Nov 26, 2022  
2016-2017 Catalog 
2016-2017 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

School of Engineering


The educational mission of the School of Engineering is to provide a comprehensive technical and professional education that instills in our students advanced problem-solving skills, effective leadership qualities and the ability to recognize and build on individual strengths throughout one’s career.


The School of Engineering offers the following majors:

What Is Engineering?

Engineering is about problem solving, innovation, and the creation of devices, systems, processes, and structures for human use. Engineers create new ideas and then transform those ideas into products and services that improve people’s lives.  Engineers apply mathematics and the principles of science—particularly chemistry and physics—to solve problems and meet the needs of society. Engineering spans the very small to the very large, from micro-sensors that can continuously monitor human health, to space stations that can support the exploration of new worlds. It also touches our everyday lives.

Engineering has provided our shelter, our transportation, our entertainment, our medical supplies and technologies, our water supplies, the food we eat, the movies we watch, the appliances that make our lives easier and the protection of our environment. Engineering careers are among the highest in demand in the United States, and as a result, provide great personal and professional satisfaction and quality of life. Engineering is a “people-serving profession” and a pathway to financial security. In short, engineering makes the world work!

Letter of Welcome from the Dean

Dear Future Engineer:

Engineering is all about creating things that never were, transforming culture, and improving human lives and conditions around the world.  Now, more than ever, we need talented and highly creative people to participate in this exciting profession.

At one of the most diverse universities in the country, engineering education at UC Merced is both challenging and satisfying.  You will meet extraordinary people:  world-class faculty, committed fellow students, dedicated staff, and partners from the local community and around the world.  The global social network you will develop in the School of Engineering and beyond during your time at UC Merced will last a lifetime.  Our goal is to help you explore ways in which engineering and appropriate technology helps people and prepare you for a career of leadership and responsibility.

Congratulations on your vision and initiative. I look forward to welcoming you into the School of Engineering and watching you develop into a technical leader prepared for the complexities of tomorrow.

Mark Matsumoto
Dean, School of Engineering

School of Engineering Requirements

All students in the School of Engineering, regardless of major, are required to complete all requirements for all majors with a C- or better. (ENGR 191: Professional Seminar  is the only exception, which requires a P grade.)

Students in the School of Engineering must repeat a required course after receiving a grade of D+, D, D-, F, U, or Not Passed for previous attempts, and may do so no more than twice beyond the initial enrollment in the class.

General Education Requirements [At Least 42 Units]

School of Engineering students are required to complete the following list of general education courses:

Lower Division General Education [28 Units]

General Education Electives [14 Units]

Complete the following requirements, selected from a list of acceptable courses.  At least three units should be a recognized upper division writing course.

  • Humanities or Arts [4 units]
  • Social Sciences [4 units]
  • An upper division writing course [3 units]
  • Either 3 Service Learning units, or 3 additional Humanities or Arts or Social Sciences units; these units can be upper division or lower division [3 units]

Service Learning

Under the advisement of a faculty mentor, students have the opportunity to form service-learning teams that work with an approved community not-for-profit organization—or client—to solve practical engineering problems. For example, a team composed of both upper and lower division students might work together to design, develop, implement and test an information system to serve the needs of a local non-profit service organization. Students electing to enroll in the UC Merced Service Learning initiative may earn up to two units per semester for participation, depending on their leadership position within the team for that semester.

Engineering Fundamentals

Engineering Fundamentals courses are determined by specific majors. See specific majors or talk to your advisor to find out which fundamentals courses are required for you.

Major Area Upper Division Courses

Major Area Upper Division Courses include major core courses, major technical electives and other specified requirements. See specific majors for the list of courses. The following course is required for all Engineering students:

Transfer Requirements

Major Preparation and Acceptance to the Major

Articulation agreements between California Community Colleges and majors in the School of Engineering at UC Merced are found on Applicants are strongly encouraged to take as many courses that are equivalent to the major preparation required of their planned major at UC Merced. For School of Engineering majors, the completion of calculus, vector calculus, linear algebra, differential equations, a year of calculus based physics, one semester of general chemistry and two programming courses are strongly recommended.

More information on transfer preparation and admission can be found on and the School of Engineering Student Advising website. 

General Education

Transfer students are required to complete the following general education pattern before graduation:

  • Two English Composition courses (equivalents to WRI 001  and WRI 010 )
  • Three social sciences courses in at least two disciplines
  • Three arts and humanities courses (of the three arts and humanities courses required, at least one has to be from arts and one has to be from humanities).

IGETC is strongly discouraged but certification will fulfill lower division Writing, Arts/Humanities and Social Science requirements.

Since Engineering is a rapidly developing profession, curricular changes are made by the Faculty from year to year. Changes made to the School of Engineering curriculum will be made available on the School of Engineering website at