The Cal State LA mechanical engineering program provides instruction in the basic sciences and in engineering design and analysis. During the junior and senior years, students may choose from a broad spectrum of electives to match individual talents and interests with a career objective.

Areas of Specialization

All mechanical engineers must be proficient in the subjects of applied mechanics (statics, dynamics, materials, and control), which best distinguish mechanical engineering from other engineering disciplines. These subjects provide knowledge on the behavior of objects under forces, pressure, and stresses, whether the objects are stationary, such as buildings and bridges, or moving, such as vehicles or vibrating structures. With the knowledge of applied mechanics, a mechanical engineer will be able to design durable structures and efficient mechanical systems and select the right materials for the structures or systems to accomplish some prescribed functions. Those mechanical engineers who are most specialized in applied mechanics often deal with the properties of engineering materials and the design of structures, mechanisms, machines, and the control systems for these devices.

The knowledge of thermal sciences (thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, and heat transfer) is equally important for mechanical engineers. Mechanical engineers specializing in thermal systems mainly deal with the production and conversion of energy required for human needs and for other systems. They design efficient engines and power plants to provide mechanical power for other machines and electrical power for society. They design heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning systems to provide a comfortable living and working environment. They operate oil refineries and build pipelines for the transport of petroleum. They design solar and wind power stations to extract clean energy from nature. They predict and control the flow of water and air to minimize the adverse effects of pollutants.

The required curriculum for aeronautical engineering is very similar to mechanical engineering, with emphasis on applications of applied mechanics and thermal sciences to the configuration design, structural design, propulsion systems, and control systems of aircraft. Using the same knowledge, aeronautical engineers may also be involved in the design of land and marine vehicles. The recent development of autonomous unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV) integrating the use of the Global Position System (GPS), and the potential of alternative propulsion systems, such as solar power or fuel cells, are creating new windows of opportunity for aeronautical engineers. These UAVs may become the long-endurance surveillance platforms and low-cost satellites of the future, on top of many other applications.

A mechanical engineering degree with a biomechanical concentration prepares students for both traditional mechanical engineering careers as well as opportunities in this growing subfield of biomedical engineering. Training in biomechanical engineering will enable mechanical engineering students to interact with an interdisciplinary group of engineers and biomedical professionals. Engineers trained in biomechanical engineering may find career opportunities in the design of products involving interaction with the human body, such as assistive technologies and enabling devices, safety equipment, orthopedic and medical devices. Research topics include kinematics of human motion and biomechanical devices, strength, and response of hard and soft tissue, and novel technology for injury prevention and rehabilitation.

Units Required

A Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering requires 122 units, of which 101 units are in the major. Consult with an advisor for the specific number of units required in all areas of the degree, including GE and free electives.

 ABET accreditation branding

ABET Accreditation

The program leading to the Bachelor of Science degree in Mechanical Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, https://www.abet.org, under the commission’s General Criteria and Program Criteria for Mechanical and Similarly Named Engineering Programs.

Department of Mechanical Engineering
5151 State UE&T, A-205niversity Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90032
Office Tel: 323-343-4490, Email: [email protected]
Office Hours: 8:30 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.,  Monday - Friday