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Pre-Engineering Advisors

Dr. Richard Belshoff
Department of Mathematics
Missouri State University
901 South National Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65897
Office: 417-836-5112
Fax: 417-836-6996
Email: RichardBelshoff@missouristate.edu

Dr. Dave Cornelison
Department of Physics, Astronomy and Materials Science
Missouri State University
901 South National Avenue
Springfield, Missouri 65897
Office: 417-836-5131
Fax: 417-836-6226
Email: Physics@missouristate.edu

Career Preparation

Seven reasons a student should consider studying pre-engineering:

  1. Engineering is a profession that encourages and rewards creativity.
  2. An engineering career provides opportunities for making worthwhile contributions to society by meeting many of the pressing needs of mankind (energy, pollution control, food supplies, transportation, etc.)
  3. An engineering education provides a marketable skill leading to job flexibility and security.
  4. The starting salary for new graduates is excellent.
  5. Chances for advancement in the profession are excellent.
  6. A wide variety of kinds of work within the profession are available (design, production, testing, research, marketing and administration).
  7. For the student undecided about future career preferences, undergraduate engineering provides an excellent "spring board" for entrance into other professions (medicine, business, law, government, education, military). A student in this field must have an inquiring mind, an active imagination and an understanding of mathematics as it is applied to nature.

Academic Program

To prepare for a career in engineering, the high school curriculum should include Algebra I and II, geometry, trigonometry, chemistry and physics. Physics is not an absolute prerequisite, but progress toward completion of the program may be delayed without it.

A Pre-Engineering student at Missouri State has two options:

  1. Choose the transfer option by spending two years at Missouri State, then transferring for the remaining two years to any university having an accredited Engineering program.
  2. Deciding that engineering is not the right option and pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree at Missouri State University in Mathematics, Physics or Computer Science.

The beginning course requirements are so similar for both options that through careful course selection with a pre-engineering advisor a student may pursue either path. This will require appropriate choices in general education courses, as well as in mathematics and the sciences. If correct choices are made, all Missouri State hours will transfer to any university with an Engineering program. Different engineering specialities have some variance in basic requirements, so the student must work with a pre-engineering advisor.


The first two years of the Pre-Engineering program provide the student with fundamental courses in physics, chemistry and mathematics which form the basis for success in the final two years and beyond. At the end of the first two years, the student will decide whether to remain at Missouri State or transfer to another university having an Engineering program.

Contacts for additional information regarding BS degrees from Missouri State University:

William Bray - Mathematics - Missouri State University

Dr. Dave Cornelison, Head of Department - Physics, Astronomy, and Materials Science Department - Missouri State University

Dr. Ken Vollmar, Department Head – Computer Science Department – Missouri State

Please consult the Missouri State‚ÄąCatalog online at www.missouristate.edu/catalog for specific course information.


Serving the two engineering options, the Departments of Mathematics and Physics and Computer Science have experienced professionals with research interests in both theoretical and applied physics, mathematics and computer science. Faculty actively conduct scholarly research, participate in professional organizations and sponsor student projects and activities.


Services available to the faculty and students of the College of Natural and Applied Sciences include a well-equipped machine shop and full-time machinist and electronics repair facilities with full-time technicians. The Departments of Mathematics, Physics and Computer Science sponsor a variety of pre-professional student organizations, including chapters of the national Society of Physics Students (SPS), the national mathematics society (Kappa Mu Epsilon), a student chapter of the Mathematical Association of America (MAA) and the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM). These groups organize and participate in a number of departmental activities that include CNAS Undergraduate Research Day, physics, mathematics and computer science competitions for high school students, tutorial assistance, seminars by guest speakers and tours of engineering or scientific interest. Students often find part-time employment in the departments, at Jordan Valley Innovation Center (JVIC) or through the Missouri State University Career Center.

Sample Schedule

Missouri State is committed to assisting students to graduate in four years--see sample graduation plans for this major.

The following is a sample schedule for this major--your actual schedule will vary.

Freshman Year

First Semester Courses Hours
EGR 110 Study and Careers in Engineering1
COM 115 Fundamentals of Public Speaking3
ENG 110 Writing I3
MTH 261 Analytic Geometry and Calculus I5
CHM 160 General Chemistry I4
CHM 161 General Chemistry I Laboratory1
Total Hours 17
Second Semester Courses Hours
MTH 280 Analytic Geometry and Calculus II5
PHY 203 Foundations of Physics I5
TCM 110 Industrial Design with Computer Applications3
HST 121, HST 122, or PLS 1013
Total Hours 16

Sophomore Year

First Semester Courses Hours
MTH 302 Multivariate Calculus3
CSC 125 Introduction to C++ Programming4
PHY 204 Foundations of Physics II5
ECO 155 Principles of Macroeconomics3
Total Hours 15
Second Semester Courses Hours
MTH 303 Differential Equations3
PHY 233 Engineering Statics3
Humanities or Social Science Elective3
Choose Two Electives6
Total Hours 15