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What is the difference between these two majors/degrees?

  1. Jul 16, 2011 #1
    What is the difference between a pre-engineering major and an engineering major? (US colleges only). I have seen this option a few times at some of the universities and colleges in our area.

    Thank you
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 16, 2011 #2
    I have never heard of pre-engineering. However, extrapolating from its name, pre-engineering is most likely a two-year program/Associate's degree that teaches you the fundamentals of engineering and will prepare you for a Bachelor's in engineering.

    OR: it could be like pre-med or pre-law, which prepares you for graduate school. You don't really need to do pre-engineering for grad school, though.
  4. Jul 16, 2011 #3
    My best guess is that if High School left you bereft of any decent mathematics or basic science skills, a course in Pre-Engineering may help you get past that.

    We'd all like to think our high schools are better than that, but sadly they aren't.
  5. Jul 17, 2011 #4
    I've never heard of pre-engineering either. I would also guess that it's a two year program, whereas normal engineering degrees takes four years.
  6. Jul 17, 2011 #5
    My undergrad school offered a pre-Engineering program; this was because it did not offer a degree in Engineering. Rather, prospective Engineers took the required low-level physics courses needed during their freshman and sophomore years, and then transferred before their junior year to a larger school in order to complete their degree.
  7. Jul 17, 2011 #6
    Like the other have said-

    At my school, engineering programs are competitive and you need to be accepted into the department for the last two years. When you are completing prerequisites you are called pre-engineering.

    Also, most community college call their 2 year Associate Degree that have the same purpose pre-engineering.
  8. Jul 17, 2011 #7
    The program I'm in at my community college is called pre-engineering, and it is a 2 year Associate degree designed to prepare students to transfer to regional universities. Basically it's just a bunch of general-education classes, and the some introductory engineering classes.

    http://catalog.volstate.acalog.com/preview_program.php?catoid=11&poid=495&returnto=247 [Broken]
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2017
  9. Jul 17, 2011 #8
    I've seen pre-engineering. From what I've heard, it's statics, dynamics, calculus, intro physics, and stuff like that, and is a two-year degree offered by some community colleges in lieu of an associates. It's for transfer students.
  10. Jul 18, 2011 #9
    Thanks everyone for the clarification.
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