At which campus can I study this program?
Any Penn State Campus
The mission of the faculty of the undergraduate computer engineering program at Penn State is to provide students with the knowledge and experience needed to pursue a productive lifelong career in industry or to engage in further study at the graduate level. Students participate in a balanced program of instruction covering the basic principles of the design and application of computer systems. The program includes coverage in breadth and depth of basic science, engineering, and abstract concepts of information handling. Students specialize in and are prepared for careers in the design, analysis and use of hardware, software and systems. The program is structured to ensure that graduates have a clear understanding of the design and the applications of computers, as well as the ability to apply this knowledge throughout their professional careers.
What is Computer Engineering?
Computer engineering provides society with the myriad engines that have powered the information age from the smallest sensor motes to the fastest supercomputers and largest data centers, and with the tools and expertise to use the current generation of computers to design the next. With the ubiquitous integration of mobile communications and computational elements in everything from appliances to cars to clothing to the electrical grid, computer engineers are responsible for developing systems and devices that have transformed the capabilities of both individuals and entire economies.
You Might Like This Program If...
You excel in math, physics, chemistry, digital systems and computational theory will enjoy computer engineering.
Entrance to Major
This program currently has administrative enrollment controls. Administrative Enrollment Controls are initiated when limitations of space, faculty, or other resources in a major prevent accommodating all students who request them. Students must follow the administrative enrollment controls that are in effect for the semester that they enter the university.
First-Year Students Entering Summer 2018, Fall 2018, Spring 2019
In order to be eligible for entrance to this major, students must satisfy the following requirements:
- completed 40-59 credits at Penn State (actual credits taken at the University)
- completed with a grade of C or better: CHEM 110, MATH 140, MATH 141, MATH 250 or MATH 251, PHYS 211, and PHYS 212
- earned a minimum of 3.00 cumulative GPA
Students Who Entered Prior to Summer 2018
Students who entered the University prior to the summer 2018 semester should view the administrative enrollment controls for the semester that they entered the university on the Academic Advising Portal.
For the Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Engineering, a minimum of 128 credits is required:
|Requirements for the Major||110|
Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.
The keystone symbol appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.
Foundations (grade of C or better is required.)
- Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
- Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits
- Arts (GA): 6 credits
- Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
- Humanities (GH): 6 credits
- Social and Behavioral Sciences(GS): 6 credits
- Natural Sciences (GN): 9 credits
Integrative Studies (may also complete a Knowledge Domain requirement)
- Inter-Domain or Approved Linked Courses: 6 credits
27 of these 45 credits are included in the Requirements for the Major.
University Degree Requirements
First Year Engagement
All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.
Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.
First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.
6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements
- United States Cultures: 3 credits
- International Cultures: 3 credits
Writing Across the Curriculum
3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.
Total Minimum Credits
A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.
Quality of Work
Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.
Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition
The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.
Requirements for the Major
This includes 27 credits of General Education courses: 9 credits of GN courses; 6 credits of GQ courses; 3 credits of GS courses; 9 credits of GWS courses.
To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn a grade of C or better in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.
|CMPEN 362||Communication Networks||3|
|CMPEN 482||Computer Engineering Project Design||3|
|CMPSC 473||Operating Systems Design & Construction||3|
|ENGL 202C||Effective Writing: Technical Writing||3|
|MATH 231||Calculus of Several Variables||2|
|PHYS 214||General Physics: Wave Motion and Quantum Physics||2|
|STAT 418||Introduction to Probability and Stochastic Processes for Engineering||3|
|Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better|
|CHEM 110||Chemical Principles I||3|
|CMPEN 331||Computer Organization And Design||3|
|CMPEN 431||Introduction to Computer Architecture||3|
|CMPSC 221||Object Oriented Programming with Web-Based Applications||3|
|CMPSC 311||Introduction to Systems Programming||3|
|CMPSC 360||Discrete Mathematics for Computer Science||3|
|CMPSC 465||Data Structures and Algorithms||3|
|EE 210||Circuits and Devices||4|
|EE 310||Electronic Circuit Design I||4|
|EE 353||Signals and Systems: Continuous and Discrete-Time||3|
|MATH 140||Calculus With Analytic Geometry I||4|
|MATH 141||Calculus with Analytic Geometry II||4|
|MATH 250||Ordinary Differential Equations||3|
|PHYS 211||General Physics: Mechanics||4|
|PHYS 212||General Physics: Electricity and Magnetism||4|
|Select 1 credit of First-Year Seminar||1|
|CAS 100A||Effective Speech||3|
|or CAS 100B||Effective Speech|
|CMPSC 121||Introduction to Programming Techniques||3|
|or CMPSC 131||Programming and Computation I: Fundamentals|
|CMPSC 122||Intermediate Programming||3|
|or CMPSC 132||Programming and Computation II: Data Structures|
|ENGL 15||Rhetoric and Composition||3|
|or ENGL 30||Honors Freshman Composition|
|Select 3 credits of the following:||3|
|Principles of Economics|
|Introductory Microeconomic Analysis and Policy|
|Introductory Macroeconomic Analysis and Policy|
|Select 6 credits of the following:||6|
|VLSI Digital Circuits|
|Digital Integrated Circuits|
|Digital Design Using Field Programmable Devices|
|Fundamentals of Computer Vision|
|An Introduction to Digital Image Processing|
|Logical Design of Digital Systems|
|Microprocessors and Embedded Systems|
|Fundamentals of Digital Signal Processing|
|Introduction to Neural Networks|
|Select 6 credits from any 400-level CMPEN or CMPSC course||6|
|Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better|
|Select 4 credits of the following:||4|
|Digital Design: Theory and Practice|
|Introduction to Digital Systems|
and Digital Design Laboratory 1
|Supporting Courses and Related Areas|
|Select 6 credits from department list 2||6|
CMPEN 275 does not require a grade of C or better.
