Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Engineering – National High School Curriculum


Project Lead the Way (PLTW) Engineering – National High School Curriculum

The PLTW curriculum, when combined with traditional mathematics and science courses in high school, introduces students to the scope, rigor and discipline of engineering prior to entering college. Throughout PLTW, students learn and apply the design process, acquire strong teamwork and communication proficiency and develop organizational, critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Along the way, students investigate a variety of careers in STEM fields. Students who complete the course and the national exam with high achievement are eligible to receive college credits from various colleges for a fee.

For more information about PLTW Biomedical Science, please visit the PLTW website.

To help prepare all students for the global workforce, the College Board and Project Lead The Way (PLTW) have partnered on a program to encourage student participation in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) courses and build their interest in STEM degrees and careers. The program leverages the success of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Program (AP) and Project Lead The Way’s applied learning programs.

To learn more about about the AP + PLTW program, please visit the AP + PLTW website.

PLTW Engineering Course Sequence:

  • Introduction to Engineering Design
  • Principles of Engineering
  • PLTW Civil Engineering and Architecture and/or Environmental Sustainability
  • Engineering Design and Development (Capstone Project)




Prerequisites: Algebra 1

Students dig deep into the engineering design process, applying math, science, and engineering standards to hands-on projects. They work both individually and in teams to design solutions to a variety of problems using 3-D modeling software, and use an engineering notebook to document their work.


Prerequisite: Introduction to Engineering Design

Through problems that engage and challenge, students explore a broad range of engineering topics, including mechanisms, the strength of structures and materials, and automation. Students develop skills in problem solving, research, and design while learning strategies for design process documentation, collaboration, and presentation.


Prerequisite: Introduction to Engineering Design, Principles of Engineering    

Students learn important aspects of building and site design and development. They apply math, science, and standard engineering practices to design both residential and commercial projects and document their work using 3D architecture design software. Note: The grade for this course is weighted.


Prerequisite: Introduction to Engineering Design, Principles of Engineering

Students investigate and design solutions in response to real-world challenges related to clean and abundant drinking water, food supply issues, and renewable energy. Students research and design potential solutions to these true-to-life challenges through hands-on activities and simulations.  Note: The grade for this course is weighted.


Prerequisite: PLTW Introduction to Engineering Design, PLTW Principles of Engineering, PLTW Environmental Sustainability or PLTW Civil Engineering and Architecture

The knowledge and skills students acquire throughout PLTW Engineering come together in EDD as students identify an issue and then research, design, and test a solution, ultimately presenting their solution to a panel of practicing engineers. Students apply the professional skills they have developed to document a design process, and they complete EDD ready to take on any post-secondary program or career. Note: The grade for this course is weighted.