UCSB Department of Chemical Engineering

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The UCSB Department of Chemical Engineering is one of the five departments that make up the College of Engineering at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Established in 1965, it offers Bachelor of Science (BS), Master of Science (MS), and Ph.D. degrees in Chemical Engineering.[1] The National Research Council has ranked the Ph.D. program as the 2nd best program in the United States and the U.S. News & World Report has ranked the program as 9th best in the nation.[2] There are currently 190 undergraduates, 79 Ph.D. students, and 18 faculty within the department.[3]

The mission of the department is twofold: firstly, to produce engineers that can effectively contribute to the process industry, and secondly, to conduct research that addresses problems in industry, science, and society.[4] Heavy emphasis is placed on research, with the department having a research budget of over $25 million in 2006. The department houses six members of the National Academy of Engineering, one member of the National Academy of Sciences, and six fellows of the American Physical Society.[5] The current department chair is Frank Doyle.


The department seeks to produce innovative and competent engineers that are flexible and have leadership skills.[6] Students have access to many programs that complement the curriculum, such as the Education Abroad Program, which allows students to study abroad in 35 countries and the Technology Management Program, where students can take courses in management, entrepreneurship and marketing. Students also have many research opportunities at the 21 engineering research centers affiliated with the university.[7]


The department offers a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering which is accredited by ABET. The curriculum is intended to prepare students for both careers in process industries and for graduate school.[8] Upon completion of the program, students are expected to have a strong foundation in mathematics, science, system design, and laboratory techniques. In addition teamwork, communication, and understanding engineering ethics are stressed. To supplement the core curriculum, students are required to take technical elective courses that cover topics both in chemical engineering and in other fields. Students are assigned a faculty advisor to assist in selection of elective courses, academic planning, and to provide career advice.[9]


The objective of the graduate school is to develop students' research skills to the level that is required by the top international academic and industrial programs.[10] As of now, the department offers a Master of Science(MS), and a Doctorate(Ph.D) in Chemical Engineering. In addition to these programs, the College of Engineering offers a five year BS/MS program, where students majoring in chemical, electrical, or mechanical engineering may simultaneously pursue both a BS degree and an MS in materials science. Prospective applicants apply during their sophomore year, and if accepted, begin to take classes in Materials Science during their junior year. Upon completion of the program, students will earn a BS and a MS degree.[11]


Notable faculty include Jacob Israelachvili, L. Gary Leal, and Samir Mitragotri.[12]

Affiliated Institutions[edit]

In addition to faculty labs, the Department of Chemical Engineering is affiliated with the following institutes.[13]


The department of Chemical Engineering is headquartered in the Engineering II building on the east side of the UCSB campus. The department has laboratory facilities that allow for the study of topics such as mass transfer, multiphase systems, surface chemistry, and biomaterials among other topics.[9]

Student Activities[edit]

There is an active student chapter of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers(AiChE).[14] The goal of this organization is to connect students with industry, the community, and networking with other engineers. AiChE hosts many activities including plant tours, industry informational sessions, speakers from academia and industry, mentor program, community outreach, and social events. Other professional organizations include the Society of Women Engineers, Engineers Without Borders, and the honor society Tau Beta Pi.[7]

The College of Engineering sponsors Convergence, the magazine of engineering and the sciences at UCSB. It was started in 2005 in order to bring topics in engineering and sciences to a broader audience. It is published in print three times a year and articles are also published online.[15]


  1. ^ "CoE Facts". 
  2. ^ "NRE Rankings". Retrieved 22 October 2013. 
  3. ^ "Chemical Engineering overview". Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  4. ^ "Mission Statement". UCSB. Retrieved 12 November 2013. 
  5. ^ "Research and Faculty Awards". Retrieved 22 October 2013. 
  6. ^ "Chemical Engineering Objectives". Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  7. ^ a b "Chem E brochure". Retrieved 12 November 2013. 
  8. ^ "Chemical Engineering Objectives". Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  9. ^ a b "Chemical Engineering overview". UCSB. Retrieved 6 November 2013. 
  10. ^ "Graduate School". Retrieved 12 November 2013. 
  11. ^ "BS/MS Program". Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  12. ^ "Faculty". Retrieved 24 October 2013. 
  13. ^ "Collaborative Research". 
  14. ^ "UCSB AiChE". 
  15. ^ "Convergence". UCSB. Retrieved 12 November 2013. 

External links[edit]