If you are interested in learning how to apply new technology to solve real-world problems, then you might consider pursuing an associate degree in engineering technology.
An engineering technology associates program focuses on the applications of technology developed by engineers. This type of associate program typically offers different courses and specializations you can choose from to suit your educational and professional goals.
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After graduating with associates in engineering technology, you may be qualified for a range of entry-level roles related to technology and electrical, mechanical, and industrial engineering.
Online Associate Degrees in Engineering Technology
The field of engineering technology is a lot more hands-on and applied than traditional engineering. Online associate degrees in engineering technology focus on teaching you how to develop and apply skills and techniques to solve technology problems.
Engineering technologists work side-by-side with engineers, and engineering technology programs focus on teaching the necessary skills for the field. Project management skills, supply chain skills, and computer skills are essential to these programs.
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While the coursework for an associate’s program in engineering technology will include many classes found in engineering programs, some courses will be focused on more practical experiences.
As a student in an engineering technology program, you will likely take courses in many different subjects, such as:
- Circuit analysis
- Computer programming
After earning your degree, you may be qualified for a variety of entry-level jobs in many different types of industries, such as:
- Construction and engineering firms
- Biomedical technology companies
- Machine companies
- Renewable resources companies
Many graduates pursue entry-level roles in engineering—such as technician roles in mechanical, electrical, or industrial engineering. Your technology skills could also help you qualify for entry-level roles in information technology, such as a computer user support specialist.
Depending on what you want to do, you may also find opportunities working for different levels of government. For example, those who have learned surveying skills may be good candidates to work for a municipal government as a surveying technician. Other positions may be available in drafting.
Common Online Associate Degree in Engineering Technology Specializations
Many technology engineering programs offer specializations to allow their students to focus on a specific aspect of engineering.
Some of the common specializations in engineering technology programs include:
- Biomedical Engineering. This specialization focuses on the function, repair, and maintenance of biomedical equipment and technology.
- Electrical Engineering. This specialization centers on the design and use of electrical systems and devices.
- Mechanical Engineering. This specialization looks at the development and use of machines and production processes.
- Surveying Engineering. This specialization teaches students about surveying engineering in relation to construction and other surveys.
- Renewable Energy Engineering. This specialization focuses on green energy sources and applications.
Different programs may offer different specializations depending on the strengths of their faculty or what they perceive serves students the best. In addition, just because two specializations from two different programs have similar names does not mean they will always cover the same materials. Colleges and universities set their own curriculum requirements for their students.
Engineering Technology Careers & Salaries
Earning an engineering technology associate’s degree can help qualify you for a number of entry-level positions working in the industry.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, here are the median wages of potential career paths related to engineering technology.
|Careers||Annual Median Salaries|
|Aerospace Engineering and Operations Technologists and Technicians||$73,580|
|Electrical and Electronic Engineering Technologists and Technicians||$63,640|
|Mechanical Engineering Technologists and Technicians||$60,460|
|Electro-Mechanical and Mechatronics Technologists and Technicians||$60,360|
|Industrial Engineering Technologists and Technicians||$60,220|
|Civil Engineering Technologists and Technicians||$58,320|
|Computer User Support Specialists||$49,770|
|Environmental Engineering Technologists and Technicians||$48,390|
|Quality Control Inspectors||$38,580|
Many graduates go on to work as engineering technicians or field service technicians in fields like mechanical, electrical, and industrial engineering.
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Others pursue careers related to computer science. For instance, some may become computer user support specialists.
Engineering Technology Associate’s Curriculum & Courses
Engineering technology associate’s programs set their own curriculum and requirements for students, but there is much overlap when it comes to the general classes students take.
As a student in an engineering technology program, you may take some of the following courses:
- Introduction to Engineering Technology: This class introduces you to the field of engineering technology.
- Calculus: This class teaches engineering technology students the required calculus used in the rest of their classes.
- Engineering Physics: This course looks at the necessary physics knowledge for engineering technology professionals.
- Technical Writing: This class teaches you the skills and fundamentals of technical writing.
- Circuit Analysis: This course looks at the details and importance of electronic circuits.
- Electronics: Building off of the study of circuit analysis, this class looks at how electronic devices work and how to use them.
- Mechanics: This class looks at the basics of mechanics, which is at the intersection of math and physics.