Students may apply up to 3 credits of Co-op. Students who complete ROTC may apply up to 3 credits of ROTC as department list credits and 3 credits of ROTC as GHW credits.
Program Educational Objectives
In particular, within a few years after graduation, graduates in computer engineering should be able to:
- Work in industry or government producing or evaluating components of computer hardware and/or software systems.
- Work in teams to design, implement, and/or maintain components of computer hardware and/or software systems.
- Stay current through professional conferences, certificate programs, post-baccalaureate degree programs, or other professional educational activities.
Program Outcomes (Student Outcomes)
- an ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering
- an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data
- an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability
- an ability to function on multidisciplinary teams
- an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems
- an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility
- an ability to communicate effectively
- the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context
- a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning
- a knowledge of contemporary issues
- an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.
The objectives of the university’s academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.
Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee’s unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information need to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.
208 Hammond Building
University Park, PA 16802
Suggested Academic Plan
Computer Engineering - Ending at University Park Campus
The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.
If you are starting at a campus other than the one this plan is ending at, please refer here:
|CHEM 110 (GN)*#†||3||CMPSC 131 or 121 (GQ)*||3|
|MATH 140 or 140E (GQ)*‡#†||4||ENGL 15, 30, or ESL 15 (GWS)‡†||3|
|PHYS 211 (GN, PHYSICS 211L & PHYSICS 211R)*#†||4||MATH 141 or 141E (GQ)*‡#†||4|
|CMPEN 111 (or First Year Seminar)†||1||PHYS 212 (GN, PHYSICS 212L & PHYSICS 212R)*#†||4|
|General Education Course†||3||General Education Course†||3|
|CMPSC 132 or 122*||3||CMPEN 331*||3|
|CMPEN 270 or 271 and 275*||4||CMPSC 221*||3|
|MATH 220||2-3||ECON 102 or 104 (GS)†||3|
|MATH 250*#||3||EE 210*||4|
|PHYS 214||2||MATH 231||2|
|General Education Course†||3|
|CMPEN 431*||3||CMPEN 362||3|
|CMPSC 311*||3||CMPSC 465*||3|
|CMPSC 360*||3||CMPSC 473||3|
|EE 310*||4||EE 353*||3|
|STAT 418||3||ENGL 202C (GWS)‡†||3|
|CAS 100A or 100B (GWS)‡†||3||CMPEN/CMPSC 4XX||3|
|CMPEN 482||3||CMPEN/CMPSC 4XX||3|
|Computer Engineering Elective||3||Computer Engineering Elective||3|
|Department List Elective||3||Department List Elective||3|
|General Education Course†||3||General Education Course†||3|
|General Education Course (GHW)†||1.5||General Education Course (GHW)†||1.5|
|Total Credits 128-129|
* Course requires a grade of C or better for the major
‡ Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education
# Course is an Entrance to Major requirement
† Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement
University Requirements and General Education Notes:
US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy University Requirements (United States and International Cultures).
W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.
GWS, GQ, GHW, GN, GA, GH, and GS are abbreviations used to identify General Education program courses. General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ) and Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS, and Integrative Studies). Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of ‘C’ or better.
Integrative Studies courses are required for the General Education program. N is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate an Inter-Domain course and Z is the suffix at the end of a course number used to designate a Linked course.
All incoming Schreyer Honors College first-year students at University Park will take ENGL/CAS 137 in the fall semester and ENGL/CAS 138 in the spring semester. These courses carry the GWS designation and replace both ENGL 30 and CAS 100. Each course is 3 credits.
CMPEN/CMPSC 4XX: Select any 400-489 CMPEN or CMPSC course offered at University Park.
Computer Engineering Elective: Select from department list. Restrictions may apply. Computer Engineering Electives are NOT offered every semester or even every year. Contact the department for information on which classes are scheduled to be offered during a given semester.
Department List Elective: Select from department list. Restrictions may apply. Students who complete the ROTC Program may substitute 3 ROTC credits for a Department List Elective. Students who complete the Cooperative Education Program may substitute 3 co-op credits for a Department List Elective.
Health and Physical Activity Elective: Students who complete the ROTC Program may substitute 3 ROTC credits for the GHW requirement and 3 ROTC credits for a Department List Elective.
These courses offered at University Park in spring semester only:
- E E 353
Computer engineers employ innovation and creative thinking to design and build hardware systems that solve complex problems. Our students learn and practice the art of applying ingenuity and lateral thinking to design solutions to complex problems. Every advance in computer hardware relies on computer engineers to understand how they work and how to leverage their power and capabilities.
System software and application developers; embedded system designers; network architects; digital designers; and computer architects.
Opportunities for Graduate Studies
Broaden educational credentials and improve your marketability in the global workplace.
The baccalaureate program in Computer Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, www.abet.org.
SCHOOL OF ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING AND COMPUTER SCIENCE
209 Electrical Engineering West
University Park, PA 16802