Jul 12, 2024  
2024/25 Combined UM UMM Undergraduate Catalog 
2024/25 Combined UM UMM Undergraduate Catalog

Engineering Physics

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Minimum number of credits required to graduate: 125

Minimum Cumulative GPA required to graduate: 2.0

Minimum Grade requirements for courses to count toward major: A grade of “C-” or better is required for all prerequisite courses in the major in order to proceed to subsequent courses in the major. 

Other GPA requirements to graduate: A minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 (“C”) in the major (physics plus engineering sequence). 

Required Course(s) for fulfilling Capstone Experience: PHY 400   and the sequence of PHY 481  and PHY 482  or HON 498   and HON 499  

Contact Information: MacKenzie Stetzer, Associate Professor, Acting Chair, Department of Physics and Astronomy, 120 Bennett Hall, 207.581.1039,  umphysicschair@maine.edu

The Engineering Physics Program, offered by the Department of Physics and Astronomy, is designed for students who are interested in not only a particular engineering field, but also in physics and mathematics that provide a foundation for that field. Thus, the mission of the Engineering Physics Program is to offer an accredited Bachelor of Science degree that combines a meaningful sequence of engineering courses within a particular engineering field with a traditional high-quality undergraduate physics education. The goals of the program are to prepare graduates to directly enter the modern workplace or go on to graduate study, either in their chosen engineering field or in physics.

Graduates of the University of Maine Engineering Physics Program are able to:

  • Use the versatility afforded by the engineering physics degree to collaborate with a dynamic, diverse, and technically sophisticated workforce by successfully employing engineering/scientific skills, developed at UMaine, in a wide range of fields.
  • Continuously improve and expand their technical and professional skills through informal self-study, coursework, pursuit of licensure, or the attainment of advanced degrees in science, engineering, business, or other professional fields.
  • Advance the profession and themselves through ethical behavior, communication, teamwork and leadership.
  • Recognize the importance of civic engagement and support the significant roles that engineering and science play in the betterment of society. 

Therefore, preparation also includes an introduction to the humanities, social sciences, communications, and a sensitivity to issues of ethics and professional practice.

Furthermore, the program encourages majors to participate in student professional organizations, including the Society of Physics Students, the Society of Women Engineers, and the various student societies within the student’s chosen engineering field. In addition, majors frequently qualify for membership in the honor societies Sigma Pi Sigma and Tau Beta Pi, among others.

For further information visit our website, physics.umaine.edu

Program Description
The basic curriculum of required courses, combined with electives in science, engineering, the humanities, and social sciences, culminates in a two-semester engineering design capstone experience. Of the 122 credits, 45 are electives, permitting each major, in consultation with both her/his physics advisor and engineering advisor, to put together a significant core of engineering courses in their engineering field of choice, and to satisfy the University General Education Requirements through electives supportive of their professional goals.

The program consists of a minimum of 24 credits of engineering courses, most of which lie in the student’s area of engineering concentration, along with a technical elective for a total of 24-30 credits. (A technical elective can be an Astronomy, Physics, Engineering, Chemistry, Mathematics, Computer Science or other approved science course, generally at the 300-level or higher.) The engineering concentrations include Biomedical, Chemical, Civil and Environmental, Computer, Electrical, and Mechanical. Engineers teach all engineering courses taken by engineering physics majors.

The program requires a laboratory course in physics in each of eight semesters. These laboratory experiences emphasize the ability to conduct experiments, analysis and interpretation of data, working with modern instrumentation and meeting deadlines. When possible, students work in teams alongside majors outside the Maine College of Engineering and Computing. Most experiments require written laboratory reports. The junior year laboratory sequence is also a writing intensive experience. An English instructor meets regularly with majors to develop their technical writing skills, through assignments, guided revision and assessment.

Five courses in mathematics (in addition to a computer programming course) are required, with the upper-level selections involving topics pertinent to engineering. A minor in mathematics can be earned with one additional mathematics course beyond these five and our required PHY 231  . Approximately 50% of graduating Engineering Physics majors earn a minor in mathematics.