- Computer-Aided Design: This course teaches you how to use CAD software to solve engineering-related problems.
- Medical Imaging Technology: This class surveys the development and functions of medical imaging technology.
- Surveying: This class teaches you the basics of survey engineering.
An associate in engineering technology program will generally list its curriculum and offered specializations on the school’s website. This could allow you to discover which programs have course offerings that best align with your interests.
Each college and university will set its own admissions requirements for prospective students, but there are similar criteria between bachelor programs, such as:
- Online application
- Standardized test scores from the SAT or ACT (not required by all schools)
- High school transcripts or GED equivalent
- Admissions essay
Some schools also require an application fee. It’s beneficial to discover the specific admissions deadlines and requirements of your prospective schools.
A school can receive regional accreditation if a regional accrediting agency has verified that it meets high educational standards and practices.
The accreditation process is conducted by an independent agency that reviews a college’s procedures and the way it delivers education to students. Earning a degree from an accredited university can positively impact your chances of using your degree for future employment or as a qualification for further education.
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To check if the colleges and universities you are applying to are accredited by credible organizations, you can visit the US Department of Education’s website.
Financial Aid and Scholarships
There are many sources of financial aid that are available to college students who qualify. Federal aid is one of the most common forms of financial aid for students. It often comes in the form of grants, loans, and work-study programs. To apply for need-based government aid, you can visit the Federal Student Aid website.
States may have their own student aid programs and applications. You can also explore scholarship opportunities from your school and various types of organizations. Typically, you will apply to these opportunities yourself. If you are employed, then you can see if your employer offers programs or assistance to help you pay for college.
What Is an Engineering Technology Associate Degree?
An engineering technology associate degree is focused on the real-world application of technology skills and engineering knowledge in different settings. In this regard, engineering technology is a very hands-on field.
As a student in an engineering technology program, your classes will teach you how to use technology to solve pressing engineering issues. You can also choose a specialization that tailors your studies to a specific area of the field.
You may take some traditional engineering courses as well, like advanced physics and math. These foundational topics can help you learn the core concepts and fundamentals you will use in the rest of your coursework.
What Can You Do with an Engineering Technology Associate’s Degree?
An associate’s degree in engineering technology can help you develop versatile skill sets for a range of entry-level roles. Your chosen degree specialization could impact your job qualifications as well.
Many graduates work as engineering technicians. Those who work as mechanical engineering technicians may work for employers like product manufacturers, the government, utility corporations, and agribusiness. It’s also common for graduates to work as technicians in electrical and industrial engineering.
Plus, some associate degree program graduates decide to continue their educations in an on-campus or online bachelor’s in engineering degree program.
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Surveying and mapping technicians may be another potential career path. These types of jobs are found working for the government, real estate developers, and construction firms.
How Long Does It Take to Get an Associate Degree in Engineering Technology Online?
The amount of time it takes to earn an associate degree depends on many factors, including your enrollment status and your school’s academic calendar. If your school follows a traditional 16-week semester and you are enrolled full-time, then your associate’s degree will generally take 2 years to complete.
If your school follows an 8-week semester and you are allowed to stay enrolled year-round, then you may be able to complete your program in less time. Other variables, such as your work schedule, may lengthen the time needed to complete an associate’s degree.
What’s the Difference Between an Online Associates Degree in Engineering Technology vs. Engineering?
Though both fields cover similar concepts, there are important differences between engineering and engineering technology.
|Associates in Engineering Technology||Associates in Engineering|
These degrees may lead to similar career paths at the associate level, but an associate in engineering could help you prepare for further education in traditional engineering disciplines.
Is an Associate’s Degree in Engineering Technology Worth It?
Yes, an associate’s degree in engineering technology is worth it for many students. This degree program could teach you how to work with your hands to solve pressing engineering issues using cutting-edge technology.
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After you graduate, there may be a variety of entry-level job opportunities available in a range of industries, including mechanical, electrical, and industrial engineering. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, architecture, and engineering occupations overall are expected to see 4% job growth over the next ten years, which is as fast as average.
Universities Offering Online Associates in Engineering Technology Degree Programs
Methodology: The following school list is in alphabetical order. To be included, a college or university must be regionally accredited and offer degree programs online or in a hybrid format.
