Frequently Asked Questions


We encourage students to meet with advisers in order to help them achieve their academic goals and/or identify opportunities that will help them become successful, either academically and/or professionally.

Although advisers can aid in providing information pertaining to course scheduling and planning, ultimately it is the student’s responsibility to ensure that they are meeting all degree requirements for graduation.

Many advising questions are relatively simple and can be answered online. We suggest that you read this FAQ section first; if the answer is not listed here, then feel free to email an adviser. If you feel the discussion requires an in-person meeting, contact your adviser directly to determine how to schedule an appointment.

Who is my assigned adviser?

This information is available within LionPATH. Click on Student Center. On the right side of the screen, you will see your assigned adviser in the adviser block.

How do I make an appointment with my assigned adviser?

First, check these FAQs to see if your answer is available online.

Many questions can be answered quickly via email. Please email your adviser to see if you can get an answer quickly this way.

If an in-person appointment is necessary, faculty members schedule appointments differently. Contact your adviser directly to determine how to schedule an appointment. Appointments with Giancarlo Labruna via Starfish.

The faculty directory can be found here.

What are the industrial engineering (IE) major degree requirements?

The IE curriculum is available here on the departmental website.

How do I track my progress towards these requirements?

A degree audit is available on LionPATH. Please take special note of portions of the degree audit that indicate requirements that are not yet satisfied. You can get the degree audit by going to your Student Center within LionPATH and choosing the Academic Requirements degree audit. If you view report as PDF, it will indicate in red the requirements that have not yet been satisfied. Once in the major, do not use the “What if” degree audit.

How can I transfer credits?

Transferring credit is handled through the Admissions Office at Penn State. Information can be found on the Admissions site.

Use the Transferring Credit tool to evaluate how the course will transfer to Penn State. If the course has not yet been evaluated, follow instructions for a New Transfer Review using Please take into account that it can take up to 3-5 weeks to have a new course evaluated. Once the course has been evaluated, if it is not a direct equivalent to a Penn State course, you will need to use to petition the IE department if you would like to use the course towards an IE degree requirement. If the course is for another degree or to be used towards a minor, you will need to discuss the evaluation with the appropriate department. When transferring credit, only credits transfer, not grades (as long as you earn a grade of C or better).

How do I file a course substitution petition?

Students who would like to file a petition should use the online system to file a petition.

All submitted petitions need to be reviewed by the IME department first and some also require review and approval by the College of Engineering. Therefore, it can take a few weeks to know the result of the process. You should submit a petition as early as possible. You can also submit petitions that involve future plans (for example, study abroad) so that you have an answer regarding a possible substitution. Some common petitions are:

  • Move "3" in Knowledge Domains: Instead of taking the required credits GN, GHW, GA, GH, and GS, a student can move three credits from one knowledge domain into a different knowledge domain. The exception to this is that a student cannot take 3 credits out of GHW because the domain cannot go down to 0 credits.
  • Course substitution: Use this option to request a course substitution for an IE degree requirement. A syllabus must be uploaded as documentation when using this option. You will need to use this option when transferring a course that has been evaluated as general credit or when evaluating courses for study abroad.
  • Faculty Senate petition: Exceptions from University policies and rules can be requested by submitting petitions to the University Faculty Senate. These requests include Retroactive Late Drop and Retroactive Withdrawals. More information can be found here.

I submitted a petition; how long before I get an answer?

For petitions that only need approval by the IME department, you should receive an answer within two weeks. Petitions involving general education requirements also require approval by the College of Engineering and may take longer than two weeks. Petitions to the Faculty Senate depends on their meeting schedules and may take a few weeks, depending on when the petition is submitted.

Can I have a concurrent major?

Students can have a concurrent major (i.e., double major) as long as only one of the majors is enrollment controlled. Students must first declare their enrollment-controlled major prior to declaring their other major(s). To request to add a concurrent major, use Update Academics on LionPath.


What electives are part of the IE degree requirements?

In addition to the general education electives, IE students must fulfill the following electives:

  • Engineering electives
  • Science electives
  • Manufacturing process electives
  • Human factors electives
  • Technical electives

The department list for courses that satisfy these electives can be found here.

Extracurricular Activities

How do I get involved with undergraduate research?

IE students may participate in the IME department’s Undergraduate Research Program. Solicitations for students to apply to open positions are generally posted at the beginning of the fall and spring semesters, and advertised via the department’s weekly email blast.

What opportunities are there to study abroad as an IE major?

IE students can participate in any study abroad programs available through the University. Programs frequently attended by IE students can be found on the IME website.

What student organizations can IE students get involved in?

In addition to the multitude of student organizations on campus, the IME department has several student organizations and societies available to IE students.


Where can I find more information on internships/co-ops?

Information is available from the Engineering Career Resources and Employer Relations site.

What is the difference between an internship/co-op?

Internships generally take place during the summer. Co-ops generally take place at least partially during the academic year (i.e., spring/summer or summer/fall).

Can I earn credit for an internship/co-op?

Yes. Information about earning credit can be found on the College of Engineering website. When you have accepted an offer, you will need to fill out the Employment Survey, found on the Engineering Career Resources website. Once you submit the survey, the Engineering Career Resources Office will register you for the appropriate credit.

Late Drop

When is the semester late drop deadline?

The late drop deadline is on a Friday, four weeks before the end of classes. Specific dates are available on the Registrar’s website.

How can I late drop a course?

Students should late drop a course in LionPATH. A step-by-step tutorial is available.

What happens if I late drop a course?