The Engineering Physics program requires satisfactory completion of at least 122 credits at an accumulative grade point average of not less than 2.0. The program in Engineering Physics is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org

The Department of Physics and Astronomy offers graduate programs leading to the following degrees: Master of Engineering in Engineering Physics, Master of Science in Physics, and Doctor of Philosophy in Physics. Further information about these programs is contained in the Graduate School online Catalog.

Cooperative “Work Experience” Program Option
Engineering Physics majors who have completed both their sophomore year and 16 credits in physics courses can participate in the cooperative education program. This program integrates a practical work opportunity at an industrial facility (obtained through a specific period of employment) with on-campus classroom and laboratory experiences. Academic credit is received through enrollment in PHY 495 Engineering Physics Practice.

Employment Opportunities
Engineering Physics graduates work in industry, universities, government agencies, and private practice. Roughly half go directly to an engineering/physics employment opportunity immediately after graduation. Others continue their education in graduate programs in engineering, physics, law (e.g. patent law), business and medicine. Employment in industries producing electronics products, optical products, and the nuclear/radiation medicine field is popular. Because the Engineering Physics major is familiar with both the practice of engineering and the scientific approach to problem solving, our students are often sought out for multidisciplinary employment opportunities. Recent multidisciplinary employment examples include navigation instrumentation (Lincoln Laboratories), nuclear radiation monitoring (The State of Maine), and optical and acoustical effects (The Walt Disney Corporation).

The Department of Physics and Astronomy has several large scholarship endowments. The Department awards between 25 and 35 scholarships each year to its undergraduate majors. The Maine College of Engineering and Computing also offers scholarships and awards supported by endowments within the College and from Maine industries.

Required Courses in Suggested Sequence for the B.S. in Engineering Physics

The recommended sequence of the four-year curriculum is shown below. Copies of the curriculum, with detailed explanations of the recommendations, can be obtained in the Office of the Department of Physics and Astronomy, or on the department webpage (https://physics.umaine.edu/undergraduate-programs/).  There are possible alterations to this schedule and substitutions may be made for some courses on approval of the Chair of the Department of Physics and Astronomy. Students desiring to transfer from another engineering program in their first or second year, into Engineering Physics, may do so without loss of credit or delays in graduation. The considerable flexibility in the Engineering Physics program will allow a student to design an individual curriculum with the assistance of her/his advisor.

First Year - First Semester

First Year - Second Semester

Second Year - First Semester

Second Year - Second Semester

Third Year - First Semester

Third Year - Second Semester

Fourth Year - First Semester

Fourth Year - Second Semester

Special Requirements:

1 Students are required to take a course in computer programming. The list of acceptable courses includes: COS 125, COS 220, CIE 115 (Civil Engineering concentration), ECE 177 (Electrical or Computer Engineering concentration), and MEE 125 (Mechanical Engineering concentration). Other course substitutions require the permission of your advisor and approval of the Chairperson. Computer programming courses in an engineering department do not count as part of the engineering sequence.

For students who have not chosen an Engineering Concentration during their first year, it is recommended they discuss possible courses with their advisors.  Otherwise, students can follow the suggested options for specific concentrations that follow in this guide.

3 Human Values/Social Context and Ethics, part of the university’s general education requirements, can be satisfied by careful selection of at least six three-credit courses.

PHY 231 can be used as one of the courses needed to obtain a minor in mathematics, provided it is the only non-MAT course used for the minor.

5 Choose from MAT 262, STS 332, STS 434, MAT 452, MAT 454, MAT 459, MAT 471, PHY 574 or approved similar mathematics courses. PHY 574 may be counted as either a mathematics elective or a physics elective, but not both.

6 A technical elective can be an Astronomy, Physics, Engineering, Chemistry, Mathematics, Computer Science or other approved science course, at the 300 level or higher.

Any physics or astronomy course at the 400 level or higher is appropriate. 

Engineering Physics students receive instruction and evaluation in technical writing as part of the junior laboratory sequence (PHY 364 and PHY 365). Students not evaluated as satisfactory may be required to take an additional course, such as ENG 317, which can be counted as a free elective. 

