What is Mechanical Engineering
Mechanical engineering is the application of the laws of solid and fluid mechanics and the thermal sciences to the analysis, design and/or manufacturing of systems and products. Mechanical engineers play a key role in national, state and local economies by bringing their expertise in the development of power generation systems (such as steam turbines, jet engines and internal combustion engines) which provide mechanical power to all segments of society. They also bring essential expertise to manufacturing processes, efficient production methods and automation vital to the well-being of the national economy. Their expertise and involvement in the analysis, design and development of new products and materials for new devices and systems produce economic activity and provide employment opportunities which sustain high standards of living. The mechanical engineering program at UT offers fundamental education in the engineering sciences and engineering design. The engineering science component educates students in the fundamental principles of engineering, while the engineering design component emphasizes design methodology, enhances creative skills and develops student ability to solve open ended problems of the type common to industry.
The undergraduate experience is broad-based and includes, in the first two years, general education in mathematics, sciences and preliminary design courses that are common with curricula in other engineering programs. The discipline of a rigorous technical program along with education in the humanities and social sciences provides a good foundation for a rich and rewarding career in a dynamic marketplace.
The objectives of the mechanical engineering degree program are:
• to prepare students for professional careers by developing their skills in problem formulation, problem solving, analysis, computation, synthesis, teamwork and effective communication
• to teach students the underlying principles of mechanical and thermal systems and the application of these principles in the design process
• to instill in students an appreciation for the importance of lifelong learning, individual professionalism and ethical practice
• to prepare capable students for graduate study at major universities
The university’s engineering programs are fully accredited by the ABET Engineering Accreditation Program.
Career Opportunities in Mechanical Engineering
Because of the broad-based education received in mechanical engineering, mechanical engineers play a vital role in a wide variety of industries (e.g., aerospace, automotive, electronics, power utilities, chemical, petroleum, textile, manufacturing); federal agencies (e.g., NASA, DOE, DOD, FAA); consulting firms, national laboratories (e.g., ORNL, SANDIA). In these different sectors, mechanical engineers are involved in analysis and design of systems and products; manufacturing, automation and control of production and processes; heating, ventilation, and air conditioning systems; and research. Mechanical engineers are also found at every level of management. Mechanical engineers have been and will continue to be in great demand in all of the areas listed above. A good resource is the U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook http://stats.bls.gov/oco/ocos027.htm.
High School Preparation
Core academic subjects required for admission can be found on the Undergraduate Admissions website http://admissions.utk.edu/undergraduate/apply/requirements.shtml.
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 of Engineering admission requirements can be found in the Undergraduate Catalog http://catalog.utk.edu/content.php?catoid=6&navoid=488. Students who are unable to meet the admission requirements may register as “university undecided” students and complete appropriate mathematics, science and other courses before applying for admission to Engineering the following year.
How to Major in Mechanical Engineering
The mechanical engineering degree program is administered by the UT Department of Mechanical, Aerospace and Biomedical Engineering (MABE). Students applying to the university should specify mechanical 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.
Requirements for Mechanical Engineering
The MABE department currently does not have any special requirements for admission to the mechanical 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 laptop computers for class work. For more information, please visit http://www.engr.utk.edu/futurestudents/computers.html.
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: www.engr.utk.edu/efd
The College of Engineering’s Office of Professional Practice (EPP) provides income-generating opportunities for engineering students to experience realworld engineering challenges through cooperative education (co-op) and 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: www.coop.utk.edu
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) www.engr.utk.edu/desp
• Engineering Diversity Programs Office (EDP) www.engr.utk.edu/edp
• Tennessee Louis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation (TLSAMP) www.engr.utk.edu/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: http://www.utk.edu/honors/. All majors in Engineering have Honors Concentrations http://www.engr.utk.edu/academics/honors.html.
The UT Center for International Education collaborates with Engineering to create opportunities for engineering students to study in other countries: http://studyabroad.utk.edu/.
Highlights of Mechanical Engineering
Students in mechanical engineering are provided with many design experiences that build on previous exposure to elements of design and culminates in capstone project classes. This experience has resulted in numerous championships for UT teams in both regional and national competitions.
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.
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.
|Freshman Year||Credit Hours|
|ENGL 101 * or ENGL 118 *, ENGL 102||6|
|CHEM 120 * or CHEM 128 *||4|
|MATH 141 * or MATH 147 *, MATH 142 * or MATH 148 *||8|
|EF 105 , EF 151 or EF 157 , EF 152 or EF 158||9|
|Cultures and Civilizations Elective*||3|
|Critical Courses: Math 141/147 and 142/148; EF 151/157 and 152/158; Chemistry 120/128|
|Sophomore Year||Credit Hours|
|MATH 231 , MATH 241 or MATH 247 , MATH 251 or MATH 257||10|
|PHYS 231 *||3|
|ME 231 , ME 321||6|
|ECON 201 * or ECON 207 *||4|
|Cultures and Civilizations Elective*||3|
|Arts & Humanities Elective *||3|
|Critical Courses: math 231, 251; ME 231, 321; Physics 231|
|Junior Year||Credit Hours|
|ME 331 , ME 344 , ME 345 , ME 363 , ME 366 , ME 466||18|
|Departmental Elective (Any 300-level or above course in aerospace, biomedical, or mechanical engineering)||3|
|Critical Courses: ME 331, 344, 345, 363, 391|
|Senior Year||Credit Hours|
|ME 410 (OC) *, ME 475 , ME 449 (WC) , ME 450 , ME 460||13|
|ME 365 or ME 463||3|
|Technical Elective (Must be pre-approved and petitioned by the advisor and department head)||3|
|Departmental Electives (Any 300-level or above course in aerospace, biomedical, or mechanical engineering)||6|
|Social Sciences Elective*||3|
|Arts and Humanities Elective*||3|
|* Meets general education requirements|
|Critical Courses: ME 410, 449, 450, 460, 475|
|*Meets University General Education Requirement .|
|1 Students receiving a grade of A or B in ENGL 118 will complete their first year composition requirement by choosing ENGL 102 , a sophomore literature course in the English Department, or ENGL 355 .|
|2 Choose any course from the University General Education list .|
|3 Any 300-level or above courses in aerospace, biomedical, or mechanical engineering that are not already required.|
|4 Must be pre-approved and petitioned by the advisor and department head.|
In addition to satisfying the requirements for the mechanical engineering major, candidates for the honors mechanical engineering concentration must also complete the following requirements.
- First-year courses for honors concentrations in the engineering majors. (Note: Most of the honors requirements are course substitutions for the mechanical engineering major.)
- Two upper-division honors courses in mechanical engineering via Honors-by-Contract or Honors Independent study. If participating in only the Chancellor’s Honors Program, the Honors-by-Contract paperwork goes to the Chancellor’s Honors Office on campus during the first 10 days of the semester. If participating in Engineering Honors and not Chancellor’s Honors, the Honors-by-Contract paperwork is submitted the first 10 days of the semester to the engineering major department. If participating in both Chancellor’s and Engineering Honors, the Honors-by-Contract paperwork is submitted to both areas.
- A minimum of 3-credit hours of an honors senior design course. This requirement is normally satisfied as part of the senior capstone design course (ME 460 ).
|The department offers a 5 year BS-MS program for qualified students. The primary component of the program is that qualified students may take up to 9 hours of approved graduate courses for their senior undergraduate electives and have them count toward both their bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Tennessee. This program is designed for students attending the University of Tennessee for their Master of Science degree because other universities may not accept these courses for graduate credit since they were used to satisfy requirements for the Bachelor of Science degree. Significant components of the program are: