Department of General Engineering

Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies: Ruth E. Davis

Director of Undergraduate Engineering Programs: Shane Wibeto

Lecturer: Jessica Kuczenski

The School of Engineering, under the direction of the Office of the Dean, offers a major in general engineering and a minor in general engineering. The bachelor of science degree in general engineering is designed to provide students a technical degree with concentrations designed to meet the needs of the individual student. Not intended for a student who plans to work as a professional engineer, the general engineering degree allows a student to earn a technical degree while preparing for work or graduate study in fields such as law, medicine, business, or education.

Requirements for the Major

In addition to fulfilling the Undergraduate Core Curriculum requirements for the bachelor of science degree in engineering, students majoring in engineering must complete the minimum number of units and the specified requirements for their concentration.

Students majoring in engineering must complete a minimum of 189 units and the following requirements:


  • ENGL 181

Mathematics and Natural Science

  • MATH 11, 12, 13, 14
  • MATH 22 or AMTH 106
  • One upper-division mathematics elective
  • CHEM 11
  • PHYS 31, 31L, 32, 32L, 33, 33L
  • MECH 15, 15L


  • ENGR 1, 1L
  • ENGR 110
  • BIOE 10
  • CENG 41, 43, 43L
  • COEN 10 and 10L (or other approved programming course and lab), 21, 21L
  • ELEN 50, 50L, 115, 115L
  • MECH 10, 10L, 11, 121

Design Sequence from one of the following options:

  • BIOE 194, 195, 196
  • COEN 194, 195, 196
  • ELEN 194, 195, 196
  • CENG 192A, 193, 194
  • MECH 194, 195, 196


  • 36 upper-division units defining a coherent concentration, selected in consultation with an academic advisor

Requirements for the Minor

Students must fulfill the following requirements for a minor in general engineering:

  • One course selected from COEN 10, 11, 44, 45, or other approved programming course together with the associated lab
  • CENG 41
  • ELEN 50, 50L
  • MECH 10, 10L, 121
  • Two courses selected from BIOE 10, CENG 10, CENG 43, COEN 12, (COEN 21 or ELEN 21), ELEN 33, ELEN 115, MECH 11, MECH 15, MECH 140, together with associated labs
  • A two-course sequence selected from BIOE 153 and BIOE 154, CENG 115 and CENG 118, CENG 121 and CENG 143, COEN 70 and any upper-division COEN course, ELEN 100 and ELEN 110, ELEN 115 and (ELEN 116, 127, or 164), MECH 122 and MECH 132, MECH 123 and MECH 125, together with associated labs

Lower-Division Courses: General Engineering

1. Introduction to Engineering

This course provides an introduction to engineering, including fundamentals of engineering study, different engineering disciplines, and interdisciplinary aspects of engineering. As this course also fulfills the STS core requirement, this course investigates the connection between science, technology and society and also illustrates the extent to which engineering impacts the world. The course also exposes students to entrepreneurship, engineering professionalism, emerging markets, ethics, and civic engagement. Co-requisite: ENGR 1L. (1 unit)

1L. Introduction to Engineering Laboratory

The laboratory will provide students with hands-on experience of engineering design and open-ended problem solving. The lab focuses on introducing aspects of the different engineering disciplines and allowing students to gain experience with each of the engineering disciplines and reflect on learning gains with teamwork, communication, and engineering skills. Engineering designs will be developed in a team-based environment utilizing visuals, written text, and oral presentation. Co-requisite: ENGR 1. (1 unit)

15. Environmental Quality Engineering

Behavior of chemicals in the environment. Environmental protection strategies. Environmental impact assessment. Risk analysis and economic considerations. Discussion of local, regional, and global environmental problems, and alternative solutions. For non- engineering majors. Prerequisite: MATH 6 or equivalent. (4 units)

19. Ethics in Technology

Making the case for constructive ethical application of the most powerful technologies of the 21st century. Normative, principle- based ethical analysis of current and emerging technology in arenas including information, energy, biotech/medicine, military science, robotics, and agriculture. (4 units)

20. Topics in Robotics

Participate in a project-based, hands-on engineering project in a team-based environment. Gain exposure to sensing, actuation, and control techniques and components in the process of developing a robotic system or subsystem. Prerequisite: Instructor permission required. (1 unit)

25. Sustainable Energy Projects

Students learn the fundamentals of sustainable energy in a wide range of fields and carry out projects in these areas. Activities are normally associated with the Latimer Energy Scholars Program. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: Instructor permission required. (1-2 units)

