Return to: Welcome to UTEP

Welcome to the University of Texas at El Paso! UTEP is a nationally recognized institution where the faculty and staff are wholly dedicated to students’ academic success. A broad range of academic programs are offered to encourage students to become involved in the discovery and creation of knowledge. UTEP is a friendly place: Relationships are easy to develop with fellow students, staff members, and faculty. This catalog serves as an introduction to UTEP’s policies, degrees, majors and minors, and curricula. Our commitment is to offer the highest quality education in a supportive community of faculty and staff.

Our History

UTEP has created a foundation of academic excellence as strong as the rugged Rocky Mountain foothills that are the University’s home. Located on the United States-Mexico border in El-Paso-Ciudad Juárez, a binational metropolitan area of more than two million people, UTEP is the largest Mexican-American-majority university in the United States. In this unique multicultural setting, the University offers a wide scope of academic programs and outstanding support services, providing academic excellence for students.

The second-oldest academic institution of The University of Texas System, UTEP was established in 1914 as the Texas State School of Mines and Metallurgy to prepare professionals for the mining industry of the southwestern U.S. and Mexico. From its inception, the campus has featured architecture derived from the Himalayan kingdom of Bhutan. UTEP’s unique buildings are the only examples of this ancient architecture in the Western Hemisphere. The motif, characterized by thick, sloped outer walls accented with a band of elaborate brickwork, was suggested by Kathleen Worrell, the wife of the college’s first dean, after she saw photographs of Bhutanese monasteries in an issue of National Geographic. Noted El Paso architect Henry Trost designed the first buildings, and subsequent architects have continued the theme through more than 80 years of campus expansion.

The college’s curriculum expanded in 1927 with the addition of liberal-arts courses. The first Master of Arts degree was established in 1940. The institution was renamed Texas Western College in 1949 and the University of Texas at El Paso in 1967. Since then, enrollment has grown to more than 23,000 students, and the scope of programs has expanded to include over 71 Bachelor’s, over 70 Master’s, and 20 Doctoral degrees to meet the needs of an increasingly industrialized and more diverse West Texas.

The 367-acre UTEP campus consists of more than 4,000,000 square feet in 87 buildings with facilities to support academic and physical excellence. The 125,000-square foot Undergraduate Learning Center features multimedia computer and distance-learning technology. The UTEP Library has more than one million books and houses the new Collaborative Learning Center with 224 computers and a lobby café enriched with Bhutanese art. The 362,000-square foot Engineering Sciences Complex houses many research opportunities for students in facilities such as the W.M. Keck Center for 3D Innovation with $4-million of equipment, including 17 rapid prototyping machines and facilities for tissue engineering. Nearby, the Biosciences Research Building provides state-of-the-art equipment to address biomedical and environmental problems. Well-equipped computer laboratories are located throughout the campus. The Fox Fine Arts complex contains galleries, recital halls, and studios for exploring art, theatre, music, and dance. The Don Haskins Center, the 52,247-seat Sun Bowl Stadium and the Larry K. Durham Sports Center provide student athletes a range of resources, including a strength and conditioning center; a sports medicine center; a student-athlete lounge and computer center; locker rooms; coaches’ offices; meeting rooms; and the Hall of Champions.

With its pivotal setting on the U.S.-Mexico border, UTEP is a nationally recognized leader for creating excellent academic opportunities for a largely first-generation student population. Quality academic programs and a robust research agenda mark UTEP as an innovative force in American higher education for the 21st century.

Our Mission

The University of Texas at El Paso is dedicated to the advancement of the El Paso region through education, creative and artistic production, and the generation, interpretation, application, and dissemination of knowledge. UTEP embraces its role as an intellectual, cultural, and socio-economic asset to the region, offering programs to meet human resource needs and contribute to the quality of life.

As a public university, UTEP is committed to providing access and opportunity to the people of the El Paso region and the State of Texas. UTEP’s mission of ensuring access is coupled with a commitment to excellence, reflected in rigorous programs which prepare students to make significant contributions to their professions, their communities, and the world.

As a research/doctoral institution, UTEP fosters a climate of scholarly inquiry, with a special focus on applying innovative interdisciplinary approaches to explore and address major issues that confront the United States and Mexico border region.

Our Vision

The University of Texas at El Paso will be internationally recognized as a preeminent model for urban, public research universities in the 21st century.

UTEP will serve as a gateway to an improved quality of life for people of the Paso del Norte region, which includes far-west Texas, northern Mexico, and southern New Mexico. UTEP will offer a broad range of undergraduate, professional, and doctoral programs that support the workforce needs of the region and the state, and will provide lifelong educational opportunities for area residents.

UTEP will be recognized nationally as the preeminent institution in fostering student participation and success, especially young people, working adults, returning students, and lifelong learners from socioeconomic groups that have been traditionally under-represented in U.S. higher education.

UTEP graduates will be known for the high quality of their academic preparation and eagerly recruited by employers and the most selective graduate and professional schools in the country.

