Aerospace Engineering

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The broad scope of aerospace engineering encompasses the general areas of aeronautics and astronautics. Because these areas are so intimately related, many of the required courses of study overlap so the student will be well prepared for either general area. Some of the specific areas to be studied include the physics and computation of gas flow, heat transfer, and combustion processes; performance, dynamics and control of vehicles and other general systems; analysis of lightweight, high-strength, complex structural systems; and principles of jet and rocket propulsion systems. The program of study is well balanced and is directed towards developing both technical and non-technical skills and prepares the student for the work environment of the 21st century. The program trains the student in the use of analytical, computer, and laboratory skills, and further emphasizes interpersonal skills such as verbal and oral communication, and team work.

The curriculum is broad-based, and specifically designed to prepare the student for professional positions in the aeronautical and space industries. However, the educational background is general enough that students may utilize their education in a variety of other industries which require a strong analytical and computational background. The program provides a strong foundation for advanced graduate work. Students have also used their background for entry into non-technical fields of business, law, and medicine.

The undergraduate curriculum course structure has been arranged to develop students' background in basic sciences and mathematics during the first two years. The basic science principles are integrated into formulating and solving practical problems of interest starting in the second year. During this time, computer language and general computational skills are also emphasized. In the subsequent years, the student continues with the strong development of problem solving, design, and analysis skills. Students take well integrated sequences of courses in aerodynamics, propulsion systems, dynamics, and control. They are also introduced to the concept and analysis of systems. Students who meet a minimum grade point requirement may participate in an undergraduate research program within the department.

Department laboratories occupy an integral part of the overall course structure. Laboratory experience includes experimental techniques applicable to areas of fluid dynamics, structures, controls, and propulsion. Digital computer techniques are introduced early in the program and are generously used in the courses. Students gain practical experience in the application of academic studies through cooperative work in aerospace and allied industry, in government laboratories, or on departmental research projects.

Curriculum Sheets

NOTES on the Curriculum Sheet

The Curriculum Sheet above is for students on a standard schedule and may need to be modified for students on irregular schedules.

The college numbers of the courses shown are not given except for 36 PD 120.

All other courses for which an area name is specified must be taken from the College of Engineering and Applied Science which has a college number of 20. The exception is 36 PD 120, whose college number is already given as 36.

BoK courses may be taken from any college of the University. 

All other elective courses must be approved by the student's departmental advisor.


You are strongly encouraged to meet with your academic adviser if you currently have any curricular deficiencies or have any other reason to follow a modified program. Failure to follow an approved program may lead to Academic Probation, delay of graduation, or other more serious problems.

Substitute Course Work for Required Course Work during a Study Semester

In general, a student may not take a course from another UC college during a study semester as a substitute for a required course in his or her curriculum. However, if there is an unusual reason to do so, a student may request to take a substitute course. Submit a request to the Committee on Academic Standards using the form Petition to use A Substitute Course.

A student may not register for the substitute course until after receiving approval of his or her petition. Failure to petition for approval may result in no credit for the course toward the student's degree requirements and the course may have to be repeated.

Substitute Course Work for Required Course Work during a Co-op Semester

Students are allowed to take up to six credits during a co-op semester if the class does not interfere with the co-op assignment. Approval must be secured from the Department advisor, the Professional Practice advisor, and the Chairman of the Committee on Academic Standards before registration is permitted. If a student needs to make up a class or wishes to take a class during the normal hours of a co-op assignment, then a petition must be submitted along with a letter from the employer stating that the employer is aware that the student needs to take the course, the company has a flextime policy for all employees (not just the student involved), and that the student can make up the hours in order to work a minimum of 40 hours per week. Submit a request to the Committee on Academic Standards using the form Petition to use A Substitute Course.