Brown University School of Engineering

Concentration Declarations

Declaring an Engineering Concentration

You will declare a concentration (hopefully in Engineering!) toward the end of your fourth semester. You can change your concentration at any time, as long as you can still meet your new graduation requirements.

To declare a concentration in Engineering:

  1. Choose one of the engineering degree programs. This is not always easy - you can discuss your choices with any member of the faculty at any time, and in particular, your freshman and sophomore advisors, your Meiklejohn advisor, the faculty teaching your first and second year engineering classes, as well as the concentration advisors will be happy to help you understand your options.
  2. Check the detailed requirements for your concentration on the University Bulletin, and make a list of courses that interest you.
  3. Arrange a meeting with your concentration advisor, who will help you choose between courses and finalize a program.
  4. File your concentration on the ASK system. After you log into the system, navigate to the Declarations tab in the top menu. Then select the button that says Declare a New Concentration or “Change” to revise an existing declaration. You can find some answers to common problems in ASK here
  5. After you submit your concentration declaration electronically, your advisor will review and approve it or suggest changes (electronically). Once you have approval, you will be able to register for courses.
  6. You can change your course plan at any time - if you want to make a change, simply update your program in ASK and resubmit it.

Course Substitutions

It is often possible to substitute courses for one or more of your degree requirements. You might need to transfer credit from a study abroad program, or may wish to substitute a more advanced version of a course in place of one of the listed requirements. In some cases there are good reasons to re-design a program with a slightly different focus.

It is important to obtain approval in advance for any course substitutions, since they are not automatic. If you would like to make a course substitution

  1. Discuss your plans with your concentration advisor . In some cases (such as transfer credits) your advisor may be able to approve the substitution. In this case, you can simply enter the substitute course into your program in ASK and your advisor will approve it.
  2. In some cases, your advisor may ask you to prepare a petition to the concentration committee. Your petition should explain the reason for the substitution, and, for degrees that are accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET http://www.abet.org, show that your revised program is consistent with the educational objectives, outcomes, and credit hour requirements for your concentration. Your concentration advisor will submit the petition on your behalf. Approval is contingent on the majority vote of the committee.

Independent study courses

If you wish to use an Independent Study course to meet a concentration requirement you must obtain approval from your concentration advisor before you can register for the course.
More information on independent study

Additional Information