Bioresource Science and Engineering

Bioresource Science and Engineering (BSE) is an accredited engineering program in the School of Environmental and Forest Sciences at the UW.

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About the major

The major is designed for students seeking training in chemical and physical sciences, and chemical engineering as applied to manufacturing fiber products, fuels and chemicals from biomass resources. It emphasizes the application of mathematics, chemistry and engineering to paper and related bioresource-based industries, and our students learn the fundamental science and engineering of biomass and conversion processes.

Mission Statement

The Bioresource Science and Engineering Program at the University of Washington will be a national and international leader in the preparation of undergraduate and graduate students for the bioresource segment of the world economy. In particular, our students will be prepared for careers in industries – direct and supporting – that produce fibers and fiber productions, high value molecules, and fuels and energy from biomass.

Educational Objectives

The BSE program has three broad educational objectives. These objectives are the long term goals that we set for our students. Each objective is supported by a number of program outcomes which are those skills and abilities we expect our students to have when they graduate from our program so they can achieve the objectives. The BSE Educational Objectives are the following:

  • Engineering excellence
    Our graduates will engage in successful careers demonstrating engineering excellence.
  • Industry leaders
    Our graduates will be leaders in identifying and creatively resolving – using sound professional judgment – significant bioresource issues.
  • Intellectual maturity
    Our graduates will develop the intellectual maturity to serve their profession and community.

Student Outcomes

The following are the Bioresource Science and Engineering student outcomes that prepare our graduates to attain the Educational Objectives listed above:

  1.  An ability to identify, formulate, and solve complex
    engineering problems by applying principles of engineering,
    science, and mathematics.
  2. An ability to apply the engineering design process to produce
    solutions that meet specified needs with consideration for
    public health and safety, and global, cultural, social,
    environmental, economic, and other factors as appropriate to
    the discipline.
  3. An ability to communicate effectively with a range of audiences.
  4. An ability to recognize ethical and professional
    responsibilities in engineering situations and make informed
    judgments, which must consider the impact of engineering
    solutions in global, economic, environmental, and societal
  5. An ability to function effectively on a team whose members
    together provide leadership, create a collaborative and inclusive
    environment, establish goals, plans tasks to meet deadlines, and
    meet objectives.
  6. An ability to develop and conduct appropriate
    experimentation, analyze and interpret data, and use
    engineering judgment to draw conclusions.
  7. An ability to recognize the ongoing need to acquire new knowledge using appropriate learning strategies, and to correctly apply this knowledge.
  8. An ability to apply knowledge of fiber and paper science,
    environmental science, chemistry, and engineering as it
    pertains to the bioresource, paper, and allied industries.


The BSE program is accredited by the Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET, making it the only accredited engineering program outside of the College of Engineering at the UW.