Academic Policies

Welcome Week Orientation. It is very important that all incoming students attend the MAE Orientation for new students held each fall. This will give students an overview of the department and the college system at UCSD. New students will hear about the dates and times for the MAE Orientation in the Welcome letter they receive from us in August.


UCSD undergraduate students enroll in one of six colleges: Revelle, John Muir, Thurgood Marshall, Earl Warren, Eleanor Roosevelt , or Sixth College. The colleges are distinguished by their particular educational philosophy and environment. The choice of college is independent of the choice of major; all colleges are open to all majors.

Each student must satisfy general education course requirements determined by the college, as well as the major requirements determined by the department. The six colleges require widely different general education courses. The number of general education courses required by each college beyond the mathematics, physics, chemistry and engineering courses included in the MAE major programs are listed and range from 9 courses in Earl Warren College to 13-17 courses in Revelle College.

The four-year programs in mechanical and aerospace engineering allow for a maximum of 10 general education courses if a full schedule is taken each quarter. The non-accredited four-year engineering science program allows for a maximum of 13 general education courses with a full schedule. Depending on the number of Advanced Placement credits students enroll with, students from certain colleges may not be able to graduate in the four-year schedule presented in the MAE curriculum tables.

In the ABET accredited programs, students must take a total of at least twenty-four units in the arts, humanities, and social sciences, not including subjects such as accounting, industrial management, finance, or personnel administration. This requirement is typically satisfied by the general education requirements of all colleges.

Number of General education Courses Beyond Those Required by MAE Major Program

College Additional Courses
Earl Warren 9
Sixth College 9 - 13
Thurgood Marshall 10
John Muir 11-12
Eleanor Roosevelt 13-14
Revelle 13-17


Specific course requirements for each major program are outlined in grids. In addition to the required technical courses specifically indicated, a suggested scheduling of humanities and social science courses (HSS) are distributed in the curricula for students to use to meet college general-education requirements. To graduate, students must maintain an overall GPA of at least 2.0, and the department requires at least a C- grade in each course required for the major. **All courses required for the major must be taken for a letter grade.** Deviations from the prescribed programs of study must be approved by the Undergraduate Affairs Committee prior to taking alternative courses. In addition, technical elective (TE) course selections must have departmental approval prior to taking the courses if they are not selected from the pre-approved list. A complete list of technical electives for each major is available in the MAE Student Affairs lobby (EBU II, first floor). In the accredited programs, TE courses are restricted to meet ABET standards. Courses such as MAE 195, 197, and 198 are not allowed as technical electives in meeting the upper-division major requirements. MAE 199 can be used as a technical elective only under special conditions. Policy regarding these conditions may be obtained from the department's Student Affairs Office.

Students are strongly encouraged to complete lower and upper-division courses in a timely fashion and in the sequences outlined. Deviation in scheduling of MAE upper-division courses is strongly discouraged. Lower-division courses are offered more than once each year to permit students some flexibility in their program scheduling. However, many MAE upper-division courses are taught only once per year, and the courses are scheduled to be consistent with the curricula as shown in the grids. Students taking upper-division courses in a different order than that shown in the tables may experience conflicts as the schedules of different courses may overlap. A list of course offerings is available from the department each spring for the following academic year.

Frequently Asked Questions