The Washington State University Catalog

Gene and Linda Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering

The online catalog includes the most recent changes to courses and degree requirements that have been approved by the Faculty Senate, including changes that are not yet effective.

Gene and Linda Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering
Wegner Hall 105

Director and Professor, J. N. Petersen; Associate Director, Associate Professor, and Linda Voiland Professor, N. Abu-Lail; B. Wise Professor of Energy Production, M. Levin; Bill Thomson Professor of Practice, C. Sonnichsen; Paul Hohenschuh Distinguished Professor, H. Beyenal; Voiland Distinguished Professors, N. Kruse, Y. Wang; Professors, B. Ahring, C. F. Ivory, P. Pfromm, M. Rezac, K. Schulz, B. J. Van Wie; Associate Professors, W. Dong, S. Ha, A. Kostyukova, D. Lin, H. Lin, A. Vasavada, X. Zhang; Assistant Professors, J.S. McEwen, S. Saunders, D. Wu; Clinical Assistant Professors, H. Davis, D. Thiessen; Professors Emeriti, D. C. Davis, K. C. Liddell, R. Mahalingam, R. C. Miller, W. J. Thomson, R. Zollars.

The mission of the Gene and Linda Voiland School of Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering is to deliver academic programs in Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering that advance the boundaries of knowledge, educate competent engineering professionals, and contribute to the needs of society. Faculty, staff, and students engage in discovery, teaching, application, and integration, along with periodic review of achievement, to develop practitioners and scholars prepared to make meaningful and responsible contributions to society.

The Program Educational Objectives for baccalaureate degree programs in Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering define achievements of which these graduates are capable.  As appropriate for their chosen career paths, within five to ten years of graduation, program graduates will be able to:

  1. Engage successfully in graduate or professional education or entry-level employment.
  2. Perform responsibly and professionally in their chosen career paths.
  3. Exhibit continued growth of effective communication and collaboration skills.
  4. Demonstrate ongoing development of competent and innovative problem solving skills.
  5. Continue learning and accept increasing levels of responsibility over time.

These long-term educational objectives will be achieved through development of our Student Outcomes in a culture of integration and engagement. Student Outcomes lay a solid, well-rounded foundation from which to build longer-term capabilities. Systemic integration of theory and practice deepens students’ understanding and builds confidence they will need for bold innovation and lifelong learning. Frequent engagement of students with peers, faculty, and external constituencies builds their interpersonal skills, refines their understanding, and leads them to opportunities for advanced study or employment. Dedicated faculty who effectively teach, mentor, refer, and model professional behaviors prepare our graduates for the professional world.

The school offers courses of study leading to the degrees of Bachelor of Science in Bioengineering, Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering, Master of Science in Chemical Engineering, and Doctor of Philosophy, with a focus in chemical engineering. We also graduate students who receive the Master of Science in Engineering and the Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering Science with an emphasis in bioengineering.

Chemical Engineering

The curriculum in chemical engineering provides thorough knowledge of basic science and engineering. This includes material and energy balances, chemical and physical equilibria, rate processes, and economic balances. With such training, graduates may participate in the design and operation of chemically based products or they may engage in research leading to new or improved chemical processes, products, and uses. Graduates also find rewarding work in plant operation, plant management, university teaching, sales-service, and other functions requiring chemical engineering training. Many students also use their educations in chemical engineering as preparation for other professional degrees such as medicine or law. The chemical engineering program is accredited by ABET.

Student Learning Outcomes

To guide our student activities in developing the skills to meet the School's objectives we will monitor their attainment of the Student Outcomes as set forth by ABET.  These are:  a) an ability to apply knowledge of mathematics, science, and engineering, b) an ability to design and conduct experiments, as well as to analyze and interpret data, c) an ability to design a system, component, or process to meet desired needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, ethical, health and safety, manufacturability, and sustainability, d) an ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams, e) an ability to identify, formulate, and solve engineering problems, f) an understanding of professional and ethical responsibility, g) an ability to communicate effectively, h) the broad education necessary to understand the impact of engineering solutions in a global, economic, environmental, and societal context, i) a recognition of the need for, and an ability to engage in, life-long learning, j) a knowledge of contemporary issues, k) an ability to use the techniques, skills, and modern engineering tools necessary for engineering practice.

In addition to these Outcomes we will also monitor the program criteria for chemical, biochemical, biomolecular or similarly named engineering programs, as set forth by the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE).  These criteria are, respectively:  “The curriculum must provide (1) a thorough grounding in the basic sciences including chemistry, physics, and biology, with some content at an advanced level, as appropriate to the objectives of the program. The curriculum must include (2) the engineering application of these basic sciences to the design, analysis, and control of chemical, physical, and/or biological processes, including the hazards associated with these processes.” (Numerals added to original AIChE statement).

