BS in Mechanical Engineering

At the undergraduate level, Boston University offers a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, with the option to concentrate in one of the following areas: Aerospace Engineering, Manufacturing Engineering, Energy Technologies, Technology Innovation, or Nanotechnology. Graduates are prepared for careers in mechanical engineering, develop lifelong learning skills, and advance the science and technology of mechanical engineering through multidisciplinary research in selected focus areas. Our students develop technical skills required for immediate entry into industry or graduate school, but also become leaders in tomorrow’s world and prosper in a society whose problems will require increasingly multidisciplinary solutions.

Students completing the undergraduate program in mechanical engineering develop competence or acquired knowledge in a variety of areas, including engineering tools, communication skills, modeling and formulation, design of individual components and multicomponent systems, professional ethics, mechanical systems, laboratory exploration, computer usage, and more.

Most of the engineering science courses come from the two major stems of mechanical engineering: (1) energy and fluids, and (2) structures and motion in mechanical systems. During their sophomore and junior years, students take four first-level courses from the structures/motion stem (including two courses in engineering mechanics, mechanics of materials, and materials science) and three first-level courses from the energy/fluids stem (including fluid mechanics, thermodynamics, and heat transfer). In their senior year, students have the opportunity to broaden and deepen their technical background through four advanced elective courses.

The required mechanical engineering design experience is integrated throughout the curriculum, beginning in the sophomore year and increasing in scope in each subsequent year. In the sophomore year, one engineering science course per semester requires a design project. In the junior year, design projects are required in each of the two courses. The design courses introduce students to formal design methodologies, the use of CAD systems, and the professional aspects of engineering, including safety considerations and professional ethics. In the senior year, the design experience culminates in a capstone design sequence that builds on previous coursework and in which small student teams work on major design projects. As part of the design experience, the professional aspects of engineering are stressed, including professional ethics, teamwork, and oral and written communications.

Students in the Mechanical Engineering Program gain experience in laboratory settings through experiments associated with all of their natural science courses (in the freshman and sophomore years) and with most of their engineering science courses (in their sophomore and junior years). Laboratory experience culminates in the senior year with an intensive mechanical measurements and instrumentation course.

Computer experience for mechanical engineering students begins in the freshman year with the required college-wide introductory computer course. It then continues throughout the curriculum, being required for some homework, projects, or laboratories in most subsequent engineering courses. Students gain experience in programming in MATLAB; and using commercial software packages for CAD, spreadsheet analysis, finite element analysis, and graphical-interface-driven laboratory systems for data acquisition, data analysis, and instrument control.

A total of 136 credits for the degree in Mechanical Engineering is required. In addition to satisfying all BS requirements as listed below, a minimum of 48 credits of coursework must be taken at Boston University in the upper-division program. The upper-division program consists of the program requirements and/or program electives as listed below for the junior and senior years. Social science, humanities, and/or writing courses taken during the junior or senior years cannot be counted toward this requirement.

Required Courses


First Semester (16 credits)

  • CAS CH 131 Principles of General Chemistry (4 cr)
  • CAS MA 123 Calculus I (4 cr)
  • CAS WR 100 Writing Seminar (4 cr)
  • ENG EK 100 Freshman Advising Seminar
  • ENG EK 125 Introduction to Programming for Engineers (4 cr)
    • or ENG EK 127 Introduction to Computation (for students who matriculated prior to Fall 2017 or earlier)

Second Semester (16 credits)

  • CAS MA 124 Calculus II (4 cr)
  • CAS PY 211 Physics I (4 cr)
  • CAS WR 150 Writing and Research Seminar (4 cr)
  • ENG EK 131/132 Introduction to Engineering (2 cr)
  • Linear Algebra Elective (ENG EK 102 or CAS MA 142) (2 cr)


First Semester (18 credits)

  • CAS MA 225 Multivariate Calculus (4 cr)
  • CAS PY 212 Physics II (4 cr)
  • ENG EK 301 Engineering Mechanics I (4 cr)
  • ENG EK 156 Design & Manufacture (2 cr)
  • Social science/humanities requirement (4 cr)

Second Semester (18 credits)

  • CAS MA 226 Differential Equations (4 cr)
  • ENG EK 307 Electric Circuits (4 cr)
  • ENG EK 210  Introduction to Engineering Design (2 cr)
  • Natural science elective (4 cr)
  • Social science/humanities requirement (4 cr)


First Semester (18 credits)

  • ENG ME 302 Engineering Mechanics II (4 cr)
  • ENG ME 303 Fluid Mechanics (4 cr)
  • ENG ME 304 Energy and Thermodynamics (4 cr)
  • ENG ME 359 Introduction to CAD and Machine Components (2 cr)
  • Social science/humanities requirement (4 cr)

Second Semester (14 credits)

  • ENG ME 366 Probability and Statistics for Mechanical Engineering (2 cr)
  • ENG ME 419 Heat Transfer (4 cr)
  • ENG ME 305 Mechanics of Materials (4 cr)
  • ENG ME 306 Materials Science (4 cr)
  • ENG ME 360 Product Design (4 cr)


First Semester (16 credits)

  • ENG ME 310 Instrumentation and Theory of Experiments (4 cr)
  • ENG ME 460 Electo-Mechanical Systems Design (4 cr)
  • Advanced elective (4 cr)
  • Advanced elective (4 cr)

Second Semester (16 credits)

  • ENG ME 461 Mechanical Engineering Capstone Experience (4 cr)
  • Social science/humanities requirement (4 cr)
  • Advanced elective (4 cr)
  • Advanced elective (4 cr)

Advanced Electives

These electives provide additional depth or breadth in either mechanical engineering science or another advanced technical or professional subject. Students must select courses that are on the list of acceptable courses found on the back of the Mechanical Engineering program planning sheet.