Overview of Nanosystems Engineering Bachelor's Degree Programs
Nanosystems engineering, or nanoscale engineering, is a practical field that underpins any number of other high-technology disciplines like medicine and sustainable energy. Nanosystems engineering programs are built on a strong foundation in basic math and sciences, with which they prepare students to find solutions to technological problems using analytical, empirical and computational tools. Read on to learn about the admission requirements and sample coursework for nanosystems engineering programs. This article also provides career and salary information for this degree and related fields.
Admission Requirements for Nanosystems Engineering Programs
Admission requirements for nanosystems engineering programs typically follow the requirements of the overall university admissions committee. Prospective students will be expected to provide high school or GED program transcripts and standardized test scores. As nanosystems engineering programs are heavily based in math and sciences, prioritizing these areas in high school may be an advantage. While academic achievement and test scores are important, other factors will likely be taken into account as well: extracurricular background, work experience, motivation and any extenuating circumstances.
Nanosystems Engineering Program Coursework
These programs begin with one or two years of general engineering, math and science coursework before delving into specific nanosystems topics. Some of the courses offered by nanosystems engineering programs are described below.
Fundamentals of Nanosystems Engineering
This course begins to apply general physics and chemistry principles to nanotechnology. It focuses on applications in the field of engineering, covering basic concepts like fabrication techniques and measurement tools. Students learn the theoretical foundation of these concepts and get practical laboratory experience as well.
Measurement and Analysis of Nanoscale Materials
This course covers the types of advanced materials used in nanosystems engineering in order to create nanoscale devices and systems. The properties and characteristics of the various materials are discussed, as well as the processes and economics of the design process based on the selected materials. After this course students will be confident in the fundamental practical skills of measuring and assessing materials.
Nanosystems Engineering Research Seminar
Understanding of the research process is critical for career scientists, even those based in industry. This seminar course is an introduction to various topics in research relevant to the development of nanosystems, and may involve group work, independent projects, reports and presentations. Topics include literature reviews, science writing, and designing and conducting research projects.
Nanoscale Engineering Design and Manufacture
This course is truly focused in engineering, or manufacturing, nanosystems and devices. It may focus on semiconductor based chip design as the key technology of many nanosystems. Using industry or research examples, topics covered include an overview of functional components, design for manufacturing, and future, emerging technologies.
Biology is one major industry interested in nanosystems, and is often available as a concentration option within nanosystems engineering programs. In this course, students will be introduced to basic molecular processes and concepts such as cell functioning and replication. These topics will then be applied to engineering principles to introduce nanoscale science as a potential solution to biochemical problems. Applications that may be discussed include biosensors, nanobiological materials and biomimicry.
How to Choose a Nanosystems Engineering Program
It is important to consider which potential concentrations within nanosystems engineering interest you. A degree in nanosystems engineering is applicable in a wide variety of industries, and you should choose a program that offers courses and a concentration in the field that most interests you. You should also look at the research opportunities available to undergraduates; there may be a required capstone course involving independent research, which can provide valuable experience with plenty of support.
Career Options for a Degree in Nanosystems Engineering
While nanosystems engineering students may choose to go on to advanced degree programs, there are many career opportunities available to graduates in high technology industries. For one such industry, biomedical engineering, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported a median annual salary of $85,620. Employment of biomedical engineers is expected to grow 7% from 2016-2026. Below are additional career options available with a degree in nanosystems engineering.