2023-2024 Undergraduate Programs

Requirements for BS Degrees

The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science awards BS degrees to students who have satisfactorily completed four-year programs in engineering studies.

Students must meet University requirements, school requirements, and department requirements for the Bachelor of Science degree.

University Requirements

The University of California has two requirements that undergraduate students must satisfy in order to graduate: (1) Entry-Level Writing or English as a Second Language, and (2) American History and Institutions. These requirements are discussed in detail in the Undergraduate Study section of the UCLA General Catalog.

School Requirements

The Henry Samueli School of Engineering and Applied Science has seven requirements that must be satisfied for the award of the degree: unit, scholarship, academic residence, writing, technical breadth, ethics, and general education.

Unit Requirement

To receive a bachelor’s degree in any UCLA Samueli major, students must complete a minimum of 180 units. The maximum allowed is 213 units.

After 213 quarter units, enrollment may not normally be continued in the school without special permission from the associate dean. This regulation does not apply to Departmental Scholars.

Scholarship Requirement

In addition to the requirement of at least a 2.0 (C) grade-point average (GPA) in all courses taken at any UC campus, students must achieve at least a 2.0 GPA in all upper-division courses offered in satisfaction of the subject and elective requirements of the curriculum. A 2.0 minimum GPA in upper-division mathematics, upper-division core courses, and the major field is also required for graduation. Grade-point averages are not rounded up.

Academic Residence Requirement

Of the last 48 units completed for the BS degree, 36 must be earned in residence at UCLA Samueli on this campus. No more than 16 of the 36 units may be completed in summer sessions at UCLA.

Writing Requirement

Students must complete the UC Entry-Level Writing or English as a Second Language (ESL) requirement prior to completing the school writing requirement.

Students admitted to the school are required to complete a two-term writing requirement—Writing I and Engineering Writing. Both courses must be taken for a letter grade, and students must receive a C or better grade in each (a C- grade is not acceptable).

Writing I

The Writing I requirement must be satisfied by the end of the second year of enrollment by completing English Composition 3, 3D, 3DX, 3E, or 3SL with a C or better grade (a C- or Passed grade is not acceptable).

The Writing I requirement may also be satisfied by scoring 4 or 5 on one of the College Board Advanced Placement Examinations in English; completing a course equivalent to English Composition 3 with a C or better grade (a C- or Passed grade is not acceptable) taken at another institution; or scoring 5, 6, or 7 on an International Baccalaureate Higher Level Examination.

Students whose native language is not English may need to take English Composition 1A, 1B, and 2I before enrolling in a Writing I course. All courses in the sequence must be passed with a C or better grade (a C- or Passed grade is not acceptable).

Engineering Writing

The Engineering Writing requirement is satisfied by selecting one approved Engineering Writing (EW) course from the school writing course list or by selecting one approved Writing II (W) course. The course must be completed with a C or better grade (a C- or Passed grade is not acceptable). Writing courses are published in the Schedule of Classes.

Applicable writing courses also approved for general education credit may fulfill the relevant general education foundational area.

Technical Breadth Requirement

The technical breadth requirement consists of a set of three courses providing sufficient breadth outside the student’s core program. A list of school Faculty Executive Committee-approved technical breadth requirement courses is available online or in the Office of Academic and Student Affairs, and deviations from that list are subject to approval by the associate dean for Academic and Student Affairs. None of the technical breadth requirement courses selected by students can be used to satisfy other major course requirements.

Ethics Requirement

The ethics and professionalism requirement is satisfied by completing one course from Engineering 181EW, 182EW, 183EW, or 185EW with a C or better grade (a C- or Passed grade is not acceptable). The course may be applied toward the Engineering Writing requirement.

General Education Requirements

General education (GE) is more than a checklist of required courses. It is a program of study that reveals to students the ways that research scholars in the arts, humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences create and evaluate new knowledge; introduces students to the important ideas and themes of human cultures; fosters appreciation for the many perspectives and diverse voices that may be heard in a democratic society; and develops the intellectual skills that give students the dexterity they need to function in a rapidly changing world.

This entails the ability to make critical and logical assessments of information, both traditional and digital; deliver reasoned and persuasive arguments; and identify, acquire, and use the knowledge necessary to solve problems.

