1997-1998 Bulletin Information

For current bulletin information see

Dean: David T. Hayhurst (460-6140)
Associate Dean: Wilford D. Raburn (460-6140)
Director of Graduate Studies: B. Keith Harrison (460-6140)

Chemical Engineering
Civil Engineering
Electrical and Computer Engineering
Mechanical Engineering

The College of Engineering offers programs of study leading to the following degrees:
Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering
Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering
Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering
Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering
Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Master of Science in Chemical Engineering
Master of Science in Electrical Engineering
Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering

Admission to the University of South Alabama constitutes admission to the College of Engineering for those students wishing to major in engineering. Incoming students must specify a particular discipline in the College as a major in order that they may receive proper counseling and pursue their engineering course work. Transfer students must declare a major and have all transfer credit evaluated by the Admissions Office. The department chair will approve transfer credit for engineering degree credit except where substitutions are involved; substitutions require the approval of the dean. Transfer students are encouraged to have departmental evaluations accomplished prior to their first registration for classes.

Entering freshmen students not adequately prepared to enter the degree program may be required to take additional preparatory course work. Such preparatory work will not be counted toward the major degree program.

Students must have the prerequisites for the courses in which they enroll; students who enroll without prerequisites are subject to administrative withdrawal by the dean. Prerequisites are satisfied by courses taken either at South Alabama or by acceptable transfer credit. Students not exempted from EH 101 will be required to take it as a prerequisite to EH 102.

Today's society is permeated by an extensive technology that affects the lives of everyone. The engineering function in this modern society--while basically unchanged from the goal of using natural resources for the betterment of mankind--has more far-reaching and immediate consequences than ever before through the social, economic, environmental, and political reactions that follow technological developments.

The engineering profession has recognized that to fulfill the social as well as technical responsibilities incumbent upon today's engineer, engineering graduates must not only be technically competent, but must also be as broadly educated as possible within the allotted educational time period. To this end, the College of Engineering strives to prepare its students ultimately to assume their responsibilities by providing technically sound programs of instruction that incorporates a strong component in the humanities and social sciences. Graduates are prepared to take industrial positions, to assume positions with government, or to pursue graduate studies.

Engineering students may also qualify as pre-medical students should they desire to apply for admission to medical school. Students interested in medical careers should consult with the Dean of the College of Medicine.

PROFESSIONAL COMPONENT STANDING FOR UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAM All departments in the College of Engineering require Professional Component Standing (PCS) for most 300- and 400-level courses. PCS is awarded by the appropriate department chair when the student does the following:

  1. Completes a required set of fundamental courses;
  2. Has at least a 2.00 GPA (2.25 in EE) or "C" level competency for certain departmentally specified courses taken at the University of South Alabama; and
  3. Has at least a 2.00 GPA (2.25 in EE) overall at the University of South Alabama.

Students who fail to maintain PCS criteria will lose PCS and may be required to take or repeat appropriate courses as specified by the department chair to correct their deficiencies and may not be permitted to continue in the 300- and 400-level engineering courses. See departmental policy statements for additional details.

To become a candidate for a Bachelor of Science degree in one of the five major disciplines within the College of Engineering, the student must satisfy the general requirements of the University as set forth in "Academic Information," and must have satisfactorily completed the program of instruction specified by the major department. In addition to these requirements, the Engineering student must have at least a GPA of 2.00 or C-level competency in all subjects taken in the student's major department at the University of South Alabama.

A transfer student must complete at least 48 hours of approved courses with at least 24 hours in the upper level of the student's major department at the University of South Alabama.

The humanities and social sciences in the Engineering curricula are an integral part of the Engineering educational program. These courses must be selected by the student from an approved College listing. Concentrations of at least eight quarter hours in each of the humanities and social sciences are required.

Subjects such as accounting; industrial management; art and musical skills; finance; and personnel administration do not fulfill the objectives desired of the humanities and social-sciences curriculum content.

Engineering students are required to take the Fundamentals of Engineering examination (FE examination) of Alabama or another state prior to graduation. Students should be aware of the 45-day advance deadline established by the State Board of Registration for submission of examination application materials. Failure to meet the deadline could result in delayed graduation.

After an absence of one calendar year or when transferring into an engineering program, students must use the Bulletin in effect at the time of readmission or transfer, or a later version. No student may use a Bulletin older than six years from the date of graduation.

The College of Engineering also offers an attractive five year Cooperative Education Program. This program allows the student to gain valuable engineering experience as he or she pursues his or her degree. The first year is spent as a full time student at the university. During the sophomore and junior years the student alternates working full time with an attractive salary for one quarter and taking full time courses work the next quarter. The student returns to school full time for the senior year.

