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Mechanical engineering other topics FAQ

Professional Engineer

Engineering vs. Engineering Technology; Which degree is required to become a PE?
Posted: 26 Mar 07 (Edited 29 Mar 07)

ABET uses two internal commissions to accredit Engineering and Engineering Technology degrees. Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) accredits Engineering and Technology Accreditation Commission (TAC) accredits Engineering Technology degrees. The criterion each degree must meet is different.

All states allow EAC/ABET graduates to sit for the PE exam. Some states allow TAC/ABET accredited graduates to sit for the PE exam but that number has been shrinking. Why? Unfortunately Engineering Technology curriculum vary greatly from school to school.

Most Engineering Technology (ET) programs are a "hands on approach" to problem solving. The curriculm stresses using existing technology and problem solving methods to the fullest. Some institutions only require one Calculus course. Others require three plus a course in differential equations. Thus some ET programs resemble Engineering programs and others resemble vocational/technician programs although most programs fall somewhere in the middle.

A traditional Engineering degree is a more theorectical/mathematical approach to problem solving. This is where new problem solving methods are born and new technologies are invented.






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