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Online Colleges for Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical engineering is one of the oldest disciplines within the engineering field. Many of the principles learned in a mechanical engineering program can be used within other related areas such as aeronautical engineering, environmental engineering and civil engineering. Mechanical engineers can find jobs in a number of sites that include laboratories, industrial plants and office buildings, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Others could work at production sites or travel abroad to oversee sites.

Most professionals engineers don't want to walk away from their jobs for a few years in order to attend college. In such a situation, an online mechanical engineering program can be the perfect answer. But with so many great options available, how can a working professional choose between them? That's where we come in.

We looked at the wide variety of online colleges for mechanical engineering and compared them on a variety of factors, including graduation and admissions rates. Our results — formulated using data from the National Center for Education Statistics' Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) and our own unique methodology (located at the bottom of this page) — can help prospective students narrow down their options to the best possible programs available to them. So, without further ado, here is a list of ten featured online colleges for medical engineering.

1

The University of Texas at Tyler

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$7,312
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
18
Accredited
School Type
4-year

The Master's of Science in Mechanical Engineering program offered online at UT Tyler can be completed online within four years. Students can choose from the master's thesis option, the advanced engineering design project (for the experienced engineer) or six additional graduate credit hours for the professional development option. All courses are taught by respected, seasoned engineers who have done extensive work in the field and hold the professional credentials to prove it. With a solid admissions rate -- the sixth-highest of the schools featured on this list -- this online mechanical engineering program is best for those who are serious about expanding their career horizons.

Accreditation:

  • Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (COCSACS)

Location:

3900 University Blvd
Tyler, TX 75799-6699
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2

Texas A&M University - College Station

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$9,837
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
38
Accredited
School Type
4-year

Students ready to take their engineering career to the next level can get a boost from the Master of Engineering in mechanical engineering program offered through Texas A&M. The program requires 30 credit hours to complete, as well as a completed portfolio for assessment. Core courses include advanced product design, continuum mechanics, engineering dynamics, mechanical vibrations, control system design and the like. With the No.4 admissions rate and the top graduation rate of the ten schools featured on our list, Texas A&M is a school for students willing to work hard to reach the next level.

Accreditation:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
  • Engineering Accreditation Commission of ABET

Location:

JKW Administration Building, Suite 100
College Station, TX 77843-1248
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3

New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$6,613
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
3
Accredited
School Type
4-year

Those seeking a strong engineering department can find it at New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, where a whopping 20 percent of all degrees awarded — the highest percentage of any school featured in this list — are in mechanical engineering. The NMT graduate degree in mechanical engineering allows students to specialize in one of four areas: explosive engineering; mechantronics systems engineering; solid mechanics; or fluid and thermal sciences. Participating students are expected to complete 30 credit hours, including 12 in core courses, six in engineering electives, six for thesis study, and another six from other departments in the school — a recipe for a well-rounded education.

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission (HLC)

Location:

801 Leroy Place
Socorro, NM 87801
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4

University of Idaho

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$7,020
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
24
Accredited
School Type
4-year

The Master's of Engineering in mechanical engineering degree program from the University of Idaho is a non-thesis program that requires 30 credits for graduation. Designed for engineers with industrial experience, the program builds on the knowledge and skills graduates have already gained to help them move into project engineering or project management. Programs begin every spring and fall; however, those who miss those deadlines have the option of taking non-degree courses until the application is approved, them applying those credits to their degree pursuit. With an impressive admissions rate that comes in as the third highest on this list, the university's doors are open for those who want to test their engineering mettle.

Accreditation:

  • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCC)

Location:

875 Perimeter Drive
Moscow, ID 83844-2282
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5

University of Central Florida

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$6,368
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
38
Accredited
School Type
4-year

With the fifth highest graduation rate of the schools chosen to feature on this list, students who attend the University of Central Florida can feel confident that they will be in a class with other hardworking individuals who take their online mechanical engineering program quite seriously. The Master's of Science in mechanical engineering (M.S.M.E.) program at University of South Florida allows students to choose one of three different tracks to suit their educational and career goals: the accelerated B.S. to M.S.M.E.; mechanical systems; or thermofluids. Students can also opt for the thesis or non-thesis options. Be aware that students whose bachelor's degree is in a field other than engineering will have to meet requirements of the articulation program.