All Engineering Physics students must take a thermodynamics course, typically MEE 230 or CHE 385.

Physics Electives

For more detail, please see http://physics.umaine.edu/undergraduate-programs/degree-programs/

Fall Semester

Biomedical Engineering Concentration in Engineering Physics - Required Courses in Suggested Sequence first two years

First Year - First Semester

Second Year - First Semester

Second Year - Second Semester

Chemical Engineering Concentration

Core Courses:

CHY 122 - General Chemistry II Credits: 3  

CHY 124 - General Chemistry Laboratory II Credits: 1  

CHE 200 - Fundamentals of Process Engineering Credits: 4 

CHE 385 - Chemical Engineering Thermodynamics I Credits: 3    * 

ECE 209 - Fundamentals of Electric Circuits Credits: 3  

In addition to these initial five core courses, the student must take the following 17 credits of courses (or substitute up to 6 credits from another engineering discipline area):

CHE 352 - Process Control Credits: 3 

CHE 360 - Elements of Chemical Engineering I Credits: 4 

CHE 362 - Elements of Chemical Engineering II Credits: 4 

CHE 368 - Kinetics and Reactor Design Credits: 4 *  

CHE 410 - Advanced Materials Credits: 3  

Note: *A minor in Process Engineering can be obtained by completing the required courses for this concentration. 

Chemical Engineering Concentration in Engineering Physics - Required Courses in Suggested Sequence first two years

First Year - First Semester

Second Year - First Semester

Second Year - Second Semester

Civil and Environmental Engineering Concentration in Engineering Physics - Required Courses in Suggested Sequence first two years

First Year- First Semester

Second Year - First Semester

Second Year - Second Semester

Computer Engineering Concentration in Engineering Physics - Required Courses in Suggested Sequence first two years

First Year - First Semester

Second Year - First Semester

Electrical Engineering Concentration

Core Courses: 

ECE 210 - Electric Circuits I Credits: 3  

ECE 214 - Electric Circuits II Credits: 4  

ECE 314 - Signals and Systems Credits: 3   

ECE 342 - Electronics I Credits: 4   

Note: Taking ECE 342 will satisfy the electronics requirement; students should NOT take PHY 262.

Following the initial 4 courses, students must choose 4 more Engineering courses, with one of these courses from outside the ECE department (i.e. a non-ECE course). 

Communications & Wireless: 

ECE 453 - Microwave Engineering Credits: 4  

ECE 484 - Communications Engineering Credits: 3  

Power and Alternative Energy: 

ECE 323 - Electric Power Conversion Credits: 3  

ECE 427 - Electric Power Systems Credits: 4  

Microelectronics and Circuits: 

ECE 444 - Analog Integrated Circuits Credits: 3  

ECE 445 - Analysis and Design of Digital Integrated Circuits Credits: 3  

ECE 462 - Introduction to Basic Semiconductor Devices and Associated Circuit Models Credits: 3  

ECE 464 - Microelectronics Science and Engineering Credits: 3  

State and Sensor: 

ECE 462 - Introduction to Basic Semiconductor Devices and Associated Circuit Models Credits: 3  

ECE 464 - Microelectronics Science and Engineering Credits: 3  

ECE 465 - Introduction to Sensors Credits: 3  

ECE 466 - Sensor Technology and Instrumentation Credits: 4  

Optional Courses: 

ECE 316 - Random Signal Analysis Credits: 3  

ECE 343 - Electronics II Credits: 4  

ECE 351 - Fields and Waves Credits: 3  

ECE 467 - Solar Cells and Their Applications Credits: 3  

Electrical Engineering Concentration in Engineering Physics - Required Courses in Suggested Sequence first two years

First Year -First Semester

First Year -Second Semester

Second Year -First Semester

Mechanical Engineering Concentration in Engineering Physics - Required Courses in Suggested Sequence first two years

First Year - First Semester

Second Year - First Semester

Second Year - Second Semester

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