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Nuclear Engineering Major Guide for 2010-2011

What is Nuclear Engineering

Nuclear Engineering is the engineering discipline that focuses on the application of sub-atomic processes for the benefit of mankind. Some examples of such applications are listed below:

    *      Production of electric power with essentially no air pollution

    *      Processes for the diagnosis and treatment of diseases such as cancer

    *      Activation analysis for identifying materials including environmental pollutants and contaminants

    *      Radiography inspection of welds in bridges and boilers

    *      Food preservation and sterilization of medical supplies

    *      Radioisotope gauges for use in manufacturing processes

    *      Nuclear measurement techniques for oil well logging and airport security

    *      Radioactive tracer elements for use in medical research

    *      Generation of radioisotope power for deep space exploration

High School Preparation

Core academic subjects required for
• 4 units of English
• 2 units of algebra
• 1 unit of geometry, trigonometry,
advanced math or calculus
• 2 units of natural science, including
at least 1 unit of biology, chemistry
or physics
• 1 unit of American history
• 1 unit of European history, world
history or world geography
• 2 units of a single foreign language
• 1 unit of visual or performing arts
Computer courses prior to the freshman year in engineering are also highly recommended. Prospective students who want to enter the engineering program are also required to meet the criteria of the “Success Prediction Index” (SPI). The formula for SPI is 10 x high school core GPA + math ACT score. The college is gradually increasing the required SPI score.  Check the UT Admissions or College of Engineering web sites to determine the current SPI required. Students who are unable to meet this requirement may register as “university undecided” students and complete appropriate
mathematics, science and other courses before applying for admission to the COE.

How to Major in Nuclear Engineering

Students applying to the university should specify nuclear engineering as their chosen major when completing the admission form. Students transferring from other departments within UT or from other educational institutions
should contact the department for more information regarding the appropriate entry level and any additional required
courses. For more information on the admissions process, see Admissions

Requirements for Nuclear Engineering

The Nuclear Engineering department currently does not have any special requirements for admission to the nuclear engineering program, other than the general admission requirements for the university and the college. College of Engineering students at the sophomore level and above are required to own personal computers for class work. For more information, please visit

Special Programs, Co-ops, and Internships

All UT freshman engineering students are automatically enrolled in the innovative Engage Engineering Fundamentals
Program, designed to help students learn basic engineering concepts and teamwork skills through a series of hands-on projects and activities:

The College of Engineering’s Office of Professional Practice (OPP) provides income-generating opportunities for engineering students to experience realworld engineering challenges through internship programs. Both programs offer
structured learning environments where students develop increasing responsibilities by holding full-time paid positions
in a professional environment related to their academic and career goals:

In addition to financial and scholarship programs available to all students, the college also provides special scholarships
and support programs to minority students, including:
• Diversity Engineering Scholarship Program (DESP)
• Engineering Diversity Programs Office (EDP)
• The Pipeline Engineering Diversity Program
• Tennessee Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (TLSAMP)

The College of Engineering also participates in the University Honors Program, which is designed to give academically
outstanding students a unique undergraduate experience consisting of special courses, seminars, mentoring and
research projects.

The UT Center for International Education collaborates with the COE to create opportunities for engineering students to study in other countries: 

Highlights of Nuclear Engineering

The Nuclear Engineering Department at The University of Tennessee offers exceptional opportunities to its students. Graduates contribute to an important technology needed by the United States to maintain its standard of living and its place in the world economy. This page provides information about UT's Nuclear Engineering program and career opportunities for graduates. Some of the main points are:

    * Excellent academic program. The department benefits from its association with nearby Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the concentration of nuclear research and industry in the area.

    * Reasonable cost. Tuition and fees are among the lowest of the top academic institutions in America. Nuclear Engineering students from Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, South Carolina, Virginia and West Virginia can qualify for the same instate tuition and fees paid by Tennessee residents. This major savings is made possible by an agreement among Southeastern states called the Academic Common Market.

    * Scholarship opportunities. Nuclear Engineering students have excellent scholarship opportunities from UT, from national organizations which provide nuclear engineering scholarships, and from the UT Nuclear Engineering Department.

    * Accelerated program to obtain Master of Science. The UT Nuclear Engineering Department has developed the Master Student Program in which top undergraduates begin their graduate course work and graduate research while still an undergraduate. This reduces the time required to obtain a M.S. degree after the B.S. by as much as one half.

Ready for the World logoReady for the World

Engineering students can take part in UT Study Abroad programs throughout the world. There are programs in Asia, Europe, Africa, Australia, South America, and North America. You can take classes during one semester, mini-term, summer, or the whole academic year.  There are also opportunities for international internships and other work experiences.  See the websites at the Engineering Outreach Office and Programs Abroad Office for more information.

Learn more about UT's Ready for the World initiative to help students gain the international and intercultural knowledge they need to succeed in today's world.

Sample Curriculum

Freshman Year Credit Hours
CHEM 120 * or CHEM 128 *, CHEM 130 * or CHEM 138 * 8
ENGL 101 * or ENGL 118 *, ENGL 102 * 6
EF 105 , EF 151  or EF 157 , EF 152  or EF 158 9
MATH 141 * or MATH 147 *, MATH 142 * or MATH 148 * 8
Sophomore Year Credit Hours
Arts and Humanities Elective* 3
ECON 201 * or ECON 207 * 4
ECE 301 3
ME 202 2
EF 230 2
MATH 231 , MATH 241  or MATH 247 7
ME 331 3
PHYS 231 *, PHYS 232 * 7
NE 200 1
Junior Year Credit Hours
Cultures and Civilizations Elective* 3
MATH 403 3
NE 342 , NE 351 , NE 360 ,  ,  , NE 470 19
PHYS 341 3
Social Sciences Elective* 3
Senior Year Credit Hours
Cultures and Civilizations Elective* 3
EF 402 1
MSE 201 3
ME 321 3
NE 400 *, NE 402 *, NE 406 , NE 472 11
PHIL 241 *, PHIL 243 *, or PHIL 244 * 3
1Technical Electives 6
* Meets University General Education Requirement.
1 Technical electives are selected from upper-division mathematics, chemistry, physics, and engineering courses and must be pre-approved by the department.

For More Information



The information on this page should be considered general information only. For more specific information on this and other programs refer to the UT catalog or contact the department and/or college directly.