Accreditation:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

Location:

4000 Central Florida Blvd
Orlando, FL 32816
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6

Mississippi State University

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$7,502
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
12
Accredited
School Type
4-year

Students interested in the Master's in mechanical engineering program at Mississippi State University can look forward to working with in-depth research projects, a requirement for every student in the graduate program at the institution. Students can choose from the thesis or non-thesis option; however, students should keep in mind that while the thesis options requires 30 credits, the non-thesis option might take a bit longer, with 33 credits required. The admissions rate for this school is the fifth highest on this list, giving hopeful applicants a good chance of being accepted into this long-time, well-established institution.

Accreditation:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

Location:

550 E. Washington St.
Indianapolis Ind. 46204-2611
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7

North Carolina State University at Raleigh

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$8,581
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
36
Accredited
School Type
4-year

Seeing as this school boasts the second-highest graduation rate featured on this list, it seems clear that North Carolina State offers significant opportunity for its students. The university's Master of Science in mechanical engineering provides identical courses for on-campus and online students, and there is no thesis or final exam requirement. The program is designed for those who are working professionals in the field; in addition, it is available only to those who work or live in the United States. Only two courses per semester are allowed for students who are working full-time, and all degree requirements must be completed within six years.

Accreditation:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

Location:

2101 Hillsborough Street
Raleigh, NC 27695-7001
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8

Auburn University

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$10,424
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
26
Accredited
School Type
4-year

In addition to the Bachelor's of Engineering offered at at Auburn University, students can choose between the Master's of Science in mechanical engineering (thesis track) or the Master's of mechanical engineering (non-thesis degree). Within those programs, students can choose from four specialties: mechanics; dynamics and systems; design and manufacturing; or thermal science. With over 30 full-time faculty members for the school's mechanical engineering department, students can expect ample opportunity to connect with their educators as desired. And with admissions and graduation rates that both rank in the top half of our list, it's safe to say Auburn offers the boost experienced professionals are looking for to take their career to the next level.

Accreditation:

  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC)

Location:

Auburn, AL 36849
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9

Kansas State University

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$9,350
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
43
Accredited
School Type
4-year

Working professionals who have already obtained their bachelor's degree and are now seeking to enhance their prospects in the employment world may want to consider pursuing the Master's of Science in mechanical engineering at Kansas State University. Students can take all courses for the program entirely online, but they will have to show up on campus once, for the oral examination required at the end of the program. Students can expect to complete 30 hours of coursework in areas such as finite element applications, fluid mechanics, intermediate dynamics, fracture mechanics and indoor environmental engineering. With the runaway first place for admissions rank on our list, students can turn to Kansas State University to challenge themselves in the mechanical engineering field.

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCACS)

Location:

Anderson Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506
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10

Purdue University - Main Campus

Tuition & Fees/Year Tuition and fees per year refers to the average in-state tuition and required fees for full-time undergraduates and, if applicable, graduate students as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
$10,002
Number of Programs Offered Number of programs offered refers to the count of degrees and certificates offered via distance education at any level as of 2016, according to the National Center for Education Statistics
17
Accredited
School Type
4-year

Rounding out our list of featured online colleges for mechanical engineering is Purdue University, which offers a Master's of mechanical engineering program for working professionals. Students in the 30-hour curriculum can choose from the Master's of Science in mechanical engineering or the interdisciplinary Master of Science in engineering with an emphasis on mechanical engineering. The school offers courses in biomechanics; acoustics and noise control; heat transfer; automotive systems; design and computer-aided design; manufacturing and materials processing; and more. With the third-highest graduation rank on our list, complemented by the second-highest percentage of mechanical engineering degrees awarded in 2015, it seems clear that, with hard work, students who attend Purdue University have a valuable opportunity to advance their education.

Accreditation:

  • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCACS)

Location:

Hovde Hall of Administration
West Lafayette, IN 47907-2040
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Mechanical Engineering Career Outlook

A competitive but prestigious field with ample rewards in both salary and tangible creative results, mechanical engineering is the ambition of many new and returning college students alike. Here are a few ways you might be able to put a degree in mechanical engineering to use after graduation.

