Jun 18, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

College of Science and Engineering


Dr. Janelle Leger, Dean

The College of Science and Engineering consists of seven academic departments: Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Engineering & Design, Geology, Mathematics, and Physics & Astronomy. In addition to the academic departments, the college is home to Western’s Science, Mathematics, and Technology Education (SMATE) program and the Advanced Materials Science and Engineering Center (AMSEC). SMATE is dedicated to the recruitment and preparation of future K-12 teachers, and to improving the teaching and learning of science, mathematics, engineering and computer science. AMSEC’s mission is to educate students and promote interdisciplinary research in materials science, and to enhance regional competitiveness and innovation. The college is committed to excellence in teaching, fostering interdisciplinary research and study opportunities, enhancing diversity, enhancing the quality of science, mathematics and technology K-12 teaching, and the development of critical thinking. Western has extensively invested in new facilities, instructional innovation, and the recruitment of world-class faculty for the sciences in recent years. Thus, students in the college are engaged in high-quality classroom, laboratory, and hands-on research experiences that foster deep foundational disciplinary knowledge as well as the tools to engage in the creation of new scientific knowledge. The overall mission of Western’s College of Science and Engineering is to serve the science and engineering needs of Washington State and the global community by advancing scholarship and educating thoughtful leaders and problem solvers.

All departments within the college are dedicated to providing a high-quality education for students by incorporating undergraduate research and practical hands-on experiences to stimulate intellectual curiosity, critical thinking abilities and application of the scientific method. Graduates from the college pursue graduate degrees, a wide variety of jobs in industry or governmental organizations, or become teachers. 

Within the college, students will find a wide variety of majors and minors from which to choose, many of which are interdisciplinary. Both bachelor’s and master’s degrees are offered, and graduates from many majors also seek certification in education. Through the university’s GUR program, students in the College of Science and Engineering earn a broad liberal education, and are uniquely positioned to contribute leading roles in their scientific, professional, and technical lives in our increasingly complex world.

Academic Programs Leading to Undergraduate and Graduate Degrees

Applied Mathematics BS
Biology BA, BS, MS
Biology/Anthropology BS
Biology/Mathematics BS
Biochemistry BA, BS
Chemistry BA, BS, MS
Chemistry/Biology BAE
Chemistry/Mathematics BAE
Chemistry/Physics BAE
Computer Science BAE, BS, MS
Cybersecurity BS
Data Science BS
Earth Science BAE
Earth Science/General Science BAE
Economics/Mathematics BA
Electrical and Computer Engineering BS
General Science BAE
Geology BA, BS, MS
Geophysics BS
Industrial Design BS
Manufacturing Engineering BS
Mathematics BA, BAE, BS, MS
Mathematics/Computer Science BS
Natural Science/Science Education MEd
Physics BS
Physics/Mathematics BAE
Polymer Engineering BS
Statistics BS

Majors and Minors

In addition to the General University Requirements (GURs) and other common degree requirements of the University, the candidate for a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Science degree must complete a major area emphasis which is usually accompanied by supporting courses. Minor degrees are optional. A few concentrations are offered which encompass both a major and a minor. Students should confer with appropriate departmental advisors to plan study programs. Transfer students are expected to complete at least a portion of their work in the major and minor fields in this institution.

College Admission and Advisement

Students are encouraged to reach out to department advisors as soon as possible after arriving at Western and deciding on a preferred area of study. Faculty within each department share responsibility for counseling students electing concentrations in their area. Faculty members may recommend to the department chair the waiving of certain course prerequisites (when it has been demonstrated that the student already has these competencies). Students who are undecided about a major may seek advisement through the Academic Advising & Student Achievement Center.

Department Chairs

Dr. Lynn Pillitteri, Biology
Dr. P. Clint Spiegel, Chemistry
Dr. Filip Jagodzinski, Computer Science
Dr. David D. Gill, Engineering and Design
Dr. Bernard Housen, Geology
Dr. David A. Hartenstine, Mathematics
Dr. Kevin Covey, Physics/Astronomy

Other College Information

Departments, Courses and Programs

Courses listed in this catalog constitute a record of the total academic program of the University. For an exact scheduling of courses at Western, students should consult Browse Classes and Outreach and Continuing Education  communications.

College of Science and Engineering Collaboration (CSEC)

A subset of courses containing scientific, technological and/or mathematical topics that span scientific disciplines may be offered under the College of Science and Engineering Collaboration (CSEC) designation. Faculty teaching CSEC courses come from across the College of Science and Engineering.


Go to information for Biology.



Go to information for Chemistry.


Computer Science

Go to information for Computer Science.


Engineering and Design

Go to information for Engineering and Design.



Go to information for Geology.


Materials Science

Go to information for Materials Science.



Go to information for Mathematics.


Physics and Astronomy

Go to information for Physics and Astronomy.


Science Education

Go to information for Science Education.