Engineering Technology vs Engineering

Many students ask, “What is the difference between an engineering degree and an engineering technology degree?” The short answer is that Engineering Technology (ET) is the applied side of Engineering. The ET degree program does not require calculus, but does require more applied “hands-on” labs and coursework. Engineering Technology is the profession in which knowledge of technology, applied science, and mathematics is devoted to the application of engineering solutions for the benefit of humanity.

Engineering Technology with Advanced Manufacturing, and Mechanical Design & Fabrications specializations focuses primarily on applying, analyzing, implementing, and improving existing technologies in support of modern manufacturing. The degree program is designed to prepare students with the knowledge and skills needed for Florida’s diverse manufacturing sectors by providing the fundamentals of production processes, the maintenance of those processes, quality assurance, and safety. Then students build upon those fundamentals with more in-depth study of automation and instrumentation (including PLC basics), metrology, process improvements (including total predictive maintenance, lubrication technology, vibration, and alignment), manufacturing processes & materials, Computer Numerical Control, as well as quality work practices utilizing Lean and Six Sigma principles. In addition to these technical skills, students will learn the management competencies needed to advance the efficient and effective performance within advanced manufacturing entities.

“Engineering technology is the profession in which a knowledge of mathematics and natural sciences gained by higher education, experience, and practice is devoted primarily to the implementation and extension of existing technology for the benefit of humanity. Engineering technology education focuses primarily on the applied aspects of science and engineering aimed at preparing graduates for practice in that portion of the technological spectrum closest to product improvement, manufacturing, construction, and engineering operational functions.” – Accreditation Board of Engineering Technology (ABET)

Engineering Engineering Technology
Planning Doing
Researching new ideas Applying existing “state of the art”
Innovating Implementing
Concept-oriented Application-oriented
Theoretical Practical and “hands-on”
Calculus based Algebra based
Develop new processes Apply new processes
Open-ended and futuristic Specific and current
Required for registration as P.E. in all states Required for registration as P.E. in most states
Can require period of internship due to emphasis on fundamentals and theory Usually ready to work due to emphasis on current practice in industry
Graduate studies widely available Graduate studies increasingly available
Jobs in engineering design Jobs in applied engineering and production