Academic Course Catalogs

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Mechanical Engineering

Bachelor of Science/Bachelor of Arts Dual Degree Program in Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering [A professional program accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of the ABET, http://www.abet.org].

Mechanical engineering is a profession that applies the principles of mathematics, science and engineering for analysis, design, manufacturing, and maintenance of mechanical systems. Mechanical engineers research, develop, design, and manufacture engines, machines, and other mechanical devices for the benefit of society. They work on power-producing machines such as automobile and jet engines. They also develop power-using machines such as air-conditioners, robots, machine tools, and manufacturing equipment. Mechanical engineers are also at the forefront of newly developed technologies such as bioengineering, nanoengineering, environmental engineering, and renewable energy. Our mechanical engineering curriculum includes study in the following areas:

  • Thermal sciences, including thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, and heat transfer with applications in the efficient conversion of energy that allows the development of commercial power plants, environmentally friendly lawn mower engines, and cryogenic medical devices used to treat cancer.
  • Mechanics and materials, including the analysis of machine elements, materials, and dynamics to improve products such as artificial knees, automobile suspensions, and space vehicles.
  • Design and manufacturing, including application of manufacturing processes and integration of engineering fundamentals from the thermal science, mechanics and materials areas in analysis and synthesis of mechanisms and machinery.

The USD mechanical engineering curriculum is broad-based, hands-on, and design-oriented. We emphasize a student-centered education in small classes with a liberal arts foundation. The first two years of study are substantially the same as for the electrical engineering and industrial and systems engineering programs. The mechanical engineering dual BS/BA Program includes 147 units and has a standard course pattern with nine semesters. While the curriculum is designed to be completed in nine semesters, students may be able to complete the program in four years with a combination of prior preparation, AP credit, and summer study. An extensive laboratory component supports and complements theory and practice.

The mechanical engineering program prepares program graduates to work for small or large companies in most industries throughout Southern California, the United States, and internationally. Graduates may work in most industries, including aerospace, automotive, bioengineering, environmental, product design and manufacturing industries. The program also prepares graduates for a career in government, to enter graduate school in an area related to mechanical engineering, as well as to pursue a professional degree, for example in business, law, or medicine. Student will be qualified to take the fundamentals of engineering exam as the first step toward professional registration.

Students majoring in mechanical engineering are expected to advance the integrity, honor, and dignity of their chosen profession. As part of these professional obligations, all ME majors are encouraged to maintain student membership in the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).

Educational Objectives

The mechanical engineering program seeks to develop graduates who are able to:

  • apply their mechanical engineering and broad academic backgrounds in their professional and personal endeavors
  • adapt to evolving job responsibilities
  • communicate effectively
  • contribute and provide leadership in a team environment.

Mechanical Engineering Advisory Board

The Mechanical Engineering Advisory Board was established in 2005 with members representing current students, alumni, parents, higher education, and local industries. The board, composed of representatives from companies including Hamilton-Sunstrand, Asymtek, Hewlett-Packard, Trane, and others, contributes to the on-going development of the mechanical engineering program, and provides mentorship and internship opportunities to our students.

Requirements for the Mechanical Engineering Major: (147 semester units)

The mathematics, science, and engineering courses listed below also satisfy the core curriculum requirements in mathematics competency, natural sciences, and the upper division writing course.

Mathematics and Basic Science requirements (33 units):

Mathematics (18 units): MATH 150, 151, 250, 310, and ISYE 330 (or MATH 315)
Physics (8 units): PHYS 270 and 271
Chemistry (4 units): CHEM 151, 151L
Life Science Elective (3 units)

Engineering Core Requirements (22 units):

These courses include units in engineering science, computer programming, engineering design, and other subject requirements in support of engineering practice: ENGR 101, 102, 121 (or COMP 150), 311; MENG 210, 260; ELEC 201 (or 200).

Engineering Professional Practice Requirements (9 units)

In support of the professional practice of engineering, there are requirements for knowledge of economics, communications, and engineering ethics. Some of these requirements can be chosen in such a way as to also fulfill university core requirements: ISyE 220; COMM 203 (or NAVS 201 for students in NROTC, MILS 301 for students in ROTC, or AS 300A for students in AFROTC); PHIL 342 or PHIL 345.

Mechanical Engineering Requirements (46 units):

These courses include units in mechanical engineering science, laboratory, and design. There are 12 required courses: MENG 300, 350 (also listed as ISYE 350), 351, 360, 370, 375, 380, 400, 430, 460, 491W, and 492. Students also select one required stimulation-based course and two additional mechanical engineering elective courses. A list of approved mechanical engineering electives is available from the coordinator of mechanical engineering.

Core Curriculum Requirements (30 or more additional units):

All mechanical engineering majors must satisfy the core curriculum specified by the university.