Minor and Certificate Programs


The transcript-recognized undergraduate academic minor must be completed in conjunction with an undergraduate degree at the University of Texas at Austin. For more information regarding the requirements for achieving a minor, including a comprehensive list of minors, please visit the Minors and Certificate Programs section of the Undergraduate Catalog.

Certificate Programs

National Academy of Engineering Grand Challenges Scholars Program

The National Academy of Engineering Grand Challenges Scholars Program (GCSP) certificate is designed to be complementary, not additive, to a student’s traditional academic path. The GCSP certificate provides students with the scholarship network and formal recognition from the National Academy of Engineering, while typically requiring only one course beyond their standard degree program.

The GCSP certificate program is designed to offer students from all majors and all years an introduction to the program through Engineering Studies 377, an array of university-wide course connections, and mentorship. GC Scholars choose between 18 and 24 hours of approved coursework from a broad range of offerings that align with the five key program components. The five key curriculum components include facing the 21st Century Engineering Grand Challenges with (1) entrepreneurship and (2) service-learning by (3) understanding global dimensions through (4) research and (5) interdisciplinary curriculum. Each Scholar must choose at least one class that emphasizes each one of the components. Scholars will be advised on progress regularly by faculty affiliated with the program, and will present their work at an annual GCSP colloquium.

The certificate requirements are:

  1. Complete Engineering Studies 377 Grand Challenges topic
  2. At least 18 hours of approved courses from GC Scholar Coursework Program Plan
  3. Be a student of good standing
  4. Complete courses, a research project, a community project, a comprehensive reflective report, and a final design, which are evaluated with aligned rubrics.

Computational Science and Engineering Certificate

The Cockrell School sponsors the transcript-recognized Certificate in Computational Science and Engineering along with the Jackson School of Geosciences, the College of Liberal Arts, and the College of Natural Sciences.

The foundations of science and engineering are under rapid, dramatic, and irreversible change brought on by the advent of the computer. Steady growth in computer capabilities, and enormous expansion in the scope and sophistication of computational modeling and simulation, have added computation as the third pillar of scientific discovery and have revolutionized engineering practice. Computational science and engineering can affect virtually every aspect of human existence, including the health, security, productivity, and competitiveness of nations.

The Computational Science and Engineering Certificate program is sponsored by the Cockrell School of Engineering, the Jackson School of Geosciences, the College of Liberal Arts, and the College of Natural Sciences; it is administered by the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences (ICES). The program offers highly qualified upper-division students an opportunity for in-depth study and research in computational science and engineering, including computational and applied mathematics, numerical simulation, scientific computation, and visualization. A student who completes the general requirements listed on Transcript-Recognized Programs and the specific requirements below receives recognition on his or her University transcript and a letter from the director of ICES that describes the program and the work completed. Along with supporting letters from supervising faculty and graduate mentors, these are valuable assets for students applying to graduate school and pursuing competitive job opportunities.

To apply for admission, students must have completed 60 semester hours of coursework, must have a grade point average of at least 3.00, and must have taken coursework in calculus. 

Students must complete 18 semester hours of approved coursework with a grade of at least C- in each course.  A student’s overall GPA in certificate courses must be 3.00 or greater. Students must take at least one course in each of the following areas:

  1. Upper Division Mathematics
  2. Basic Programming
  3. Numerical Applications
  4. Advanced Computing
  5. Electives
  6. Scientific Computing Project - to be supervised by a member of the computational science, engineering, and mathematics (CSEM) graduate program faculty. The research project is completed in a three-semester-hour research methods or individual instruction course, which the student should take during the senior year. The research project may include mentoring by ICES postdoctoral fellows and CSEM graduate students as part of a vertical instructional research team.

With the approval of the certificate program’s faculty adviser, course substitutions may be made within the broad area of computational science and engineering.

Some courses on the approved course list may be restricted by the department offering the course. Please note that the CSE Certificate Program cannot ask the department to waive prerequisites or force the department to lift restrictions on their courses.

A list of approved courses is available at http://www.ices.utexas.edu/programs/cse-certificate/ and in the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences, ACE 4.110