Chemical Engineering, Bachelor of Science College of Engineering

The Department of Chemical Engineering offers two undergraduate programs: Chemical Engineering and Biochemical Engineering.

Chemical Engineering Undergraduate Program

The Chemical Engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.

Chemical engineers apply the principles of chemistry and engineering to produce useful commodities, ranging from fuels to polymers. Chemical engineers are increasingly concerned with chemical and engineering processes related to the environment and food production. They work in diverse areas ranging from integrated circuits to integrated waste management. Preparation for a career in chemical engineering requires an understanding of both engineering and chemical principles to develop proficiency in conceiving, designing, and operating new processes.

The chemical engineering curriculum has been planned to provide a sound knowledge of engineering and chemical sciences so that you may achieve competence in addressing current and future technical problems.


The objectives of the program in Chemical Engineering are to educate students in the fundamentals of chemical engineering, balanced with the application of these principles to practical problems; to train them as independent, critical thinkers who can also function effectively in teams; to foster a sense of community, ethical responsibility, and professionalism; to prepare them for careers in industry, government, and academia; to illustrate the necessity for continuing education and self-learning; and to help students to learn to communicate proficiently in written and oral form.

Students are encouraged to adhere carefully to all prerequisite requirements. The instructor is authorized to drop students from a course for which stated prerequisites have not been completed.

Exclusive of General Education units, the minimum number of units required for the Chemical Engineering major is 156.

Options for Junior & Senior Year

The focus in the junior year is on fundamentals such as thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, energy transfer, and mass transfer phenomena. In the senior year, students draw these fundamentals together and apply them in a study of kinetics, process design, and process dynamics and control. The program’s requirement of eight chemical engineering elective units allow students to strengthen specific areas in chemical engineering, explore new areas, or pursue new areas of specialization.

Honors Program

An Honors Program is available to qualified students in the Chemical Engineering & Biochemical Engineering majors It is a two-year program designed to challenge the most talented students in these majors. Students are invited to participate in their sophomore year. In the upper division coursework, students will complete either an honors thesis or a project that might involve local industry. Students must maintain a grade point average of 3.500 to continue in the program. Successful completion of the Honors Program will be acknowledged on the student's transcript.

Lower Division Required Courses
MAT 021ACalculus4
MAT 021BCalculus4
MAT 021CCalculus4
MAT 021DVector Analysis4
MAT 022ALinear Algebra3-4
or MAT 027A Linear Algebra with Applications to Biology
MAT 022BDifferential Equations3-4
or MAT 027B Differential Equations with Applications to Biology
PHY 009AClassical Physics5
PHY 009BClassical Physics5
PHY 009CClassical Physics5
Choose One:5
General Chemistry
Honors General Chemistry
General Chemistry for the Physical Sciences & Engineering
Choose One:5
General Chemistry
Honors General Chemistry
General Chemistry for the Physical Sciences & Engineering
Choose One:5
General Chemistry
Honors General Chemistry
General Chemistry for the Physical Sciences & Engineering
Chemical Engineering
ECH 005Introduction to Analysis & Design in Chemical Engineering3
ECH 051Material Balances4
ECH 060Numerical Methods in Engineering4
ECH 080Chemical Engineering Profession1
Choose one:4
Circuits I
Properties of Materials
Properties of Materials
BIT 001YIntroduction to Biotechnology4-5
or BIS 002A Introduction to Biology: Essentials of Life on Earth
Choose one: a grade of C- or better is required:4
Introduction to Literature
Introduction to Academic Literacies
Introduction to Academic Literacies: Online
Introduction to Academic Literacies
Major Works of the Ancient World
Major Works of the Medieval & Early Modern World
Major Works of the Modern World
Major Works of the Contemporary World
Introduction to Native American Literature
Lower Division Required Courses Subtotal76-79
Upper Division Required Courses
Chemical Engineering
ECH 140Mathematical Methods in Biochemical & Chemical Engineering 4
ECH 141Fluid Mechanics for Biochemical & Chemical Engineers 4
ECH 142Heat Transfer for Biochemical & Chemical Engineers4
ECH 143Mass Transfer for Biochemical & Chemical Engineers4
ECH 145AChemical Engineering Thermodynamics Laboratory3
ECH 145BChemical Engineering Transport Lab3
ECH 148AChemical Kinetics & Reaction Engineering3
ECH 148BChemical Kinetics & Reaction Engineering4
ECH 152AChemical Engineering Thermodynamics3
ECH 152BChemical Engineering Thermodynamics4
ECH 155Chemical Engineering Kinetics & Reactor Design Laboratory4
ECH 157Process Dynamics & Control4
ECH 158AProcess Economics & Green Design4
ECH 158BSeparations & Unit Operations4
ECH 158CPlant Design Project4
CHE 110APhysical Chemistry: Introduction to Quantum Mechanics4
CHE 110BPhysical Chemistry: Properties of Atoms & Molecules4
CHE 128AOrganic Chemistry3
CHE 128BOrganic Chemistry3
CHE 129AOrganic Chemistry Laboratory2
Chemical Engineering Electives
Choose 8 units:8
At least 3 units must be completed in any upper division engineering course(s) not numbered 190C, 192, 198, and 199 (independent study, research, seminar, or internship courses).
Remainder of units, for a total of a minimum of 8 units, may be completed in any upper division engineering and/or science course(s)1 including courses numbered 192 (internship) and 199 (independent study) but not numbered 190 or 1982
You may receive chemical engineering elective credit up to a maximum of 4 units of an internship (192) and/or independent study (199).
Upper Division Composition Requirement; a grade of C- or better is required:
Choose one:0-4
Writing in the Disciplines: Engineering
Writing in the Disciplines: Food Science & Technology
Writing in the Professions: Business Writing
Writing in the Professions: Business Writing
Writing in the Professions: Science
Writing in the Professions: Technical Writing
Passing the Upper Division Composition Exam.
Upper Division Required Courses Subtotal80-84
Total Units156-163

Acceptable science courses must carry one of the following subject designations: ATM, BIS, BIT, CHE, FPS, FST, MAT, MCB, PHY, STA, and VEN.


With the exception of ECH 198.