Area of Focus
  • Engineering & Technology
Degrees Offered
  • B.S.
  • M.S.
  • Ph.D.
  • Undergraduate Minor
Academic Division
  • Jack Baskin School of Engineering
  • Computer Science and Engineering

Program overview

The UCSC B.S. in computer engineering prepares graduates for a rewarding career in engineering. The computer engineering curriculum's focus is making digital systems that work. The program's emphasis on interdisciplinary system design provides both excellent trainings for future engineers and strong background for graduate study. UCSC computer engineering graduates will have a thorough grounding in the principles and practices of computer engineering and the scientific and mathematical principles upon which they are built.


Learning Experience

Computer engineering focuses on the design, analysis, and application of computers and on their applications as components of systems. Because computer engineering is so broad, the B.S. in computer engineering offers four specialized concentrations for completing the program: systems programming, computer systems, networks, and digital hardware.

Study and Research Opportunities

  • An accelerated combined B.S./M.S. degree in computer engineering enables eligible undergraduates to move without interruption to the graduate program.
  • Four concentrations: systems programming, computer systems, networks, and digital hardware
  • Minor in computer engineering

Program faculty focus on multidisciplinary hardware and software research including computer system design, design technologies, computer networks, embedded and autonomous systems, digital media and sensor technology, assistive technologies, and robotics. Students complete a senior design capstone course. Undergraduates contribute to research activities as independent study students, paid employees, and participants in Research Experiences for Undergraduates.

First-Year (Freshman) Requirements

Freshman Applicants: It is recommended that high school students intending to apply to the BSOE have completed four years of mathematics (through advanced algebra and trigonometry) and three years of science in high school, including one year each of chemistry, physics, and biology. Comparable college mathematics and science courses completed at other institutions may be accepted in place of high school preparation. Students without this preparation may be required to take additional courses to prepare themselves for the program.


Transfer Requirements

This is a screening major.

  • By the end of your last spring term in community college, you must complete at least six (6) of the lower-division course requirements listed below.
  • The GPA of all lower-division requirement courses attempted must be at least 2.80.


  1. CSE 12
  2. ECE 13 or CSE 13S
  3. CSE 16
  4. CSE 30
  5. MATH 19A
  6. MATH 19B
  7. MATH 23A or AM 30
  8. MATH 21 or AM 10
  9. AM 20
  10. PHYS 5A and PHYS 5L
  11. PHYS 5C and PHYS 5N
Designing a video game

Internships and Career Opportunities

  • Digital Electronics
  • FPGA design
  • Chip Design
  • Computer Hardware Design
  • Operating System Development
  • Computer Architecture Design
  • Signal/image/video processing
  • Network administration and security
  • Network engineering
  • Site Reliability Engineering (SRE)
  • Software engineering
  • Assistive technologies

These are only samples of the field’s many possibilities.

Many students find internships and fieldwork to be a valuable part of their academic experience. They work closely with faculty and career advisers in the UC Santa Cruz Career Center to identify existing opportunities and often to create their own internships with local companies or in nearby Silicon Valley. For more information about internships, visit the Internship & Volunteering page.

The Wall Street Journal recently ranked UCSC as the number two public university in the nation for
high-paying jobs in engineering.



apartment Baskin Engineering Building