College of Arts and Sciences

Pre-engineering is a one- to three-year program within the physics department at Bowling Green State University. After completion of the pre-engineering program, students may decide to transfer to a university with a major in Engineering to complete professional training. The program also provides a strong science-mathematics base for students who choose to move into any one of several science-oriented majors at BGSU.

Career Opportunities

Engineering is a challenging field that offers satisfying careers to creative people who like to see concrete results come from their work. The goal of the engineer is to apply known scientific principles to transform natural resources and materials into products and services people can use.

Engineering specialties include: aerospace, agricultural, architectural, chemical, civil, electrical, industrial, materials, mechanical, metallurgical, mining, nuclear and petroleum.

Many graduates are employed by private industry, especially large corporations, to work in applied research and development, or manufacturing and production. In highly technological industries, management positions are often filled by an engineer. All governmental levels, from city service bureaus to the most sophisticated national laboratories, employ engineers.


The pre-engineering curriculum provides the basic science and mathematics courses on which engineering is based. In addition, some technology-oriented courses, common to all engineering specializations, are introduced. This curriculum matches that of most engineering schools. Students are encouraged to write to prospective Universities with majors in Engineering for a catalog of course requirements for upper division courses in the later years of the major.

As a general rule, engineering schools require an early commitment to a specialty and offer fewer non-engineering alternatives than BGSU. Students with definite plans for a particular engineering specialty will probably want to transfer to an engineering college after one year.

However, students who are uncertain about a specialty, or about engineering as a major, will probably wish to spend two years in the pre-engineering curriculum. During these two years, students can choose a specialty as well as select the best engineering college for that particular specialty.

Transferring to an Engineering University requires acceptance by that University based on the academic record established both in high school and at BGSU.

Special Features

One special feature of the pre-engineering program is that it offers students who are undecided about career goals the opportunity to pursue a program in the science-mathematics-engineering area. By enrolling in the pre-engineering program, students may remain undecided for one or two years while pursuing coursework common to all of these areas.

After a period of time, students may find that interests continue in engineering, or have changed to astronomy, physics, chemistry, geology, mathematics, computer science or interdisciplinary combinations of the above. If a career decision is made to leave engineering for one of the above professions, students find that the pre-engineering curriculum has provided appropriate preparation.

Preparation for College

Completing the requirements for high school graduation is necessary for admission to BGSU, but only finishing the minimum coursework will leave you unprepared for a physics major. Consider taking four years of mathematics instead of the three that are required. Two, three or even four years of the same foreign language is excellent for preparation for college. You will also benefit from competency in computer use. Courses that provide exposure to or training in the visual and performing arts are excellent choices.

For Further Information

Internet Access

BGSU's website for future students contains University highlights, admissions procedures, financial aid information and many department profiles. It can be accessed at

The University

Bowling Green State University is a vibrant university that engages, challenges and prepares students for meaningful futures. At BGSU, students enjoy an education that integrates personal growth, academic excellence and an environment that expands their thinking and potential. A mid-size residential university, BGSU has an enrollment of approximately 20,000 and a full-time faculty of more than 900 on its main campus. More than 200 undergraduate majors and programs are offered as well as master's and doctoral level programs.

NOTE: Information in this guide is subject to change without notice. To learn more about the official program of study for Pre-Engineering, please check the undergraduate catalog online at: