Types of Degrees Materials Engineering Majors Are Getting
The following table lists how many materials engineering graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.
|Education Level||Number of Grads|
What Materials Engineering Majors Need to Know
In an O*NET survey, materials engineering majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.
Knowledge Areas for Materials Engineering Majors
According to O*NET survey takers, a major in materials engineering should prepare you for careers in which you will need to be knowledgeable in the following areas:
- Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
- Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
- English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Skills for Materials Engineering Majors
materials engineering majors are found most commonly in careers in which the following skills are important:
- Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Abilities for Materials Engineering Majors
As a materials engineering major, you will find yourself needing the following abilities:
- Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
What Can You Do With a Materials Engineering Major?
People with a materials engineering degree often go into the following careers:
|Job Title||Job Growth Rate||Median Salary|
|Architectural and Engineering Managers||5.5%||$140,760|
|Biofuels/Biodiesel Technology and Product Development Managers||5.5%||$140,760|
Who Is Getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Materials Engineering?
At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of materials engineering majors is as follows:
|Race/Ethnicity||Number of Grads|
|Black or African American||44|
|Hispanic or Latino||125|
Materials Engineering appeals to people across the globe. About 10.2% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:
- South Korea
How Much Do Materials Engineering Majors Make?
Bachelor’s Degree Starting Salary
The median early-career salary of materials engineering students with a bachelor’s degree is $63,300 a year according to 2017-2018 data from the U.S. Department of Education. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $60,300 (25th percentile) and $66,300 (75th percentile).
It is possible that some of these people may have taken positions that were not related to materials engineering.
Salaries According to BLS
Materials Engineering majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $69,710 to $113,680 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.
To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.
Amount of Education Required for Careers Related to Materials Engineering
Some careers associated with materials engineering require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.
How much schooling do you really need to compete in today’s job market? People currently working in careers related to materials engineering have obtained the following education levels.
|Education Level||Percentage of Workers|
|High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED)||0.9%|
|Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production)||2.4%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||3.0%|
|Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master.||3.6%|
|Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level.||1.8%|
Online Materials Engineering Programs
In 2018-2019, 105 schools offered a materials engineering program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.
|Degree Level||Colleges Offering Programs||Colleges Offering Online Classes|
|Certificate (Less Than 1 Year)||4||0|
|Certificate (1-2 years)||2||0|
|Certificate (2-4 Years)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Research)||76||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Other)||0||0|
Is a Degree in Materials Engineering Worth It?
The median salary for a materials engineering grad is $96,930 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.
This is 143% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $1,140,600 after 20 years!
Top Ranking Lists for Materials Engineering
Explore Major by State
Majors Related to Materials Engineering
You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to materials engineering.
*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.
- College Factual
- College Scorecard
- National Center for Education Statistics
- O*NET Online
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers First Quarter 2020
- Image Credit: By Panoramedia under License
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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