photo of viewpointe team at capstone
Photo: Jeff Liang, UCSB
Courtesy: ECE 189 CE Capstone

About the Program

The CE Program is offered jointly by the Computer Science (CS) and the Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) departments. Administratively, the CE Program is housed within the ECE Department.

Computer engineering focuses on the design of computer systems. Students learn hardware design, software concepts, robotics, circuit design, and networking. Computer engineers gain more software based training than do electrical engineers, and differ from computer science majors in that the curriculum is focused more on the lowest-level interactions among software and hardware, digital hardware design, and peripheral-systems interfacing.

Research areas include bio-inspired computing; circuit and system design; computer architecture; electronic design automation and testing; emerging technologies for computing; energy-efficient computing; nanotechnology; networking; operating and distributed systems; software and language

The program offers students:

  • a broad education in the fundamentals of computer engineering, as well as a solid foundation in the basic sciences including mathematics, probability and statistics, data science, and physics
  • research areas including bioinspired computing; circuit & system design; computer architecture; design, manufacturing & test automation; machine learning & AI; emerging technologies for computing; energy-efficient computing; nanotechnology; and software and language
  • preparation for a wide range of positions in industry, business, research & development, and government

Program Features

1st Place – Homeflow (IFT): an intuitive health wearable that collects meaningful data
Jack Shoemaker, Senior from Santa Clarita, CA
Favorite Class: Machine Learning in Design and Test Automation (ECE 157A)
1st Place – BRANDON AND THE VERILOG SURVIVORS / Reality Reel (Appfolio): A platform for creating professional quality real estate videos in minutes

Degree Program

The Computer Engineering major’s objective is to educate  engineers with both depth and breadth. We expect our undergraduates to gain an understanding of digital electronics, computer architecture, system software, hardware/software interfaces and integrated circuit design. These topics bridge traditional electrical engineering and computer science curricula.

CE major’s graduates can design and build integrated digital hardware and software systems in a wide range of application domains. Teamwork, project management skills, and attention to ethical & socially-responsible design decisions are emphasized throughout the program.

Curriculum Highlights

Senior Elective Sequences

During the junior year, students select two sequence topics each consisting of two to three courses. These courses help satisfy CE Major Degree Requirements in the Senior Elective Study Plan.

Senior Projects (ECE 189 or CMPSC 189)

During the senior year, each CE student is required to take the Senior Capstone Project. Students work in teams to design and engineer complete systems, beginning with formulation of requirements and proceeding with hardware & software design, integration, documentation, and testing.

Mission Statement

Our Mission

To prepare our students to reach their full potential in computer engineering research and industrial practice through a curriculum emphasizing the mathematical tools, scientific basics, fundamental knowledge, engineering principles, and practical experience in the field.

Educational Objectives

The Computer Engineering Program seeks to impart to each student:

  1. Broad knowledge in the fundamental theories, techniques, and tools relating to computer engineering.
  2. The ability to apply computer engineering principles in solving problems, creating products, and improving performance in hardware and software applications.
  3. A continuing commitment to the advancement of science, lifelong education, professionalism, and interest in education and mentoring for the coming generations of students.
  4. An understanding of the social, business, technical, and human context of the world in which their engineering contributions will be utilized.

Program Outcomes

Upon graduation, students in the Computer Engineering B.S. degree program at UCSB are expected to have:

  1. an ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics
  2. 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
  3. an ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences
  4. 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
  5. 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
  6. an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use engineering judgment to draw conclusions
  7. an ability to acquire and apply new knowledge as needed, using appropriate learning strategies

The Computer Engineering B.S. program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org

CE Five-Year Enrollment

  • Fall Enrollment - 2023 (273) | 2022 (247) | 2021 (275) | 2020 (271) | 2019 (259)

CE Program Statistics (Fall 2023)

  • 2240 applicants | 87 enrolled
  • Average incoming GPA: 4.44
Interested in the BS/MS Program?

A program offered by either the ECE or CS departments.

BS/MS options available for Computer Engineering undergraduates:

Applications for the BS/MS in ECE are usually due at the end of the spring quarter of the junior year. BS/MS in Computer Science has a different deadline. As this is an accelerated program, it is expected that you have completed all the required courses for the CE major including all the junior required courses. GRE exams are not required to apply.

To check the status your BS/MS application: