Engineers solve problems by developing innovative solutions that help improve products, infrastructure, and technology.

Best Bachelors in Engineering 1

Working in many different fields, engineers apply the knowledge gained during a bachelor of science in engineering degree in the professional workforce. Mechanical engineers develop new materials and products, civil engineers design roads and bridges, and computer engineers design computer systems. Graduates work in manufacturing and technology, in medical research labs, and for government agencies. With a wealth of career paths after graduation, earning an engineering degree prepares graduates for lucrative, in-demand careers.

The best engineering degrees incorporate hands on, experiential learning at the undergraduate level. Engineering majors at the top programs participate in research projects, gain work experience through co-ops and internships, and build global competencies through study abroad experiences. The following list of the best engineering programs includes all types of engineering degrees, from biomedical engineering to environmental engineering, which offer the best undergraduate education in engineering.

What can you do with an Engineering degree?

Engineers create the newest products, services, and ideas to improve human health, safety, and happiness. Engineers provide solutions to opportunities and challenges that affect everyone.

From the environment, energy, new product design, to national security, engineers have an active role in virtually every area of human life.

Here are some of the most popular areas of study within engineering:

  • Aerospace
  • Biomedical
  • Chemical
  • Computer
  • Electrical
  • Environmental
  • Industrial

What kind of Engineering degree should you get?

All of the colleges on this list are fully accredited. That means that a higher education board approved the curriculum after getting input from US engineering communities.

There are several disciplines within engineering – different starting points for solving engineering problems. More than twenty-five major specialties are recognized in the fields of engineering and engineering technology.

Because research is such an integral part of engineering, and because schools with graduate programs tend to have more research centers, labs, and institutes, we’ve limited our top 50 list to those schools that also have graduate programs.

However, if you are looking for a list of undergraduate programs that offer the flexibility of an online curriculum, be sure to check out our ranking of the Best Online Engineering Degree Programs.

How much money do people make with an Engineering degree?

Year after year, engineering majors get the highest paying jobs.

Of course, individual engineering salaries vary depending on the level of education, focus of career, and the region of the world, but the average salaries top the charts.

It is well worth the time and effort to become an engineer. The most current numbers on starting median salaries for engineers is $55,000 to $70,000, with the potential to earn two to three times these amounts with experience, success, and further education.

What are the requirements for an Engineering Degree?

Prospective engineers need a solid high school education:

  • 4 years of English
  • Geometry, Trigonometry, beginning Calculus
  • Biology, Chemistry, Physics
  • 2 years of social science
  • SAT score around 630
  • ACT score around 29
  • 3.0 GPA

Engineers use mathematics, the physical, chemical, and biological sciences, as well as business and communications skills to solve important, real-world problems in society.

Engineers and scientists must be critical thinkers, entrepreneurs, and innovators who understand the social and business implications of their work.

They need to be able to communicate their ideas coherently, and work effectively in teams. Above all, they must be willing and able to provide leadership in solving society’s big problems.

What Are the Best Engineering Degree Programs?

Our scores are based on five factors: Quality, Reputation, Affordability, Value, and Satisfaction. We get these numbers by combining data points from U.S. News and World Report, Payscale.org, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, student reviews, and the school’s websites.

To help prospective engineering student explore programs and schools, we have compiled the following list of the top 50 undergraduate engineering programs.

They need to be able to communicate their ideas coherently, and work effectively in teams. Above all, they must be willing and able to provide leadership in solving society’s big problems.

Our world is powered by engineers.

Engineers create the newest products, services, and ideas to improve human health, safety, and happiness. Engineers provide solutions to opportunities and challenges that affect everyone.

From the environment, energy, new product design, to national security, engineers have an active role in virtually every area of human life.

Engineering salaries vary depending on the level of education, focus of career, and the region of the world, but year after year, engineering tops the list of majors with the highest average starting salary.

It is well worth the time and effort to become an engineer. The most current numbers on starting median salaries for engineers is $55,000 to $70,000, with the potential to earn two to three times these amounts with experience, success, and further education.

Engineering involves the creative application of tools from math and science to solve problems that confront humanity today.

While these problems present technological challenges, each exists within a cultural, economic, historical, and ethical context, and thus an undergraduate education in engineering must provide students with a broad academic foundation.

Twenty-first-century engineering is at the epicenter of an explosion in new knowledge. Revolutionary discoveries in science, engineering, medicine, mathematics, and the social sciences have not only changed the way we interact with the world around us, but have also blurred the boundaries between academic disciplines.

