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What Are the Courses in a General Engineering Certificate Program?

Most engineering certificate programs are highly specialized, meaning that general certificates are extremely rare. There are, however, multiple options at the degree level. Read about the courses that make up these programs below.

Overview of Courses in General Engineering Degree Programs

Degree programs in general engineering provide offers students an interdisciplinary examination of the engineering field. These programs are an excellent option for students who wish to study engineering and technology but do not intend to become professional engineers. Often, graduates will seek employment in areas related to engineering, such as architecture or business law. In some cases, students will enter a general engineering program in order to complete several core courses and then declare a specialization in a field such as electrical or chemical engineering.

Important Facts About General Engineering Degrees

Required Education High school diploma or equivalent
Online Availability Fully online
Degree Levels Associate's; Bachelor's; Master's
Possible Careers Application engineer, product planner, entrepreneur
Median Salary (2018)$93,080 (All engineers)*
Job Outlook (2016-2026)8% (All engineers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

Course Topics

Although the curriculum will be different from program to program, most engineering programs cover similar subjects. The list below contains a few examples of common course topics in a general engineering degree program.

Science Courses

Physics is usually a core course in an engineering degree program. These courses often feature a lab component that gives students hands-on experience with experiments. Chemistry is also a common required course for engineering students.

Math Courses

Engineering is a field that involves plenty of math, and as such calculus and algebra are almost always among the core courses. Algebra may be required for preparation for calculus. If the program's purpose is career preparation, a technical math course may be included. These courses focus on algorithms and mathematical processes that directly apply to solving engineering problems.

Humanities Courses

In addition to honing technical skills, engineering students also need to focus on more theoretical and artistic talents. Degree programs often have a humanities requirement, wherein students take courses in topics such as human behavior, expository writing, quantitative reasoning, and technical communication. While these subjects may seem unrelated to engineering, they provide a comprehensive foundation of knowledge and skills that students will need in the workplace.