Updated August 2017
Students admitted prior to Fall 2015, who wish to move their Degree Audit to the Fall 2015 catalog year, should send a request via Virtual Advising Center.
The Computer Engineering major is a unique blend of hardware and software, allowing students to gain a deep understanding of the ideas that enable many of today’s fundamental technologies, including mobile devices and the Internet of Things. The lower division courses provide students with a core foundation in programming, mathematical reasoning, physics and circuit design. The upper division blends fundamentals in computer science including software engineering, operating systems and computer architecture with fundamentals in electrical engineering including linear systems and advanced digital circuit design. Electives allow students to specialize in one, or both, fields.
The Computer Engineering major is joint between the CSE and the ECE departments, and requirements are the same for both departments. Students typically select their department based on which side of computer engineering (CS or EE) they want to focus on.
Many graduates in this degree program go on to graduate school or choose careers that involve the design of computer hardware and software systems in diverse areas such as: computer graphics, computer-aided design, multimedia systems, databases, parallel computation, distributed computation, artificial intelligence, optical computing, very-large-scale-integration design, and fabrication.
The BS computer engineering program requires a total of 136 units (not including the general-education requirements).
Our Long-Term Plans are designed for students with no advanced placement credit. Some students will begin with CSE 3, CSE 8A or CSE 11, therefore, it is imperative that each student draw up a suitable schedule based on her/his specific circumstances. Please read CSE Course Placement Advice to figure out which courses to take first. To assist you with planning your schedule, consult our Courses page.
Tracking Your Progress
CSE 8B (if you completed CSE 8A)
CSE 12/15L (if you completed CSE 8B)
CSE 30 (if you completed 12/15L)
BS Computer Engineering
The computer engineering lower division requirements are designed to provide a strong foundation in mathematics, physics, electrical engineering, programming methodology and skills, and computer organization. Upper-division core courses deal with the theory and design of algorithms, hardware, and software as well as electronic systems. The program encompasses the study of hardware design, data storage, computer architecture, assembly languages, and the design of computers for engineering, information retrieval, and scientific research. Many graduates in this degree program go on to graduate school or choose careers that involve the design of computer hardware and software systems in diverse areas such as: computer graphics, computer-aided design, multimedia systems, databases, parallel computation, distributed computation, artificial intelligence, optical computing, very-large-scale-integration design, and fabrication.
Students are expected to complete the following 72 units by the end of their sophomore year.
a) Computer Science and Engineering: CSE 8B or CSE 11, CSE 12, CSE 15L, CSE 20 or Math 15A, CSE 21 or
Math 15B, and CSE 30 (24 units)
b) Computer Science and Engineering Lower Division Elective: Minimum of two units chosen from:
CSE 3, CSE 4GS, CSE 5A, CSE 6GS, CSE 7, CSE 8A, MAE 9, COGS 10, COGS 18, ECE 15, NANO 15,
CENG 15, CSE 80, CSE 86, CSE 90, CSE 91, CSE 99, or any CSE upper-division course not used to fulfill other
c) Mathematics. Math 20A, Math 20B, Math 20C, Math 20D, and Math 18 (formally Math 20F) (20 units)
d) Physics: Phys 2A, Phys 2B, Phys 2C; (12 units). Math 20A is a prerequisite for Phys 2A. Students whose
performance on the Department of Mathematics placement test permits them to start with Math 20B or a
higher course may take Phys 2A in the fall quarter of the freshman year; all others will take Phys 2A in the
winter quarter of the freshman year. Students who received high grades in both calculus and physics in high
school may substitute the major’s sequence, Phys 4A-B-C for Phys 2A-B-C.
e) Electrical Engineering: ECE 35, ECE 45, and ECE 65 (12 units)
f) Statistics: ECE 109 (4 units)
Students must complete 64 upper-division units: 28 units of CSE Core courses, 8 units of ECE Core courses, and 28 units of Elective courses.
1. Core CSE courses: CSE 100 or Math 176, CSE 101 or Math 188, CSE 110, CSE 120, 140, 140L, 141, and 141L
2. Core ECE Courses: ECE 101 and ECE 108 (8 units) Please see "ECE course" information below
3. Electives: Seven courses (28 units) must be completed.
· One elective must be either ECE 111 or ECE 118 (4 units) Please see "ECE course" information below
· Minimum of five courses (20 units) chosen from ECE or CSE upper-division or graduate courses.
· A maximum of 12 units of P/NP courses may count, chosen from: a maximum of 8 units of CSE 198 or
CSE 199 or 199H; a maximum of 4 units of CSE 197.
· A maximum of four units of non-CSE courses, referred to as technical electives on the student’s degree audit. Please see an approved list of Technical Electives. Students may petition for other courses not on the list
Notes for Selecting and Scheduling Classes for BS Computer Engineering
1. All courses must be taken for a letter grade, unless they are offered P/NP only
2. See the CSE website for a sample four-year plan of study.
3. Students should read “CSE Course Placement Advice” for assistance in determining which CSE course to
take first, CSE 3A, CSE 8A, CSE 8B or CSE 11.
4. Effective Fall 2014, CSE 8A (3 units) and 8AL (1 unit) were combined into one course, CSE 8A (4 units).
5. Computer Science Advanced Placement Credit: A Exam (Java Programming) two units. Score of 4 exempts
CSE 8A; students should take CSE 11.
6. CSE 8B or CSE 11 may be taken concurrently with CSE 20/Math 15A.
7. CSE 15L must be taken concurrently with CSE 12.
8. CSE 140 must be taken concurrently with CSE 140L.
9. CSE 141 must be taken concurrently with CSE 141L.
ECE Course Information
- ECE 108 offered for a final time during Spring Quarter 2014. Students who did not take ECE 108, must submit a petition to use an upper-division ECE or CSE Elective in lieu of ECE 108.
- ECE 118 offered for a final time Spring 2014. Students should plan to take ECE 111, offered during Winter quarter.
- All major requirements and upper-division electives, except CSE 91, CSE 197, CSE 198 or CSE 199, must be taken for a letter grade.
- To graduate, a minimum grade-point average of 2.0 will be required in upper-division courses in the major, including upper-division electives.
- Students must satisfy the general education course requirements of their college and university requirements.