Students may take one GE course per term on a Passed/Not Passed (P/NP) basis if they are in good academic standing. For details on P/NP grading, see Grades in the Academic Policies section of the UCLA General Catalog or consult with the Office of Academic and Student Affairs.

GE courses used to satisfy the engineering writing and/or ethics requirements must be taken for a letter grade.

Foundations of Knowledge

General education courses are grouped into three foundational areas: Foundations of the Arts and Humanities, Foundations of Society and Culture, and Foundations of Scientific Inquiry.

Five courses (24 units minimum) are required. Engineering writing requirement courses also approved for GE credit may be applied toward the relevant GE foundational areas. Transfer applicants may complete courses in addition to those above that satisfy degree requirements. Engineering and computer science courses appropriate for each major may be found on the ASSIST website.

Students must meet with a counselor in the Office of Academic and Student Affairs to determine the applicability of GE cluster courses toward the engineering writing or GE requirements.

Courses listed in more than one category can fulfill GE requirements in only one of the categories.

Foundations of the Arts and Humanities

Two 5-unit courses selected from two different subgroups:

Courses in this area supply perspectives and intellectual skills necessary to comprehend and think critically about our situation in the world as human beings. In particular, courses furnish the basic means to appreciate and evaluate the ongoing efforts of humans to explain, translate, and transform their diverse experiences of the world through such media as language, literature, philosophical systems, images, sounds, and performances. The courses introduce students to the historical development and fundamental intellectual and ethical issues associated with the arts and humanities and may also investigate the complex relations between artistic and humanistic expression and other facets of society and culture.

Foundations of Society and Culture

Two 5-unit courses, one from each subgroup:

Courses in this area introduce students to the ways in which humans organize, structure, rationalize, and govern their diverse societies and cultures over time. Courses focus on a particular historical question, societal problem, or topic of political and economic concern in an effort to demonstrate how issues are objectified for study, how data is collected and analyzed, and how new understandings of social phenomena are achieved and evaluated.

Foundations of Scientific Inquiry

One course (4 units minimum) from the Life Sciences subgroup or one course from Bioengineering CM145/Chemical Engineering CM145, Chemistry and Biochemistry 153A, or Civil and Environmental Engineering M166/Environmental Health Sciences M166:

This requirement is automatically satisfied for Bioengineering and Chemical Engineering majors. The requirement is satisfied for Civil Engineering majors by the natural science requirement.

Courses in this area ensure that students gain a fundamental understanding of how scientists formulate and answer questions about the operation of both the physical and biological world. Courses also deal with some of the most important issues, developments, and methodologies in contemporary science, addressing such topics as the origin of the universe, environmental degradation, and the decoding of the human genome. Through lectures, laboratory experiences, writing, and intensive discussions, students consider the important roles played by the laws of physics and chemistry in society, biology, Earth and environmental sciences, and astrophysics and cosmology.

Foundations Course Lists

Creating and maintaining a general education curriculum is a dynamic process; consequently, courses are frequently added to the list. For the most current list of approved courses that satisfy the Foundations of Knowledge GE plan, consult with an academic counselor or see the GE Requirement web page.

Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum

Transfer students from California community colleges have the option to fulfill UCLA lower-division GE requirements by completing the Intersegmental General Education Transfer Curriculum (IGETC) prior to transfer. The curriculum consists of a series of subject areas and types of courses that have been agreed on by the University of California and the California community colleges. Although GE or transfer core courses are degree requirements rather than admission requirements, students are advised to fulfill them prior to transfer. The IGETC significantly eases the transfer process, as all UCLA GE requirements are fulfilled when students complete the IGETC courses. Students who select the IGETC must complete it entirely before enrolling at UCLA. Otherwise, they must fulfill UCLA Samueli GE requirements. The school does not accept partial IGETC.

Department Requirements

UCLA Samueli departments generally set two types of requirements that must be satisfied for award of a degree: preparation for the major (lower-division courses) and the major (upper-division courses). Preparation for the major courses should be completed before beginning upper-division work.

Preparation for the Major

A major requires completion of a set of courses known as preparation for the major. Each department sets its own preparation for the major requirements; see the Departments and Programs chapter of this announcement.

The Major

Students must complete their major with a scholarship grade-point average of at least 2.0 (C) in all courses in order to remain in the major. Each course in the major department must be taken for a letter grade. See the Departments and Programs chapter of this announcement for details on each major.