Engineering is the catalyst for bringing disciplines together and pushing forward the amazing advances made possible by those collaborations. The breadth of an engineer’s education as well as the interdisciplinary nature of engineering disciplines has led some to call an engineering education the new liberal arts.

The Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET) accredits college engineering programs nationwide using criteria and standards developed and accepted by U.S. engineering communities.

There are several disciplines within engineering—different starting points for solving engineering problems. More than twenty-five major specialties are recognized in the fields of engineering and engineering technology.

Some of the more popular areas of study include Aerospace, Biomedical, Chemical, Civil, Computer, Electrical, Environmental, Industrial, Mechanical, and Systems.

Whether you’re an undergraduate who likes the idea of research or who is thinking about graduate school, collaborating on projects will prepare you for a productive future in research, your workplace, and your community.

The experience will position you to meet the needs of society and provide technical leadership, no matter where your path leads.

Because research is such an integral part of engineering, and because schools with graduate programs tend to have more research center, labs, and institutes, we’ve limited our top fifty list to those schools with graduate programs. However, if you are looking for a list of undergraduate programs that offer the flexibility of an online curriculum, be sure to check out our ranking of the Best Online Engineering Degree Programs.

What Are the Best Engineering Degree Programs?

To help prospective engineering student explore programs and schools, we have compiled the following list of the top fifty undergraduate engineering programs. Because we know that a degree is an investment of sorts, we have factored into our rankings the cost of getting an engineering degree and the salary prospects for graduates of the various schools.

By combining data points from U.S. News and World Report, Payscale.org, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and information provided by schools, we’ve created a list of fifty schools that will get an aspiring engineering off to a successful start.

Best Bachelors in Engineering Programs

1

University of Illinois—Urbana-Champaign

College Choice Score: 100.00

Annual Tuition: $31,320

Program Website

The University of Illinois College of Engineering offers 15 types of engineering degrees, with options in bioengineering, computer engineering, engineering physics, and nuclear, plasma, and radiological engineering. First-year students can enroll in a program for undeclared engineering majors to learn about different types of engineering before declaring a major. Participants complete a customized project-based course, building experiential learning skills. Certain majors also participate in senior design projects, where they partner with a company on a specific project to gain hands on experience. Illinois also offers study abroad programs designed for engineering students in more than 50 countries.

2

Purdue University—West Lafayette

College Choice Score: 98.87

Annual Tuition: $28,804

Program Website

Perdue ranks among the best engineering degrees for its variety of specialized majors and its options to earn a joint bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in engineering in five years. Perdue’s first year engineering program provides hands on experience through the learning laboratory, helping incoming engineering students identify their area of interest, including agricultural and biological engineering, industrial engineering, biomedical engineering, and mechanical engineering. At the end of the first year program, students are admitted into one of Perdue’s professional schools of engineering. Some majors, like construction engineering and management, also incorporate paid internships into the degree.

3

Georgia Institute of Technology

College Choice Score: 98.46

Annual Tuition: $32,404

Program Website

The College of Engineering at Georgia Tech offers more than 50 degree tracks at the bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral levels, with 11 undergraduate majors including aerospace engineering, civil and environmental engineering, materials science and engineering, and mechanical engineering. The college also offers five year BS/MS programs for engineering students who want to earn a master’s degree. Georgia Tech also offers a co-op program, where undergraduate engineering students gain paid work experience for three semesters without paying tuition. Within degrees, engineering students can also choose a concentration such as construction engineering or structural systems to customize their degree.

4

University of Minnesota—Twin Cities

College Choice Score: 96.84

Annual Tuition: $22,210

Program Website

The University of Minnesota offers the best engineering degrees for undergraduates seeking multiple options for their engineering major. Minnesota’s College of Science and Engineering provides 18 options for engineering majors, including geo-engineering, industrial and systems engineering, and computer engineering. With the option to earn a science major or minor within the same college, Minnesota appeals to engineering students with an interest in chemistry, physics, or mathematics. Minnesota also offers a mentor program for majors to network with industry professionals, undergraduate research opportunities, and volunteer opportunities through the college’s K-12 outreach program to recruit future engineers.

