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Online Engineering Ph.D. Programs

by Jen Saunders

A Ph.D. not only grants you a superior level of knowledge in a given field, it also makes you eligible for securing top jobs in an industry. Many people working full-time jobs don't have the time to go to graduate school in a traditional campus setting. These students are perfect candidates for earning their engineering doctorates online. Earning an online engineering Ph.D. may not be for everyone, but for some, it is the only method by which they can earn a degree.

Online Degree Benefits

Earning an online Ph.D. in engineering has a number of benefits. Forget about rushing to campus and fighting for a parking spot with the hopes you have time to make it to class without being late. An online education allows students to attend class when the time is convenient for them. Online education also removes any probability of failing to attend class due to traffic accidents, car troubles or family emergencies. Everest University states that students enrolled in online degree programs can persevere through class even when life throws unexpected curveballs at you, as time is always on your side.

Best Schools

The three top schools for earning online graduate engineering degrees include University of California Los Angeles, Pennsylvania State University and Columbia University, according to "U.S. News and World Report" rankings. When most people hear these names, they don't tend to think of online degree programs. In order to meet the needs of growing and busy students, major universities are now offering online degree options. Pennsylvania State University offers a Ph.D. in both mechanical engineering and nuclear engineering and, like most schools, requires students to first complete a master's degree.

Expenses for Online Engineering

Earning an online Ph.D. in engineering will almost always be a more affordable option than the same degree offered on campus. But the savings don't just exist in tuition costs. When figuring the financial investments of student dues, parking permits, transportation costs, a new wardrobe, eating out and childcare, along with other expenses that students incur, studying from home will save thousands on costs aside from tuition that most people don't stop to think about.

Types of Engineering Doctorates

If you want to earn an online Ph.D. in engineering, you can choose from several engineering fields, including civil, software, electrical, biochemical, mechanical, atmospheric and systems engineering. Make sure you choose a doctorate field to pursue that helps you secure employment within your desired industry. Furthermore, if you have already completed the M.S. in engineering, it is advantageous to enroll in a Ph.D. program that continues with similar work that was conducted in your master's program.

About the Author

Jen Saunders is an entrepreneur and veteran journalist who covers a wide range of topics. She made the transition to writing after having spent 12 years in England where she studied and taught English literature.

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