioral & Safety Sciences of the College of Arts & Sciences.

View Degree Requirements
Excerpt taken from the Online Course Catalog

Degree Requirements

Safety Science General Core

MSF 580Industrial Hygiene & Environmental Protection3
MSF 601Ergonomics3
MSF 602Human Factors *3
MSF 603Occupational Safety3
MSF 613Aviation Safety3
Total Credits15

Prerequisite MSF 600

Safety Science Research Core

MSF 600Quantitative Methods3
MSF 612Research Methods3
Select one of the following options:3-6
Option I
MSF 700
Thesis *
Option II
MSF 690
Graduate Research Project *
Total Credits9-12

Prerequisite MSF 600 and MSF 612


Select three to four of the following:9-12
MSA 602
The Air Transportation System
MSA 613
Airport Operations Safety
MSF 530
Arcrft Accident Investigation
MSF 605
Industrial Hygiene Measurement **
MSF 606
Cntrl Mthds Occptnl Sfty Hlth
MSF 607
Epidemiology *
MSF 609
System Safety *
MSF 610
Industrial Security
MSF 611
Case Studies in Safety *
MSF 614
Safety Ethics
MSF 630
Aircraft Accident Analysis
MSF 635
Advanced Aircraft Survivability ***
MSF 655
Airline & Ops Safety Mgmnt
MSF 675
Aviation Maintenance Safety
MSF 680
Integrated Safety Ops Capstone
MSF 685
Aviation Security
MSF 686
Emergency Preparedness
MSF 696
Internship in Safety Science
MSF 699
Special Topics in Safety Science
Total Credits9-12

Prerequisite MSF 600


Prerequisite MSF 580


Prerequisite MSF 530

Opportunities for Graduate Students

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate assistantships are academic appointments that are normally reserved for qualified graduate students. Graduate assistants are involved in research activities under the direction of a faculty member. To be eligible for a graduate assistantship, a student must have full graduate status in a degree program, must have maintained a CGPA of 3.00 out of a possible 4.00 or above through the end of the semester (graduate or undergraduate) preceding the appointment, and must demonstrate adequate communication and technical skills.

Each department has the responsibility to post the availability of its graduate assistantships. Students interested in applying should submit an application form and a 500-word essay directly to the department. Incoming students should contact departments directly about the availability of assistantships.

Graduate assistantships carry a stipend set by the University and a tuition waiver; in addition, limited hourly graduate employment opportunities within a department may be available. Graduate assistants with such appointments are expected to devote up to 20 hours each week to effectively carry out their assignments. Under some circumstances, partial assistantships providing either tuition or a stipend may be granted. Expected time to be devoted is set by the assigning department. Graduate assistants are permitted to accept other University employment; however, University policies limit all students to a total of 25 hours of work per week, including the graduate assistantship. All graduate research assistantships, both full and partial, require that the recipient be registered for at least three graduate credits at Embry-Riddle for any semester of their appointment.

Graduate Internships

Graduate internships are temporary professional or industrial work opportunities available to graduate students. There are two types of internships: resident and nonresident. Resident internships are professional work activities supported by a partnership between the University and industry and conducted on campus under the supervision of a faculty/staff sponsor. Nonresident internships are professional work activities conducted off campus at the supporting organization facility. Full-time employees of the offering organization are not eligible for an internship appointment and cannot receive elective credit for their professional work service.

Graduate students who have full graduate status, are in good standing, with a minimum of six completed graduate credit hours, and who earn a cumulative GPA of 3.00 on a 4.00 basis, are eligible to apply for graduate internships. Students must demonstrate adequate communication and technical skills.

Students selected for an internship must register for the approved number of credit hours in the departmental internship course and pay all fees. Graduate academic credit is awarded at a rate of one credit hour for every 200 clock hours of work completed, up to a maximum of three credit hours in one semester. Three internship credit hours may be applied as an elective toward degree requirements. Students are advised to consult with the Safety Science internship coordinator for approval to use internship credits toward their degree program.

Guidelines for Graduate Research Projects and Theses

The graduate program in the Department of Safety Science offers the degree of Master of Science in Safety Science (MS-SS), which is a 36 credit-hour program. In addition to course work, this degree requires the completion of a research project, either a three-hour Graduate Research Project (GRP, with 33 hours of course work) or a six-hour Master’s Thesis (with 30 hours of course work). Those students who are planning to do a GRP should have registered for a total of three hours of MSF 690 before graduation. Those planning to do a thesis should register for six hours of MSF 700 before graduation. The detailed information in this section is intended to assist graduate students in the completion of this research requirement.

The Difference Between a GRP and a Thesis

The difference between a GRP and a thesis is primarily a question of scope, but there are other distinguishing features.

If the student has any aspirations to later pursue a doctorate, a thesis is strongly recommended, since this is good preparation for writing a dissertation. A thesis is a project that requires the collection and analysis of data in an original fashion. This work should be suitable for submission to a peer-reviewed journal for publication.

In contrast, a GRP may consist of a selection from a number of possible options: for example, documenting results of an internship in which the student designed a safety program or conducted hazard analyses; replicating previously published research to validate findings; or conducting original data collection on a smaller scale than that considered acceptable for the thesis.

Each semester the department establishes and posts the deadlines for committee organization, proposal submission, completion of the first three chapters of the GRP/thesis, the defense confirmation, delivery of the GRP/thesis to the committee, and the final defense.


Go to the Online Course catalog

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