5

Texas A&M University—College Station

College Choice Score: 95.59

Annual Tuition: $28,768

Program Website

Texas A&M offers engineering degrees from its state of the art, technology-integrated Zachry Engineering Education Complex. One of the largest colleges of engineering in the country, Texas A&M enrolls over 16,000 engineering students in its 14 departments. With bachelor’s programs in ocean engineering, petroleum engineering, and biomedical engineering, Texas A&M prepares graduates for careers in high-demand fields. First year engineering students explore the program’s 19 majors by completing a common curriculum and applying to their chosen major at the end of the year. Texas A&M also offers multiple opportunities to participate in undergraduate research projects.

6

University of California—Berkeley

College Choice Score: 95.14

Annual Tuition: $40,191

Program Website

Berkeley offers one of the best engineering degrees in electrical engineering and computer science. With its close relationship to Silicon Valley, Berkeley integrates tech into all aspects of its program, and 2016 engineering undergraduates reported a starting salary of over $90,000. Students in the combined electrical engineering and computer science program study artificial intelligence, robotics, and nanoelectromechanical systems, preparing for in-demand careers after graduation. Berkeley engineering majors also benefit from the Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation, which provides hands on experience in design and prototyping, and the Sutardja Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology, which trains students to launch new companies and ventures.

7

University of Texas—Austin

College Choice Score: 93.00

Annual Tuition: $34,676

Program Website

The Cockrell School of Engineering at UT Austin offers 11 undergraduate engineering majors, including architectural engineering, computational engineering, environmental engineering, and petroleum engineering. First year students choose from these types of engineering degrees after participating in first year interest groups, which build a cohort of students with similar interests. UT Austin’s Cooperative Engineering Education Program lets undergraduate students join an experiential learning program to complete two or more semesters of full-time work while enrolled in their degree. Engineering majors also participate in short-term international immersion programs or semester long study abroad experiences around the world.

8

Virginia Tech

College Choice Score: 92.88

Annual Tuition: $29,371

Program Website

Virginia Tech offers 14 engineering degrees at the undergraduate level, including chemical engineering, mining engineering, computer engineering, and construction engineering and management. First-year engineering students explore the College of Engineering’s degree options, participate in hands on projects at Frith Lab, and join a major in their sophomore year. Engineering majors also use Ware Lab to design projects, create their own parts, and explore engineering materials. Students in the College of Engineering also benefit from numerous undergraduate scholarship opportunities. Virginia Tech graduates more than half of the engineers in Virginia’s workforce, making it one of the most important educational institutions in the state.

9

University of Wisconsin—Madison

College Choice Score: 91.18

Annual Tuition: $32,738

Program Website

Engineering students at UW-Madison benefit from one of the best engineering degrees for students to gain work experience while earning a degree. At UW-Madison, 85% of engineering majors complete a paid internship or co-op experience during their undergraduate program, earning an average of over $3,000 a month while in school. UW-Madison also offers study abroad opportunities, field research, laboratory experience, and entrepreneurial opportunities for engineering majors. Undergraduates in the College of Engineering choose from 12 majors, including biological systems engineering, chemical engineering, electrical engineering, and engineering mechanics. UW-Madison also offers nine engineering certificates for undergraduates to expand their skill set and increase their competitiveness on the job market.

10

Pennsylvania State University—University Park

College Choice Score: 88.61

Annual Tuition: $32,382

Program Website

The College of Engineering at Penn State offers a wide choice of types of engineering degrees, including engineering science, mechanical engineering, architectural engineering, and computer engineering. The broad range of engineering majors lets incoming students find the best path for their interests and career goals. Penn State also offers study abroad opportunities for engineering majors on six continents, both as semester-long programs or shorter immersive experiences integrated into classes. Engineering majors benefit from the college’s Engineering Career Resources and Employer Relations department, which connects undergraduate students with research opportunities in Penn State’s Applied Research Lab, with industry partners, or in national laboratories.

11

University of Washington

College Choice Score: 88.20

Annual Tuition: $34,791

Program Website

With connections to Seattle’s growing tech industry, the UW offers engineering degrees in ten departments, including the Boeing Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science and Engineering. First-year engineering students complete foundational courses and explore College of Engineering majors, such as environmental engineering, computer engineering, and human centered design and engineering. The College of Engineering produces more than half of the startups at the UW, and the Career Center @ Engineering connects undergraduates with internship opportunities and offer career coaching, job assistance, and networking opportunities.

12

Iowa State University

College Choice Score: 87.83

Annual Tuition: $21,483

Program Website

The College of Engineering at Iowa State University offers 12 types of engineering degrees for undergraduates, including agricultural engineering, civil and environmental engineering, and software engineering. The college plans to introduce a new major in cyber security engineering in 2019, bolstering the computer engineering curriculum with cyber security courses. Iowa State prioritizes work experience, with over 70% of engineering majors graduating with work experience in their field. The college supports students through co-ops and internships, working with industry and government organizations to provide experiential work opportunities. Engineering Career Services also hosts a career fair where over 600 employers recruit Iowa State engineering students.

