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School of Engineering

Course XVI -- Aeronautics and Astronautics

The Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics prepares engineers to design and implement aerospace and related engineering systems. The department offers bachelors, masters’ of engineering, masters’ of science and doctoral degrees.

In addition to General Institute Requirements, undergraduates in Course XVI must complete a departmental core consisting of several math and physics courses in addition to the infamous 48-unit Unified Engineering course. Course XVI majors also complete professional area subjects (pillar subjects) that detail the material presented in classes like Unified Engineering. Majors complete their requrements with “Capstone subjects” involving experimental work through project labs.

Course XVI provides its undergraduates with several opportunities to work at a professional level while completing an SM degree. The Course XVI-B cooperative program provides undergraduates with the opportunity to work as a paid employee in an aerospace firm for seven months before the final semester of their senior year. In addition, the department participates in the Engineering Internship Program (EIP), which is a joint SB-SM program that features periods of work at a participating company, alternating with periods of study at MIT.

MIT’s Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics also leads the Massachusetts Space Grant Consortium, which supports space education, especially for women and minority students. Undergraduates can participate in an optional year abroad program that sends students to host institutions in various European nations. Students take courses in the local language and obtain credit for corresponding MIT subjects.

Like other courses, Course XVI sponsors student UROPs through its 11 departmental laboratories. Currently, faculty and students are conducting over 200 research projects through the department. -- Sanjay Basu