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Engineering

Engineering is more than problem solving. It’s not just designing, building, troubleshooting, and improving things. Are those all part of a strong engineering education? Yes. But there’s more to it than that.

At Dordt, we believe engineers have the privilege and responsibility of developing and maintaining God’s creation. We also believe that an engineer’s technical skill set should be rooted in a biblical understanding of his or her calling. That mindset is one aspect of Dordt’s Engineering major that sets us apart from most other engineering programs. If you want to be challenged and changed by your engineering education, consider applying to Dordt.

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Program Overview

As an engineering major at Dordt, you’ll learn technical skills in the classroom. You’ll have numerous opportunities to do hands-on projects. You’ll have chances to put your knowledge into action through on-campus engineering competitions and internship opportunities. And you’ll be challenged to understand how all aspects of your work can serve the Lord.

Engineering at Dordt will teach you how to engage the field from a Christian perspective. Professors with years of research and industry experience create a rich learning environment. Our resources, facilities, and labs set us apart from other engineering programs. And you’ll have a range of engineering concentrations to choose from, including Biomedical, Chemical, Civil, Computer, Electrical, and Mechanical.

The engineering program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, https://www.abet.org, under the General Criteria.

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A Top Undergraduate Engineering Program

Dordt’s engineering program was listed as a top program within the “Undergraduate Engineering Programs (No Doctorate)” list by U.S. News and World Report. To qualify, a school must have an undergraduate engineering program accredited by ABET.

What can I do with a degree in engineering from Dordt University?

By majoring in Engineering at Dordt, you’ll set yourself up for a bright future. Whether you attend graduate school or enter the workforce, you’ll leave with the skills and tools you need to succeed. Civil engineering. Chemical engineering. Mechanical engineering. Whatever type of engineering you’re passionate about, you’ll be ready to make a career of it. And with your identity firmly rooted in Christ, you won’t just make a professional impact—you’ll make a spiritual impact as well.

You can serve the public in any of the different engineering fields. You may work with consulting firms or government organizations. You might pursue a job in the manufacturing industry or in a research laboratory. Here are just a few of the careers you’ll be prepared for as an Engineering major at Dordt:

Consulting

Provide engineering direction for public and private organizations. Help plan and manage construction or infrastructure projects in your areas of expertise.

Government

Work for the local or federal government to plan and lead civil construction projects, like building bridges, roads, or other city needs.

Manufacturing

Design and control mechanical devices and thermal systems ranging from wheelchairs to solar collectors to refrigerators.

Engineering Concentrations

Engineering Major

As an engineering major at Dordt, you’ll learn technical skills in the classroom and will have numerous opportunities to do hands-on projects. You’ll have the opportunity to put your knowledge into action by participating in the concrete canoe, emergency shelter, steel bridge, or mini-baja competitions.

As an engineering major at Dordt, you’ll learn technical skills in the classroom and will have numerous opportunities to do hands-on projects. You’ll have the opportunity to put your knowledge into action by participating in the concrete canoe, emergency shelter, steel bridge, or mini-baja competitions.

Engineering at Dordt will teach you how to engage the field from a Christian perspective so you can enter your career prepared to make a difference for Christ using your technical skills in a biomedical, chemical, civil, computer, electrical, or mechanical engineering concentration.

To learn more, you can also view the program strengths and learning outcomes for this program.

As an engineering major at Dordt, you'll have access to these labs and more:

  • Computational labs: design and analyze 3D objects using solid modeling (CAD), finite element analysis (FEA), and computational fluid dynamics (CFD)

  • Solar energy lab: monitor solar collector and wind turbine performance

  • Prototyping lab: fabricate a project using computer-aided manufacturing (CAM), computer numeric control (CNC) machining, and 3D printing

  • Mechanics and materials lab: measure material behavior under loading

  • Chemical reactor lab: experiment with combustion and gasification

  • Civil engineering lab: analyze soil and concrete samples

  • Biomechanics lab: measure forces and positions for the human body during movement

  • Thermodynamics lab: test air-foils in a wind tunnel and measure the impact of a high-speed fluid jet on a vane

  • Electronics lab: build, design, and test circuits and microprocessors

The following curricular outcomes provide specific means of achieving the institutional and program educational objectives. Students will have…