60. Sustainable Electric Energy

This course explores the two-fold 21st-century challenges of the use and conservation of electric energy, and the sustainable generation of electric energy, primarily through the use of photovoltaic cells. The course includes a study of issues relating to the environment, economics, politics, and societal impact. Although physical and mathematical studies and analyses are a part of the course, no background in these areas is required beyond algebra. (4 units)

85. Special Topics in Engineering

Subjects of current interest. May be taken more than once if topics differ. (1-4 units)

90. Engineering Competition Workshop

Workshop to develop aspects of an engineering school sponsored entry into an external competition (examples include Solar Decathlon and Tiny House). May include design, communication, construction, research, analysis, planning, documentation, fundraising, and other activities. Students will meet together to share information, brainstorm, collaborate, and make decisions, and will also work independently or in small teams in focused areas. (1 unit)

91. Architecture Workshop

Students will explore aspects of architecture with a particular emphasis on design related to an external contest. General topics may include design principles; form and function; space utilization; natural and artificial lighting; BIM and architectural documentation; and texture and color. Special topics may include sustainable building materials, LEED certification process, passive solar design, building integrated photo voltaics, and modular building techniques. (2 units)

98. Independent Study

Independent study of an approved engineering problem and preparation of a suitable project report. (1-4 units)

Upper-Division Courses: General Engineering

110. Community-Based Engineering Design

Student teams are partnered with a local community business or organization and complete a design project from problem identification through final prototype. Course focuses on "hands-on" experience in project management, building cross-disciplinary team skills, and prototyping (training and use of the SCU Maker Lab included). This course is open to students at all levels and all majors (engineering or non-engineering). Come make a real difference in a real community! (2 units)

111. STEM Outreach in the Community

Students conduct STEM activities in local schools. They work with individual K-12 students following lesson plans that are focused on engineering as a discipline and career choice. May be repeated for additional credit. (2 units)

121. BioInnovation I: Opportunity Identification and Concept Generation

Introduces students to healthcare and medical device technology innovation for advanced and emerging markets. Students work in teams on problem identification and assessment as well as scrutinization of clinical impact, product feasibility, and commercial viability to define the needs and requirements of new technology products to address unmet or poorly met healthcare needs. Also listed as BIOE 111. Prerequisite: BIOE 10 or instructor consent. (2 units)

122. BioInnovation II: Product Development Strategy and Prototyping

Second course of the two-course sequence takes students through the product development stage of medical device innovation process. Students work in teams on the design, development, and prototyping of engineering solutions that satisfy the needs identified in BIOE 111/ENGR 121, as well as formulation of strategies to ensure regulatory compliance and commercialization success. Also listed as BIOE 112. Prerequisite: BIOE 111/ENGR 121 or instructor consent. (2 units)

125. Advanced Sustainable Energy Projects

Students study advanced concepts in sustainable energy and carry out complex projects, typically in a team environment. Activities are normally associated with the Latimer Energy Scholars Program. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisites: ENGR 25 and instructor permission required. (1-2 units)

135. Humanitarian Engineering

Engineering for social benefit. Introduction to the following concepts: humanitarian and frugal innovation, design for empathy, needs assessment, impact evaluation, and social entrepreneurship. (1 unit)

136. Frugal Innovation Projects for Social Benefit

Students explore and apply the 10 core competencies of frugal innovation through case studies applied to mobile applications, low- cost diagnostics, frugal habitat, last-mile distribution and micro entrepreneurship, and learn how to design technologies and business models for social benefit. Student projects focus on real-world implementations with social enterprises in emerging markets. Prerequisite: Junior standing or sophomores with instructor consent. (2 units)

143H. Science, Religion, and the Limits of Knowledge

The limits of scientific knowledge are examined in the framework of nonlinear system theory, metamathematics, and modern physics. The technical background developed in the course is used as a basis for exploring the relationship between science, aesthetics, and religion. Particular emphasis is placed on the rationality of faith, and on controversial questions where the views of scientists and theologians appear to conflict. Prerequisite: MATH 12 or 31. (4 units)

160. Nanotechnology and Society

This course examines the fundamental scientific and technological underpinnings of the important new field of nanotechnology; how both the understanding and the technological capabilities have evolved over the past century; and how nanotechnology proposes new applications that can address social and economic goals. An appreciation of the interaction between these goals and the evolution of the technology will be central to the course. Students will develop critical thinking about the prospects for nanotechnology in order to be able to assess the relevant ethical and social issues, and also the possibility and/or likelihood of the development of specific applications. (4 units)

167. Go To Market Strategy

This course for engineering undergraduate students reviews essential concepts for new entrepreneurial ventures to include the customer discovery phase, channels of distribution, strategic partners, and monetary metrics. (1 unit)

