Courses of Study 2022-2023 
    Jun 24, 2024  
Courses of Study 2022-2023 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Fiber Science

In the College of Human Ecology .

Course Offerings  

The Fiber Science major is unique in the Ivy League.  Students study the physical, chemical, and engineering properties of fibrous materials for applications including textiles for fashion, functional, smart or protective clothing, biomedical textiles, engineering composites, nanofibers, and high performance materials.

The scientific study of fibrous materials, builds on foundations in biology, chemistry, engineering, mathematics, and physics. Students learn fiber composition and about their chemical, mechanical, biological and physical properties. Students explore the role of fiber science in the design and fabrication of traditional and innovative products, from clothing to smart devices, life-saving medical implants and composite structures. Because fiber science has applications in so many areas, majors can tailor their studies to meet personal, academic and professional goals.

Within this major, students get individual attention and develop one-on-one relationships with faculty.  Each student has the opportunity to individualize their plan of study, with 50% of their course credits chosen from broad categories or as free electives. The curriculum provides great flexibility for students to pursue materials science, biomedical science, ergonomics or product development in performance and functional apparel or soft goods. With its rigorous requirement of physical science courses, it can be excellent preparation for a range of graduate and professional studies including medical school.

Beyond formal course work, all Fiber Science students have opportunities to participate in undergraduate research with a faculty member. Field placements, joining a faculty member’s research team, or conducting independent research can add a significant experiential component to the course of study, providing valuable practical knowledge while testing students’ academic or career interests.  Many students choose to study abroad or participate in an international exchange program for one semester during their Junior year. 


Y. Gowayed, Chair (HEB T57); F. Baytar, C. Blumenkamp, M. Conroy, M. Frey, D. Green, J. Hinestroza, F. Kozen, T. Lewis, V.D. Lewis, H. Park, K. Phoenix, J. Reed, L. Shepherd, T. Uyar.

Academic Advising

All Fiber Science majors are matched with a faculty advisor by the Director of Undergraduate Studies. Students are strongly urged to discuss their goals, course selection and sequence, electives, and career plans with their faculty advisor. Students are free to change advisors; changes must be recorded with the Director of Undergraduate Studies. It is the student’s responsibility to keep track of their courses and to make sure that the program meets graduation requirements for their major and college.

Student Work

All work done as part of the academic program will be held by the department until it has been released by the instructor. Certain exceptional work may be used by the department to exhibit for academic purposes. The department is not responsible for the loss or theft of student work.

Career Opportunities

Recent graduates of the Fiber Science program have begun careers with fiber and textile firms, outdoor and athleticwear firms, protective apparel firms, testing laboratories, and government agencies.  Students have continued to graduate studies in polymer or materials science, engineering, and technology or to medical, business or law school.

Fiber Science Major

Fiber Science Major

In addition to college requirements  , students in the Fiber Science Major must complete specific requirements listed here.

The requirements listed below pertain to all students matriculating in August 2022 and January 2023.

Fiber Science Intro Courses

FSAD Introductory Courses (6-8 credits)

Take any two additional FSAD courses at the 1000, 2000, or 3000 level.

Fiber Science Advanced Courses

FSAD Advanced Courses (6 credits)

Take any two additional 4000 or 6000 level FSAD courses*

*FSAD 4000, 4010, 4020, 4030, 4990 cannot count here.

Fiber Science Computer Science

Computer Science (3 credits)

Choose one of the following courses:
CS 1110 - Introduction to Computing Using Python  OR
CS 1112 - Introduction to Computing Using MATLAB  OR
CS 1300 - Introductory Design and Programming for the Web  (also INFO 1300 )

If you have a score of 5 on AP Computer Science, then you may substitute one of the following upper level courses:
CS 2110 - Object-Oriented Programming and Data Structures  OR
CS 2300 - Intermediate Design and Programming for the Web  OR
INFO 2950 - Introduction to Data Science  

Fiber Science Intro Chemistry

Introductory Chemistry (8 credits)

This fulfills the college distribution natural sciences requirement.

