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Requirements for the Program


Program Advisor
Thomas Moses, Physics

Engineering is among the oldest disciplines, yet is changing and growing at a breathtaking pace. Engineers are at the forefront of the effort to apply scientific understanding to meeting human needs. Today’s engineering problems push the limits of physical law and scientific knowledge, making it more important than ever that engineers have a strong preparation in the basic science underlying their chosen engineering specialty. At the same time, our increasingly interconnected society and environment demand a broadly educated engineer who is prepared to think critically about the trade-offs and impacts inherent in any engineering design. The Dual-Degree Program in Engineering is designed to prepare students to be successful engineers in the challenging world we face today.

Knox offers a five-year combined program leading to the degrees of bachelor of arts and bachelor of science in engineering, through cooperative agreements with the schools of engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Illinois, Washington University, Columbia University, and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Alternatively, students may pursue engineering studies at another institution of their own choice in consultation with the engineering program advisor. Dual-degree students attain an especially strong education both in fundamental science and in engineering by earning two majors, completing a major in mathematics or pure science at Knox and a major in engineering at the cooperating institution. Dual-degree students typically major in physics, chemistry, mathematics, or computer science at Knox, although biology, biochemistry or environmental studies are appropriate majors for certain engineering specialties. To allow increased flexibility, students may transfer back up to two courses from the cooperating institution to be counted as electives satisfying their major requirements at Knox.

Students interested in the Dual-Degree Program are encouraged to consult with the program advisor as early as possible to facilitate planning an individually customized course of study. It is possible, and not at all uncommon, for a student to pursue coursework appropriate to the Dual-Degree Program and at the same time keep open other options such as pursuing a pure science major, a pre-medical or business program, or other paths—maximizing flexibility in planning is one major advantage of the Dual-Degree Program.

Prior to starting study at an engineering institution, a Knox student must:

  • have received at least 27 credits with at least a 2.0 grade point average;
  • have been in residence on the Knox campus at least 6 terms and have earned at least 18 Knox credits;
  • have completed all the requirements for a Knox degree except the requirements for the major, for total credits, that the last credits and terms before the degree be in residence;
  • be recommended for the program by the Dean of the College or, upon the Dean’s request, by the faculty program advisor.

Students participating in the Dual-Degree Program are exempted from the requirement to complete a second field at Knox, since their pre-engineering work at Knox together with engineering courses taken during the first year at the engineering institution will be considered equivalent to completing a second field.

In addition to the above general Knox requirements for participation in a cooperative program, students complete a core curriculum consisting of the following courses:

  • PHYS 110, PHYS 120, and PHYS 130
  • CHEM 101
  • MATH 151, MATH 152, MATH 205, and MATH 230
  • CS 141

A cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or above is recommended for admission by the cooperating schools of engineering. Certain programs have additional requirements, and interested students are urged to contact the program advisor for specifics and assistance with planning.

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