Polymer Science and Engineering, BSE

Degree: Bachelor of Science in Engineering (BSE)
Major: Polymer Science and Engineering

Program Overview

In 1970, the department introduced a program leading to the Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree with a major in Polymer Science and Engineering, which is designed to prepare the student both for employment in polymer-based industry and for graduate education in polymer science. 

The Case School of Engineering is proud that the polymer science and engineering program was the first such undergraduate program in the country to receive accreditation from the Engineering Council for Professional Development. The curriculum combines courses dealing with all aspects of polymer science and engineering with basic courses in chemistry, physics, mathematics, and biology, depending on the needs and interests of the student. The student chooses a sequence of technical electives, in consultation with a faculty advisor, allowing a degree of specialization in one particular area of interest, e.g., biomaterials, chemical engineering, biochemistry, or physics. In addition to required formal laboratory courses, students are encouraged to participate in the research activities of the department, both through part-time employment as student laboratory technicians and through the senior project requirement: a one or two semester project that involves the planning and performance of a research project.

Polymer science undergraduates are also strongly encouraged to seek summer employment in industrial laboratories during at least one of their three years with the department. In addition to the general undergraduate curriculum in Polymer Science and Engineering, the department offers two specialized programs which lead to the Bachelor of Science in Engineering with a major in Polymer Science and Engineering. The cooperative program contains all the course work required for full-time resident students plus one or two six-month cooperative sessions in polymer-based industry. The company is selected by the student in consultation with his or her advisor, depending on the available opportunities. The dual-degree program allows students to work simultaneously on two baccalaureate level degrees within the university. It generally takes five years to complete the course requirements for each department for the degree. The BS/MS program leads to the simultaneous completion of requirements for both the master’s and bachelor’s degrees. Students with a minimum GPA of 3.0 may apply for admission to this program in their junior year.

The Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree program with a major in Polymer Science and Engineering is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org.

Program Educational Objectives

This program will produce graduates who:

  1. Are competent, creative, and highly valued professionals in industry, academia, or government.
  2. Are flexible and adaptable in the workplace, possess the capacity to embrace new opportunities of emerging technologies, and embrace leadership and teamwork opportunities, all affording sustainable engineering careers.
  3. Continue their professional development by obtaining advanced degrees in Polymer Science and Engineering or other professional fields, as well as medicine, law, management, finance or public policy.
  4. Act with global, ethical, societal, ecological, and commercial awareness expected of practicing engineering professionals.

Learning Outcomes

As preparation for achieving the above educational objectives, the Bachelor of Science in Engineering degree program with a major in Polymer Science and Engineering is designed so that students attain:

  • an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics
  • an ability to apply engineering design to produce solutions that meet specified needs with consideration of public health, safety, and welfare, as well as global, cultural, social, environmental, and economic factors
  • an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences
  • an ability to recognize ethical and professional responsibilities in engineering situations and make informed judgments, which must consider the impact of engineering solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal contexts
  • an ability to function effectively on a team whose members together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, and meet objectives
  • an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions
  • an ability to acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies.

Co-op and Internship Programs

Opportunities are available for students to alternate studies with work in industry or government as a co-op student, which involves paid full-time employment over seven months (one semester and one summer). Students may work in one or two co-ops, beginning in the third year of study. Co-ops provide students the opportunity to gain valuable hands-on experience in their field by completing a significant engineering project while receiving professional mentoring. During a co-op placement, students do not pay tuition but maintain their full-time student status while earning a salary. Learn more at engineering.case.edu/coop. Alternatively or additionally, students may obtain employment as summer interns.

Undergraduate Policies

For undergraduate policies and procedures, please review the Office of Undergraduate Studies section of the General Bulletin.

Accelerated Master's Programs

Undergraduate students may participate in accelerated programs toward graduate or professional degrees. For more information and details of the policies and procedures related to accelerated studies, please visit the Office of Undergraduate Studies section of the General Bulletin.