13

California Institute of Technology

College Choice Score: 86.57

Annual Tuition: $47,577

Program Website

Caltech’s Division of Engineering and Applied Science offers undergraduate engineering degrees in electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, and engineering and applied science. The programs emphasize laboratory and design experience, problem formation and solving skills, and self-reliance for engineering majors. Caltech’s strong research focus includes the Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship, where majors conduct research under experienced mentors. The ABET-accredited BS in mechanical engineering ranks as one of the most popular majors at Caltech, offering opportunities to conduct research at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, industry laboratory, or participate in the Design Competition or Solar Decathlon.

14

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

College Choice Score: 86.44

Annual Tuition: $48,452

Program Website

MIT’s School of Engineering offers one of the best engineering degrees for students who want undergraduate research experience. Sophomores at MIT choose any major at the institute, and roughly 70% of undergraduates choose an engineering major, with options in materials science and engineering, electrical engineering and computer science, and mechanical engineering. Engineering majors benefit from undergraduate research opportunities, with 90% participating in a research program. The diverse projects include tissue engineering, robotics, solar cells, and internet modeling, with the opportunity to participate in publication-worthy research. Engineering students also use the MIT Lincoln Laboratory Beaver Works to apply their technical skills in a student workspace.

15

Ohio State University—Columbus

College Choice Score: 85.94

Annual Tuition: $28,229

Program Website

The College of Engineering at Ohio State prioritizes experiential learning, team building, and technological abilities. OSU offers 14 engineering degrees, including engineering physics, food, agriculture, and biological engineering, mechanical engineering, and welding engineering. Engineering students participate in undergraduate research projects with faculty members, and can earn the designation of “with research distinction” on their diploma by completing an undergraduate research thesis. OSU also offers undergraduate research scholarships to support engineering research. Engineering majors who participate in the Global Option in Engineering gain international experience through co-op or internship opportunities outside the U.S., preparing graduates to work as engineers in a global environment.

16

University of Michigan—Ann Arbor

College Choice Score: 85.73

Annual Tuition: $43,476

Program Website

Michigan Engineering offers 17 types of engineering degrees for undergraduates, including ABET-accredited majors in mechanical engineering, civil and environmental engineering, electrical engineering and computer science, and chemical engineering. Incoming engineering students work on design projects to build their professional skills. Majors participate in the co-op education program to gain work experience and gain global experience through the International Programs in Engineering. Undergraduates gain research experience through the Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program, which lists over 700 possible research projects. Michigan also offers a Sequential Undergraduate/Graduate Study Program where engineering students earn a bachelor’s and master’s degree in five years.

17

North Carolina State University—Raleigh

College Choice Score: 85.01

Annual Tuition: $26,399

Program Website

North Carolina State University welcomes new engineering students with the Engineering First Year Program, where they learn about the engineering profession and their academic options. NC State offers majors in mechanical engineering, civil engineering, computer engineering, and less common options like textile engineering and paper science and engineering. One of the best engineering degrees for entrepreneurial students, NC State offers the Engineering Entrepreneurs Program where students form a new venture, invent a product, and bring their creation to market. Incoming students also benefit from NC State’s living and learning villages, where students with shared interests live together, with options like the engineering village or the women in science and engineering village, creating a strong community within the school.

18

Stanford University

College Choice Score: 84.84

Annual Tuition: $47,940

Program Website

Stanford’s School of Engineering offers over a dozen different types of engineering degrees, including mechanical engineering, civil engineering, and computer sciences, with additional interdisciplinary programs in biomechanical engineering, architectural design, and product design. Engineering students with unique educational goals that do not fit into a single major can design their own degree through Stanford’s Individually Designed Major in Engineering option. Stanford prioritizes hands on learning in different environment, with an engineering curriculum that emphasizes fundamental knowledge and interactive learning. Stanford also offers global engineering programs, including international internships, faculty-led global research projects, and service learning opportunities overseas.