UTEP will be nationally and internationally recognized for its exemplary accomplishments in generating and applying knowledge about emergent global issues, with a special focus on those having a direct regional impact.

UTEP will continue to be the leading research university in the nation with a majority Mexican-American student body, and through its excellent academic programs will help meet the demands of American enterprise for a diverse and highly educated workforce.

UTEP will be known for its commitment to diversity in its recruitment of faculty, staff, and administrators who serve as role models and mentors for its largely first-generation, Mexican-American student population.

UTEP will build on the strength of its core disciplines, the promise of new and emerging areas of academic excellence, and the resources of its U.S.-Mexico border context to develop innovative and multidisciplinary strategies to address major issues that confront the Paso del Norte region.

UTEP’s centers of excellence will be at the forefront of addressing emergent national challenges in such areas as Hispanic health disparities, the education of U.S. Hispanics, homeland security, and national defense.

UTEP will be acknowledged as the principal human and economic development engine for the Paso del Norte region and as a catalyst for technology transfer, commercialization, regional innovation, and entrepreneurship.

UTEP’s role in the El Paso Collaborative for Academic Excellence will be recognized as the preeminent national model for successfully raising aspirations and academic achievement of K-16 students through its development of a partnership among K-12 school districts, the community college, civic and philanthropic organizations, business leaders, and researchers.

UTEP will be recognized for incorporating into both graduate and undergraduate curricula research that engages students, cultivates intellectual curiosity, and promotes innovation and creative thinking.

UTEP will be internationally recognized for its artistic and creative productions that are shaped by the confluence of cultures, values, and aesthetics of the U.S.-Mexico border region.

UTEP will be known for its commitment to play a role in creating educational opportunities for residents of northern Mexico and fostering the cross-border economic development essential to the long-term resolution of border issues.

UTEP will be known for its success in integrating public service and civic engagement into its teaching, learning, research, and creative activities, and its graduates will be prepared to engage in civic affairs and make meaningful contributions to society.

UTEP will be recognized as an engaged partner in sponsoring and enhancing cultural, artistic, athletic, and entertainment activities and events in the Paso del Norte region.

UTEP’s intercollegiate athletics program will build on the legacy of its transformative NCAA men’s basketball championship to be recognized for its achievement of high performance standards in both men’s and women’s athletic competitions and in the classroom.

UTEP will be known for its effectiveness in containing costs and generating additional resources to ensure a high-quality educational experience for its students and for its efficient and prudent stewardship of the resources entrusted to it by students, the State of Texas, granting agencies, and donors.

Our Goals

Goal 1 - Learning and Teaching: To prepare UTEP students to meet lifelong intellectual, ethical, and career challenges and to be the leaders of the 21st Century.

Student Achievement: To graduate students who have a command of communicative, mathematical, and computer skills; core knowledge in the natural and social sciences, humanities, and arts; knowledge, attitudes, and skills of their academic major or profession; and additional knowledge and skills to be gained from capitalizing on UTEP's special setting.

Curriculum: To maintain a core curriculum for all undergraduate students and major/professional curricula which provide students with the knowledge, attitudes, and skills to be productive citizens and to meet future intellectual, ethical, and career challenges.

Educational Programs: To provide a wide array of quality academic programs appropriate to a comprehensive university and the educational requirements of El Paso's binational metropolitan area and to develop new graduate degree programs based on needs and opportunities of our setting and institutional strengths.

Faculty: To recruit, orient, support, and retain a highly qualified, diverse faculty which is dedicated to teaching and which uses effective instructional practices, such as directed practical experiences and technological innovations, for the enhancement of student learning.

Student Services: To provide comprehensive programs and services which strengthen UTEP students' academic achievement and develop their leadership skills.

Pre-College Preparation of Students: To work collaboratively with schools, the community, and employers to ensure that young people and their families are informed about the necessity of higher levels of academic preparation for admission to and success in the University, and to support collaborative efforts to improve pre-college education.

Student Recruitment: To inform and assist qualified potential students in seeking admission to the University in order to fulfill their aspirations for higher education.

Goal 2 - Research, Scholarship, and Artistic Production: To create, interpret, evaluate, apply, and disseminate knowledge; to encourage the addition of perspectives based on UTEP’s geographic and social setting; and to contribute to the formation of a broader intellectual and artistic foundation for the 21st Century.

Generation of Knowledge: To advance knowledge through research, scholarship, and artistic production.

Application of Knowledge: To develop research, scholarship, and artistic activities which apply UTEP's expertise and resources to the search for solutions to regional, national, and international problems.

Integration with Teaching: To expand the linkages between University instruction with research, scholarship, and artistic activities whenever appropriate and to expand opportunities for both graduate and undergraduate students to participate in these endeavors.

Faculty: To recruit, orient, support, and retain a highly qualified, diverse faculty dedicated to the advancement, dissemination, and application of knowledge.

Goal 3 - Public Service: To work in partnership with public and private agencies, institutions, and organizations, including business and industry, to improve the quality of life in our region and world by providing appropriate University expertise and leadership.

Community Education: To encourage lifelong learning and to provide educational courses and activities in response to local and regional needs.

