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Our Program

Pre EngineeringThe Physics department is dedicated to helping students learn physics by providing a rigorous curriculum and supportive environment. There are multiple options for Pre-Engineering through the Physics department. They include:

Dual Degree Program

Study at UWRF for 3 years and then complete your engineering courses in 2 years at the University of Minnesota (UM) or the University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW). Students who maintain a minimum grade point average (about 3.0) are guaranteed admission to University of Minnesota or University of Wisconsin-Madison under the Dual Degree program. Degrees earned would be a B.S. Physics, University of Wisconsin - River Falls and a B.S. Engineering, University of Minnesota or University of Wisconsin-Madison. Typically the years to completion would be about 5 years. This major is designed to give students a firm physics background before finishing up school with an engineering degree.


Complete two years at UW-River Falls and two years at an engineering university. Students would earn a B.S. Engineering, University of Minnesota, University of Wisconsin-Madison, or another university. Typically the years to completion would be about 4 years.

Bachelor of Science in Physics and Master of Science in Engineering

Students may also complete a physics degree at UW-River Falls and earn a Master’s degree in engineering. Students may earn a B.S. with a major in Physics, from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and a M.S. in Engineering, from either the University of Minnesota, or the University of Wisconsin-Madison, or another university. Typically the years to completion would be about 6 years.


Internships are an important part of learning how to apply fundamental knowledge outside the classroom. Students learn life-long career skills like resume and cover letter preparation, networking, and career research skills in a one-credit class in the fall of their sophomore year. Many 10-week paid summer internships enable students to gain valuable experience and get hands-on training in areas like fuel cells, computer-aided design, micro-electronics, plasma fusion physics, gravitational theory, or astro-particle physics.

Global. Innovative. Excellent.

Engineers apply math and physics principles to practical technical problems, locally, regionally, or globally. They may be involved in the research and development of products and process, or in the testing and quality control of industrial or high-tech production. Engineers design buildings, airplanes and computers. They determine why objects fail and how to prevent it in the future. They can study the earth, its resources, and its environment.

We offer three options for students wishing to become engineers. The first two years of any engineering curriculum are mainly math and physics. In addition, UW-River Falls offers several special courses for engineering. Thus a student will have no problem transferring to an engineering school as a junior after taking the first two years at River Falls. It should be emphasized, however, that there are slightly different requirements for different engineering specialties and schools so a student should contact the pre-engineering advisor in the Physics department as soon as possible.