Volgenau School of Engineering
George Mason University
George Mason University Mason
George Mason University

Graduate Certificate in Naval Ship Design

The graduate certificate in naval ship design provides students with the fundamentals and hands-on experience to be effective ship designers and design managers. 

Large navy ship in the ocean with a small boat crossing in front of it.

Expand your knowledge of naval ships with this graduate certificate program. Photo by Leigh McCue.

Through coursework and experiential learning, students will develop specific knowledge in the art of naval ship design and acquire the skills to support the management of new and in-service design programs.

Upon completion of the certificate program, graduates will be able to:

  • Design a vessel to execute a specified mission profile.
  • Critically assess the impact of vessel design decisions on the concept of operations.
  • Support programmatic needs by translating fleet requirements to design specifications while managing cost.
Along with the four core courses listed below, students must choose a relevant elective course at the 500 level or above.

Further information on graduate certificate program admissions is available here. 

Questions can be addressed to Leigh McCue. 

Core Courses

ME 551: Naval Engineering (3 credits)

This course will give students exposure to the specific needs of naval vessels. Through understanding a design’s concept of operations and its mission, students will learn how to identify needed vessel capabilities and integrations such as radar and sonar, combat systems, damage control, and special mission systems to support unmanned and manned air, surface, sub-surface vessels and other payloads.

ME 552: Fundamentals of Naval Architecture (3 credits)

Students learn the fundamentals of naval architecture including ship geometry and definitions, intact, damaged, and submarine stability and trim, structural fundamentals, resistance and propulsion, seakeeping, maneuverability, and control. Case studies are utilized to provide a real-world grounding to the academic work in this class.

ME 553: Ship Design Process and Tools (3 credits)

Students are taught the theory and practice of ship design. Topics will include the development of requirements for the design, the design spiral, set-based design, application of computational tools to efficient evaluation of the design space, ship classification, and cost. The class culminates in a ship design project.

ME 554: Defense Industry Project Management (3 credits)

Students will be taught key concepts in program and project management for defense acquisition, maintenance, and modernization efforts. Through lectures, case studies, and practical exercises, learners will better understand how to bring a design from the drafting table to the fleet.

Large naval ship with the number 64 on the side.

The graduate certificate in naval ship design builds on engineering skills and provides students with the foundation to design naval ships. USS Wisconsin docked at Norfolk, Virginia. iStock photo.

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