Skip to Main Content

Project Lead the Way

The University of Massachusetts is pleased to announce our partnership with Project Lead the Way (PLTW).

PLTW is a nationwide non-profit organization that promotes STEM teacher training and related educational opportunities for students in grades 9-12. In recognition of this partnership, UMass Lowell announces the UMass Lowell Project Lead the Way Scholarship.

Scholarship awardees must enroll at UMass Lowell in a STEM field and also meet one of the following criteria:

  • Female
  • First-generation college student
  • A member of an ethnically underrepresented minority group: American Indian or Alaskan Native, Asian, Black or African American, Cape Verdean, Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander, Hispanic or Latino, Multiracial

Additionally:

  • Must have completed at least one PLTW course, with strong preference to those who have completed at least three
  • Be nominated by a STEM high school teacher, school counselor or principal
  • Show a minimum cumulative high school GPA of 3.0
  • Must apply for a STEM program by the Regular Decision deadline: February 1, 2020.

Benefits of completing Project Lead the Way coursework:

  • Preparation for university level coursework
  • Potential for university credit (3 credits based on competency in 3 PLTW courses, with UMass Lowell departmental approval (usually a faculty meets with the student) and most likely elective credit or intro credit is awarded. On a case by case basis, students may receive 1 credit for 1 PLTW course or 2 credits for 2 PLTW courses.

PLTW Standardized Course Codes Overview

When reviewing student transcripts for university admission, it can be challenging to interpret and compare course information across schools, and thus hard to ensure an accurate picture of each student’s academic profile. The School Courses for the Exchange of Data (SCED) Classification System was developed to meet the need for common, widely understood, standardized course codes that can be used to compare course information, maintain longitudinal data about students’ coursework, and efficiently facilitate the exchange of transcript information. The SCED System, while voluntary, has become a widely used standard in the K12 education data community. Please note that UMass Lowell considers the course(s) that a nominee completed as an official PLTW course(s) only if the name on the secondary school transcript is an exact match to the course name(s) on the national listing of PLTW courses.

PLTW Pathways: Courses & SCED Codes

Each Project Lead The Way high school course has a specific SCED code, allowing for easy identification of PLTW courses on a student’s transcript. SCED code usage for identification of PLTW courses continues to gain popularity, as the value of highlighting this coursework for universities becomes more apparent.

PLTW Pathway: Engineering

CourseSCED CodeCourse Description
PLTW Introduction to Engineering Design (IED)21017Opportunity for students to become involved in hands-on projects that require mathematics, science, and engineering applications. In these courses, students review problems, document work in an engineering notebook, and design solutions using 3D modeling software.
PLTW Principles of Engineering (POE)21018Focus on solving a wide range of engineering problems. Topics such as mechanisms, structure and material strength, and automation are explored as students research, strategize, and document the design process.
PLTW Aerospace Engineering (AE)21019Designed to teach students the fundamentals of atmospheric and space flight. These courses emphasize physics and robot system concepts by focusing on the design of an airfoil, propulsion systems, rockets, and remotely operated vehicles. May include the study of orbital mechanics using industry-standard software. 
PLTW Civil Engineering and Architecture (CEA)21021Focus on building and site design and development. In these courses, students use 3D architecture design software and apply mathematics, science, and standard engineering projects to create residential and commercial designs. 
PLTW Computer Integrated Manufacturing (CIM)21022Introduce students to high-tech innovations related to modern manufacturing. These courses emphasize manufacturing processes, product design, robotics, and automation.
PLTW Digital Electronics (DE)21023Introduce students to digital circuits in appliances and mobile devices. Course topics include combinational and sequential logic, logic gates, integrated circuits, programmable logic devices, along with other circuit design tools. 
PLTW Environmental Sustainability (ES)21024Help students investigate and design solutions in response to real-world challenges related to supply and access to drinking water, food supply issues, and renewable energy. 
PLTW Engineering Design and Development (EDD)21025A capstone course for the PLTW Engineering program. Students use knowledge obtained in previous courses to identify an issue and research and design a solution. Students may present the results of their solution to a panel of engineers.

PLTW Pathway: Computer Science

CourseSCED CodeCourse Description
PLTW Computer Science Essentials10013Introduce students to computational thinking concepts, fundamentals, and tools. Students will increase their understanding of programming languages through the use of visual and text-based programming. Projects will include the creation of apps and websites to address real-life topics and problems.
PLTW Computer Science A10014Prepare students for the College Board’s Advanced Placement Computer Science A exam. Focus on extending students' computational thinking skills through the use of various industry-standard programming and software tools. In these courses, students collaborate to design and produce solutions to real-life problems.
PLTW Computer Science Principles10015Prepare students for the College Board’s Advanced Placement Computer Science Principles exam. Designed to help students develop computational thinking, and introduce students to possible career paths involving computing. These courses help students build programming expertise and familiarity with the Internet using multiple platforms and programming languages. Course content may include application development, visualization of data, cybersecurity, and simulation.
PLTW Cybersecurity10016Introduce students to the tools and concepts of cybersecurity. In these courses, students are encouraged to understand vulnerabilities in computational resources and to create solutions that allow people to share computing resources while retaining privacy. These courses also introduce students to issues related to ethical computing behavior.

PLTW Pathway: Biomedical Sciences

CourseSCED CodeCourse Description
PLTW Principles of Biomedical Science (PBS)03066Focus on a case study in which students investigate the cause of death of a fictional person. Students conduct research, in which they examine autopsy reports, review medical history, and study human physiology, biology, and medicine to diagnose and recommend treatments that could have been applied.
PLTW Human Body Systems (HBS)03067Designed for students to assume the role of biomedical professionals to solve real-world medical cases and experience science in action. In these courses, students study the interactions of systems within the human body by building organs and tissues on a skeletal manikin and use data acquisition software to monitor bodily functions. Course content also includes the exploration of identity, power, movement, protection, and homeostasis.
PLTW Medical Interventions (MI)03068Focus on the health of a fictitious family that students must support by providing disease prevention, diagnosis, and treatments. In these courses, students study infections, human DNA code, cancer treatment, and organ failure. Course topics may also include immunology, surgery, genetics, pharmacology, medical devices, and diagnostics.
PLTW Biomedical Innovation (BI)03070Help students apply their knowledge and skills to design innovative solutions related to biomedical challenges. These courses address topics ranging from public health and biomedical engineering to clinical medicine and physiology. These courses may also provide students with the opportunity to work with a mentor or advisor from a university, medical facility, or research institution. Students may design and complete an independent project as part of the course.

Nominate A Student

Note that if the nominated student is selected but does not enroll at UMass Lowell, the scholarship is not transferable. The scholarship has a maximum award value of $5,000 for students from Massachusetts and $10,000 for those from other states. The scholarship is renewable for four years of undergraduate study, provided a minimum GPA of 3.0 is maintained, and does not extend to graduate programs at UMass Lowell. Please note that scholarship funding is limited.  

The University of Massachusetts Lowell is pleased to partner with you on the important work of promoting STEM education to a diverse talent pool and preparing students for future success. We look forward to receiving your nominations. For questions, please contact Michael Belcher.