Preparation of Professionals in Critical Areas: To educate and prepare for licensure and certification critically needed professionals, such as teachers and providers of health care and human services.

Economic Development Analysis and Technical Assistance: To provide needs-assessment services, data collection and analyses, training, and technical assistance supportive of regional economic development.

Culture: To provide cultural activities consistent with the goals of the University and to work collaboratively with other groups supportive of regional cultural activities.

Recreation: To provide recreational activities consistent with the goals of the University and to work collaboratively with other groups in the support of regional recreational activities.

Athletics: To provide intercollegiate athletic activities consistent with the goals of the University and to work collaboratively with other groups in the support of regional athletic activities.

Goal 4 - Administration: To support the achievement of UTEP’s mission in learning, teaching, research, scholarship, artistic production, and public service through responsive, effective, and efficient administrative and staff services.

Strategic Planning: To contribute to the achievement of UTEP's mission and goals through the University's planning, institutional research, and evaluation system.

Financial and Material Resources: To plan, manage, and supervise the physical facilities and grounds, materials management, purchasing, and campus security in order to provide the necessary support services conducive to learning, teaching, research, artistic production, and public service.

Institutional Advancement: To advance academic and co-curricular programs through voluntary support of university initiatives, to increase alumni participation in the life of their university, and to enhance on-campus and public visibility of UTEP successes.

Information and Telecommunications Services: To expand and integrate state-of-the-art technology and telecommunications throughout the campus, emphasizing their application to instruction and student learning, and to improve information and telecommunication services for essential administrative functions (e.g., student and alumni records, purchasing, and facilities management).

Staff: To hire, train, support, and retain well-qualified staff members who work to ensure the achievement of the University's mission and goals.

Our Colleges

UTEP has seven academic colleges--the College of Business Administration, the College of Education, the College of Engineering, the College of Health Sciences, the College of Liberal Arts, the College of Science, and the School of Nursing--that work collaboratively to ensure that students experience a positive college environment and have the opportunity to explore a myriad of academic disciplines. The colleges comprise some 38 academic departments and offer over 70 baccalaureate degrees. Graduate degrees offered by UTEP include over 80 master degrees in disciplines from all six colleges. Doctoral degrees are offered in Biological Science; Chemistry; Civil Engineering; Computational Science; Computer Science; Educational Leadership and Administration; Electrical and Computer Engineering; Environmental Science and Engineering; Geological Science; History; Interdisciplinary Health Sciences; International Business; Materials Science and Engineering; Physical Therapy; Psychology; Rhetoric and Composition; and Teaching, Learning, and Culture. The Graduate School serves and responds to the needs of graduate students.

Each of the seven colleges and school contributes to UTEP’s academic programs:

  • The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSB) accredited programs of the College of Business Administration include a Bachelor of Business Administration with eight possible majors, a Master’s in Business Administration, specialized Master’s degrees in Accounting and Economics, and a PhD in International Business. These programs provide students a thorough understanding of the binational and global business community and the academic skills necessary to meet the intellectual and ethical challenges of 21st-century international commerce.
  • The College of Education plays an active role in several local, regional, and national projects to improve teacher education and public school administration, including the graduation of better-prepared science and math teachers.
  • Beginning with the first degree program in Mining Engineering in 1914 when UTEP was established as the Texas College of Mines, the College of Engineering has played a significant role in the economic vitality of the region through engineering workforce and technology development. This influence has now expanded to the national level as the College has grown to include six undergraduate and 17 graduate degree programs producing graduates highly sought by companies nationwide.
  • The College of Health Sciences and several cooperative programs with other institutions provide the region a broad spectrum of degree opportunities in Clinical Laboratory Sciences, Health Promotion, Kinesiology, Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Public Health, Speech-Language Pathology, and Social Work. The College also collaborates with the School of Nursing to offer an Interdisciplinary Ph.D. in Health Sciences.
  • The School of Nursing provides a variety of nursing programs including a traditional BSN; an articulation RN-BSN; an accelerated BSN for second-degree students; MSN degrees with majors such as Nurse Practitioner, Nurse Clinical Specialist, and Nursing Systems Management; and a variety of certificate programs.
  • The College of Liberal Arts, UTEP’s largest College, offers a variety of programs in the humanities, social and behavioral sciences, and arts. Built on a long tradition of excellence, the College has continued to develop new and innovative programming that capitalizes on the scholarly and creative strengths of its faculty and addresses the needs of its students.

Our Student Body

Students who attend UTEP come from a mix of social, cultural, and economic backgrounds that closely mirror the population of the El Paso-Ciudad Juárez region. Approximately 76% of UTEP’s students are Hispanic, approximately 64% work while in college, and more than half are first-generation college students. UTEP students typically represent the 50 United States and 71 countries, with about six percent coming from Mexico.


The University of Texas at El Paso is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges to award bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees.   Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404.697.4500 for questions about the accreditation of The University of Texas at El Paso.

Information on accreditation by separate accrediting bodies for specific programs is presented in the specific college and school sections of this catalog.