Choose one of the following sequences:
(a)    CHEM 2070 - General Chemistry I  and CHEM 2080 - General Chemistry II   OR
(b)    CHEM 2090 - Engineering General Chemistry * and CHEM 2080 - General Chemistry II  

*requires written permission from the Chemistry Office of Undergraduate Studies

Fiber Science Organic Chemistry

Organic Chemistry Lecture and Laboratory (8 credits)

Take all of the following:
CHEM 3570 - Organic Chemistry for the Life Sciences 
CHEM 3580 - Organic Chemistry for the Life Sciences 
CHEM 2510 - Introduction to Experimental Organic Chemistry 

Fiber Science Physics

Physics (8 credits)

Choose one of the following sequences:
(a)    PHYS 1101 - General Physics I  and PHYS 1102 - General Physics II  OR
(b)    PHYS 1112 - Physics I: Mechanics and Heat  and PHYS 2213 - Physics II: Electromagnetism  OR
(c)    PHYS 2207 - Fundamentals of Physics I  and PHYS 2208 - Fundamentals of Physics II 

Fiber Science Materials Science

Materials Science (3 credits)

MSE 2610 - Mechanical Properties of Materials: From Nanodevices to Superstructures  

Fiber Science Additional Science Sequence

Additional Science Sequence (6-8 credits)

Choose from one of the following sequences or any other in consultation with your advisor which will require a petition.

Apparel Design Sequence*

FSAD 1450 - Introduction to Fashion Design  AND
Choose one of the following:
(a)    FSAD 2660 - Activewear Design and Product Development  OR
(b)    FSAD 3650 - New Technologies for Fashion Design  OR
(c)    FSAD 3990 - Smart Clothing: Design and Programming  OR
(d)    FSAD 6900 - Understanding Functional Aspects of Clothing and Design 

*Courses used here may not apply to Fiber Science Introductory Courses or Fiber Science Advanced Courses.

Materials Science and Engineering sequence

MSE 2620 - Electronic Materials for the Information Age  AND

Choose one of the following:
(a)    MSE 3010 - Materials Chemistry  OR
(b)    MSE 3040 - Kinetics, Diffusion, and Phase Transformations  OR
(c)    MSE 3050 - Electronic, Magnetic, and Dielectric Properties of Materials 

Environment and Sustainability sequence

Choose from one of the following two course groups:
(a)    NTRES 1101 - Understanding Environment and Sustainability  and NTRES 1201 - Global Water Sustainability  OR
(b)    DEA 3030 - Materials for Design and Sustainability  and FSAD 3200 - Global Textile and Apparel Sustainability  

Biomedical sequence

Choose one of the following:
(a)    ENGRI 1310 - Introduction to Biomedical Engineering  OR
(b)    CHEME 2880 - Biomolecular Engineering: Fundamentals and Applications  
MSE 4610 - Biomedical Materials and Their Applications  

Physical Chemistry sequence

Choose one of the following sequences
(a)    CHEM 2870 - Introductory Physical Chemistry  and CHEM 2900 - Introductory Physical Chemistry Laboratory  OR
(b)    CHEM 3890 - Honors Physical Chemistry I  and CHEM 3900 - Honors Physical Chemistry II  

Psychology Requirement

Psychology Requirement (3 credits)

This fulfills the college distribution social sciences requirement.

Choose one of the following courses:
HD 1150 - Human Development: Infancy and Childhood 
HD 1170 - Adolescence and Emerging Adulthood 
PSYCH 1101 - Introduction to Psychology *

*HD 1120  and PSYCH 1101  are forbidden overlaps.  You may only take one of these courses.

Introductory Economics

Introductory Economics  (3 credits)

This fulfills the college distribution social sciences requirement.

ECON 1110 - Introductory Microeconomics  

Fiber Science Statistics

Statistics (4 credits)

This fulfills the college distribution quantitative and analytical courses requirement.

Must be taken at Cornell, AP Statistics is not accepted

Choose one of the following courses:
PAM 2100 - Introduction to Statistics  OR
AEM 2100 - Introductory Statistics  OR
ILRST 2100 - Introductory Statistics /STSCI 2100 - Introductory Statistics  OR
PSYCH 2500 - Statistics and Research Design  OR
ENGRD 2700 - Basic Engineering Probability and Statistics  

Fiber Science Calculus

Calculus (8 credits)

Choose one of the following sequences:
(a)    MATH 1110 - Calculus I  and MATH 1120 - Calculus II  OR
(b)    MATH 1110 - Calculus I  and MATH 1220 - [Theoretical Calculus II]  OR
(c)    MATH 1910 - Calculus for Engineers  and MATH 1920 - Multivariable Calculus for Engineers  

Note: A score of 4 or 5 on AP Calculus AB fulfills the Calculus I requirement; a score of 4 or 5 on AP Calculus BC fulfills Calculus I and II requirements.

Fiber Science Linear Algebra

Linear Algebra (4 credits)

Choose one of the following courses:
MATH 2210 - Linear Algebra  OR
MATH 2230 - Theoretical Linear Algebra and Calculus  OR
MATH 2310 - Linear Algebra with Applications  OR
MATH 2940 - Linear Algebra for Engineers