Pitt | Swanson Engineering
Welcome to the Undergraduate Computer Engineering Program

The undergraduate Computer Engineering program provides an education in the fundamentals of mathematics and the physical sciences, coupled with a strong emphasis on analysis and design of computer hardware and software that is essential for solving real-world engineering problems.

There is also a strong emphasis on the humanities and the development of an appreciation for societal issues, which are introduced into the curriculum through course work and seminars.

The program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org.

The overall objective of the Computer Engineering Program is for our graduates to become successful professionals in a diverse, global environment, and to be able to innovate and operate new technologies, and adapt to shifting technologies, in the career path they choose to pursue.  This includes careers in computer engineering through employment in industry, academic research, government or private practices, as well as careers in other engineering, computing, science, or professional disciplines such as bioengineering, electrical engineering, computer science, business, law, or medicine.  Our graduates will also pursue advanced study in computer engineering or other engineering, science, or professional and academic fields and be able to serve in leadership positions in industry, academia, research, or government.

The most recent set of the ABET criteria (3a-3k), taken from the Criteria for Accrediting Engineering Programs Effective for Evaluations During the 2011-2012 Accreditation Cycle are:

    a. an ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering;
    b. an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data;
    c. an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability;
    d. an ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams;

Our interpretation of multidisciplinary teams includes teams of individuals with similar educational backgrounds focusing on different aspects of a project as well as teams of individuals with different educational backgrounds.

    e. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems;
    f. an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility;

Our interpretation of this outcome includes the ethical reporting of experimental data, issues related to plagiarism (including self-plagiarism), academic and professional integrity/intellectual property (e.g., credit for work), and avoidance of intentionally harmful application of engineering knowledge, particularly in the context of design.

    g. an ability to communicate effectively;
    h. the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context;

Our interpretation of this outcome is to consider impacts of engineering practices on society. This outcome considers the long-term impacts of designs on various environments and socio-economic/cultural groups as ethical issues.

    i. a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in life-long learning;

Our interpretation of this includes teaching students that the underlying theory is important because the technology will change. We interpret this outcome to require us to identify mechanisms that our students can use for continued learning such as professional societies, graduate school, etc.

    j. a knowledge of contemporary issues;

Our interpretation of this outcome includes theory and practice of emerging research areas within a discipline. This outcome also requires us to present students with contemporary issues such as the impact of globalization, the outsourcing of both engineering and other support jobs as practiced by modern international companies.

    k. an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.

Freshman Engineering Students

Further Information
* Advanced Standing & Special Students
* Transfer of Credits
* Cross Registration
* Financial Aid

Students from the Freshman Engineering Program will be considered for admission into the Computer Engineering Program if they satisfy the following criteria.

1. Have completed the freshman engineering program curriculum.
2. Have maintained a cumulative QPA of at least 2.00/4.00.


Transfer Students (internal and external): Please click here for more information.


Admission Dates

The dates for submission of applications for admission to the Electrical and Computer Engineering Program are as follows:

  • July 15 for the fall term
  • November 15 for the spring term
  • March 15 for the summer term



 The program totals a minimum of 128 credits. 

Undergraduate Program


Freshman, Term 1

Freshman, Term 2

Engineering Analysis
ENGR 0011 or ENGR 0015
3 Credits
Engineering Computing
ENGR 0012 or ENGR 0016         
3 Credits
Physics 1
PHYS 0174
4 Credits
Physics 2
PHYS 0175
4 Credits
Chemistry 1
CHEM 0960
3 Credits
Chemistry 2
CHEM 0970
3 Credits
Calculus 1
MATH 0220
4 Credits
Calculus 2
MATH 0230
4 Credits
Humanities/Social Sciences Elective Humanities/Social Sciences Elective
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Sophomore, Term 3

Sophomore, Term 4

Linear Circuits and Systems + lab        
ECE 0101
4 Credits


Microelectronic Circuits + lab

ECE 0102
4 Credits

Digital Circuits and Systems + lab        
ECE 0201
4 Credits
Embedded Systems & Interf. + lab         
ECE 0202         
4 Credits
Problem Solving Using C++         
ECE 0301         
3 Credits
Data Structures & Algorithms         
ECE 0302         
3 Credits
Analytical Methods         
ECE 0401         
3 Credits
Signals, Systems & Probability         
ECE 0402         
3 Credits
Humanities/Social Sciences Elective   Communication Skills Elective 
3 Credits
ECE 1885 Seminar ECE Seminar
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Junior, Term 5

