Engineering and Applied Science Undergraduate Degree

Option Representative

Azita Emami
azitacaltech.edu

The engineering and applied science (EAS) option offers students the opportunity for study in a wide variety of challenging areas of science and technology and includes concentrations in computation and neural systems, and materials science. In addition, the EAS option offers students the possibility of designing a customized course of study that has breadth, depth, and rigor similar to the concentrations listed above.

The aim of the EAS option is to prepare students for research and professional practice in an era of rapidly advancing interdisciplinary technology. The program builds on the core curriculum to combine individual depth of experience and competence in a particular chosen engineering specialty, and a strong background in the basic and engineering sciences, with laboratory and design, culminating in a capstone design experience. It strives to develop professional independence, creativity, leadership, and the capacity for continuing professional and intellectual growth.

The first year of the four-year course of study leading to a Bachelor of Science degree is common for all students of the Institute, although freshman elective subjects are available as an introduction to various aspects of engineering and applied science. At the end of the first year, students who elect the EAS option are assigned advisers as close to their expressed field of interest as possible, and together with their advisers they develop programs of study for the next three years. Beyond the Institute-wide requirements of physics, mathematics, and humanities, the EAS option requires one year of applied and computational mathematics and a prescribed number of units selected from a wide variety of engineering and applied science courses. Engineering design (synthesis), as distinct from analysis, is considered an essential part of every engineer’s capability. Advisers will expect students to select a sufficient number of courses that place emphasis on design.

Any student in the EAS option whose grade-point average is less than 1.9 at the end of the academic year in the subjects listed in the option requirements may be refused permission to continue to work in the EAS option.

Option Requirements

Students who have elected the EAS option must either choose one of the approved areas of concentration (see item 6 a below), or by the end of the third term of the sophomore year submit a written proposed customized course of study and obtain approval for it from the EAS option oversight committee (see item 6 b below).

The course of study must include each of the following elements:

  • Fulfillment of core requirements in differential equations (Ma2 or equivalent); Probability and Statistics (Ma3, ACM/ESE118 or equivalent); Waves (Ph2a, Ph12a or equivalent), Quantum Mechanics (Ph2b, Ph12b, Ch21a or equivalent); Thermodynamics and Statistical Mechanics (Ph2c, Ph12c, ChE63, ME18, Ch21c or equivalent)
  • Demonstration of computer programming competency by taking CS 1, or by taking an approved alternative course, or by passing a placement exam administered by the computer science option by first term of sophomore year.
  • a. 27 units of advanced EAS courses with the prefixes Ae, ACM, AM, APh, BE, CE, CNS, CS, CDS, EE, ESE, MS, or ME;
    and
    b. 27 additional units of either advanced EAS courses or advanced science courses offered by the biology, CCE, GPS, or PMA divisions.
  • a. 9 units of laboratory courses taken from the following list: APh 77 bc, Ae/APh 104 bc, CE 95, CE 180, CS/CNS 171, 173, and 174, EE 45, EE/CS 52, 53, 54, EE 90, EE 91 ab, ESE 159, MS 90, MS 125, ME 72 ab, ME 90 bc, ME 96;
    and
    b. 9 units of additional laboratory courses either from the list in 3 a or from EAS courses with the word “laboratory” in the title, but excluding those courses for which freshman laboratory credit is allowed.
  • ACM 95 abc or Ma 108 abc or Ma 109 abc. None of these course sequences may be taken pass/fail.
  • E 10 or equivalent; E 11 or equivalent.
  • Courses used to satisfy requirements 1–5 above must also satisfy a depth requirement, which must be met by either:
    a. the concentration requirements listed below for one of the following disciplines: computation and neural systems, and materials science,
    or
    b. a customized schedule of requirements that is similarly rigorous to 6 a, has both breadth and depth, and that includes a senior thesis or capstone design project, such as, but not restricted to, EE 80 abc, CS 80 abc, ME 90 abc, or two terms chosen from EE 91 ab and EE/CS 53. To select this alternative, the student must submit a written proposal to, and obtain the approval of, the EAS option oversight committee. This approval must be obtained by the end of the third term of the sophomore year.
    (Note: Students who meet the depth requirement by satisfying one of the five concentration requirements listed in 6 a will have both the EAS option and the name of the concentration listed on their transcript, while students who satisfy the depth requirement using 6 b will have only the EAS option listed on their transcript.)
  • At least 117 units of EAS courses not including those used to satisfy requirements 3, 4, and 5 above. Concentrations marked with a dagger (†) in the list below include sufficient EAS courses to automatically satisfy this requirement; concentrations marked with an asterisk (*), and also the customized schedule given in 6 b, do not do so, in which case students will have to select sufficient additional EAS courses to bring the total to 117 units. Courses in ChE count toward this requirement.
  • All concentrations and the customized schedule of requirements described in 6 b shall include a major design experience.
  • Passing grades must be earned in at least 486 units, including those listed in requirements 1–8 above.

