Q&A – About Engineering Physics

What is Engineering Physics?

Engineering Physics offers a broad engineering and science education enabling career paths in development, research, or application of diverse technologies for the 21st century. The program is offered by the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering in conjunction with the Department of Physics. Students cover essential core material from both the Electrical Engineering and Physics curricula, and also take an enhanced mathematics component. Emphasis is placed on understanding science fundamentals and learning techniques of engineering design and problem solving. This program is fully accredited by the Canadian Council of Professional Engineers.

Who should take Engineering Physics?

This program is particularly applicable for work in development of emerging advanced technology areas where success is leveraged by a combination of an in-depth knowledge of the basic sciences, math, and engineering ingenuity. For those uncertain of a desired career field, engineering physics offers a sound and particularly broad education that does not confine graduates to a narrow perspective of opportunities. Many graduates proceed to post-graduate work in applied sciences or engineering, whereas others have entered the engineering profession directly. Some recent graduates are employed in the fields of telecommunications, remote sensing, microdevice fabrication, biochips, “intelligent” materials, circuit design, industrial lasers, microscopic silicon machines, fluids engineering, and teaching.

Program Highlights

Graduates of the program receive a degree entitled “B.Sc. Engineering Physics”. Required engineering courses are taken from the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Physics courses are taken from the Honours Physics program. Engineering Physics gives the student flexibility through the choice of technical electives from engineering or science departments within the University. Of particular value is the capstone design project in 4th year that may be tailored to the student’s interest. These projects tackle open-ended and complex engineering design problems, often across multiple fields. For example, within the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, some of the design project opportunities include the fields of:

  • microelectronic devices and microscopic machines
  • clean energy technologies such as solar
  • medical and industrial lasers
  • nanofabrication and nanotechnologies such as biochips
  • fusion energy and plasma engineering
  • fibre optic communications and devices
  • applied electromagnetics and high speed photonics
  • biomedical engineering
  • radio astronomy
  • laser spectroscopies and new laser technologies
  • computer simulation and design in each of the above areas

What is Nanoengineering?

Nanoengineering is the study, design and fabrication of materials and devices on a size scale less than 1 micrometer. It is an exciting new field incorporating knowledge from a wide variety of disciplines including electronics, materials science, chemistry, biology, and advanced physics such as quantum mechanics. Nanotechnology products and nanoengineering applications are essential to new capabilities and opportunities in energy storage and conversion, biotechnology and health care, microelectronics and microdevices, and information storage and processing.

What is the Nanoengineering Option in Engineering Physics?

The Nanoengineering Option builds on the strong core of the interdisciplinary Engineering Physics degree, providing training for immediate careers or preparation for graduate studies in Nanotechnology. The Nanoengineering Option also leverages the exceptional expertise and facilities on campus established through the National Institute for Nanotechnology (NINT), our leading University of Alberta Micromachining and Nanofabrication Facility, and the affiliated fundamental and industrial nanoengineering research teams. Program highlights include instruction in nanoelectronics and nanobiotechnology, laboratory training in nanofabrication and microelectromechanical systems processing, and a fourth year project building nanofabricated devices.

Entering the Program

The Engineering Physics program is administered by the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. In order to enter the program, one must first apply to enter the Faculty of Engineering and take the common first year of engineering. Near the end of this first year, the student may then apply to enter the Engineering Physics program. A minimum grade point average of 3.0 is required at the end of first year engineering in order to be considered for this program.

For Further Program Information

For further information on the Engineering Physics programs, please contact our program director:

Mani Vaidyanathan

Faculty of Engineering – Electrical & Computer Engineering Dept
11-241 Donadeo Innovation Centre For Engineering
9211-116 St
Edmonton, AB
Canada T6G 2H5
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