First-Year Engineering Program

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Fundamentals of Engineering

The First-Year Engineering course sequence is a prerequisite for declaring most engineering majors at OSU. Incoming freshmen take a two-semester series which broadly introduces the topics of:

  • Technical graphics
  • Computer-aided design
  • Programming in MATLAB
  • Engineering design and analysis
  • Project management
  • Ethics in engineering
  • Teamwork
  • Oral and written technical communication

Topics and laboratories provide a broad overview of engineering disciplines. Many "undecided" freshmen use these courses to help them narrow down and declare a major of their interest in the College of Engineering.

Program Advantages

These courses offer an unparalleled engineering experience due to their:

  • Broad Introduction to Engineering - Students can take engineering courses beginning their first semester. Labs and projects given throughout the sequence are designed to provide as broad an introduction to engineering as possible.
  • Team Work Experience - Prospective employers greatly favor candidates who demonstrate the ability to work in teams. By the end of these fundamentals courses experience, students will have had many valuable group work experiences.
  • Presentation Practice - Presentation and communication skills will be enhanced, and students will learn the importance of documentation in engineering. These are valuable assets when looking for a job or internship.

Course Sequences

The First-Year Engineering Program consists of three different course sequences, designed to give students a broad understanding of the principles and practices of engineering:

The two-semester, Standard sequence teaches basic engineering skills to prepare students for advanced courses, internships and careers in engineering. The Honors sequence accomplishes the same objectives but in a more accelerated fashion with a programming course built in to the series. 

All three program options entail a major, design-build project. The continuously updated curriculum, taught by faculty and professional engineers, exposes students to different engineering disciplines and helps develop the most up-to-date and practically relevant skills.



The Transfer Sequence assists students who may already have elements of the program to progress more quickly. The transfer series entails the courses Engineering 1186, 1187, and 1188.



Each version of the Fundamentals of Engineering program is associated with a competition held during the last course of the sequence:




First Year Areas

Contact Information

To learn more about the First-Year Engineering program, please contact

Dr. Dale Masel
Associate Chair, EED