19

University of Maryland—College Park

College Choice Score: 84.49

Annual Tuition: $32,045

Program Website

The A. James Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland offers nine undergraduate engineering degrees, with options in bioengineering, biomolecular engineering, computer engineering, fire protection engineering, and mechanical engineering. First year students can directly enter their chosen major or explore their options while completing core classes. Maryland emphasizes hands on education and early experiential learning opportunities for engineering students, who participate in a project-based engineering design project in their first year. Engineering students also participate in competitions, which builds a climate of innovation and entrepreneurship among students, and the school won first place in the highly competitive international Solar Decathlon competition in 2011.

20

University of California—Los Angeles

College Choice Score: 83.34

Annual Tuition: $39,518

Program Website

The Samueli School of Engineering at UCLA offers undergraduate engineering degrees in seven departments, including bioengineering, electrical and computer engineering, and mechanical and aerospace engineering. UCLA Samueli also hosts the university’s computer science department. Engineering majors benefit from a student research program designed for incoming engineering students to gain research skills, and summer research programs, including the Nanosystems Chemistry and Engineering Research program, sponsored by the National Science Foundation. Consistently ranked in the top 10 of public engineering schools by U.S. News & World Report, and with over 26,000 applicants for 775 spots, UCLA remains one of the most competitive engineering schools.

21

Rice University

College Choice Score: 83.17

Annual Tuition: $43,918

Program Website

Graduates from Rice’s School of Engineering found companies, become leaders in industry, and work in labs around the world. Rice offers ABET-accredited bachelor’s programs in bioengineering, chemical engineering, civil engineering, electrical engineering, and mechanical engineering. Students earning engineering degrees benefit from the Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen, where they design projects and enter competitions. Rice also offers an engineering design minor for undergraduates interested in design. More than two thirds of Rice engineering majors undertake research projects with faculty and industry, including paid opportunities. Engineering makes up a major part of Rice’s undergraduate education, with 37% of all undergraduates earning an engineering degree.

22

Arizona State University—Tempe

College Choice Score: 82.95

Annual Tuition: $25,458

Program Website

ASU’s Schools of Engineering offer multiple types of engineering degrees, including industrial engineering, software engineering, chemical engineering, and electrical engineering. Some programs, like the mechanical engineering bachelor’s degree, offer optional concentrations such as computational mechanics or energy and environment. ASU also offers accelerated programs where students complete a bachelor’s plus a master’s degree in engineering in as little as four years. The Fulton Undergraduate Research Initiative lets engineering majors build a mentoring relationship with a faculty member while gaining hands on research experience through a paid research opportunity. ASU welcomes incoming students with the E2 program, a multi-day opportunity to build teamwork and leadership skills while meeting upperclassmen and faculty members.

23

Princeton University

College Choice Score: 81.30

Annual Tuition: $45,320

Program Website

Engineering majors at Princeton join one of the university’s six engineering departments and complete interdepartmental certificates to broaden their skills and increase their competitiveness on the job market. Princeton students earn engineering degrees in civil and environmental engineering, electrical engineering, and mechanical engineering, with interdisciplinary certificates in applications of computing, engineering and management systems, robotics and intelligent systems, and sustainable energy. The Keller Center for Innovation in Engineering Education offers opportunities to design and make projects, learn from entrepreneurs and innovators, and find internships around the globe. Graduates from Princeton’s engineering school go on to work for Microsoft, Google, Tesla, Boeing, and other major corporations.

24

University of Florida

College Choice Score: 79.14

Annual Tuition: $28,666

Program Website

The College of Engineering at UF offers 15 degree options in nine departments, with over 20 centers and institutes to support engineering students. The college emphasizes multidisciplinary approaches, innovation, and human-centered solutions. Undergraduates pursue engineering degrees in biomedical engineering, computer engineering, mechanical engineering, and nuclear engineering. Incoming students explore the various engineering majors, conducting hands on experiences to learn about each option. UF offers professional development workshops to support engineering students, with topics around choosing a major, study skills, and career planning. Engineering students can also participate in UF’s International Engineering Programs, which offer immersion experiences in foreign countries.

25

Cornell University

College Choice Score: 75.81

Annual Tuition: $50,953

Program Website

Cornell University offers the largest engineering program in the Ivy League, with 14 majors and 20 minors for engineering students, including civil engineering, computer engineering, and mechanical engineering. Undergraduates join Cornell Engineering Project Teams with faculty members to solve complex problems using innovative solutions. The college’s 29 teams boasted a combined budget of over a million dollars, providing valuable research experience to the program’s undergraduates. Each year, half of undergraduate engineering majors participate in a research project, and Cornell’s College of Engineering has one of the highest percentage of women engineers, at 50% of students.

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