Engineering vs. Engineering Technology

Engineering vs. Engineering Technology

Distinction between Engineering and Engineering Technology Degrees

Engineers and engineering technologists perform similar but different functions. The Engineering Technology Council of ASEE lists Engineering Technology as a career in Engineering. Engineers apply scientific and theoretical knowledge through their education to invent, design, and build systems, structures, and devices primarily to solve societal or economic problems.

In contrast, engineering technologists apply their practical skills to develop and implement engineering solutions to today’s technological challenges.

ABET defines Engineering as careers leading to the professional practice of engineering. It further defines engineering technology as leading to careers in sectors such as construction, manufacturing, product design, testing, technical services, and sales. The level of activities and responsibilities of the engineering technologists go far beyond the ABET description today. Activities of the engineering technologists are much closer to that of the engineer. ASEE recognizes that engineering technology and engineering are two distinct disciplines with distinct career paths.

Differences in preparation for engineering and engineering technology careers can be found in the curricular content and focus of study. These begin with admission requirements and curricular content. Beyond these, the career paths of the engineer and engineering technologist typically follow different trajectories.