Computer Engineering and Society – Faculty of Engineering

Computer Engineering and Society

Delve into computer engineering and create innovative electronic and software solutions that benefit people, while exploring the human aspects of engineering and the intricate relationship between technology and society.

5 years
Bachelor of Engineering & Society (Co-op Available)


  • Combine design of computer hardware and software components

  • Apply knowledge to fields anywhere from medical systems to the automotive industry

  • Graduate in high industry demand with a variety of graduate studies options

Admission requirements

Academic Prerequisites

This is an above level 1 specialization that requires successful completion of the Engineering 1 general first year.

Use the Future Students admissions tool for entry requirements.

MMRT students in workshop

Program structure

Programming principles and methodology is studied extensively while computer hardware design and architecture is modelled and explored.

In Level II you will study the basic principles of programming, digital logic and microprocessors. In the programming course you will learn how to write and analyze small programs. The digital logic will give you the opportunity to learn the basics of how the modern computers are organized and built. In the microprocessors course you will learn the language of embedded systems, machine-level code as well as how are all of those microchips in cell phones and MP3 players are designed.

  • COMPENG 2DI4 – Logic Design
  • COMPENG 2SH4 – Principles of Programming
  • COMPENG 2SI3 – Data Structures and Algorithms
  • ENGINEER 2PX3 – Integrated Engineering Design Project 2
  • ELECENG 2CI4 – Introduction to Electrical Engineering
  • ELECENG 2CF3 – Circuits and Waves
  • MATH 2Z03 – Engineering Mathematics III
  • STATS 3Y03 – Probability and Statistics for Engineering
  • ENGSOCTY 2X03 – Inquiry in an Engineering Context I
  • ENGSOCTY 2Y03 – Case Studies in History and Technology
  • ENGINEER 1EE0 – Introduction to the Engineering Co-op Program
  • 3 units Engineering and Society focus electives

In Level III you will learn computer hardware design, computer architecture and computer software design. In the computer hardware design your knowledge of hardware systems is taken to another level. In this course you will learn how complex systems such as MP3 players or peripheral devices such as hard disk drives are built as whole systems. In computer architecture, building on your knowledge from Level II, you will learn the techniques that make today’s computers faster and more efficient. In computer software design you will learn how to ensure that the devices we use are reliable, secure and error-free.

  • COMPENG 2DX3 – Microprocessor Systems Project
  • COMPENG 3SM4 – Algorithm Design and Analysis
  • SFWRENG 3SH3 – Software Development
  • ENGINEER 3PX3 – Engineering Design 3: Engineering Economics
  • ELECENG 2EI4 – Electronic Devices and Circuits I
  • ELECENG 3TP3 – Signals and Systems
  • ELECENG 3TQ3 – Advanced Probability and Random Processes
  • SFWRENG 3K04 – Software Development
  • ENGSOCTY 3Y03 – Technology and Society
  • ENGSOCTY 3Z03 – Preventative Engineering: Environmental Perspectives
  • 3 units Engineering and Society focus electives

In Level IV you will focus primarily on computer systems, shaping you into a complete computer engineer. You will study advances topics in computer hardware design and architecture. In addition, you will study how computers communicate in communication networks and study advanced Internet communications. You will also have a technical elective which will allow for customization of your program. You will also undertake a year long computer engineering design course where you will complete an open-ended project under the supervision of a faculty member.

  • COMPENG 3DQ5 – Digital Systems Design
  • COMPENG 3DY4 – Computer Systems Integration Project
  • ELECENG 3CL4 – Introduction to Control Systems
  • ELECENG 3EJ4 – Electronic Devices and Circuits II
  • ELECENG 3TR4 – Communication Systems
  • ENGSOCTY 3X03 – Inquiry in an Engineering Context II
  • 9-12 units Engineering and Society focus electives

  • COMPENG 4DK4 – Computer Communication Networks
  • COMPENG 4DM4 – Computer Architecture
  • COMPENG 4DN4 – Advanced Internet Communications
  • COMPENG 4DS4 – Embedded Systems
  • ELECENG 4OI6 A/B – Engineering Design
  • COMPENG 3SK3 – Computer-Aided Engineering
  • ENGSOCTY 4X03 A/B – Inquiry in an Engineering Context III
  • ENGSOCTY 4Y03 – Society Capstone Design
  • 3 units Engineering and society focus electives

Co-op and experiential learning

Experiential learning provides students with hands-on opportunities beyond the traditional lecture-style format to gain valuable experience.

The Engineering Co-op Program is an optional program which provides you with the opportunity to work in real engineering positions before you graduate. The Undergraduate Co-op Program is administered by the Engineering Co-op and Career Services Department (ECCS).

Example employers:

  • IBM Canada
  • GE Canada
  • Siemens Canada
  • Advanced MicroDevices (AMD)
  • CIBC Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce
  • RBC Royal Bank
  • Toronto Hydro Corporation

Learn more about co-op.

McMaster Engineering has many engineering clubs, teams and societies you can join to enhance your practical knowledge and soft skills, provide support, or give you the chance to explore new activities. Clubs are an enjoyable way to enrich your student life and contribute to your social development and academic success.

  • IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) McMaster Student Branch
  • McMaster Electrical and Computer Engineering Society
  • PhaseOne (formerly HackItMAC)
  • McMaster Solar Car Project
  • MAC Formula Electric
  • Arduino Club
  • McMaster ACM (Association for Computing Machinery)

Browse opportunities to get involved and gain experience.

Engineering programs have been enriched with interdisciplinary design courses, enabling students to work in teams on real-world problems. This practical experience builds their portfolios and hones skills vital for managing complex projects and utilizing emerging technologies. It prepares them for co-ops and future careers, fostering critical thinking, collaboration, and an understanding of societal issues.

Four project-based design courses that all students take include:

  • ENGINEER 1P13: Integrated Cornerstone Design Projects in Engineering
  • ENGINEER 2PX3: Engineering Design 2: Communications and Societal Impact
  • ENGINEER 3PX3: Engineering Design 2: Engineering Economics

Find out more

Examples of Canadian companies:

  • Texas Instruments
  • Advanced Micro Devices (AMD)
  • Ericsson
  • Evertz
  • GE Canada
  • IBM Canada

Research areas

  • Internet of Things
  • Image processing and multimedia
  • Computer networks and signal processing
  • Microelectronics and embedded systems
  • CAD/optimization/simulation
  • Parallel processing
  • Neural computing
  • Computer security
  • Biological computing

How to apply

Understand every step, from applying, to accepting your offer and joining us on campus!

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering

We’re electrifying the world of engineering.

Image of ETB