In your very first year at Duke, you receive instruction in real-world design—through our first-year design course, EGR 101L

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The First Year

Welcome to your first year as a Duke Engineer!

Duke Engineering's signature educational experience prepares you to be an engineer who is inspired & equipped to solve complex societal problems.

We will make you a confident creator ready to reshape the world.

This experience starts during your very first year at Duke.

The Duke Engineering First-Year Experience includes :

Course Layout

Assuming no AP or IPC credit See Note 1:

Fall Semester

Spring Semester

  • Mathematics 112L
  • Physics 151L
  • Technical Course See Note 5
  • Engineering 103L or Writing 101 See Note 3


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1. If You Have AP or IPC Credit

Students with credit for:

Students without AP Computer science credit should take EGR 103L Computational Methods.

Email for assistance interpreting such credit as it pertains to course selection.

2. Chemistry Placement

  • Students without AP Chemistry credit should enroll in CHEM 101DL
  • Students who plan to major in Civil Engineering (CE), Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE), Environmental Engineering (EnvE) or Mechanical Engineering (ME) have satisfied the chemistry requirement with a score of 4 or 5 on the AP Chemistry exam
  • Students who plan to major in Biomedical Engineering (BME), and received an AP Chemistry exam:
    • Score of 5—Should enroll in CHEM 201DL
    • Score of 4—Should enroll in CHEM 101DL or CHEM 110DL

See chemistry placement guidelines »

Contact for guidance on appropriate chemistry placement.

3. All students must take EGR 101L and a Digital Computation Course

All engineering students must take:

  • EGR 101L Engineering Design and Communication in the fall semester
  • A Digital Computation course. See Note 1 for information about which course to select to satisfy this requirement

4. Fall Writing 101

  • Students assigned to Fall Writing 101 should enroll in a writing section
  • Students not assigned to Fall Writing 101 should enroll in EGR 103L. See Note 3 for more

5. Suggested First-Year Technical Courses

The technical course in your first spring semester should be selected according to your intended major, if known:

  • Undecided—Biology 201L or one of the classes listed below
  • Biomedical Engineering—Biology 201L
  • Civil Engineering—CEE 132L
  • Electrical and Computer Engineering—ECE 110L
  • Environmental Engineering—CEE 132L
  • Mechanical Engineering—EGR 121L