Engineering fields are numerous, and it follows that Master of Engineering programs are similarly diverse in nature. However, some disciplines are more common than others. A few of the more common disciplines in engineering are mechanical, electrical, and software engineering; these engineering disciplines will be discussed in more detail throughout this article. No matter which discipline of engineering you decide to pursue, earning a quality engineering degree from a reputable engineering school is the first step. Master of Engineering degrees can be earned at respected schools all over the country, or through one of the top online Master of Engineering degree programs.
Master of Engineering Overview
Mechanical engineering is a common discipline in the field of engineering. Mechanical engineering programs teach students about physics and materials to allow them to design and construct mechanical systems. Mechanical engineering programs emphasize mathematics, dynamics, statics, thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, hydraulics, instrumentation, material strength, and a wide variety of other disciplines relevant to the field.
Electrical engineering programs teach students about electronics, electromagnetism, and electricity. This broad discipline covers a wide range of topics and includes various sub-disciplines such as signal processing, microelectronics, telecommunications, power engineering, control engineering, electronics engineering, and computer engineering. Electrical engineers seeking Master’s degrees learn about control systems, electronic devices and circuits, network theory, electromagnetism, and communications.
Software engineering programs cover the same methodical, disciplined approach that engineers use for other fields, only as applied to software. Like electrical engineering, it is a relatively broad discipline with numerous sub-disciplines, including software testing, requirements, construction, design, maintenance, and quality. Engineers can also move into fields related to a sub-discipline or progress to positions in government, law, or consulting.
Online Engineering Degrees
Engineering schools are accredited by a body in a particular country. In the United States, that body is the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology, otherwise known as ABET. ABET ensures that the school provides a quality education for students.
ABET-accredited schools that offer education entirely over the Internet are as follows:
- Air Force Institute of Technology
- Capella University
- Metropolitan State College of Denver
- Regis University
- University of Southern Mississippi
Master of Engineering Degree Requirements
To earn a Master’s degree in engineering, applicants need an undergraduate degree from a university. This takes four years. The student then applies to an institution offering a Master of Engineering degree. While the undergraduate degree need not be in a field related to engineering, many programs will not admit students without an engineering background. High grades are also required.
Once the student is admitted to a Master’s program, the student will undergo two years of intensive coursework. If the student graduates, he or she will receive the degree.
Annual salaries depend upon the individual’s experience, area, and chosen discipline. A selection of average engineering salaries is as follows:
- Aerospace Engineering: $99,000
- Chemical Engineering: $94,590
- Oil and Gas Engineering: $128,000
- Materials Engineering: $112,280
- Electrical Engineering: $87,770
Related Degree Areas
Depending upon his or her chosen discipline, prospective engineers may consider a Master’s degree in information technology, mathematics, or physics. These fields offer coursework similar to some engineering coursework and provide an education in hard science.
There are various engineering programs, including mechanical, electrical, software, chemical, material, structural, environmental, control , mining, nuclear, optical, petroleum, genetic, food, entertainment, electronic, aerospace, civil, agricultural, metallurgical, systems, computer, network, construction, and enterprise engineering. There are various other engineering specialties, and many of these fields have sub-disciplines. Given all of these engineering specialties, it is easy to see why earning a Master of Engineering can lead to an exciting and fulfilling career.