Can I Get an Engineering Degree Online?

Working engineers and non-engineers looking for a more flexible learning format to study the design of machines, systems, and structures can obtain their engineering degree online. Thanks to the convenience of the Internet, online engineering programs have become more popular and respected in the industry. Online learners can take this opportunity to study engineering and enter an in-demand field filled with lucrative salary potential. In fact, CNN reports that nine out of the top 10 highest-paying college majors are engineering specialties. Engineering plays a role in virtually every aspect of today’s modern world, so there’s a big need for more innovative thinkers to acquire an engineering degree. If you’re looking to build a rewarding career improving society’s functioning while earning a great return on your investment, an online engineering program could be the perfect match.

Types of Online Engineering Degrees

Online degrees for engineers can be found at every educational level from certificate through doctorate, but the most common are bachelor’s and master’s degrees. At least a four-year bachelor’s degree is typically required for starting an entry-level engineering job. Most undergraduate programs will lead to a Bachelor of Engineering (B.E.) or Bachelor of Science in Engineering (B.S.E). Students will spend at least four full-time school years building a broad foundation in mathematics, science, and engineering principles. At the graduate level, programs lead to a Master of Engineering (M.E.) or Master of Science in Engineering (M.S.E.) degree for professional certification. Graduate students can choose to tailor their studies to specialties like chemical, environmental, biomedical, civil, petroleum, or computer engineering (please see: How Can You Specialize an Engineering Degree?).

Benefits to Studying Engineering Online

As a wider selection of reputable online learning options become available, students are no longer limited to studying at local universities. There’s more freedom for students to find any program around the country that aligns with their career interests. Since course materials are offered 24/7 with a self-paced format, engineers can develop new knowledge and skills while working full-time. Lessons being learned can instantly be applied in the workplace for quicker professional advancement. Online courses are completed from the comfort of home, which is ideal for engineers wishing to maximize time with their families. Online engineering degrees can be more affordable because tuition is charged per course and there’s no transportation costs.

Finding a Good Online Engineering Degree

It’s clear that earning an engineering degree online is smart, but not all programs are created equal. Engineers and future engineers need to utilize their good research skills to locate degrees that are reputable in order to avoid falling into the trap of diploma mills. First, it’s important to look for online degrees that have been regionally accredited and approved by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). This certifies that the program meets specific professional standards. It’s also advised that you peruse the U.S. News and World Report’s ranking for the best online engineering programs. Other factors that should be considered include student support services, practical learning experiences, cutting-edge technology, reputation, faculty credentials, specialty options, and student-faculty ratio.

Overall, online engineering degrees are spreading across the United States because they offer an infinitely more flexible learning format than traditional education while holding the same weight with industry employers. Earning your engineering degree online can prove valuable in acquiring new technical and management skills that can lead to engineering job opportunities anywhere from the bottom of the ocean to outer space.