Undergraduate Program

Class of 2005The Department of Structural Engineering offers an unique engineering program leading to the B.S. degree in structural engineering which is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (EAC/ABET). The Department of Structural Engineering also offers a traditional non-accredited engineering program leading to B.S. degrees in engineering sciences. The B.S. programs require a minimum of 148 units, plus college requirements in humanities and social sciences.  All courses for the major must be taken for a letter grade.

All Structural Engineering programs of study have strong components in laboratory experimentation, numerical computation, and engineering design. Design is emphasized throughout the curricula by open-ended homework problems, by laboratory and computer courses which include student-initiated projects, and finally by senior design project courses which involve teams of students working to solve engineering design problems brought in from industry. The Structural Engineering programs are designed to prepare students receiving bachelor’s degrees for professional careers or for graduate education in their area of specialization. In addition, the programs can also be taken by students who intend to use their undergraduate engineering education as preparation for postgraduate professional training in non-technical fields such as business administration, law or medicine.

Structural Engineering is concerned with the design and analysis of civil, mechanical, aerospace, marine, naval, and offshore structures. Examples include bridges, dams, buildings, aircraft, spacecraft, ships, oil platforms, automobiles, and other transportation vehicles. This field requires a thorough knowledge of the behavior of solids (concrete, soils, rock, metals, plastics, and composite materials), fluid mechanics as it relates to structural loads, dynamics as it relates to structural response, mathematics for the generation of theoretical structural models and numerical analysis, and computer science for simulation purposes associated with computer-aided design, response analyses, and data acquisition. Basic understanding of materials behavior and structural performance is enhanced by laboratory courses involving static and dynamic stress failure tests of structural models, and response of structural systems.  Undergraduate students can specialize in one of the following four focus sequences: (a) civil structures, (b) aerospace structures, (c) structural health monitoring/non-destructive evaluation (SHM/NDE), or (d) geotechnical engineering.

The Engineering Science program, which is not accredited, follows the overall Structural Engineering program except that the number of required design courses is reduced. In addition to core courses in dynamics, vibrations, structures, fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, heat transfer, and laboratory experimentation, a large number of technical electives are scheduled. This aspect of the curriculum allows flexibility by permitting specialization and in-depth study in one area of the engineering sciences or through a sequence of courses on various emerging technologies. Students must consult their advisers to develop a sound course of study to fulfill the technical elective requirements of this program.


Please note: The Structural Engineering B.S. program has been declared "capped" for ALL students, effective Fall 2015.

Additional information can be found in the "Admissions" section of the Undergarduate portion of this website.


Department of Structural Engineering Undergraduate Program Statistics:

Enrollment, Fall 2015:   601

Degrees Conferred, 2014-2015:  140


Enrollment, Fall 2014:   697

Degrees Conferred, 2013-2014:  124





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