Rice University logoGeorge R. Brown School of Engineering
Electrical and Computer Engineering

Undergraduate Program 

 * Course Notes and Changes for 2013-2014 academic year  *  

The department offers two undergraduate degrees: the bachelor of arts (BA) and the bachelor of science in electrical engineering (BSEE). The BA degree provides a basic foundation in electrical and computer engineering that the student can build on to construct a custom program. Because of its flexibility and large number of free electives, the BA can be combined easily with courses from other departments to create an interdisciplinary program. This may be particularly appropriate for students planning further study in law, business, or medicine. The program leading to the BA Degree is not  accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET.


The program leading to the BSEE Degree is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) of ABET*, http://www.abet.org. The BSEE degree is the usual degree taken by those students planning a career of engineering practice. The program for the BSEE requires more hours and greater depth than the BA degree, however it still provides considerable flexibility and can reduce the time required to become a licensed professional engineer.  In the final year, BSEE students undertake a capstone design project.  Both degrees are organized around a core of required courses and a selection of elective courses from three  Specialization Areas: Computer Engineering, Neuroengineering, Photonics and Nanoengineering, and Systems.  Each student's program must contain a depth sequence in one area and courses from at least two areas to provide breadth.  The specialization electives provide the flexibility to create a focus that crosses traditional areas.  Because of the number of options, students should consult early with departmental advisors to plan a program that meets their needs.

Students considering a major in Electrical and Computer Engineering should take physics (PHYS 101, 102) and calculus (MATH 101, 102) in their Freshman year, and perhaps CHEM 121, or COMP 140 depending on their area of interest. The first core courses in the department, ELEC 220, ELEC 241, and ELEC 261 are usually taken during the Sophomore year, along with more math and science. Students entering with advanced placement have more scheduling options and may take some of these core courses in Freshman year. Student should consult with one of the department's undergraduate advisors.