Architectural and Engineering Managers
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$143,870
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
59,500
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
2
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Bachelor's degree

Managers by trade and designers at heart, architectural and engineering managers are the lodestars for production and/or maintenance of the plethora of creative projects undertaken at architectural or engineering firms. These professionals can work in a variety of environments, including manufacturing companies, architectural firms, government agencies, industrial production plants and research laboratories. In order to land a job in the field, expect to need at least a bachelor's degree, as well as years of work experience as an architect or engineer.

Those who pursue architectural and engineering manager careers are responsible for analyzing staffing needs and hiring and training new employees; planning new products and designs; and creating budgets for programs and projects. In order to be successful, these workers need monitoring, instructing, critical thinking, listening and speaking skills.

Mechanical Engineers
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$89,800
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
102,500
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
5.3
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Bachelor's degree

It's not the easiest job to earn, but if digging your hands deep into the workings and development of brand-new mechanical innovations is your passion, a career as a mechanical engineer is worth the trouble. The day-to-day duties of these professionals include determining how mechanical and thermal devices can solve a problem, creating device designs and testing the finished products, and overseeing the process of manufacturing a product design.

Students who are interested in entering mechanical engineer careers should complete a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering technology or mechanical engineering. In most cases, they will need to obtain a license in order to move up the ladder in the field and land higher-level positions. Licensing requirements include passing the Fundamentals of Engineering (FE) and Professional Engineering (PE) examinations and obtaining at least four years of work experience.

Aerospace Engineers
Average Salary Average salary refers to the 2016 mean salary for all U.S. workers in this job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
$112,010
Projected Job Openings Projected job openings refers to the estimated number of job openings from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics
20,700
Projected Job Growth Projected job growth refers to the estimated rate of increase in the number of jobs in this profession from 2014-2024, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
-2.3
Entry-level Education This refers to the typical entry-level education needed to obtain a position in a particular job, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2016
Bachelor's degree

People who enter aerospace engineer careers need to undergo rigorous training that teaches them principles such as aerodynamics, propulsion, and stability and control, and with good reason: these are the people who design aircraft, spacecraft, satellites and missiles… and then test their inventions' prototypes.

In order to prepare for this career, students should complete a bachelor's degree with a curriculum that includes classroom instruction, field experience and laboratory time. After earning such a degree, students are eligible for entry-level positions at government agencies, manufacturing companies, research facilities and engineering firms, where they may find themselves responsible for creating product designs; testing products; making decisions about proposals and budgets; and/or evaluating the quality of manufactured products. This is a demanding career that requires strong technical, math, analytical, writing and business skills in order to be successful… but at the same time, it's also a career that may result in shooting a personally-designed rocket launcher.

Sources and Methodologies

Sources:

  1. https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/architectural-and-engineering-managers.htm
  2. https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/11-9041.00
  3. https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/17-2141.00
  4. https://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/mechanical-engineers.htm
  5. https://www.onetonline.org/link/summary/17-2011.00
  6. https://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/aerospace-engineers.htm
  7. Master of Engineering in Mechanical Engineering, Texas A&M - College Station, http://engineering.tamu.edu/mechanical/academics/degrees/graduate/meng
  8. Master of Mechanical Engineering, Purdue University, https://engineering.purdue.edu/ProEd/programs/masters-degrees/mechanical-engineering
  9. Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering, Kansas State University, http://global.k-state.edu/engineering/mechanical/
  10. Masters of Science Mechanical Engineering, NC State, https://online-distance.ncsu.edu/program/master-of-science-in-mechanical-engineering/#tabsPnl1-tab-0
  11. Mechanical Engineering, Auburn University, http://eng.auburn.edu/files/acad_depts/mech/mech-factsheet.pdf
  12. Mechanical Engineering, University of Idaho, https://eo.uidaho.edu/me-degree
  13. Mechanical Engineering Master's Program, Mississippi State University, http://www.bcoeonline.msstate.edu/academic-programs/mechanical-engineering/
  14. Mechanical Engineering M.S.M.E., University of Central Florida, https://www.ucf.edu/online/degree/mechanical-engineering-m-s-m-e/
  15. Mechanical Engineering MS Degree - Online Option, The University of Texas at Tyler, http://www.uttyler.edu/academics/graduate/mechanical-engineering-degree.php
  16. NMT Graduate Degree in Mechanical Engineering, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology, https://act.nmt.edu/distance/mechanical-engineering/
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Sources and Methodologies