Junior, Term 6

Computer Organization & Architecture         
ECE 1110         
3 Credits
Junior Design Fundamentals        
ECE 1895         
3 Credits
Computer Networks         
ECE 1150         
3 Credits

Advanced Digital Design

ECE 1195         
3 Credits

Embedded Systems Design         
ECE 1175         
4 Credits
Systems & Project Engineering        
ECE 1140         
3 Credits
Applied Discrete Mathematics        
Math 0480
3 Credits

Information Security

ECE 1155         
3 Credits

Humanities/Social Sciences Elective   Humanities/Social Sciences Elective  
 ECE 1885 Seminar  ECE 1885 Seminar
 ////////////////////////////////////////////////  ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Senior, Term 7

Senior, Term 8

Advanced Elective
3 Credits

Senior Design Elective

ECE 1896
3 Credits

Advanced Elective
3 Credits
Advanced Elective
3 Credits
Advanced Elective
3 Credits
Technical Elective
3 Credits
Tecnical Elective
3 Credits
Technical or Global Elective
3 Credits
Humanities/Social Sciences Elective   Open Elective
3 Credits
 ECE 1885 Seminar  ECE 1885 Seminar
 /////////////////////////////////////////////////  ///////////////////////////////////////////////////////////

Computer Engineering Core Courses Include:

  • ECE 1110: Computer Organization and Architecture
  • ECE 1140: Systems and Project Engineering
  • ECE 1150: Computer Networks
  • ECE 1155: Information Security 
  • ECE 1175: Embedded Systems Design
  • ECE 1195: Advance Digital Design
  • ECE 1895: Junior Design Fundamentals
  • ECE 1896: Senior Design Project

    *not all core courses are offered every term

    Advanced Electives

    Students must complete Four Advance Electives.

    Advance Electives should be ECE 1000 Level (3 or 4 credit) courses that are not already required courses.  

    If you do have questions on certain courses please contact Mrs.Oros at alisonoros@pitt.edu

    Technical Electives

    Students must complete Three Technical electives. Technical electives can be any ECE or CS elective or any other School of Engineering course which has not been used to fulfill another requirement or does not substantially duplicate other required course material . Most advanced math and science courses, or ENGR courses that can be taken by other Engineering department students, can be used as Technical electives by COE students. Below is a PDF of the Approved and Non approved Technical Electives:

    Acceptable and Non Acceptable Technical Electives

    Enrollment in any of these courses is, of course, constrained by the space and prerequisite limitations of the host department.

    Communication Skills Electives:

    All Students must complete one Communication Skills elective.  This is separate from the students Humanities and Social Science elective requirement.  Below is a list of the approved Communication Skills Elective's.  Some of these can be used as the Communication Elective and also fulfill the Writing Requirement for the University.

    Communication Skills Electives

    Humanities and Social Science Electives:

    All Students must complete six Humanities and Social Science elective.  This is separate from the students Communication's elective requirement. Please remember that breadth and depth need to be met when taking the Humanities and Social Science Electives. Below is a link with the requirements explained for the Humanities and Social Science electives as well as the approved list of the Humanities and Social Science Elective's.  Some of these can be used to also fulfill the Writing Requirement for the University.

    Humanities and Social Science Electives



The Co-operative Engineering Education Program (or "co-op" as it is generally known) is a program within the Swanson School of Engineering whereby the student engineer's education experience is enhanced by a series of challenging, highly relevant "real world" work experiences. The program rotates semesters at work with semesters at school. Typically, the first work rotation is after the end of the sophomore year or the first term of junior year, and each rotating term lasts four months. This is a popular and highly successful program. Co-op salaries are excellent, and the work experience gained is invaluable. More information can be found on the co-op program website here


During each co-op rotation, the student must work with the co-op department to register for one credit of ENGR1090. Students can use three rotations of co-op as one Open Elective.


COE students contact the COE Program Administrator, Alison Oros, for co-op schedule forms and instructions. Each co-op schedule should rotate every other term at work, and every opposite term in class (no double work rotations). Double rotations are not encouraged, and would require the approval of the co-op team, and the student's academic adviser.

Seminar (COE1885) is designed to acquaint the student with aspects of engineering that are not normally encountered in classes and school activities and include a wide range of topics such as the significance of engineering as a profession, ethical problems in engineering, and skills required for a successful engineering career. 
Seminar is required of all students registered full-time in the fall and spring semesters. Students are required to attend a minimum of six seminars each semester.

If students are in the co-op program, they are not required to take Seminar during the fall and spring terms that they're working. 

Any fall or spring term that a student is taking a part-time course load, they are excused from participating in Seminar during that part-time term.