Required Co-op Courses

The Co-op Program consists of two courses, CSE 4896 (2 credits) and CSE 4996 (2 credits). Each course includes a lecture and discussion component. Courses are administered remotely in a synchronous format. All of the coursework instruction will be conducted through the course's Canvas site. The program is designed to be two consecutive semesters (Summer/Fall or Spring/Summer). Academic-year-long co-op experiences (fall/spring) are acceptable as well but may not be the best option for degree progress.

Course Schedules

CSE 4896 - offered spring and summer terms
CSE 4996 - offered summer and fall terms

Please note the following course requirements:

  • Co-op courses must be taken concurrently with the work experience.
  • Typically, CSE 4896 is taken first and CSE 4996 is taken second. However, students planning on a full academic year co-op (fall/spring) would take them in reverse order (CSE 4896 is not a prerequisite for CSE 4996).
  • Registration may not be delayed, nor may the class be taken before or after the work term.
  • Registration can not be administered retroactively.
  • You cannot take two co-op courses in the same semester.
  • Students are not allowed to participate in the co-op program without taking the co-op courses.
  • It is not possible to take a full course load during a co-op work semester, although some students do take an additional evening or online course.

Technical Elective Credit

Each major that participates in the Co-op Program offers four (4) technical elective credits. Both CSE 4896 and CSE 4996 must be taken in order to receive these credits. Before applying to the program, you must meet with your departmental academic advisor to ensure that you will receive usable technical elective credit that will count towards your degree progress. Please also discuss the most appropriate semesters to complete a co-op to help keep you on track with your degree progress.

Course Content

CSE 4896 topics include industrial ethics/professionalism, conflict resolution, communication skills and networking strategies. Students will prepare executive summaries and various reports on topics like diversity/inclusion, team dynamics, and ethical dilemmas. CSE 4996 will focus on intellectual property, the patent process and business model canvas. Each course will feature various speakers from industry and students will have the opportunity to learn how to collaborate with other types of engineers in a professional setting via interviews and alumni networking. Both courses will conclude with a final presentation.

Course Grades

Co-op grades are based on performance in the course. Good performance on the job, while required, is not considered in assigning a grade for the course. 

Course information for students who started their co-op experience prior to Fall 2021:

Please note that changes were made to the co-op program beginning Fall 2021. If you began the program prior to Fall 2021, please note these important course updates:

  • EE/IE/ME 3041 will be offered for the last time Summer 2021
  • EE/IE/ME 4044 will be offered for the last time in Spring 2022
  • EE/IE/ME 4043W and BMEN 4996W will be offered for the last time in Summer 2022

The number of technical elective credits earned through the Co-op Program depends on the number of semesters you work with your Co-op employer.

  • The first course and third course are each two credits.
  • The second course is writing intensive and is four credits.
  • The classes must be taken in sequence.

Students must complete at minimum the first two courses to receive technical elective credits. Students who work only one semester and take only the first course will not receive any usable technical elective credits. The credits will revert to general elective credits.

Co-op Courses Description

EE/IE/ME 3041  or BMEn 4896

(2 credits)


  • Initial short assignments and an on-campus workshop
  • Summary of an article in a technical journal
  • Preliminary report (carefully written draft of a descriptive report)
  • Final 8- to 11-page descriptive report

EE/IE/ME 4043W or BMEn  4996W
(4 credits)


  • Prerequisite 3041 or 4896
  • Initial short assignments and an on-campus workshop
  • Summary of an article in a technical journal
  • Preliminary report (carefully written draft of a design report)
  • Final 20- to 24-page final design report
Optional 3rd semester

EE/IE/ME 4044 
(2 credits)


  • Prerequisite 4043W
  • On-campus workshop
  • Technical PowerPoint presentation (15 to 20 minutes)
  • Reflection paper about Co-op experience