This program offers many advantages for the student. Interested students should consult with either Career Services Center or the College of Engineering.

The College of Engineering offers programs leading to degrees of Master of Science in Chemical, Electrical and Mechanical Engineering. The Department of Civil Engineering offers graduate level course work but does not offer a graduate degree program at present.

The programs of study are designed to provide knowledge of modern engineering concepts and practices; to prepare the graduate for the practice of engineering at a higher level of proficiency than attainable with the bachelor's degree; and to prepare the graduate for further study toward the doctoral degree should the graduate so desire. The programs comprise course work and directed theoretical and experimental inquiry in thesis or project research and are available at night to accommodate the full-time employed engineer.

Foundation courses in the three areas are offered on a two year cycle and are arranged so that a student should be able to begin study at any time in the cycle.

The Mechanical Engineering program admits students only in the fall, winter, and spring quarters. The Chemical and Electrical Engineering programs admit students each quarter.
The following criteria supplement the Graduate School criteria (see Categories of Admission):


    a) An ABET accredited B.S. degree in engineering in a relevant field.

    b) For those students not holding an ABET accredited B.S. degree in engineering: a B.S. degree in engineering in a relevant field and a minimum combined score of 1100 on the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Exam.

    c) For international students, a minimum score of 550 on the TOEFL test is required. If an international student has earned a bachelor's or graduate degree at an accredited United States institution of higher education, the TOEFL test is not required.

    a) An ABET accredited B.S. degree in engineering or a minimum combined score of 900 on the verbal and quantitative sections of the Graduate Record Examination is required. Applicants for Chemical Engineering may substitute an American Chemical Society accredited B.S. degree in chemistry in place of the ABET degree.

    b) A BS in engineering or in a field acceptable to the departmental Graduate Admissions Committee is required Depending on the student's background additional undergraduate preparatory courses may be required. These courses will not count toward the Master's degree.

    c) A minimum grade-point average of 2.5 on all undergraduate work (A=4.0) including a minimum grade-point average of 2.5 over the last 96 course hours of undergraduate work or, a minimum grade-point average of 2.75 over the last 96 course hours of undergraduate work is required.

    Each applicant will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee of the appropriate department which may reserve the right to evaluate additional credentials, such as, but not limited to, course work taken, letters of recommendation, etc.

    The above are minimum requirements for admission.

The following requirements are in addition to the Graduate School requirements for change of status:

  1. Students required to complete additional undergraduate course work in partial fulfillment of the requirements to advance from Provisional Admission to Regular Admission must obtain a minimum grade-point average of at least 3.00 on the total of all such required courses with a grade of at least C in each course.
  2. The Department of Electrical Engineering requires all students to pass a qualifying examination to advance from Provisional to Regular Admission. This admission examination covers five areas (digital system design, linear system theory, electronics, electromagnetics, and energy conversion) from the field of electrical engineering. The examination must be taken prior to the quarter in which the student registers for the 17th hour of course work toward the student's graduate degree program. Students should contact the Electrical Engineering Graduate Coordinator.

Each student will have a graduate advisory committee and a faculty advisor. The student's program of study must be approved by the advisory committee and all courses taken must have the approval of the student's faculty advisor.

Two plans of study are offered. The Thesis Option requires a minimum of 48 hours credit including a thesis. The Project Option requires a minimum of 52 hours credit including a project. The thesis differs from the project in that the thesis is usually oriented toward original engineering research whereas the project is usually oriented toward engineering applications. Within the total minimum requirements the following minimum distributions must also be met:

Engineering 24 hours minimum
Supporting Areas 12 hours minimum
Approved Elective 4 hours minimum
Thesis 8 hours minimum

Engineering 28 hours minimum
Supporting Areas 16 hours minimum
Approved Elective 4 hours minimum
Project 4 hours minimum

Supporting areas include mathematics, natural sciences, basic medical sciences, computer sciences, statistics as well as engineering.

A maximum of 8 hours of directed study may be counted toward the degree. A maximum of 12 hours of thesis may be counted toward the degree.

Students must complete satisfactorily a comprehensive examination. Students failing this examination may try a second time not sooner than 12 weeks after the first attempt. Students failing the second time will be academically dismissed from the program.

The thesis or project candidate must present a satisfactory oral defense of the written report. Should the student present an unsatisfactory defense, a second attempt will be allowed not sooner than 12 weeks after the first attempt. A second unsatisfactory defense will result in dismissal from the program.

An engineering senior at the University of South Alabama within 12 hours of graduation with a GPA of 3.00 or better may with approval of the Director of Graduate Studies enroll in graduate engineering courses provided the total quarter load does not exceed 16 hours. However, the same courses may not be counted toward both the undergraduate and any future graduate degree.

College of Engineering

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