Discipline Concentration Requirements

(to satisfy requirements 6 a and 8 above)

Computation and Neural Systems
CNS 100, Bi/CNS/NB 150, CNS/Bi/Ph/CS/NB 187, CNS/Bi/EE/CS/NB 186, CNS/CS/EE 188 (or IST 4), EE 111, CDS 101, Bi 8 (or Bi 9) Ph 2 abc, Ma 2, Ma 3 and CS 2 is required in addition to CS 1 for the CNS concentration. In addition, the laboratory course Bi/CNS 162 is required. The project for CNS/Bi/EE/CS/NB 186 shall be organized as a design project drawing on the ensemble of CNS disciplines.

Materials Science
APh 17 ab or ChE 63 ab or ME 18 ab; MS 115 a; MS 115 b or MS/ME162; MS 90; and three terms of MS 78 (senior thesis, which includes a major design experience). In addition, the student shall complete 45 units from the following list of restricted electives: ME 35 abc, APh 105 abc, APh 114 abc, APh/EE 130, APh/EE 183, Ch 120 ab, Ch 121 ab, Ch 125 abc, Ch/ChE 147, ChE/Ch 148, CS 11, Ge 114 ab, MS 105, MS/APh 120, 122, MS 125, 131, 133, 142, Ph 125 abc. Substitution of courses may be approved at the discretion of the concentration representative, provided they meet the overall EAS requirements.

Typical Course Schedules

Units per term
1st 2nd 3rd
Second Year
HSS electives 9 9 9
Electives 36 36 36
45 45 45
Third Year
ACM 95 abc or Ma 108 abc or Ma 109 abc 12 12 12
HSS electives 9 9 9
Electives 24 24 24
45 45 45
Fourth Year
E 10 Technical Seminar Presentations - 3 -
HSS electives 9 9 9
Electives 33 33 33
42 45 42

Typical Course Schedules by Concentration

Variation of the course schedule from these examples should be made in consultation with the student’s academic adviser and must satisfy the discipline concentration requirements listed above.

Computation and Neural Systems

First Term Second Term Third Term
First Year
CS 1 CS 2 Elective
Bi 8
Second Year
CNS 100 Elective Elective
EE 111 Ma 3 Ph2 c
Bi/CNS/NB 150 Ph 2 b
Ma 2
Ph 2 a
Third Year
CDS 101 CNS 186 Bi/CNS 162
ACM 95 a ACM 95 b ACM 95 c
Fourth Year
CNS 187 IST 4 Elective
E 10

Materials Science

First Term Second Term Third Term
First Year
APh 17 a APh 17 b Restricted elective
or MS 90
MS 115 a MS 115 b
Third Year
ACM 95 a ACM 95 b ACM 95 c
Restricted elective Restricted elective Restricted elective
or MS 90
Fourth Year
MS 78 a MS 78 b MS 78 c
MS 131 E 10 MS 133
MS/APh 120