Aerospace Engineering Technical Electives

Technical Elective Program Requirements

Aerospace Engineering students are required to earn a minimum of 9 credit hours of technical elective credit to complete degree requirements. The Aerospace Engineering program has three technical elective tracks available to students. In addition to the standard technical elective track, there are two undergraduate research tracks (honors and non-honors) offered to students. 

Detailed information about the Honors Research Distinction Track and Research Distinction Track can be found here. 


student project team
students and faculty - ARC
students and drone
student project team

Standard Elective Track

The Standard Elective Track requires that Aerospace Engineering students complete a minimum of 9 credit hours of technical elective credit hours from the following list of approved courses. Students are required to complete at least 6 credit hours of Aerospace Engineering (AEROENG) courses. Students may take any 5000-level, 6000 (with permission), or 7000 (with permission) level Aerospace Engineering (AE) courses to fulfill degree requirements. 

The courses listed below are approved to fulfill Technical Elective degree requirements. These are NOT "approved" for automatic enrollment in the course if you do not meet the pre-requisites. If you do not meet the pre-requisites, please reach out to the instructor for instructor permission.

Please Note: Course offerings are subject to change and not guaranteed to be offered in any given term.



Course # Course Title Credit Hours Course Description


Helicopter Aerodynamics 3 Basic treatment of helicopter aerodynamics, performance, and design. Prereq: 3570.


Aircraft Performance and Flight Test Engineering

3 Determination of the performance, stability, controllability, and handling qualities of general aviation aircraft through analysis and flight tests. Prereq: 3520 and 3570.


Introduction to Computational Aerodynamics 3 Introduction to computational methods used in aerodynamics flow problems. Prereq: 3570 and 3581, and AeroEng major. 


Advanced Flight Vehicle Design  3 The course introduces advanced flight vehicle design techniques applied during the conceptual design phase. The optimum design process and problem formulation is introduced, with an in-depth focus on multivariate graphical optimization techniques for aircraft. We will conduct optimal design based on first principles, and apply best practices to multidisciplinary flight vehicle design. Prereq or concur: 4550, and  4515 or 4517; or Grad standing in AeroEng; or permission of instructor.


Stability and Control of Flight Vehicles 3 Analysis and design of aircraft, helicopter and missile flight control systems and the associated guidance and navigation systems. Prereq: 3521.


Guidance, Navigation, and Control of Aerospace Vehicles 3 Spacecraft (satellite) control systems analysis and design. Prereq: 3521


Orbital Mechanics for Engineers 3 Introduction to orbital mechanics with orbit determination techniques, orbital maneuvers and lunar and interplanetary trajectories. Prereq: 3520 and MechEng 2030. 


Advanced Air Breathing Propulsion 3 Fundamental and advanced concepts of gas turbine operation. Prereq: 4550.


Advanced Space Propulsion 3 Analysis of different propulsion techniques for access to space and inter-planetary flight: liquid, solid, hybrid, nuclear and electric. Emphasizes fundamentals based on physics and mathematics. Prereq: 4550, or permission of instructor.


Hypersonic Flow 3 Introduction to hypersonic inviscid and viscous flows, Newtonian theory, high-temperature effects and heat transfer. Prereq: 3570 and 4550. 



A maximum of 3 credit hours can be chosen from this category.

Course # Course Title Credit Hours Course Description


Applied Finite Element Method 3 Overview of finite element method, description of finite element software, modeling requirements and techniques, analysis using general purpose software, and case studies. Prereq: 2020, 2040, or equiv, and enrollment in MechEng major; or Grad standing in Engineering.


Engineering Fracture Mechanics 3 Fracture and fatigue of solids; stress intensity factors; stability of cracks; compliance and energy methods; plane stress, plane strain effects; crack propagation and arrest criteria. Prereq: 2020 or 2040, and Math 2174, 2177, or 2415; or Grad standing in Engineering


Introduction to Laminated Composite Materials 3 Introduction to anisotropic material behavior and failure assessment of laminated composite materials. Classical lamination theory, beams, plates and shells. Prereq: 2020 or 2040; or Grad standing in Engineering; or permission of instructor. 


Vibration and Acoustic Design 3 Free and forced vibration analysis of single-degree-of-freedom systems with various forms of damping, vibration isolation and control methods and devices, vibration sensors, equations of motion of multi-degree of freedom systems using Lagrange's method, Eigen value problem, modal analysis method for free and forced vibration analysis, frequency-domain data analysis fundamentals. Prereq or concur: 3360, or Grad standing in Engineering.


Design and Control of Mechatronic Systems 3 Introduction to multi-domain (mechanical, thermal, fluid, electrical, electronic, electro-mechanical) system design, dynamic modeling, and control system design and analysis techniques. Prereq: 3360 or 3361, or Grad standing in MechEng, or permission of instructor. 


Applied Computational Fluid Dynamics and Heat Transfer 3 Introduces basic concepts in Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) and Computational Heat Transfer (CHT), teaches thermo-fluid analysis of engineering systems, and enhances understanding of fluid flow and heat transfer. Prereq: 3501 or 3502, and 3503 or 3504. Prereq or concur: 4510, or Grad standing in MechEng.


Design and Manufacturing of Compliant Mechanisms and Robots 3 Introduces methods and theories for kinematic and force analysis, synthesis of rigid body and compliant (flexible) mechanisms and robots. Pseudo-rigid-body model and CAD/CAE software will be used for modeling and analysis study. Students will be required to work on a team project to solve a real world design problem related to mechanisms and robots. Prereq: 3670 or equiv, or Grad standing in Engineering.


Intro to Nuclear Science and Engineering 3 Discussion of nuclear energy and nuclear radiation; sources, methods of utilization, and projections for future engineering uses.
Prereq: Math 2173, 2177, 2255 (255), or 2415 (415); and Physics 1251 (133), or permission of instructor.


Radiation Protection and Shielding 3 General principles of radiation, radioactivity, and radiation protection including radiation sources, radioactive decay, radiation interactions, radiation detection, radiation shielding, radiation dose calculations, and biological effects. Prereq: Math 2153, 2173, or 2177, and Physics 1250; or Grad standing.


Remote Sensing of Environment 3 The energies of the natural and cultural environment, current remote sensing systems and case histories of applications in measuring the environment. Prereq: 2410, or permission of instructor.


Introduction to GPS: Theory and Applications 3 Introduction to reference systems; fundamentals of GPS design and operation; GPS observables, error analysis and handling; data collection and data processing; interdisciplinary applications of GPS. Prereq: Math 1172 or 1544 or 2153, and Jr standing or above; or Grad standing; or permission of instructor.