Systems Engineering

Systems Engineering

Program Description

Systems Engineering (SE) is a transdisciplinary and integrative approach to enable the realization, use and retirement of successful engineered systems. SE principles and practices are essential for the development of large, complex, high-performing, sustainable and secure systems, whether they are products, services, or enterprises. Modern approaches make use of integrated digital system models to capture requirements, structure, behavior and parametrics. Model-based systems engineering (MBSE) using System Modeling Language (SysML) is state-of-the-practice in the field, with the future toward more open, integrated and interoperable analysis tools and scripting languages.

The program:

· Prepares students for assignments across the acquisition lifecycle, from concept and mission/engineering, stakeholder needs analysis, elicitation of system requirements, system architecture and design, technical evaluation, and technical management of defense systems.

· Develops competence in the application of modern digital techniques and model-based system engineering tools across the lifecycle.

This graduate certificate program provides the system engineering depth beyond traditional acquisition training. The target audience is active duty military, Air Force civilians, and Defense contractors with traditional STEM backgrounds working Defense acquisition engineering and management, in laboratories, test centers, program offices, logistics centers, or in a requirements/concept/capability planning organizations.

The Certificate can be earned as a minor concentration as part of another AFIT degree or accomplished independently entirely via online/distance learning. Completion of this certificate also provides a pathway for engineers to continue into an AFIT Systems Engineering Master's program.

For more information about online/distance learning (DL) SE programs, or about general DL opportunities and application procedures, please visit AFIT Office of Extension Services, www.afit.edu/DL/.

Admissions Requirements

The general requirements for admission to the GSE program are as follows:

Degree: A bachelor’s degree in a STEM-related discipline, including Physical Science or Computer Science, Engineering Technology, Engineering or Mathematics.

Mathematics Courses: One year of college-level calculus.

GPA: Undergraduate GPA ≥ 3.0 (on a 4.0 scale) overall; ≥ 3.0 in mathematics (on a 4.0 scale); ≥ 3.0 in major (on a 4.0 scale)

Test: The GRE is not required for certificate-seeking students. However, if the student intends to pursue a master’s degree, the master’s degree admission criteria will apply. The criteria for the Graduate Systems Engineering (GSE) and Applied Systems Engineering (ASE) programs include additional and more restrictive standards than those required for the SE Certificate, including undergraduate engineering math (up to ordinary differential equations) and a course in dynamic systems.

Waivers to the above criteria may be granted (on an individual basis) by the Department of Systems Engineering and Management. Individuals whose academic credentials fall outside any of the above criteria are encouraged to apply.

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Outcomes & Objectives

Program Educational Objectives (PEOs)

The SE Certificate program takes students with traditional engineering backgrounds (mechanical, electrical, computer, aeronautical, etc.) and produces graduates who understand, and can effectively use, the tools and techniques of systems engineering and systems science. Within a few years after graduation, graduates are expected to:

  • Make positive programmatic and/or system engineering impacts, resulting in successful outcomes

  • Employ sound systems engineering processes and tools across the acquisition lifecycle

  • Provide technical leadership to teams; promote and facilitate integration and communication across interdisciplinary teams; sustain and increase an effective professional and technical network

Student Outcomes (SOs)

Student Outcomes (SOs) are those competencies that students are expected to achieve by the completion of the program. Graduates should be able to:

  1. Apply SE processes, valid engineering methods and technical analyses in a systematic manner to solve Defense-related problems.
  2. Use integrated descriptive and analytical models, tools and simulations for implementing SE processes across the lifecycle.
  3. Analyze and evaluate Defense high-interest, systems engineering policy, challenges and solutions.

Program Chair

Lt Col Amy M. Cox

Degree Information

Degree Type: Certificate

Delivery Method: In-Residence and Distance Learning

Degree Requirements

Courses (4 courses, 16 credits): 
These courses provide a common breadth of knowledge and the basic building blocks for DoD systems engineers.

  • SENG 520 Foundations of Systems Engineering
  • SENG 640 System Architecture
  • SENG 593 Agile Software Systems Engineering
  • SENG 670 Adv Topics in DoD Systems Engineering or SENG 610 Project Management

Note: The SEC is not available to students already in one of the SE Masters programs.

Note: Air Force Materiel Command (AFMC) began sponsoring the Certificate in 2016. Students who apply though AFMC will take SENG 670 as their fourth and final course.

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Air Force Institute of Technology
2950 Hobson Way
Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, OH 45433-7765
Commercial: 937-255-6565 | DSN: 785-6565