Benjamin Franklin Cummings Institute of Technology offers an Associate of Science in Engineering Technology. The program emphasizes sustainability and collaboration with employer partners. The curriculum consists of 60 credit hours total. Available concentrations include Advanced Manufacturing and Automation, Building Automation Systems, Mechatronics Technology, and Renewable Energy Technology.
Benjamin Franklin Cummings Institute of Technology is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
Central Ohio Technical College offers an Associate of Applied Science in Engineering Technology. Courses cover topics like occupational safety, 3D modeling, industrial controls and automation, renewable energy, and fluid mechanics. Classes may be taken online or in person. The degree requirements can typically be completed in 2 years of full-time attendance.
Central Ohio Technical College is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Community College of Philadelphia offers an Associate of Applied Science in Applied Engineering Technology. Many graduates pursue careers in manufacturing, technical sales, marketing, or as engineering technicians. The program utilizes a blend of convenient online and traditional on-campus attendance options. It requires the completion of 60 credits to graduate.
Community College of Philadelphia is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
DeVry University offers an Associate of Science in Engineering Technology. Students can select a specialization in Machine Learning and Design Techniques, Medical Technology and Healthcare Systems, or Renewable Energy and Sustainable Power. The curriculum is housed 100% online. The program can typically be completed in 2 years of full-time attendance.
DeVry University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Eastern Iowa Community Colleges offers an Associate of Applied Science in Engineering Technology. This program may be an ideal fit for students pursuing roles in manufacturing and technology fields. The curriculum consists of 62 to 64 credits and uses a hybrid learning format. Automation, Electro and Mechanical, and Process Control specializations are offered.
Eastern Iowa Community Colleges is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University offers an online program for an Associate of Science in Engineering Fundamentals.
The curriculum is designed to help students develop a strong foundation in math, physics, and practical design. The program requires the completion of 63 credits to graduate. Potential classes include Graphic Communications, Differential Equations and Matrix Methods, Fluid Mechanics, and Physics Laboratory for Engineers.
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
New England Institute of Technology offers an Associate of Science in Engineering Technology. Potential careers include roles in electrical technology, renewable energy, robotics, and mechanical engineering technology. The program’s 60 required credit hours can typically be completed in 18 months of full-time attendance.
New England Institute of Technology is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.
Polk State College offers an Associate of Science in Engineering Technology. Classes cover topics like mechanical measurements, instrumental systems, industrial safety, machine processes, robotics, programmable logic controllers, and computer-aided drafting. The program boasts cutting-edge lab and classroom facilities. It requires the completion of 60 credit hours to graduate.
Polk State College is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Quinsigamond Community College offers an Associate of Science in Engineering Technology. The curriculum aims to help students develop foundational knowledge in the discipline and prepare for further studies in a bachelor’s degree program. The program utilizes a hybrid learning format, housing at least 50% of its courses online. It can typically be completed in 5 semesters of full-time study.
Quinsigamond Community College is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education, Inc.
Seminole State College of Florida offers an Associate of Science in Engineering Technology. Potential courses include Mechanical Measurement and Instrumentation, Fundamentals of AC and DC Electricity, and Safety for Engineering Technologists. The curriculum consists of 60 credits of courses. Classes may be attended conveniently online or traditionally on campus.
Seminole State College of Florida is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
The University of the Virgin Islands offers an Associate of Arts in Engineering Management Technology. Many graduates pursue further baccalaureate studies or careers in manufacturing facilities, healthcare organizations, government, or technology firms. The program is designed to be attended full-time over the course of 24 months. There are start dates offered every 8 weeks.
UVI is accredited by the Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.
Wisconsin Technical College Systems offers an Associate of Science in Applied Engineering Technology. Courses cover topics like manufacturing processes, project management, computer-aided design, process safety, and ergonomics. The program can typically be completed in 2 years of full-time attendance. All classes can be completed online.
Wisconsin Technical College System is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
Getting Your Associate Degree in Engineering Technology Online
An associates degree program in engineering technology can help prepare you for a range of entry-level roles in the field. Many graduates go on to work as engineering technicians in mechanical, electrical, and industrial engineering.
Engineering technology programs can offer different specializations, allowing you to focus on an area of the discipline that best aligns with your interests and preferred industry. Exploring various on-campus and online engineering technology degree programs from accredited schools can help you discover the different ways programs are organized. This can include the classes they offer, the faculty that teach the classes, and the outcomes they expect.
Why not start exploring accredited schools today?