Frequently Asked Questions

Questions About Academics

What is the average number of students in an engineering class?

The average engineering class size is 30 students, although the number ranges from around 10 to 85. In a few cases, the largest class size is around 150.

When will I need to declare my major?

All students should declare a major no later than then end of their first year.

What is the difference between the Bachelor of Science in Engineering (BSE) and the Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS)?

The BSE is a professional engineering degree. The BAS is a degree for students planning careers in fields other than engineering for which a strong foundation in technology is highly desired.

Is it possible to receive a dual degree?

Yes. In fact, approximately 22 percent of Penn Engineering undergraduates pursue dual degree programs with the College, Wharton, or Nursing. In addition to regular dual degree options, certain “coordinated dual degree” programs have been established, leading to two bachelor’s degrees. Learn more.

What is a submatriculation program?

Exceptional students may apply to a graduate program during their junior year. If accepted, certain approved classes taken during the senior year may count towards both the undergraduate and graduate degree. Penn Engineering undergraduates may also pursue sub-matriculation admission into the following schools:
  • Penn Law
  • The Wharton School (for those in M&T or doing a dual degree with Wharton)
  • Dental Medicine
  • Veterinary Medicine
  • Social Work
  • Education
  • Fine Arts, City Planning, and Architecture
  • Nursing (for those in the Nursing and Technology program)

Are research opportunities available to undergraduates?

Yes, ample research opportunities are available in virtually every field throughout all four years. In fact, all students are required to produce a Senior Design project based on research as a graduation requirement.

How many liberal arts classes will I be able to take?

All students take a minimum of seven Social Science and Humanities courses. In addition, each engineering curriculum allows for up to three “free electives,” enabling a student to take all three courses in the liberal arts.

Will I be able to take courses from other Schools at Penn?

Yes. Not only are you able, but we strongly encourage you to do so. Penn undergraduates may take courses from any of Penn’s 12 schools, which are all located on the same physical campus. This includes opportunities in lawmedicineeducationsocial work,nursing, along with arts and sciences and business.

Will I be able to study abroad?

Yes, students are strongly encouraged to participate in an international experience either through traditional study abroad programs, summer abroad experiences, or international internships.

Are classes taught by graduate student teaching assistants?

All engineering classes are taught by engineering faculty members.

Do I need to have a computer?

Students are not required to provide their own computer, however many do, as it is more convenient for them. Computer consultants are available on campus.

Questions About Admissions

How many applications does Penn Engineering receive?

There were approximately 12,000 freshman applications for the Class of 2025.

What is the size of Penn Engineering's Freshman Class?

The average class size is 400 freshmen.

Does Penn offer an Early Decision Program? If so, what is the application deadline?

Yes, Penn offers Early Decision. Applications must be received no later than November 1st.

What is the deadline for Regular Decision?

Applications for Regular Decision must be received no later than January 1st.

Will it hurt my chances of being accepted if my major is undecided?

Absolutely not. Approximately 20 percent of our incoming first-year students are undecided.