Aug 19, 2022  
2009-2010 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog 
2009-2010 UMass Dartmouth Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

College of Engineering

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The College of Engineering offers engineering programs leading to the BS degree in Electrical, Computer, Mechanical  or Civil Engineering; the BS degree in Physics or Computer Science; and a choice of two degrees in Materials (the Materials: and Biomaterials Engineering Option or the Materials: Materials Technology Option).

Our engineering programs form a strong foundation in basic sciences, mathematics and engineering sciences. Our students acquire a strong foundation in the basic sciences and mathematics along with the applied sciences associated with their major. A progression of innovative design experiences culminates in a senior design project. Students in the College of Engineering use high-tech laboratories and sophisticated computer systems beginning in their freshman year. The many faculty involved with significant research projects bring excitement into the classroom and tie theory to practical applications.

Our students develop the knowledge, creativity and expertise to succeed in today’s rapidly changing technical world. Our graduates are actively recruited by industry and find rewarding careers, or earn advanced degrees in competitive graduate programs around the country.

Through cooperation with industry and government agencies, the College of Engineering also offers students the opportunity to obtain valuable work experience before graduation. Qualified students can participate in internships or cooperative education programs so that they gain practical engineering experience, a taste of the “real world” and significant income to help offset college expenses.

All undergraduate engineering programs in Civil, Computer, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering are accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission; the program in Computer Science is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, 111 Market Place, Suite 1050, Baltimore, MD 21202-4012.

Mission, Goals and Objectives of the College of Engineering

The mission and goals of the College of Engineering are molded by the history of the region and the institution, by the existing needs of the region and its people and by the emerging opportunities for regional economic growth. Building upon its quality undergraduate and graduate programs, its facilities and its faculty, the mission of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth College of Engineering is to provide educational opportunities for the region that emphasize teaching and learning, and to provide increased access to the College that will support economic growth in the region, the Commonwealth, and beyond.

Given the above mission, the educational goals of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth College of Engineering are to provide its graduates with a solid foundation of knowledge, a level of skill that will allow them to function successfully in their professions upon graduation, and to a breadth of education that will allow them to meet the needs of the contemporary workplace and to be life-long learners.

In particular, it is our intention to demonstrate that a graduate of the UMass Dartmouth College of Engineering will have met the following outcome objectives:

  • the ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering;
  • the ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data;
  • the ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs;
  • the ability to function on multidisciplinary teams;
  • the ability to identify, formulate and solve engineering and science problems;
  • the understanding of professional and ethical responsibility;
  • the ability to communicate effectively;
  • the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering and scientific solutions in a global/societal context;
  • a recognition of the need for and an ability to engage in life-long learning;
  • a knowledge of contemporary issues; and,
  • the ability to use techniques, skills, and modern engineering and science tools necessary for professional practice.

The knowledge and skills represented by the above list, which are consonant with those of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET), are essential in contemporary engineering and science endeavors, and contribute significantly to the graduate’s ability to function successfully in the ever-challenging and exciting engineering and science professions.

Transfer Agreements

The College of Engineering seeks to facilitate the transfer of students from community colleges, and from four-year institutions that lack the engineering baccalaureate, by means of a variety of transfer and matriculation agreements.

  • Course and program articulation matrices are maintained to facilitate planning and transfer between UMass Dartmouth engineering curricula and the courses and programs at Bristol, Massasoit and Cape Cod Community Colleges. Transfer applicants from other institutions are assessed individually.
  • Students at the University of Massachusetts Boston, Framingham State College and Worcester State College who complete an identified 2-year curriculum and meet conditions for a standard of performance receive guaranteed admission to identified engineering programs at UMass Dartmouth.

Cooperative Education and Internships in the College of Engineering

The College of Engineering offers an optional Co-operative Education program to students majoring in Civil Engineering, Computer Engineering, Computer Science, Electrical Engineering and Mechanical Engineering. Co-operative Education provides an excellent opportunity for students to obtain valuable engineering experience while studying at the university. Students enrolled in co-op spend two semesters and two summer sessions working at companies, engineering firms and government agencies. During these sessions, students are paid by their employers while getting hands-on  experience. Participating in the co-op program extends  the typical four-year BS degree for engineering and computer science programs to five years, but it provides the type of experience  students need to obtain highly-sought-after jobs upon graduation. It also provides an  opportunity to earn money and supplement the financial resources available to students.


Students enroll in the co-op program at the beginning of their sophomore year. To start, students participate in an informational meeting to learn how co-op works and the conditions for admission to the program. During the Spring semester of the sophomore year students who  have been admitted to the program participate in a series of seminars that prepare them to interact with employers and be hired to their co-op positions.

Requirements for Acceptance

Students must have a minimum GPA to be admitted to the co-op program, and in addition, satisfy additional departmental requirements. A student will be denied further co-op participation if his/her GPA falls below the required GPA or other requirements are not met.


