128 credit hours are required for completion of the KU-ME BS degree program. The BS-ME program is planned for four years, which requires successfully completing 15 to 17 credit hours per semester (or four to five courses per semester) during the eight semesters (assuming no summer courses). Each student takes 98 hours of required courses, 24 hours of broad electives, and 6 hours of restricted electives. Some first year students enter with a semester’s credits (15 hrs) already completed (for example, English, Math, Chemistry, Physics; Core courses: economics, ethics, oral communications, global culture, diversity, arts/humanities). Other students start at the very beginning; and still other students work part time during their studies, requiring them to reduce to 12-14 credit hours per semester. Thus, considering all situations, the average student takes 4.5 years to complete the degree.
The mechanical engineering curriculum builds on a basic foundation of mathematics and physical sciences with the study of engineering applications in three primary areas:
- Thermal-fluid sciences and design of energy systems,
- Mechanical system design and analysis (mechanical structures, motion and manufacturing), and
- Biomechanics and biomaterials.
Engineering science and design are integrated into the curriculum, with heavier emphasis on engineering fundamentals and analysis in the earlier semesters and increased emphasis on creative design in subsequent semesters, culminating in a capstone design courses.
Specific Curriculum sheets can be found on the Curriculum Page, depending upon the year which a student entered the program. Program changes are made from time-to-time in order to provide the most current mechanical engineering education possible.
These curriculum sheets show which courses are pre- and co-requisites for each course. It is critical to have successfully taken all pre-requisites and take concurrently [or previously] all co-requisites required for each course in which you are enrolling. Missing the needed pre- or co-requisite courses can cause delays in degree progress. Advisors work with students to avoid this issue, but students must be cognizant of these scheduling needs. In order to plan optimally, students are strongly encouraged to carefully plan their four-to-five year degree program (to graduation/completion) in detail, soon after arrival at KU.
To graduate with a BS-ME, students must have:
- successfully completed all 128 credit hours in the ME BS degree (exceptions are for waived credits, up to 6 hrs, specified in the Waiver;
- at least a 2.0 overall GPA for all courses which are required for the ME BS degree;
- at least an overall 2.0 KU GPA;
- Other requirements are provided by the School of Engineering on the KU policy website ARTICLE IVr.
Additional Important Information
It is important that students are aware that a few ME courses are taught only once per year. For the fall of the year, these courses are: ME 307 (sometimes taught in the summer), ME 627, ME 633, and ME 682. For the spring of the year, these courses are: EECS 316/318, ME 501, ME 628, and ME 661 (also taught in the summer). Students should plan carefully for these, so as to keep from being delayed a year. Advisors work with students to avoid this issue, but students must be cognizant of these scheduling needs. Consult your curriculum flowchart and schedule of classes for what is offered.
Note that all courses in the ME curriculum are required for graduation, but a few are not required before taking another course in the required curriculum. (Caution: several of these have their own pre- and co-requisites; and some of these are required for advanced level elective courses.) Those courses are:
- Core courses in: economics, ethics, oral communication, global culture, diversity, and arts/humanities;
- ME 412; ME 508; List 2 (6 hrs); and
- List 1 (6 hrs) - - but, of all possible List 1 choices (~40 courses), specifically, ME 633 is required for taking ME 643, and ME 627 is required for taking ME 642. ME 642 and ME 643 are final course options in two of the capstone design sequences.
In addition, a few courses (ME 210, ME 306, ME 312, and ME 612) are many times taught in the summer; but this cannot be guaranteed - - due to instructor availability and course enrollment minimums. Furthermore, students often take internships during the summer, which can limit students’ availability for taking these courses.
For the final year, students must take Senior Design courses in a specific sequence. There are four Senior Design tracks, and students are required to choose one of those four, as listed below:
- Biomechanics: ME 633 in the fall only; and ME 640 in either the spring or fall; then ME 643 must follow ME 633 and 640
- EcoHawks: ME 640 in either the spring or fall; then ME 641 must follow ME 640
- Formula: ME 627 in the fall only; then ME 642 must follow in the spring only
- All Other Sources (industry sponsored): ME 640 in either the spring or fall; then ME 641 must follow ME 640