Mechanical Engineering Majors

Bachelor's degree programs in mechanical engineering teach students the skills needed to design, build and test mechanical devices and systems. Learn about the curriculum of a mechanical engineering program as well as the career options for graduates. Schools offering Engineering & Technology Management degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Can I Learn As a Mechanical Engineer Major?

The curricula of bachelor's degree programs in mechanical engineering focus on foundational mathematics and physical science courses. You'll complete engineering courses and general education requirements in humanities, the arts and social science. You'll also have to complete writing courses and take a writing proficiency test. Math courses in a mechanical engineering program cover geometry, calculus, linear algebra and differential equations. Mathematical studies will prepare you for courses that address magnetism, electricity, optics, chemistry, physics and mechanics.

Engineering courses will provide you with a general background in electrical, mechanical and civil engineering. Laboratory requirements will demonstrate how principles in all of these engineering disciplines can be applied to the same problem or within the same project. Some of these requirements may cover design whereas others may cover failure analysis. Labs will also provide you the opportunity to learn how to use mechanical engineering instrumentation and measuring equipment, such as digital recorders, thermocouples, milling machines and band saws.

Common Courses Physics, social science, mathematics, chemistry, optics
Average Salary (2014) $55,470 (for mechanical engineering technicians)
$87,140 (for mechanical engineers)
Technology Requirements A computer with Internet access that meets the hardware and software specifications set by the institution

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Can I Do with This Degree?

The purpose of enrolling in a program as a mechanical engineering major is to pursue a career developing mechanical, aerospace, power generation or manufacturing products. After earning your degree, you'll be able to develop or research the development of these products as an entry-level engineer. Depending upon the type of specialization you pursue as a mechanical engineering major, you can also find work in design, environmental, physics, materials science or environmental engineering.

A May 2014 report from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics states that mechanical engineering technicians earned a mean salary of $55,470 ( Higher annual wages were found in the fields of oil and gas.

How Do Online Programs Work?

As a mechanical engineering major, you can earn your degree through a traditional campus program or online. In a distance learning program you'll learn the same material as an on-site program, but you may need to complete labs in person. Some online programs allow you to complete your studies within six years. Recorded lectures are delivered in an online format.

To view and submit the course assignments, you will need a computer with a high-speed Internet connection. You will also need a current Windows or Macintosh operating system and Internet browser, along with an active e-mail account. Specific software like Microsoft Word, RealPlayer, Adobe Acrobat Reader and Adobe Flash Player may be required to access course files.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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