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University of Pittsburgh    
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog 
  Jul 25, 2024
2023-2024 Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Nanoscience and Engineering Undergraduate Certificate

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Advances in nanoscience and nanotechnology (the ability to predict, create, and design with nanoscale materials and systems) are expected to reveal new physical phenomena and to enable the creation of highly desirable products and devices, in addition to revolutionary changes in industrial practice. Strength in nanoscience and nanotechnology has been identified as the nation’s future competitiveness and prosperity, and strategic plans have been developed to accelerate nanoscience research and development, encourage knowledge transfer to spur economic growth, and expand educational programs and workforce training - all in a socially and environmentally responsible and sustainable manner.

Nanoscience and nanotechnology also has had a large and rapidly growing local impact. The Pittsburgh region is home to a number of corporations, including many smaller start-up companies, with major nanotechnology components to their businesses. The continued success of companies such as PPG, Seagate, Bayer, Alcoa, Plextronics, Westinghouse, Bettis, and II-VI will depend on their ability to recruit local engineering talent with the required background in nanoscience and nanotechnology. The continued development of nanotechnology-based entrepreneurial start-ups will depend in large part on a vibrant pool of young engineers and scientists with appropriate educational experience in nanoscience and nanotechnology.

This joint certificate, housed in both the Swanson School of Engineering (SSOE) and the Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences (Dietrich School) enables BS students from both schools to complement their education by completing a fivecourse sequence. The certificate is designed to be combined with coursework in any SSOE degree-granting program, or with chemistry and physics in the Dietrich School.

The course requirements for this certificate follow.

Additional information

Non-Dietrich School course credit

Students may apply up to 18 credits of non-Dietrich School coursework to their undergraduate degrees.

Credit overlap

No more than six credits of coursework may overlap between the requirements for this certificate and a major in Physics and Astronomy or in Chemistry.

Grade Requirements

A minimum GPA of 2.0 is required in each course that counts toward the certificate.

Satisfactory/No Credit Option

No course that counts toward this certificate may be taken on the S/NC basis.

For more information

Contact the departmental advisor for the Physics and Astronomy major, Russell Clark (

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