Online engineering degree programs offers students an extremely wide range of programs in just about any engineering discipline. Prospective students can choose from entry-level engineering technology programs at the associate degree level, to more advanced programs at the bachelor’s and master’s degree level that offer training in a specific field of engineering. While certain engineering degrees cannot be offered online at the bachelor’s level because of the amount of supervised lab work required during the degree, other programs like computer and software engineering, and biomedical engineering have become extremely popular as an online option.
The Online Engineering Degree Program Experience
Depending on the program, degree level, and school where the program is taken, an online associate degree in engineering technology can usually be completed in two to three years. While this degree does not allow individuals to be employed as actual engineers, they can work as an engineering technician. Engineering technicians often and often share similar tasks to that of engineers. Online engineering bachelor’s degree programs can usually be completed in four to five years, while online master’s programs in an engineering discipline typically take three to four years. Regardless of whether the program is online or tradition, it is essential that it be accredited by the ABET. In most cases, accredited online degree programs in engineering will hold the exact same value as an on-campus degree to an employer.
At the associate level, engineering students usually participate in general education courses like composition, English, mathematics, and natural sciences before moving on to core level courses that focus on the specific engineering discipline. The same can be said for bachelor’s degree programs; however they typically include additional basic level courses, and will provide a more advanced study of the specific engineering discipline you choose. Online master’s degree programs will specifically focus on allowing students to develop a mastery of their chosen engineering discipline, and typically require students to have completed a bachelor’s degree in the same discipline first. Master’s degrees also usually require students to work towards a final capstone project focusing on a specific aspect, topic, or project that relates to their chosen discipline.
Online vs. Campus for Engineering Degree Programs
Choosing between an online or campus-based engineering program should ultimately come down to which provides the best fit for you as a student. Traditional campus-based programs are usually chosen by recent high school graduates, or by individuals who can devote the majority of their day-time schedule to pursing their degree. In addition, most bachelor’s degree programs in engineering require students to take an on-campus program due to requirements for supervised lab work. This can be a problem for working professionals or non-traditional students as their day-time schedule may be filled with work or family.
An online master’s degree in engineering can be a great choice for an engineering already holding a bachelor’s degree and working in the field. This allows engineers to continue to work as a professional in the field, while pursuing a degree that can help them advance within the field. They are also a great choice for engineers who are looking to teach courses on the subject at the collegiate level. Online students can complete their education around their existing work schedule and have access to lectures, course material, fellow students, and professors 24/7, anywhere they have access to the Internet.