168. Startup Law for Engineers

This course for engineering undergraduate students identifies legal risks facing new ventures and reviews techniques and approaches on how to reduce these risks while accomplishing business or engineering goals. (1 unit)

170. Improv for Engineers

Through theatre games, improvisation, warm-up exercises, monologues, and scenes, students will learn the basics of Stanislavski's method of physical actions to learn the basic principles of acting and in the process increase self-confidence and the ability to collaborate. (1 unit)

171A. Product Opportunity Assessment

This course focuses on identifying and assessing opportunities for new products and services. Based on the principles of design thinking, it addresses the identification of problems by reviewing methods for understanding the needs and motivations of the customer. It also reviews the development of a validated and solution-independent need statement. (1 unit)

171B. Product Prototype to Test

This course introduces product prototyping strategies to allow students to test their design concepts with customers with the objective of validating assumptions regarding customer need and desired functionality/ features. Prerequisite: ENGR 171A or instructor permission. (1 unit)

172A. Applied Entrepreneurship I

This is the first course in a two-course sequence in which students will explore an emerging technical market and develop specific viable business models to execute within the SCU educational program. Students will explore applications for the selected technology, identify customers/markets, and define a sustainable business model. Preferential admission may be given to students who have taken other courses in the school's innovation and entrepreneurship program. Prerequisites: Sophomore standing or above, and instructor permission required. (1 unit)

172B. Applied Entrepreneurship II

This is the second course in a two-course sequence in which students will explore an emerging technical market and develop specific viable business models to execute within the SCU educational program. Students will explore applications for the selected technology, identify customers/markets, and define a sustainable business model. Prerequisites: ENGR 172A and instructor permission. (1 unit)

173. Introduction to Business Fundamentals

This course serves as an introduction to fundamental business topics, to include basic economics, business forms and functions, reading simple financial statements, basic marketing concepts, and management concepts. The course includes participation in an online business simulation. Prerequisite: Sophomore to senior standing only. (1 unit)

174. Financial Reporting and Decision Making

This course develops an understanding of financial statements and how they may be analyzed to assess the performance of an enterprise. The course also reviews capital markets and associated decision making for corporate operation. A business simulation allows students to apply principles of management, operations, marketing, and accounting to a business scenario. Prerequisite: ENGR 173 or instructor permission. (1 unit)

175. Introduction to Business Models

This course introduces students to the Business Model Canvas as a framework for describing and organizing the operational elements of a functional enterprise, whether it is a commercial or nonprofit entity. Topics include identifying customers and explicitly stating the value proposition, identifying value delivery mechanisms, articulating strategic partnerships, identifying key resources, and describing anticipated cash flow. (1 unit)

176. Marketing Strategy: Positioning and Messaging

This course reviews the strategic segmenting/ targeting/positioning and practical messaging skills used in product marketing and thought leadership positions, which are core to entrepreneurial technology ventures. Specific topics include an overview of core marketing skillsets, practical examples of successful market segmentation and target selection, best practices for positioning and messaging creation, competitive landscape modeling and developing differentiation, translating customer requirements into effective positioning/messaging, and wholesale market (re-)definition. (1 unit)

177. Cultures of Innovation

This course introduces students to the skills, practices, and processes for understanding and managing innovation and entrepreneurship activities that span cultures throughout the world. These cultural challenges include developing a deep understanding of the needs of customers in emerging markets, producing goods and services with global teams, and outsourcing manufacturing operations. (4 units)

178. IP for Engineers

This course for engineering undergraduate students provides an overview of United States intellectual property (IP) laws, focused specifically on how those laws impact and apply to engineers. (1 unit)

179. Intrapreneurship—Innovation from Within

Intrapreneurship is a form of corporate entrepreneurship, and it focuses on the needs of an established organization (unlike a start- up) to create an innovative business opportunity within the existing structure of the organization. (1 unit)

180. Marine Operations

Introduction to the design, operation, deployment, piloting, and safety issues involving the use of underwater robots. Prerequisite: Instructor permission required. (1 unit)

181. Advanced Marine Operations

Technical operation, maintenance, and advanced piloting of underwater robots. Crew management. Operational and safety procedures. Prerequisite: Instructor permission required. (1 unit)

185. Special Topics in Engineering

Subjects of current interest. May be taken more than once if topics differ. (1-4 units)

199. Directed Research/Reading

Investigation of an approved engineering problem and preparation of a suitable project report. Conferences with faculty advisor are required. Prerequisite: Instructor permission required. (1-5 units)

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