College Preparation to get Admission to Chemical Engineering in the USA

The chemical engineering program develops the student's capability and competency for the invention and analysis of chemical processes and products. Students in the program should take several classes in chemistry, along with courses in physics, mathematics, and biology. The curriculum to be studied at the undergrad level includes a rigorous education in the fundamental chemical engineering sciences of thermodynamics, transport phenomena, and kinetics, as well as more applied areas such as materials science, biochemical engineering, or chemical process design. Because chemical engineers must be skilled communicators, they should also have had formal and informal oral presentation course at the undergraduate level. The undergrad course in chemical engineering also places considerable emphasis on technical report writing, team projects, and formal and informal oral presentation. In addition, students should broaden their understanding of people and society by taking several courses in the humanities and social sciences as well.
Admission to graduate programs is competitive. The applicants need an undergrad degree in engineering chemistry, good grades, and good test scores.

Additional requirements at graduate schools include:
  1. Graduate Record Exam (GRE) General: The applicants must provide official GRE scores from an examination taken within the last 5 years. All applicants from a university outside the US are required to submit General GRE scores for admission consideration.

  2. Graduate Record Exam (GRE) Chemistry: GRE Chemistry is not mandatory for all graduate schools. But a high score in chemistry will strengthen the application.

  3. TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language): All applicants from countries in which the official language is not English are required to submit official evidence of English language proficiency. Hence, the applicants are required to take TOEFL and submit the scores of the same.

  4. Letters of recommendation: Three letters of recommendation are required for the admission. These should be from faculty you have worked with closely or supervisors from industry-related work experience. A recommendation letter is a detailed discussion of the personal qualities, accomplishments, and experiences that make you unique and perfect for the program to which you've applied.

  5. Personal Statement: The personal statement should provide the information about your interest and goals. So, the applicants should recognize and focus of what they want and tell the admission panel about their ambitions, experiences, challenges, accomplishments and involvement. Be open and reflective.

  6. Research/ Real-world Experiences:  Applicants who receive research experience often are viewed as a graduate school material because research is at the heart of the graduate school.

  7. Intellectual courses: Humanities, Liberal Arts classes and Creative Development Courses: It is important that students learn and know about modes of thought and areas of human accomplishment beyond the purely technical. Therefore, intellectual courses at the undergrad level will help students to understand the impact of chemical engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental and societal context. These intellectual courses make students more flexible, creative and better able to work with diverse groups.

  8. Undergraduate GPA: The applicant must have an undergraduate grade point average of at least 3.0.

  9. General Education Classes: English composition, public speaking and other general training classes must be completed at undergrad study. Math’s and science make up a large proportion of the general education classes for this major, as these provide the foundation for the advanced science and engineering processes being taught in core classes later in the chemical engineering major. So, the applicant should have two semesters of math and science courses.

  10. Core Classes: The knowledge and skills needed to work as a chemical engineer is taught during core classes, which are typically held during the undergraduate school. Lecture, lab and field work are common for these classes as they provide instruction while allowing the students to acquire hands-on experience.

  11. Academic Transcripts: Transcripts which include your name, the name of the institution, the courses undertaken at the undergrad level, and grades or scores along with the application for initial departmental review are required. You can also attach a brief, one-page note describing any inconsistencies in your transcripts such as bad semester or medical problems.

  12. Course work to be studied at the undergrad level
The chemical engineering program typically includes courses in the following subjects:
  • Applied Analysis
  • Calculus
  • Chemistry
  • Engineering Physics
  • English Composition
  • Introduction to Computer Science
  • Linear Algebra
  • Linear Differential Equations
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Principles of Chemical Engineering
  • Process and Plant Design
  • Process Dynamics and Control
  • Reaction Engineering
  • Senior Design Project
  • Separations
  • Statistics
  • Strength of Materials
  • Thermodynamics
  • Transport
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