Computer-Integrated Design Graduate Certificate

The need for engineers trained in computer-integrated design methodology continues to increase at a rapid rate. During the next 20 years, much of our mechanical infrastructure and a major percentage of aircraft used by both domestic and foreign carriers will require replacement. Moreover, the burgeoning information technology industry will increase its demand for sophisticated and highly miniaturized mechanical devices. Most of the necessary new products will be designed and produced in completely computerized environments.

Analysis and design techniques utilizing industry-standard computer codes are beginning to be addressed in some of today's undergraduate engineering programs, but many working engineers lack sufficient formal training in the area and required to gain gain their expertise while on the job. The Computer-Integrated Design certificate has been created to provide such engineers with a coordinated four-course sequence that emphasizes hands-on experience with current professional design methodologies, and software. This prepares them for the broad spectrum of new opportunities that will exist in the near future.

This certificate program offers an alternative to a Master of Science degree (MS) program for professionals who wish to expand their education beyond the bachelor's degree but might not have the time to commit to a full graduate degree program. However, the graduate Certificate in Computer-Integrated Design serves as a path towards the MS degree since all certificate courses are transferable to an MS program.

The program

  • Consists of four courses(12 credit hours)-- three focus on numerical design and analysis tools, and the fourth is a capstone course in which students apply these tools to individual projects in aicraft, mechanical, or spacecraft design.

  • Emphasizes applied engineering through the latest industry-standard computer design and analysis programs.

  • Balances theory and "hands-on" application

  • Is designed for the working professional.

  • Is skills oriented. 

Principal Advisors

The MAE faculty advisors responsible for the graduate certificate program are Professors Douglas L. Jones, James D. Lee and Michael K. Myers.

Program Prerequisites and Admission


Prerequisites: Students admitted to the MAE Graduate Certificate program are required to have a bachelor's degree in engineering or the physical sciences.

Admission: The program operates on an "open" enrollment basis. Applicants will be subject to the standard admissions process and will complete a GW graduate admissions application indicating their choice of the Graduate Certificate program.

Certificate Requirements: students will be awarded the Graduate Certificate in Computer-Integrated Design after completion of all four of the courses in the program with a grade of  "B" or better.

Completion: Candidates can complete the program in one-year (by taking two courses/semester); or self-pace their enrollment.

Applications: Graduate Admission applications are available from SEAS Admissions Office, (202)994-6158 or (800)537-SEAS or here.


Course Descriptions


MAE 287 Applied Finite Element Methods (3)

Basic aspects of theory and application of finite element methods. Utilization of MSC/NASTRAN for static, dynamic, linear and nonlinear analyses of problems in mechanical, aeronautical, and astronautical engineering. Course emphasizes individual hands-on experience with the MSC/NASTRAN code.

MAE 220 Applied Computational Fluid Dynamics (3)

Basic principles of fluid dynamics and aerodynamics. Theory and application of finite difference and finite volume methods. Fluid flow and heat transfer analysis of thermo-fluid mechanical systems. Survey of computational aerodynamics codes. Course emphasizes individual hands-on experience with a commercial computational fluid dynamics (CFD) code such as FLUENT or FIDAP.

MAE 246 Electromechanical Control Systems (3)

State-space approach to control system analysis and design. Controllability and observability. Optimal stochastic control theory. Introduction to sliding mode control. Applications to robotics and earthquake engineering. Course emphasizes individual hands-on experience with the use of MatLab.

MAE 244 Computer-Integrated Engineering Design (3)

Design of engineering components and systems on engineering workstations using I-DEAS. Emphasis on creation of individual designs using interactive computer graphics, Finite element analysis, computer-based design optimization, and other relevant computer-based tools. Students will apply design concepts to a project selected in aircraft, mechanical, or spacecraft design in a computer-aided engineering environment.
Prerequisite: approval of department. (Spring)