Students are admitted to KAUST from a wide variety of programs and backgrounds. In order to facilitate the design of an appropriate study plan for each individual student, all MS and MS/PhD incoming students will be required to take an assessment during orientation week. There is no grade for the assessment. The purpose of the assessment is to determine whether students have mastered the prerequisites for undertaking graduate level courses taught in the program. The Advisor uses the results of the assessments to design, if necessary, a remedial study plan with a list of courses aimed at addressing content areas that may impede a student from successful completion of the degree requirements.
Students are encouraged to prepare for the assessment by refreshing the general knowledge gained from their undergraduate education before arriving at KAUST.
Material Science and Engineering Assessment Test Subjects
Material Science and Engineering students will be tested on the following subjects:
- Basic Principles of General Chemistry
- Basic Principles of Physics
- Engineering Mathematics
1. Basic Principles of General Chemistry
Topics included in the General Chemistry assessment test:
- Physical and Chemical Properties of Matter
- Principles of atomic structure
- Periodic variation in physical and chemical properties of the elements
- Chemical bonding: Formal charge and Lewis structure, Polarity, Molecular geometry and hybridization of atomic orbitals
- Intermolecular forces
- Chemical Kinetics & Equilibrium
- Acids and bases
- Chang, R., & Goldsby, K. A. (2016) Chemistry. 11th Ed. McGraw-Hill, 2016. ISBN-13: 978-0078021510 (or any other edition).
- Silberberg, Martin S., Principles of General Chemistry, McGraw-Hill, 2013.
2. Basic Principles of Physics
Topics inluded in the Principles of Physics assessment test:
- Newtonian Physics:
- Kinematics (motion with constant acceleration in one and two dimensions).
- Dynamics (Newton's Laws of motion).
- Work-Energy theorem, potential energy and energy conservation.
- Momentum, impulse and collisions.
- Electric fields, Coulomb's law, electric potential and potential energy, electric flux (Gauss's law).
- Direct-current circuits, resistors and capacitors is series and in parallel, theory of metallic conduction, power distribution systems.
- Magnetic field, motion of charged particles within uniform magnetic fields, magnetic force on current-carrying conductors, forces between parallel conductors.
- Electromagnetic Induction: Faraday's and Lenz's Laws, motional electromotive force, induced electric fields.
- Quantum Physics:
- The photoelectric effect.
- Wave particle duality, probability and uncertainty.
- Electron waves, de Broglie wavelength.
- Atomic spectra, energy levels and the Bohr model of the atom.
- Wave function interpretation.
- Calorimetry and phase changes.
- Equations of state, molecular properties of matter.
- Kinetic-molecular model of an ideal gas.
- Work done during volume changes.
- Paths between thermodynamics states .
- Kinds of thermodynamic processes.
- 1st law of thermodynamics and Internal Energy.
- 2nd law of thermodynamics. Carnot cycle and entropy.
- Oscillations and Waves:
- Mathematical description of a wave.
- Energy in wave motion.
- Speed of waves.
- Superposition of waves.
- Standing waves.
- Reflection, Refraction, critical angle and total internal reflection.
- Diffraction from a single, double slits and around objects. Interference patterns including double-slit interference.
- Young, Hugh D., et al. University Physics with Modern Physics. Addison-Wesley, 2011 (or any undergraduate general physics textbook).
3. Engineering Mathematics and Basic Calculus
Topics included in the Engineering Mathematics assessment test:
- Functions and Models (including graphical representation of functions)
- Derivatives (including graphical and physical interpretation of derivatives)
- Anti-derivatives and definite integrals.
- The classes of functions used to develop these concepts are: polynomial, rational, trigonometric exponential and logarithmic.
- Integration (by parts, substitutions, partial fractions, approximation of integrals and improper integrals)
- Infinite sequences and series
- Convergence tests
- Power series
- Taylor polynomials and series
- Taylor's Remainder Theorem
- Banner, Adrian. The Calculus Lifesaver: All the Tools You Need to Excel at Calculus. Princeton, NJ, USA: Princeton University Press, 2009, ISBN-13: 978-0691130880
- Strang, Gilbert. Calculus. Wellesley, MA: Wellesley-Cambridge Press, 2010, ISBN 978-09802327-4-5
- Zill, Dennis G., and Warren S. Wright. Advanced Engineering Mathematics. Burlington, Ma: Jones and Bartlett Learning, 2018, ISBN-13: 978-1284105902
- Stewart, James. Essential Calculus: Early Transcendentals. Australia: Brooks/Cole, 2013, ISBN-13: 978-1133112280