The College of Engineering’s Co-op Office will assist students in finding an industry placement. In addition, each department has a faculty Co-op Coordinator who also helps students find placements and interact with the companies; however, placement is not automatic. Students are responsible to prepare their resumes and post them according to the formats provided by the co-op office; furthermore, each student is responsible to interview well with prospective companies and convince the company that s/he will be a good co-op employee.

On the Job Performance

Co-op students who are placed on the job are required to keep in touch with their co-op faculty coordinators and at the end of each co-op work session write a report and submit it to their faculty coordinators. Students are also expected to follow the rules and regulations set by their employers and perform all duties assigned to them professionally.

Graduation Requirement

In order to graduate with a co-op certificate each student needs to have successfully completed at least four co-op work sessions. Successful completion implies that students have registered in and successfully completed the following sessions:

CO-OP-1: Participation in co-op seminars
CO-OP-2: First co-op work session
CO-OP-3: Second co-op work session
CO-OP-4: Third co-op work session
CO-OP-5: Fourth co-op work session

Successful completion of CO-OP-0 implies participation in a set of seminars presented by the college and preparation and posting of a resume according to the specified format. Satisfactory completion of CO-OP-1 through CO-OP-4 implies registration for these zero-credit courses, successful completion of the work session, submission of the work session report and obtaining a passing grade from the faculty co-op coordinator.

Co-op Work Sessions

The typical schedule for co-op students is shown below:

      Fall      Spring      Summer
Year 1   School   School   School
Year 2   School, Enroll in co-op   School, Co-op seminars   Work
Year 3   School   School   Work
Year 4   Work   Work   Work (Optional)
Year 5   School   School   Graduate

Each co-op student’s specific schedule is to be approved by the department Co-op Coordinator and the college Co-op Office.


Many faculty in the College of Engineering at UMass Dartmouth have excellent relationships with engineering employers in the region and nation, generating many opportunities for engineering internships. In addition, students often contact employers directly and arrange internships with the assistance of faculty advisors.

An internship is a supervised, practical learning experience, usually occurring during the last two years of the student’s program. A College of Engineering intern would be employed to do engineering work with a company or government agency while earning university credit. Supervision would be provided by the company or agency, and the work would be done outside the university except in unusual circumstances. A faculty advisor monitors the internship and works with the company or agency to see that the work is appropriate for the course credit being given.

Each department in the college of engineering has an Engineering Internship course which can be used as at least 3 credits of technical electives (CEN 400, ECE 400 or MNE 400). In order for a student to enroll in one of these courses, the work activity must provide a learning experience equivalent to that obtained in a typical technical elective. The student must file a proposal detailing the work and learning experience for approval by their internship advisor before the experience begins. The student should keep a daily journal history of the work done and send copies or a written summary report to the advisor each week. The student must submit a summary report on the work experience before credit can be given. The individual courses may have other requirements which also must be met, as found in the course listings. Co-op students can use one of these engineering internship courses to obtain credit for a qualified work session experience.

A work experience which does not qualify for technical elective credit may be able to qualify as an Experiential Learning Internship and earn free elective credit under the rules of the Experiential Learning Program administered through the Office of Career Services. College of Engineering interns in this program must meet the advising, proposal and report writing requirements of the previous paragraph in addition to the requirements of Experiential Learning.

Internships are usually done part-time while the student continues taking classes; however, some internships are full-time for a semester or more and may be far from campus. In those cases the intern may not be able to enroll in other courses; however, students enrolled in a university-recognized internship must have appropriate health insurance as specified by the university regardless of the internship work location and the number of credits.

Special Admission Programs

Alternative Paths

The engineering programs are rigorous, requiring strong high school preparation and high motivation. Students who have demonstrated an aptitude for engineering based upon SATs, or have demonstrated the ability and motivation for engineering studies as evidenced by their high school record, but have some deficiencies in their high school program of study, may still be offered admission to the college of engineering.

These deficiencies are detected by the placement test conducted during freshman orientation. Depending on the results of tests in mathematics (algebra and calculus readiness tests), students may be placed into one of three courses in the fall semester: (a) MTH 111 (or 113), Calculus; (b) MTH 131, Precalculus or (c) MTH 100, Basic Algebra. In the first case, the students will follow the standard programs shown on the following pages for each major. In cases (b) and (c), for the first year, the student will enroll in the courses shown for Precalculus-ready and Algebra-ready students under each major. Some students in cases (b) and (c) may be able to up-grade their mathematics standing by taking selected courses during the summer. If they are able to improve their Accuplacer scores sufficiently on a re-test, they will be placed in a higher-level math course and curriculum.

Reduced Load

Students may carry a lighter course load than that defined by the standard curriculum. A five-year schedule is recommended for those students who need time for a part time job, sports or other time-consuming extracurricular activities. Many students who start on the standard curriculum later find it necessary to extend their program to 4 1/2 years or 5 years. For many students it is better to plan on a 5-year schedule from the beginning. Personalized programs can be arranged through consultation with the student’s faculty advisor or the Academic Advising Center.

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