BSME: Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Approved Engineering Electives
The School of Engineering maintains lists of approved
electives in the Humanities/Arts, Social Science, Mathematics, and
Natural Sciences. These lists are updated periodically as the Tufts
course catalog evolves. Current versions of the allowed
elective lists are maintained on the student information
system SIS. To find these lists:
- Log into SIS
- Select the option to Find … A Course in the Catalog
- Set Course Career to AS&E Undergrad
- Set Course Attribute to Engineering Requirements
- Set Attribute Value to one of the following options:
- SoE-HASS-Social Sciences
- SoE-Natural Sciences
Humanities/Arts and Social Science Electives
Courses selected must include a minimum of one credit in each area of
Humanities (H) and Social Sciences (SS). In addition, at least two HASS
course credits must be taken in the same department
Learn more >
Foundation electives are intended to provide Mechanical
Engineers with breadth in the technical disciplines.
Two types of foundation electives are required for the
- Foundation (a,b): Either a mathematics or a natural science course
- Foundation (c): An elective course selected from the following list
- Any course from the approved engineering list
- COMP 11 (Introduction to Computer Science)
- ENP 61 (Introduction to Human Factors and Ergonomics)
- ES 4 (Introduction to Digital Logic)
- ES 56 (Probability and Statistics)
- ES 18 (Computer Aided Design w/ Lab)
- Natural Science Elective (a) with a pre-req of BIO 13, CHEM 1, EOS 1, or PHY 11
- Any Engineering Management (EM) course
Recommended Foundation Electives: COMP 11, ENP 61, ES 4, ES 18, ES 56.
A central feature of professional engineering education is
the ability to synthesize analytical, technical, and non-technical
concepts for the solution of practical design problems.
Engineering design education and experiences are included in the
BSME curriculum in three ways. First, core courses include
applications, open-ended problem solving and small group projects.
Second, all BSME candidates are required to take ME1-Mechanical
Engineering Design and Fabrication, and ME42-Machine Design which
covers design methodology as applied to mechanical engineering
systems as well as manual and computer-aided design and manufacturing
concepts. The course contains project work in which students must
define problems, develop alternative solutions, and consider design
issues such as safety, manufacturability, and economics as the
projects are developed. Third, all seniors are required to participate
in a capstone design experience in ME 43-Senior Design Project.
ME43 is a project course focused on the design of a component,
device, or system that will solve a problem. The design project is
executed in teams and is client-based, with sponsorship from industry,
ME Department faculty, or faculty researchers from other Tufts Schools
and campuses. The goal of ME43 is to apply engineering science principles
and to utilize design theory and practice including open-ended projects,
manufacturing and fabrication, specification and selection, testing,
and evaluation and imposition of constraints. The primary focus of
these experiences is the execution of a project. Group projects
include clearly identifiable individual contributions.
Students will take ME43 in the Fall term of their senior year.
This offering is structured around client-based projects that tend
to have a focused goal related to active product lines or related to
active research that a faculty member is conducting. Some of these
projects may fall into the general area of biomedical engineering
and may fulfill the project requirement of the Biomedical Engineering
Minor or Second Major.
The following deliverables are expected of all ME 43 projects:
proposal (Gantt chart, budget, etc.), progress report, design review
(presentation), final report, final presentation, and a possible
prototype (depends on the type and scope of the project). All final
reports and occasionally project prototypes are archived by the
Department as a permanent record of student's participation.
In general, any Mechanical Engineering (ME) course
beyond the required BSME coursework can be selected as a
concentration elective. The department has structured
the electives to offer a great deal of flexibility while
maintaining the integrity of the program. Students are
encouraged to explore a mix of options that best suit
their unique abilities and interests.
Students should consult with their academic advisors to
select a concentration elective program that fulfills
all Degree Sheet requirements. These requirements are
summarized briefly below.
All but two concentration electives must be
lecture-based courses offered by the ME department.
Lecture-based courses include any ME course except ME94,
96, 99, 193, or 194.
The remaining two concentration-elective credits may
include a combination of lecture-based ME courses,
research credits, and/or out-of-department technical
courses, as specified by the degree sheet. For example,
independent research (ME94) could count as one
concentration elective. A student interested in pursuing
additional research for credit must register for a
thesis (ME96). Only one out-of-department course can be
used to count as an ME concentration elective. In extraordinary cases, an additional out-of-department
course can be counted as an ME concentration elective,
with prior advisor and department approval. This
permission must be obtained in advance of taking a
course, and the student is required to outline a
rationale for the concentration elective choices as a
whole. No more than one mathematics or natural science
course may be counted as a concentration elective.
