NYUAD Center for Science and Engineering (CSE)

The increasingly interdisciplinary nature of modern scientific research requires that biologists, chemists, computer scientists, engineers, mathematicians, and physicists have a fundamental understanding of one another's areas. It is important for students engaged in these areas to understand and experience multiple scientific disciplines and their interrelationships.

Foundations of Science

Foundations of Science is an innovative program that responds to the nature of modern science. Instead of the traditional series of discipline-specific introductory courses, Foundations integrates basic concepts from biology, chemistry, computer science, mathematics, and physics in a demanding three-semester sequence. The program fosters discussion among students and creates a collaborative learning dynamic. Problem-solving and group work in laboratory sessions are stressed, while close contact among students and faculty is a major feature of the program. The interdisciplinary approach and experimental work foster a more comprehensive understanding of science.

All science and engineering students (except those majoring in Psychology) are required to take Foundations of Science, which is a six-course sequence. Students intending to major in Biology, Chemistry, and Physics normally start Foundations of Science in the first semester of the first year. Mathematics and Computer Science majors have the option to begin the program in their second year. Psychology majors are not required to take Foundations of Science.

Foundations of Science is geared to meet the current demand for scientists with well-integrated backgrounds who become the leaders in modern scientific scholarship and who pursue careers in research, education, industry, health care, law, business, and publishing.

Students who elect to begin the Foundations of Science series in their sophomore year with the intention to major in the sciences have several options for completing their degree. They may take additional courses over the summer at sites within NYU’s global network; they may take more than four courses per semester; or they may need an additional fifth year of study at NYUAD. These options must be considered carefully by the student and the faculty mentors.

Computer Science in Today's World


A Computer Science degree granted by a liberal arts program is of special value today, as the world increasingly needs graduates who not only possess computer skills, but also apply them in a context of broad general learning. Graduates will be ready to take exciting and demanding jobs in the field or to continue their studies in pursuit of advanced scientific or professional degrees.

Biology Major

Cell Division

The major in Biology offers students the opportunity to learn introductory science in an integrated format in the Foundations of Science program and to use the contemporary tools and approaches that are available to solve problems in areas of the current life sciences.