  1. Faithfulness and Responsibility. …an ability to articulate and faithfully practice responsible engineering that grows out of Christ’s all-encompassing work as Creator, Sustainer, and Redeemer.
  2. Fundamentals. …an ability to identify, formulate, critically evaluate, and solve complex engineering problems by applying principles of engineering, science, and mathematics faithful to the analytical, sensory, biotic, physical, kinematic, spatial, and numeric aspects of creation.
  3. Design. …an ability to holistically design systems, components, or processes that flow from a vision of responsible engineering, giving consideration to models of normative technology faithful to the fiduciary, ethical, juridic, aesthetic, economic, social, lingual, and cultural aspects of creation.
  4. Communication. …an ability to openly, honestly, and effectively communicate with a broad range of audiences using a variety of oral, written, and graphical forms.
  5. Context. …an ability to recognize how professional and ethical engineering grows out of a faithful response to the cultural mandate and therefore must be grounded in an understanding of contemporary issues within the broader context of historical, cultural, societal, global, economic, and environmental development.
  6. Teamwork. …an ability to function effectively on a team by serving alongside others to provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive environment, establish goals, plan tasks, and meet objectives.
  7. Experimental Development and Analysis. …an ability to develop and conduct appropriate experiments, analyze and interpret data, and use holistic judgment to draw conclusions.
  8. Lifelong Learning. …an ability to humbly acquire and apply new knowledge, insights, and skills as faithful stewards of creation.

