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Industrial and Systems Engineering

Degree: BS

Campus: Columbus

College: Engineering

To be considered for this major, freshmen applying to the Columbus campus are strongly encouraged to submit their complete admission application by November 1. 

Industrial engineers address the overall performance of systems, responsiveness of systems to customer and user needs, and the quality of products or services produced. Industrial engineers recognize how the design of machinery, tools, equipment, computers, software and automated systems affect the performance of people and work systems. They also evaluate and design the roles people play within work systems to ensure people can safely, effectively and efficiently perform their tasks while maximizing work quality. 

Organizations from every sector of our economy—banking, food, energy, health care, commercial aviation, manufacturing, logistics, entertainment and government—turn to industrial engineers for help in improving an organization’s efficiency and productivity. Industrial engineers often work in teams with other types of engineers and business specialists to design and improve systems that produce and distribute goods and services. Industrial engineers guide and support organizational management and often become managers. 

The Pre-Major Program

All students entering the College of Engineering enroll in the pre-major program. As pre-majors, students will:

  • complete foundational course work, including the Fundamentals of Engineering course sequence, calculus and, for most majors, physics or chemistry
  • explore the college's 14 majors and learn how several engineering majors can lead to similar career outcomes
  • select and apply to three majors, usually in their second semester (or during the semester in which eligibility courses are completed)

Admission to the major programs is based on an applicant's academic performance (cumulative GPA) and their responses to three essay questions. Learn more about the pre-major program at go.osu.edu/engineeringpre-major.

All engineering students have a similar first-year plan of study, the college core, that provides fundamental courses in math, science and engineering. View a sample first-year plan of study.

Students in the industrial and systems engineering program gain a strong engineering foundation coupled with core course work in engineering economics, simulation, optimization, quality control, supply chain management and logistics, project management, manufacturing processes, workplace and facility design, ergonomics, lean engineering, systems thinking and cognitive systems engineering.

In addition to the college core and major courses, engineering students also take select core courses and general education courses.

Engineering students have several opportunities for global education, including service learningsemester abroad, international internships, engineering-specific study abroad programs or the Global Option in Engineering program

Whether it be installing solar panels on Haitian schools, researching biomedical optics in China, devising solutions for sustainable food production in Honduras, or setting speed records on the Isle of Man, Ohio State engineering students venture beyond classrooms and labs to find success in every corner of the globe. 

Students work with Engineering Career Services to find both paid internships and co-op jobs across the United States and around the world. About 75% of engineering students participate in a co-op or internship before they graduate. 

Honors and scholars offer students an opportunity to pursue academic rigor (Honors) or foster passion through community (scholars). Engineering students can enhance their experience by getting involved with one of the following engineering-based programs.

Engineering Honors

The Fundamentals of Engineering for Honors (FEH) Program is an optional course sequence that is offered to University Honors-designated engineering students. This accelerated program is designed to challenge students and provide them with a foundation in engineering principles that are necessary for success throughout their academic careers.

Engineering Scholars

Engineering Scholars contemplate the adoption of socially responsible practices within engineering as a means to minimize health risks and environmental impact and maximize efficiency, feasibility and sustainability.

Humanitarian Engineering Scholars learn about and engage in engineering activities that impact underserved areas by addressing pressing problems. 

At Ohio State, engineering students conduct research alongside top faculty from across the university—doctors, physicists, designers, artists and experts in many other fields—to advance our knowledge and improve the world around us. Students enjoy multiple outlets to share their work, including Ohio State's annual Denman Undergraduate Research Forum each spring. Learn more about engineering research.

Industrial and systems engineering research topics:

  • human systems integration
  • resilience engineering
  • biomechanics, physical ergonomics and safety
  • optimization
  • supply chain management and logistics
  • forming and casting of lightweight materials
  • data analytics, date-driven optimization and visual analytics

Industrial and systems engineering students choose from more than 80 engineering student organizations, including Alpha Pi Mu, Institute of Industrial and Systems Engineers, Human Factors and Ergonomics Society, Big Data Analytics Association, Institute for Operations Research and Management Science, and Society of Manufacturing Engineers.

Graduates of the industrial systems engineering program develop strong technical, management and design skills that are valuable to many different industries. They pursue a variety of career paths, including jobs in manufacturing and production,  health care, finance, energy systems, retail and distribution, aviation, information technology, marketing, and education.

For the past three years, 83 percent of industrial and systems engineering graduates have been placed in full-time employment within 3 months of graduation.

Some employers of industrial and systems engineering graduates include Accenture, AMEND Consulting, Boeing Co., Deloitte Consulting LLP., Eaton, Ford Motor Co., Honda, IBM Corp., JP Morgan Chase, Mettler Toledo, PepsiCo, SwagelokCo. and Whirlpool Corp.

Many graduates work with Engineering Career Services to find their first job.

Beginning annual salaries for recent industrial and systems engineering graduates average $65,724.