Courses that have been late dropped will show on a student’s transcript with an LD. A late-dropped course counts towards a student’s (maximum) two attempts to complete a course, and may impact a student’s standing if their reduced credit load makes them a part-time student. You should fully understand the impact of being a part-time student prior to late drop, as this can have far reaching effects on many students (e.g., international students, athletes, financial aid, etc.). You should refer to for more information.

How do I withdraw from the semester?

In certain situations, withdrawing from the University may be the best option for a student. You should meet with an adviser to discuss this before requesting a withdrawal. Information regarding the withdrawal process can be found here.

How many times can I repeat course?

Students are permitted up to two attempts for each course. Courses that are not completed with a satisfactory grade and courses that are late dropped are considered attempts to complete a course. Attempts are tracked in LionPATH and students will be denied enrollment after a second attempt in a given course. To request a 3rd attempt, follow this link


I heard there is a new policy regarding how many credits from my minor can double count towards my major. How do I know if this impacts me?

In April 2016, the University approved a new policy indicating that at least 6 credits of minor must be unique from any other degree or minor earned by a student. This policy applies to students entering the University (not the IE major) after summer 2016.

Which minors complement the IE curriculum well?

While this depends on a student’s individual educational background and career objectives, common minors for IE students include biomedical engineering, business/liberal arts, economics, engineering leadership, entrepreneurship and innovation, foreign languages, information sciences and technology, mathematics, nano-technology, product realization, psychology, Six Sigma, statistics, and supply chain and information technology.

For a list of suggested minors, click here.

Where can I find more information about minors?

A suggested list of minors for IE students can be found here.

A complete list of available minors offered through the university and the minor requirements can be found in the University Bulletin.

How do I declare a minor?

Most minors can be added via Update Academics on LionPath. If the minor you are looking for is not listed here, contact the department offering the minor.

Where can I find the requirements for a minor?

These can be found in the University Bulletin.

How can I count classes I am taking for my minor towards my Industrial engineering major?

A student’s ability to double count credits depends on when you were admitted to Penn State. Please refer to our minors page for a list of approved minors as well as more information on how students may double count credits depending on when you were admitted.


What is industrial engineering?

Industrial engineering (IE) offers a broad curriculum that provides graduates with the tools needed to work in a variety of industries such as management, manufacturing, consulting, healthcare, service, and many others. More information can be found here.

To learn more about IE as a profession, visit the Institute of Industrial & Systems Engineers website.

What are the entrance to major requirements?

The entrance to major requirements are available on the College of Engineering website.

How can I enroll in an IE class if I am an engineering student in pre-major status or non-IE student?

Pre-major and non-IE students are permitted to enroll in IE classes only after IE majors have been allowed to enroll and if seats are still available. LionPath will prevent non-IE students from enrolling in an IE course.  To request enrollment, you will need to submit a Prerequisite Override Form via LionPath. Enrollment approvals are not guaranteed and each student will be evaluated for appropriateness of request.

How do I meet with an IE adviser if I am an engineering student in pre-major status?

The Engineering Advising Center (EAC) has an IE adviser available to meet with students. Please schedule an appointment with the IE adviser in the EAC by using this link. 

How do I apply for the IE major?

Assuming students meet the entrance to major (ETM) requirements, students apply for the IE major in LionPATH by selecting “Update Academics” and selecting the IE major from the list of options. LionPATH will automatically approve students into the major once they have fulfilled all ETM requirements. You may also apply during the semester where you are completing the last ETM requirement and be conditionally approved, as long as you are within the credit window. At the end of the semester, the system will check to ensure that you have earned a C or better in the ETM course and that the GPA requirement for the major has been met.

Registration and Holds

How do I find out when I can register for classes?

In the Student Center on LionPATH, your registration date is displayed on the right hand side in the Enrollment Dates block. A list of registration dates is also available on the Registrar’s website.

LionPATH won’t let me register, what can I do?

Before registering, you must agree to the financial agreement and eliminate any holds on your account. If the course(s) have specific controls that you do not meet, LionPATH will also not allow you to register. Some departments also enforce prerequisites via the registration system. If you continue to have issues, contact the Registrar's Office.

  • There’s a hold on my account: The Holds block in your student center on LionPATH should indicate the type of hold placed on your account and whom to contact in order to resolve the hold.
  • A class is full: The class capacity is generally in place because of infrastructure requirements (e.g., classroom size) and is therefore strictly enforced. Students may add themselves to the waitlist, which will add students in a first-come, first-served order if space becomes available. You must satisfy the controls for the course, if any, and also have the time available on your schedule in order to be added via the waitlist. If you have a course scheduled that you'd like to drop, if a seat becomes available in the waitlisted course, then you must set up a swap.
  • The class has a control that I do not meet: You should contact the department offering the course to request if you can be added. Departments are not obligated to add you if you do not meet the controls for the course. If they do allow you in, then the records specialist of the department offering the course can do the override.

What can I do if I don’t meet the prerequisites for an IE class?

Prerequisites are strictly enforced by the IME department. You will not be allowed to enroll in an IE course unless you meet the prerequisites.



Home of the first established industrial engineering program in the world, the Harold and Inge Marcus Department of Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering (IME) at Penn State has made a name for itself in the engineering industry through its storied tradition of unparalleled excellence and innovation in research, education, and outreach.

We are Innovators. We are Makers. We are Excellence in Engineering. We are Penn State IME.

The Harold and Inge Marcus Department of
Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering

310 Leonhard Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802-4400

Phone: 814-865-7601

FAX: 814-863-4745