  • Introduction to Computer Aided Engineering and Design: The design studio experience introduces concepts of graphical communication for engineers and develops basic 2-D and 3-D design skills with the use of a solid modeling software package. The course meets for one design studio per week.
  • Introduction to Engineering Energy and Economics: An engineering foundations course that introduces students to engineering design economics (energy, material, time, and money) within the broader norms of engineering stewardship. Basic engineering analysis and problem-solving tools will be practiced.
  • Introduction to Engineering Design: An introduction to the engineering analysis and design of structures. Students will explore principles of statics and mechanics within the broader context of engineering analysis and design. The course meets for one studio session per week.
  • Introduction to Engineering Statics and Structures: An introduction to the engineering analysis and design of structures. Students will explore principles of statics and mechanics within the broader context of engineering analysis and design. The course meets for one studio session per week.
  • Introduction to Engineering Analysis: An introduction to engineering mathematics and problem solving, introducing foundational mathematics and computational tools for the solution of a variety of engineering problems. The course introduces a perspective on how the activities of both math and science can in-form and constrain our ability to design normatively. The course meets for one lecture session and one studio session per week.
  • Introduction to Engineering Electronics: An introduction to electrical engineering fundamentals relating to electrical energy and circuit analysis. Concepts in digital logic and digital electronics are also introduced. Students will explore principles of electronic systems within the broader context of engineering analysis and design. The course meets for one studio session per week.
  • Elements of Materials Science: Studies the relationship between structure and properties of various materials, including metals, ceramics, polymers, and semiconductors. Students will learn how atomic and molecular arrangements, as well as manufacturing processes, influence the mechanical, electrical, and thermal properties of a material. Introductory topics in metallurgy in this course include the examination of effects of processing (heat treatment and manufacturing) and service environment on microstructure and properties. Laboratory explorations in materials engineering introduce concepts in experimental design and data analysis.
  • Statics: A mechanics course that examines the effects of forces and moments applied to rigid and deformable bodies in equilibrium. Students will analyze concentrated and distributed force systems applied to static particles, rigid bodies, trusses, frames, and machines.
  • Linear Circuits and Electronics: Assumes a prerequisite knowledge of DC electrical circuits, including the definitions of electrical quantities, circuit elements (sources, resistors, capacitors, inductors), understanding of Kirchhoff’s laws and basic concepts in AC circuits such as frequency and phase. Topics in this course include: general linear circuit analysis including Norton’s and Thevenin’s theorems; superposition; nodal and loop analysis; natural and forced responses in RLC circuits; and sinusoidal steady state analysis. The course also gives introductions to operational amplifier circuits, single stage BJT transistor circuits, and steady-state balanced 3-phase power calculations. The lab includes a formal design project.
  • Introduction to Thermal-Fluids: An introduction to the principles of thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, and heat transfer principles, including energy, work, heat, properties of pure substances, the first and second laws, and other thermal-fluid relations.
  • History of Science and Technology: Enables the student to examine from a Reformed, biblical perspective the narrative of scientific unfolding and technological development as two human activities that are manifest in all cultures. Emphasis is on the major paradigms and events that have shaped the development of science and technology in the West and most recently in North America. The course focuses on the historical activity of engineers and artisans, while investigating the interrelationship between scientific thought and technological development. Events and ideas such as the philosophical origins of Western science, the Copernican revolution, Enlightenment rationalism, the industrial revolutions, 20th century positivism, the Einsteinian revolution, and the modern systemization ethic are discussed.
  • Senior Design I: The first of two project courses providing students with the opportunity to use, in an integrated manner, the knowledge and skills that have been acquired to this point in their education. This design studio course is devoted entirely to the research, planning, analysis, and report writing required in the first phase of the senior design project. Students work in project teams of two to four on a project of their mutual interest. The class meets for one lecture period and at least one team-mentor session per week.
  • Senior Design II: The second course devoted to senior design project activities. This lab studio course requires students to complete the design, experimentation, analysis, and communication components of their project. Work on the project, while culminating in this course, starts in Engineering 379 the previous semester. Teams confer weekly with members of the engineering department staff.
  • Engineering Economics: A course on the fundamentals of engineering economics and system cost analysis. An introduction to engineering economic topics such as, cost estimating, economic decision-making, time-value analysis, depreciation, taxes, cash flow, cost-benefit, and risk assessment will be addressed in the context of stewardship principles of engineering design.
  • Technology and Society: An examination and critique of the relationship of technology to other areas of Western society. During the first half of the course students examine a Christian philosophy of technology and application is made to such problems as the role of the computer, technocracy, appropriate technology, and the historical two-cultures dualism. During its second half, the course focuses on the question of engineering ethics, with particular emphasis on such questions as safety and risk, professional responsibility and authority, whistle blowing, normative socioeconomic structures, and morality in career choice. This course requires the student to write and orally present a significant thesis paper.
  • Principles of Chemistry: A study of the fundamental principles of chemistry and an introduction to foundational issues in science. Topics include atomic and molecular structure, chemical equilibria, chemical kinetics, chemical thermodynamics, and electrochemistry. An introduction to laboratory safety and chemical hygiene is included in the laboratory. This is the first course in chemistry for majors in the physical and life sciences. Three lectures and one three-hour laboratory period per week.
  • Programming I: An introduction to computer programming. Basic notions of abstraction, elementary composition principles, the fundamental data structures, and object-oriented programming technique are introduced. Topics include variables, control structures, arrays, and input/output.
  • Calculus I: A study of the basic concepts and techniques of calculus for students in all disciplines. Topics include limits, differentiation, integration, and applications. This course is intended for students without any previous calculus credit.
  • Calculus II: Continuation of Mathematics 152; a study of transcendental functions, integration techniques, Taylor series approximations, calculus in polar coordinates, vectors, calculus of vector valued functions and applications of calculus. Students with one semester of calculus credit should take this course instead of Mathematics 152.
  • Multivariable Calculus: A study of differential and integral calculus of functions of several variables, and line and surface integrals.
  • Differential Equations: An introduction to the theory and techniques of solving elementary differential equations and the use of these techniques in applied problems.
  • Introductory Physics I: An introduction to the study of the physical aspect of reality for students intending to continue in the physical sciences and engineering.
    Linear and rotational kinematics and dynamics, statics, and gravitation will be covered. Three lectures and one laboratory period per week.
  • Introductory Physics II: Continuation of Physics 231. Topics covered include fluid, oscillations, waves, heat and thermodynamics, and electricity. Three lectures and one laboratory per week.
  • Elementary Linear Algebra: An introductory study of vectors, matrices, linear transformations, vector spaces, determinants, and their applications, with particular emphasis upon solving systems of linear equations.
  • Numerical Analysis: A study of numerical methods for integration, differentiation, calculus of finite differences, and applications, using the computer.
  • Discrete Structures: A study of topics in discrete mathematics that are relevant to computer science and mathematics, including logic and proof, induction and recursion, elementary set theory, combinatorics, relations and functions, Boolean algebra, and introductory graph theory.
  • Introduction to Light, Energy, and Matter: Advanced classical and introduction to modern physics topics. Optics, advanced waves, semiconductors, and modern physics topics in particle, nuclear, and quantum physics are covered.
  • Classical Mechanics: Lagrangian and Hamiltonian dynamics, general rigid body motion, theory of vibrations and waves, planetary motion, and chaos are studied.
  • Electromagnetic Fields: Review of vector calculus; divergence, curl, Gauss’ and Stoke’s theorems; electro- and magneto-statics; polarization; boundary conditions; Laplace and Poisson equations; magnetic vector potential; energy; Maxwell’s equations for time varying fields; wave propagation; and Poynting’s theorem.
  • Modern Physics: Developments in modern physics: special relativity, atomic nature of matter and electricity, wave and particle aspects of electrons and light, quantum theory and applications to the study of atomic and molecular structure, condensed matter physics, particle and nuclear physics. Three lectures and one laboratory period per week.
  • Accelerated Introductory Statistics: This course covers the same content and learning objectives as Statistics 131 but in half the time. This course, along with Statistics 202 and Statistics 203, also serves as preparation for Actuarial Exam SRM. Additionally this course, along with Statistics 202, Statistics 203, Statistics 220 and Statistics 352, serves as preparation for Actuarial Exam MAS I. Offered first half of spring semester. Credit will not be given for both Statistics 131 and 132.
  • Applied Statistical Models: This course surveys multivariable design and statistical methods used across various disciplines and seen in peer-reviewed research. Topics include multiple and non-linear regression, general linear models, multivariable statistical models, and multifactor experimental design emphasis is on active-learning using group activities and projects, critiquing research, and statistical software. Offered second half of spring semester. Credit will not be given for Statistics 201 and 202.
  • Introduction to Univariate Probability: An introduction to the theory and techniques of general probability and common univariate probability distributions. Topics include but are not limited to basic set theory, introductory probability rules (independence, combinatorials, conditionals, Bayes theorem, etc.), common univariate distributions (e.g., binomial and normal) and expected value/variance. This course, along with Statistics 216, also serves as preparation for Actuarial Exam P/1. Offered first half of the semester.
  • Introduction to Multivariate Probability: An introduction to multivariate probability distributions. Topics include but are not limited to joint probability density functions, conditional and marginal probability distributions, moment generating functions, covariance and correlations, transformations and linear combinations of independent random variables. This course, along with Statistics 215, also serves as preparation for Actuarial Exam P/1. Offered second half of the semester.

