Frequently Asked Questions

Are d-MEMP students required to be employed full-time throughout the duration of the program?

Generally, d-MEMP students should be employed full-time throughout the duration of their enrollment. The distance program is designed to best serve the needs of working professionals.

Are d-MEMP students required to have a corporate sponsor?

No. d-MEMP students are not required to have a corporate sponsor to cover tuition and fees. We will, however, encourage employed d-MEMP students to minimally obtain management support to participate in the program given the on-campus residency requirements.

Are d-MEMP students required to have work experience?

No. d-MEMP is geared towards students with fewer than 5 years of relevant work experience, but there is no minimum work requirement.

Are joint degrees and/or concentrations available for d-MEMP students?

There are no joint degree options available for d-MEMP students. d-MEMP students can currently pursue focus area electives (2 courses) in specific areas (e.g., Operations, Finance, Commercialization) in addition to the core classes and technical electives.

Are the d-MEMP residencies mandatory?

Yes. The on-campus residencies are a critical aspect of the program and students must attend all 3 residential sessions. Administrators will review a student's inability to participate due to extenuating circumstances on a case-by-case basis.

As a graduate student, can I get men's basketball tickets?

Graduate and professional students are allocated a certain number of tickets each year, and tickets are distributed based on a weekend campout and lottery. Those selected by the lottery have the right to purchase a season pass to the men's home basketball games. See for further information.

Per rules established by Duke's Graduate and Professional Student Council, only full-time Duke University graduate and professional students who have paid student activity fees by a certain date each year are eligible to participate in the campout and lottery.  

Can d-MEMP students use current employment for the internship?

Yes, employment experience is expected to be used to meet the internship requirement for d-MEMP students.

Can distance students attend a class in person?

Yes, d-MEMP students are welcome to attend classes in person whenever they are in Durham.

Can graduate classes at another university be used for Duke's Master of Engineering Management degree?

Graduate courses taken at other schools may be used, with the Duke Master of Engineering Management Director's permission, to fulfill Duke's core required courses (including Law, Marketing, Management, and Finance), but all students are required to take 8 total courses at Duke, plus the internship requirement and two semesters of the seminar/workshop series (campus) or three residency sessions (distance).

For example, if a student has taken a course that satisfies the requirements of a core course, then the student would only have to take the 3 remaining core courses and could then take 5 technical electives instead of the usual 4.

In short, previous graduate courses may give students a bit more leeway in the types of courses taken at Duke, but they do not decrease the total number required for the degree. 

Can I join the program in the spring?

The MEM campus program accepts students in the spring, and though the majority of students enter in the fall, previous spring entrants have not had any problems integrating into the program. The program's primary career development activities are initiated in August at the beginning of the fall semester, but spring semester entrants are given the same attention related to career services on Duke's campus and developing one's "toolkit" for creating an optimal job search.  During Orientation, students who begin in the spring spend a day with the MEM career coaches to assess their career interests and learn how to pursue their career goals with what Duke has to offer.  Additionally, students who begin in the spring often search for summer internships during their first semester followed by a search for a full time position in the following fall semester.

Please note that international students who enter in spring are required to be enrolled full-time for the spring semester and the following fall semester before becoming eligible to apply for off-campus work authorization. Additional information is available here.

Distance students may start in the fall or spring semester. If distance students start in the spring semester, they must participate in a virtual on-boarding session in January before classes begin and attend their first Residency in August of the same year.

Can non-degree students participate in d-MEMP?

No. At the current time, only degree candidates can participate in d-MEMP.

Can students move from the campus option to the distance option and vice versa?

Yes. Students in good standing can move from one option to the other with approval from program administrators, as the primary difference will be the method of delivery for the content.

Can students take classes during the summer?

No. In general, we don’t offer any classes in the summer because that’s when our campus students complete their internship requirement.

Can students take longer than two years to complete d-MEMP?

d-MEMP students are allowed to extend the program with the approval of the program director.  See sample curriculums for completing the program in three and four years.    

Can students take more than 8 courses?

Yes, students can take more than 8 courses. Campus students may take up to five courses in a semester under the flat semester tuition fee. Distance candidates will incur additional per-course tuition costs for additional classes.

Does Duke have an agreement with the Navy Nuclear Power Program?

Yes. Since 2005, Duke and the United States Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program have partnered to enroll nuclear-trained Navy officers in the Master of Engineering Management Program. Read more about the agreement here.

Does the program require work experience?

The program is designed for students with five years or less of full-time work experience, including new graduates with no experience. Generally, our campus students tend to join the program directly after receiving their undergraduate degree, though some have returned to school after spending some time in the workforce. Our distance students usually have between 1 and 5 years of experience.

The program provides a rewarding educational experience whether or not you have work experience. For those without work experience, you have the opportunity to work on teams with individuals that have often faced some of the challenges that are being discussed in class. These experienced classmates can share their own experiences and can help you understand that material better.

For those with work experience, it provides an opportunity to reflect on what you are learning and relate it to your previous experience. A key question to ask yourself is "with this new understanding, how would I address the situation differently?" It also provides the opportunity to mentor some of your less experienced classmates. Mentoring allows you to work on developing your skills to lead and manage other technical professionals.

How are distance course materials delivered?

d-MEMP courses are recorded using Panopto software and are accessible for synchronous and asynchronous viewing via the Internet. Faculty individually determine what other collaboration technologies and tools they want to use for their courses. Learn more about course delivery.

How can I compare the campus program and the distance options to see which is right for me?

Download a quick comparison of the two options.

