Most online master's degree programs in engineering, such as the Master of Science (M.S.) in Engineering, are developed for professionals who are already working in the field. Such programs are typically intended to increase proficiency in the field and in the work environment.
Students who wish to enroll in fully online master's degree programs in engineering typically must hold a bachelor's degree in engineering or a related field. Programs like this tend to require students to choose a focus area in engineering management or engineering areas, such as civil, mechanical, electrical or software engineering. Special hardware and software may be required.
When looking for an online master's program in engineering, students should check to see if it is accredited by ABET, formerly called the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology. This is the industry standard, and graduation from an ABET-accredited program is usually a requirement in fields that require licensing. Many states require that certain types of engineers, such as civil engineers, hold licenses. Licensing requirements usually include graduation from an accredited program and passing an examination.
Coursework tends to vary depending upon a student's focus area. Everything from advanced courses in electrical, software and mechanical engineering to engineering management are typical for students enrolled in online master's degree programs in engineering.
This course studies Newton's Laws, work and energy, kinematics and impulse and momentum. Students will apply these ideas to problems of particle and rigid body motion.
Students learn about the relationships between industrial organizations and their function. Management techniques and ideas in products, process and personnel are emphasized.
This course takes an interdisciplinary approach to studying engineering. Students will look at methods in analyzing problems of various branches of engineering.
The programs are available completely online, with students accessing video lessons and course materials as their schedules permit, within certain time limitations. Students must have a good computer with a high-speed internet connection. They may need special hardware and software to meet the requirements of the engineering program.
Online lectures are typically delivered via streaming video. Coursework is completed online through the course website. Resources, such as libraries, books and support are usually accessible online as well. Software downloads and certain hardware requirements may be necessary.
Many people who earn a master's degree in engineering go on to work in management positions in engineering. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) as of May 2015, the average annual wage for engineering managers was $141,650 (www.bls.gov). The BLS also reported that, between 2014 and 2024, job opportunities for engineering managers are expected to increase by 2 percent.
Master's degree programs in engineering are available for students to complete entirely online. The courses in these programs vary depending on what concentration students are pursuing.