See the course catalog for more information.

Ready to take the next step?

Science and Technology Center

As an engineering major, you'll have the opportunity to spend time in Dordt's Science and Technology Center. Informally known as the "Science Building," the Science and Technology Center is home to labs for mechanical engineering, electronics, electrical engineering, and computer-aided design.

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A front exterior view of the Science and Technology Center

Student Stories

Dordt students and alumni use their gifts to make a difference in the world. Check out their stories to see how Defender Nation lives out our mission to work effectively toward Christ-centered renewal in all aspects of contemporary life.

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Emotional Engineering

Nicholas Kuperus

During his time at Dordt, Nicholas learned invaluable skills that prepared him to enter the field of engineering and grew in many areas, especially in his spiritual life.

Nicholas Kuperus

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Gaining in Engineering

Monique Lieuwen

Monique travels from Canada to get a Christian education and engineering degree

Monique Lieuwen

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Yielding Fruit

Andrew De Haan

Dordt's engineering program prepared Andrew in ways he did not anticipate before entering the workforce.

Andrew De Haan

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When Worlds Collide

Becca Groninga Merging rap music and an engineering degree

Engineering and rap seem like two separate worlds, but at Dordt, Becca was able to pursue both interests.

Becca Groninga Merging rap music and an engineering degree

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Grounding in God's Story

Darrin Beekman

Beekman looks back and acknowledges the most valuable aspect of Dordt's engineering program being the grounding of their work within God's story.

Darrin Beekman

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Beyond Coursework

Kyle Vander Zee

Kyle recognizes that the engineering program at Dordt prepared him in ways beyond the obvious coursework that allowed him to extend his faith and perspective into his future.

Kyle Vander Zee

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