Both the campus and distance options award the same Master of Engineering Management degree, and campus and distance students take the same courses with the same faculty.  The difference between the two options includes the method by which information is disseminated to students and the flexibility of the degree.  

d-MEMP students take courses on their own schedules via distance learning and come to our campus for three one-week residencies over the course of two years. The courses are recorded using Panopto software, and are accessible for live or delayed viewing via the internet. Professors determine what other collaboration technologies and tools they want to use for their specific courses, like Skype, Adobe Connect, WebEx, etc. One key factor is that both campus and distance students take courses together, so d-MEMP students work with campus students on a team in courses like marketing, management, project management, etc.  

The residencies allow d-MEMP students to connect with faculty, each other, and the campus students who will be in their classes as well. The residencies also enable d-MEMP students to satisfy our seminar and workshop requirements, which campus student satisfy by attending weekly seminars and monthly workshops.  

An advantage the campus program has over d-MEMP is the greater flexibility in choosing technical electives. d-MEMP students are limited to the course selection for technical electives and focus areas.  This is not a problem for the d-MEMP student who is interested in data analytics, operations and supply chain management, financial engineering, or commercialization and innovation, but we offer many other tracks in the campus program – see our campus focus area list.

Overall, it depends on a student’s needs – is course flexibility important, and can the student take a year off to come to our Durham campus? Or does his/her interest align with one of our d-MEMP tracks, and can s/he take three weeks off from work in the next two years? (An example residency schedule would be a week in August Year 1, July Year 2, and May Year 2 – graduation.)

How do d-MEMP students engage with the broader program beyond the 3 on-campus residencies?

d-MEMP students will have the opportunity to interact with campus students in the courses that they take using the collaborative tools/techniques that the faculty member chooses to use in his or her class. Distance students will additionally have access to the same online program resources that are provided to campus students (e.g. Sakai Learning Management System, faculty blogs, student discussion forums, etc). The residencies are, however, the key means of providing d-MEMP students with the opportunities to engage with their cohort, meet faculty/staff, and gain exposure to Duke's campus.

How do d-MEMP students work with teams, participate in group projects, etc?

d-MEMP students  use a variety of tools/technologies to support group assignments and projects. Faculty individually determine which collaboration technologies and tools they want to use for their courses. Students may likewise leverage teleconferencing, email, and other existing approaches to work with others.

Is tuition billed on per course basis or as a flat fee?

Campus tuition is based on a flat fee per semester, based on 4 courses. d-MEMP tuition is based on a flat fee per semester, based on 2 courses.

Tuition can alternatively be billed per course if students decides to take fewer classes during the semester, but courses beyond the eight will likely incur additional tuition costs.

What do d-MEMP students do during the scheduled residencies?

d-MEMP students will participate in a number of activities including (but not limited to): program introductions/updates, business simulation activities, professional development workshops, and distance technology/tooling overviews. In addition, d-MEMP students will complete the internship component of the program during the final residency experience. Read more about the residencies.

Where can I find information about the system requirements for Panopto (DukeCapture)?

A description of the system requirements for Panopto (DukeCapture) can be found here.

Which distance courses will be offered in the upcoming term and in the next two years?

We post classes here. We expect to know which courses will be offered for upcoming terms by mid-April for a fall term and mid-October for a spring term. The program provides enough distance course options to satisfy the degree requirements, however, d-MEMP students have fewer elective choices than on-campus students, as a limited selection of courses will be available remotely.

Why does Duke’s MEM program use a case-study teaching model?

The Case-Study method supplements standard classroom instruction in Duke’s MEM Program’s business courses. The program uses this method because it places students in a complex, real-world situation where they use their knowledge, understanding, and analytical skills to decide on a course of action. Case studies are an excellent method for students to apply concepts that are being taught. Students benefit from case-study learning through individual analysis of the case and through group discussion of the case.

In the individual analysis, students must first figure out the problem, which is sometimes stated, sometimes inferred. Additionally, there are often several problems, and the student must prioritize the ones where action will have the most impact. Problem definition is often the most challenging aspect of a case. The clarity of the problem definition is directly related to the effectiveness of the defined actions. Next, the student must understand the assumptions and decide whether they are reasonable. Challenging the assumptions may open up new courses of action that had not been considered previously. Next, the student must analyze the facts and determine their significance. In most situations, students will wish they had more information. However, part of this learning process is to become comfortable with making decisions under conditions of uncertainty and ambiguity. Next, students must consider alternative courses of action. In most situations, the student will want to view the problem from multiple perspectives and then select the preferred approach and develop a detailed course of action.

Group discussions are an equally valuable part of the learning process. In these situations, students will be exposed to the perspectives and insights of others. Students will hear how others choice of assumptions, priorities, and actions might have differed from his/her own. Students will learn to listen to others to gain from their insights. Students will also learn to present, defend, and persuade others to see his/her point of view. Ultimately, students will need to learn to work together as a group to come to agreement on how to proceed while still respecting the differing opinions within the team.

The overall purpose of the case study method is to integrate business concepts and real world situations so that students develop a structured, disciplined decision making process that they will be able to apply throughout their careers. Additionally, it prepares students to be able to articulate and justify their decisions. It also provides students with the experience and knowledge to analyze and assess the decisions of others. 

Will I need a specific software or hardware configuration on my computer to view distance lectures?

Panopto recordings can be viewed on a number of computers and browsers including Windows Vista, Windows XP, OS X (Intel only), and IE, Firefox and Safari browsers. You may be required to install Microsoft's Silverlight plugin the first time you view a lecture.  No special Panopto software is required to view content.

Will my diploma or transcript indicate I completed the online program?

Distance students receive the same degree as our campus students, and student transcripts and diplomas do not indicate the method by which the degree was earned.