The undergraduate program in Systems Engineering is designed for students interested in bringing people and technologies together to improve the productivity and effectiveness of organizations and address complex, multidimensional problems in society and industry. Students receive exposure to a wide range of topics, including the economic, political, managerial, environmental, and technical aspects of large scale systems design and implementation. Students are provided with diverse opportunities for hands-on experience with real-world situations and problems.
The primary objectives of the Systems Engineering program are to graduate students who will:
- Engage in development, implementation, and optimization of systems that include humans, data and information, hardware, software, and natural and technology resources.
- Embark on sustainable, productive careers in systems engineering, applied science, and technology management.
- Excel in the practices of analytical modeling and integrative systems engineering.
- Seek and succeed in lifelong professional education that includes advanced schooling and mentoring.
- Contribute to the profession of systems engineering and to human welfare through professional societies, public service, and civic activities.
The Systems Engineering curriculum is more flexible than many traditional engineering programs. In addition to the courses specifically required in the curriculum, students are able to take nine credits of unrestricted electives, nine credits of electives tailored to an application area, and six credits of technical electives.
The curriculum allows students to pursue a specific area of interest within the broad framework of systems engineering. The following areas are available as application sequences: biomedical systems, communication systems, computer and information systems, control systems, economic systems, energy and environmental systems, financial systems, human factors, intelligent transportation systems, management systems, and mathematical systems. Appropriate ROTC courses may be counted as an application sequence in military systems. Additionally, there are opportunities for students with special interests and abilities to design their own unique application sequences.
The program culminates in a capstone design project, spanning both the fall and spring semesters of the fourth year. Students working in small teams under the direction of a faculty advisor are matched with a client from the public or private sector. Each team is assigned an open-ended design problem, and they apply the perspectives, methods, and tools of systems engineering that they learn in the classroom to the resolution of a problem for a client.
A degree in Systems Engineering from UVa confers employability in a wide range of industries, governmental agencies, and non-profits. It offers students a variety of career choices in engineering and management, and also provides excellent pre-med, pre-business, and pre-law preparation. The award-winning program is one of the largest systems engineering programs in the Unites States, and the graduates of the program consistently receive higher salary offers than the national average for other systems programs and other engineering disciplines. The program is accredited by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology and received the first award of the Board for Curricular Innovation. The program also received the Outstanding Educator Award from the Boeing Company, which recognized the Department of Systems and Information Engineering for its potential to “develop leaders prepared to shape the future.” An award from the U.S. Department of State enables a select group of fourth year Systems Engineering students to study in Brazil with their capstone team for a semester.
Admission to the program is based on space availability, academic performance, and extracurricular activities. Application forms and further information are available in the department office in Olsson 114.
“D” Policy: Students majoring in Systems Engineering must receive a grade of “C-” or better in all required SYS courses and all required 3000 or higher level APMA courses, and CS 2110 in order to earn the major in Systems Engineering. Furthermore, students must earn a grade of C- or better in all courses required as prerequisites for all SYS courses.
(make the following header bold) 4th Year Standing Policy: Students must have 4th year standing in order to enroll in SYS 4053 and 4054. 4th year standing is defined as follows: Regular policy: must have taken 6 or more classes in the standard SYS curriculum (2001, 2202 and 4 of the following: 3021, 3023, 3034, 3060, or 3062). Policy for students in the U.S. Brazil program: must have taken 4 or more classes in the standard SYS curriculum (including 2001, 2202, 3021, and 3023).
Transfer students’ policy: Transfer students from SEAS may petition the SIE undergraduate committee for admission into the Systems Engineering Major. If their petition is denied, they may apply for the major in the spring semester with the incoming second year class. They may take SYS 2004 in the meantime. If they are admitted to Systems Engineering and earn a grade of “C-“ or better in all courses required for the SIE major, SYS 2004 will satisfy the SYS 2202 requirement.
Transfer students from within the University (not SEAS) who apply for the systems major will have their applications reviewed in the semester they apply. If they are admitted, such admission will be probationary for one year. They may take SYS 2004 in the meantime. If they earn a grade of “C-“ or better in all courses required for the SIE major during the probationary year, they will be fully admitted to the major, and SYS 2004 will satisfy the SYS 2202 requirement.
Transfer students from other colleges and universities who apply to the Systems Engineering major will be admitted for a one year probationary period. During this time they will be permitted to take SYS 2202. If they earn a grade of “C-” or better in all courses required for the SIE major during the probationary year, they will be fully admitted to the major.