B.S. Chemical Engineering

The undergraduate curriculum constitutes a four-year accredited program in Engineering leading to a B.S. degree in Chemical Engineering and requires completion of 187* units. The objective is to meet the standards of excellence at UCSD which allows students graduating with this degree to enter the industrial job market.
(* The 187 units for graduation and 48 units of G.E. requirements are shown for Warren College students as an example to fulfill the general education requirements.  Students in other colleges need to adjust the plan to match their own college requirements.)

Strong emphasis is placed on the development of communication skills, both written and oral. In addition, experiences are provided which enhance the ability of our graduates to work effectively in team efforts. These goals are achieved in a two-quarter senior laboratory (CENG 176A-B) which deals with process design and research. It is through this laboratory that seniors are also exposed to real-world industrial problems since projects in CENG 176A-B are often sponsored and monitored by local companies.

General Catalog Description

The B.S. program in Chemical Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. The curriculum is tailored to provide breadth and flexibility by taking advantage of the strength of basic sciences and other engineering disciplines at UCSD. The intention is to graduate chemical engineers who are multidisciplinary and can work in a broad spectrum of industries rather than solely traditional chemical and petrochemical industries.

Areas of specialization are available whereby a graduate can be in a position for a career in nanotechnology, environmental technology, microelectronic device fabrication, materials and polymer processing, pharmaceutical and biotechnology, biomedical engineering, energy and thermal systems, control and system engineering, and so forth.

For students who aspire to pursue a graduate degree and a career in research and development, the units in an area of specialization can be allocated to more fundamental science and engineering courses. These students are also encouraged to perform independent projects in one of the faculty research laboratories or groups.

Whether the career goal is industry, or graduate or professional school, the curriculum has a strong emphasis on developing problem-solving skills and the ability to think and learn independently. The capstone courses are the senior design and process lab courses. Students learn to participate in project teams, refine their communication skills, and work on various design and experimental projects that over two-quarters introduce them to elements of project planning, execution, analysis, and improvement.

Entering freshmen will follow the new set of course work guidelines detailed in this section. Continuing students will continue with their current set of course work guidelines outlined in previous general catalogs. The Student Affairs Office can provide the proper curriculum tables. All students are encouraged to visit the Student Affairs Office or visit the Department of NanoEngineering Web site for any clarification and updated information.

Deviations from these programs of study must be approved by the Undergraduate Affairs Committee prior to taking alternative courses. In addition, technical elective (TE) course selections must have departmental approval prior to taking the courses. The TE courses are restricted to meet the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET. Courses such as CENG 195, 197, and 198 are not allowed as a technical elective in meeting the upper-division major requirements. CENG 199 can be used as a technical elective only under restrictive conditions. Policy regarding these conditions may be obtained from the department’s Student Affairs Office. To graduate, students must maintain an overall GPA of at least 2.0, and the department requires at least a C– grade in each course required for the major.

Students with different academic preparation may vary the scheduling of lower-division courses such as math, physics, and chemistry, but should consult the department. Deviations in scheduling CENG upper-division courses are discouraged and require prior approval. Most lower-division courses are offered more than once each year to permit students some flexibility in their program scheduling. However, all CENG upper-division courses are taught only once per year, and courses are scheduled to be consistent with the curricula as shown in the tables.

Thinking of changing majors to CENG? If you change majors after the start of the junior year courses in the major (see sample CENG curriculum chart) then plan on not graduating for another 3 years. Pre-requisites for courses will not be waived and courses are only offered once per year. If you change into the major before the start of the junior year courses, you need to take both the sophomore and junior year courses in the major concurrently in order to graduate in two years (see CENG curriculum chart for Transfer Students).


Chemical Engineering 2017 Admit Day Presentation 

Learn more about the chemical engineering major

General-Education/College Requirements

For graduation, each student must satisfy general-education course requirements determined by the student’s college as well as the major requirements determined by the department. The six colleges at UCSD require widely different general-education courses, and the number of such courses differs from one college to another. Each student should choose his or her college carefully, considering the special nature of the college and the breadth of general education.

The CENG program allows for General Education (G.E.) courses so that students can fulfill their college requirements. As accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, students must develop a program that includes a total of at least twenty-four units in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, not including subjects such as accounting, industrial management, finance, or personnel administration. Students must consult with their college to determine which G.E. courses to take.

Professional Licensing

After graduation, all students are encouraged to take the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) examination as the first step in becoming licensed as a professional engineer (PE). Students graduating from our accredited program can take the PE examination after FE certification and two years of work experience; students graduating from a non-accredited program can take the PE examination after FE certification and four years of work experience.

For further information please contact your local Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors.

B.S./M.S. Contiguous Program

A contiguous program leading to a bachelor of science and a master of science degree in chemical engineering is offered to a student with junior standing who has an upper-division GPA of 3.5 or better and a 3.0 overall UCSD GPA. During the last quarter of their junior year (more specifically, the fourth quarter prior to the receipt of the B.S. degree), students interested in obtaining the M.S. degree within one year following receipt of the B.S. degree may apply to the department for admission to the program.

The M.S. program is intended to extend and broaden an undergraduate background and/or equip practicing engineers with fundamental knowledge in their particular fields. The degree is offered under both the Thesis Plan I and the Comprehensive Examination Plan II.