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Chemical Engineering Certification

Specific requirements for certification in chemical engineering are provided in the WSU catalog under the Chemical Engineering Schedule of Studies, and may also be found at, Academics, CHE Program, Certification Requirements.


Bioengineering is an engineering discipline that integrates engineering and life sciences to address issues important to human and animal well-being and to society at large. As such, the educational objective of the BS Bioengineering degree is to prepare graduates for productive employment, advanced study, or professional programs where they apply principles and methods of both engineering and life sciences to solve problems affecting human and animal health and well-being. Graduates may apply their expertise in human and animal medicine, biotechnology, or related biology-based engineering fields.

With these integrated science and engineering skills, bioengineering graduates are able to make valuable contributions to human and animal health care and environments, bio-based product development, and biotechnology. At Washington State University, bioengineering cooperates with and finds applications in numerous disciplines of engineering, veterinary medicine, and medical sciences. The bioengineering curriculum easily accommodates pre-medical, pre-dental, and pre-veterinary requirements for those students wishing to apply to professional schools in health care fields. The bioengineering program is accredited by ABET.

The total number of majors in bioengineering is restricted at the junior level.

Student Learning Outcomes

Bioengineering graduates are able to demonstrate the following Student Outcomes: 

  1. APPLICATION OF MATH/SCIENCE/ENGINEERING: Students demonstrate an ability to use foundational knowledge in mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, physiology, and engineering sciences.
  2. EXPERIMENTATION: Students demonstrate ability to design and conduct experiments, make measurements, analyze data, and interpret results and interactions between living systems and nonliving materials and systems.
  3. BIOENGINEERING DESIGN: Students demonstrate ability to design engineering solutions to meet needs with biological considerations and constraints of producers, users, investors and society.
  4. TEAMWORK: Students demonstrate an ability to work in teams comprised of engineers and others to produce joint work products.
  5. SYSTEMS SOLUTIONS: Students demonstrate ability to use analogous thinking, synthesis and analysis, integrative systems approaches, and associated tools to solve engineering problems.
  6. PROFESSIONAL ETHICS: Students demonstrate understanding of professional and ethical responsibility and reasoning suitable for professional decision-making.
  7. COMMUNICATION: Students demonstrate ability to communicate effectively in written and oral forms to interdisciplinary audiences.
  8. CRITICAL THINKING: Students demonstrate ability to analyze and evaluate scientific and engineering arguments or claims and to critically relate such claims to global, economic, environmental, professional, and societal issues.
  9. INDEPENDENT LEARNING: Students demonstrate awareness of a need for ongoing professional growth and ability to learn independently to address challenges they encounter.
  10. CONTEMPORARY ISSUES: Students demonstrate awareness of diverse contemporary issues that influence their career development and professional practice.
  11. PHYSIOLOGY AND BIOLOGY: Students demonstrate advanced knowledge of physiology and biology and can identify and solve problems which require the integration of that knowledge with engineering and advanced mathematical tools.

Online at

Bioengineering Certification

Specific requirements for certification in bioengineering are provided in the WSU catalog under the Bioengineering Schedule of Studies, and may also be found at, Academics, BE Program, Certification Requirements.

Computer Requirement

All Chemical Engineering and Bioengineering students are required to purchase laptop computers. Computer requirements are described at

 Transfer Students

Students who are planning to transfer to Chemical Engineering or Bioengineering at Washington State University from other institutions should coordinate their programs with the school to establish a schedule of studies leading to the bachelor’s degree. This is desirable because of sophomore professional requirements and course sequences. A strong preparation in chemistry, mathematics (through differential equations), and physics is necessary prior to transfer to minimize the time required at Washington State University to complete bachelor’s degree requirements. Inquiries concerning specific questions are welcomed. 

Preparation for Graduate Study

As preparation for work toward an advanced degree in Chemical Engineering, a student should have completed the equivalent of the following chemical engineering schedule of studies. A Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from an institution accredited by ABET normally will satisfy this requirement.

Students seeking advanced training in bioengineering should use the Engineering Science degree program. Such students should have completed the equivalent of the bioengineering program outlined above. A Bachelor of Science degree from any ABET accredited engineering program would normally satisfy this requirement.

Special programs are also available for students with bachelor’s degrees in chemistry, biology, or other areas of science who wish to obtain advanced degrees.

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