What is Engineering Technology?
The United States Department of Education recognizes Engineering Technology as a field that is primarily focused on engineering values and ideas, along with the technical skills necessary for typical engineering development projects. Engineering Technology involves functions for research, production, operations, and programs that are designed for specific engineering fields.
How is engineering technology different from engineering?
Many graduates from the engineering technology disciplines are employed as some sort of engineer. In fact, technology and engineering are interrelated fields, but there are some differences:
- Technology students complete more laboratory (applied) courses than engineering students, who take different math and science (theory-based) courses.
- Technology research focuses on new applications of current technologies and processes, while engineering research revolves around new engineering theories and principles.
- Graduates in both disciplines generally find jobs with similar titles, and they work alongside each other in engineering teams. In these teams, technology graduates spend more time making the plans work while engineering graduates will spend more time in planning.
What will I learn?
Engineering Technology programs typically include classroom and laboratory instruction in various engineering support functions from research, systems, production, operations, and applications, to specific engineering specialties. Engineering Technology degree programs are oriented toward educating students to develop application abilities.
Where will l work?
Graduates work for companies across the technological, construction, distribution, healthcare, and engineering spectrum; but they are best suited to areas that deal with application, production, implementation, engineering operation, sales, and distribution, as opposed to the conceptual design and research functions performed by typical engineering graduates.
Entry-level positions in product design, testing, development, systems engineering, field engineering or production, technical operations, and quality control are all common positions for Engineering Technology graduates. Graduates are eligible to become registered professional engineers in most states, with wide variation in the qualification requirements.
What will I do?
Engineering technologists can use their education and application of STEM, for example, to help make and/or manage the production and related processes of roads/bridges, buildings, power distribution systems, racing teams, computers, software, electronic instruments, environment, and transportation systems that are used daily.
The Engineering Technology graduate is prepared to immediately begin technical assignments, since many technology programs stress current industrial practices and design procedures. The Engineering Technology graduate can apply established procedures which utilize current state-of-the-industry practice. The Engineering Technology graduate is more likely to get “hands-on” jobs in technical sales, as a team leader, working in a laboratory or field position.
Can I get an advanced degree?
With a bachelor's degree in engineering technology, you could have opportunities for graduate study in areas such as technology, computer science, engineering management, engineering, business, or technical management.