Research and Independent Projects
Undergraduate research and projects offer unique educational opportunities
and all undergraduates are encouraged to participate. All BSME students are
required to have at least one full-semester project experience through the ME43
Senior Design Project.
- ME 94 - Undergraduate Research
Students who wish to engage in additional undergraduate research or
independent projects enroll in ME94-Undergraduate Research. With the
supervision of a faculty member and often in collaboration with others, students
focus on a topic of scientific or practical interest. Undergraduate projects
often require students to perform laboratory experimentation and/or numerical
simulations, giving them an opportunity to gain practical experience and be
exposed to graduate level engineering education. The Department will not grant
course credit for ME94 unless the following requirements are fulfilled:
- An undergraduate with junior or senior standing can take one semester of
Undergraduate Research (ME94) for credit as an ME Concentration Elective.
- All ME 94 research projects must have a ME faculty advisor who is
responsible for project assessment and grading. The student and advisor must
meet at least every two weeks, but are encouraged to meet weekly.
- All students enrolled in ME 94 need to submit a one-page proposal within
two weeks of the start of the semester (same as the Last Day for AS&E students
to ADD courses). If not, the students will be dropped from the course
(form available here.)
The proposal must be signed by the advisor and
Department Chair. A copy of the form will be placed in the student's file.
- The ME 94 grading process will include an end-of-term presentation –
poster or oral presentation – that will be evaluated by all faculty who
participate. These evaluations should be in the form of a single "presentation"
score. It is suggested that presentations account for 20% of the overall grade.
- ME 96 - Thesis
Students who want to pursue an independent project for more than a single
semester are expected to do so by writing an undergraduate thesis (ME96) in the
second semester of their independent project.
- Given the scope of work and time commitment necessary for thesis preparation, a
senior may take one semester of ME96-Thesis as a concentration elective
the successful completion of a semester-length research and/or design
effort. Prior research/design effort may be: ME94-Undergraduate Research,
ME43-Senior Design Project, or concentrated summer research work with a faculty
mentor in the ME Department.
- A student is required to have a thesis committee as well as a faculty advisor
for a Senior Thesis. The student and advisor must meet at least every two
weeks, but are encouraged to meet weekly.
- All students enrolled in ME96 must submit a one-page proposal within two weeks
of the start of the semester (same as the Last Day for AS&E students to ADD
courses). The proposal form is
The proposal must be signed by the advisor
and Department Chair. A copy of the form will be placed in the student's
- Each student registered for ME96 will present his/her thesis during the reading
period. The presentation will last 30 minutes (20 minute presentation and
10 minute Q&A).
- The grade for the thesis will be awarded by the faculty advisor in consultation
with the thesis committee and other faculty members attending the presentation.
- The Department may award thesis honors (honors, high honors, highest honors) in
which case an Honors Thesis Form must also be completed, signed, and
returned to the program administrator in Dowling Hall. A copy of these
forms will be placed in the student's file.
The guidelines for awarding of honors are as follows:
- No Honors - Default
- Honors - Excellent piece of work as judged by the thesis
committee, which consists of the advisor and one additional
- High Honors - Based on advisor's input, the work is worthy
of publication (e.g. the advisor and student intend to submit
the work for publication at a later date).
- Highest Honors - The work has been accepted or submitted
for publication in a refereed conference proceedings or journal.
Free Electives are an integral and complementary part of the curriculum
and students are urged to consult with their academic advisors in choosing
these electives. For example, students may wish to take additional humanities
and social science courses preparing them for professional activities and
graduate studies in areas such as law, economics, organization and social
aspects of engineering, management, and technology and policy. Students in
the combined five-year Liberal Arts-Engineering Program may use the free
electives to satisfy the requirements in the second major.
- ME 99 - Internship in Mechanical Engineering
Effective 07/01/2012 A Mechanical Engineering Internship (ME99) can be
taken for course credit, and the student may also receive payment from the
internship employer. However, ME99 may only count as a
towards the BSME degree.
The following requirements must also be fulfilled:
- The student has junior or senior standing and has declared a major in
- The student must submit a written internship proposal, which must be
approved by the academic advisor, the faculty mentor, and Department Chair prior
to the semester in which the internship will be performed. Form is available
- The faculty mentor must have technical control of any work that receives
credit in the Department.
- A written report must be submitted, to be evaluated by the faculty
mentor and the outside institutional supervisor. Work of a proprietary
nature cannot be used as a basis for the granting of course credit.
Engineering management courses count toward the BSME degree as follows:
- EM 51: Foundation elective
- EM 52: Foundation or HASS elective
- EM 54: Foundation or HASS elective
- EM 153: Foundation or HASS elective
- EM 155: Foundation or HASS elective