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Bachelor Degrees T - Z

Aerospace Engineering Degree Facts

Aerospace engineer
May 25th, 2014

Developing new procedures for propulsion, designing aircraft, satellites, and spacecraft and their parts, launching aerodynamic and amphibious vehicles, and becoming part of a space exploration team are all possible with a degree in aerospace engineering. Aerospace engineers can be employed by companies primarily engaged in design, manufacture, research, and development, as well as the government.
A bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering or an engineering field related directly to aerospace systems is required to be able to work in industries that design/build not only various types of aircraft but spacecraft, missiles and defense systems as well. Some aerospace engineering graduates even get to work on several national defense projects which require security clearances, while others go on to become employees at NASA.
The two areas of aerospace engineering are astronautics and aeronautics. The former is the specialized study of aircraft and systems which are close to the earth such as airplanes and the latter is focused on aircraft and systems outside the atmosphere such as satellites. The possibilities of employment for astronautical engineers, however, is lower than for aeronautical engineers.
What Can You Do With an Aerospace Engineering Degree?
This continuously-evolving field is one of the most challenging in engineering; a graduate can have the choice of becoming any of the following:

  • Flight test engineer,
  • Wind tunnel engineer,
  • Project engineer,
  • Test engineer,
  • Aircraft design engineer,
  • Spacecraft design engineer,
  • Research and development engineer,
  • Professor.

The curriculum for an aerospace engineering includes various fundamental elements such as:

  • Fluid mechanics,
  • Propulsion,
  • Materials and structures,
  • Orbital mechanics,
  • Experiments and instrumentations,
  • Aerosystem designs.

The student can also choose from several elective courses like:

  • Control systems
  • Computational structures
  • Composite materials
  • Hypersonic aerodynamics
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • Helicopter aerodynamics

You must choose a school that offers aerospace engineering as a four-year degree, meet all requirements for admission, pay the tuition or apply for a scholarship, and complete the entire course. Note that while a degree in aerospace engineering may be offered at numerous universities, the case isn’t the same for astronautical engineering.
The Best Schools to Get an Aerospace Engineering Degree
Schools which offer an aerospace engineering degree are usually located near or within government laboratories or institutions related to space and air systems programs. Choose a school that has an Accredited Board of Engineering and Technology or ABET.
ABET certifications ensure that the educational institution has met the standards of quality established and required by the aerospace engineering profession. ABET schools are recognized by national and regional accreditation agencies and education authorities worldwide. These schools (in no particular order) include:

  1. United States Air Force Academy
  2. Boston University
  3. Pennsylvania State University
  4. Rutgers University
  5. Syracuse University
  6. Stanford University
  7. Tuskegee University
  8. San Diego State University
  9. University of California in Los Angeles, Davis, San Diego, and Irvine
  10. Arizona State University
  11. United States Naval Academy
  12. Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  13. Texas A&M University
  14. Princeton University
  15. North Carolina State University
  16. University of Alabama
  17. Purdue University
  18. University of Notre Dame
  19. Georgia Institute of Technology
  20. Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

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