Career Options in Engineering Field

Technology has been the reason for advancements in the world today. Engineers are the backbone for such achievements. Be it in the field of agriculture, transport, healthcare and even the way we communicate. Life would not be the same if the engineering field would not be a career choice. The present youth has a galore of opportunities in the field of engineering. Apart from the traditional branches such as aeronautics, chemical, electrical, computers, information technology and civil, the new areas of engineering such as robotics, laser, nanotechnology and ultrasonic technology are attracting brilliant and enthusiastic students.  As of year 2011, 1.5 million seats are available for students who wish to pursue a course in engineering. If one has a penchant for problem solving and like to study the subjects of Mathematics and Science, a career in engineering is a lucrative career choice. A career in the engineering field offers challenges, development of new skills and a lot of scope in moving into more specialized areas. For instance, a student who studies mechanical engineering can specialize in robotics and a chemical engineering graduate can work towards producing energy from bio fuels. With great possibilities also comes high salary and a good lifestyle. In India, there are a large number of opportunities for engineering graduates and post graduates, no matter the economy is booming or suffering recession.

Branches in Engineering

Students can pursue their degree or diploma in Engineering in a variety of areas. One needs to choose the engineering branch in the undergraduate level. The specializations available include:

Aviation Electronics Petroleum
Aerospace Communication Nanotechnology
Chemical Biomedical Clinical
Environmental Mining Agricultural
Computer Science Instrumentation Architecture
Information Technology Materials and Metallurgy Pharmaceutical
Production Marine Software
Mechanical Laser Technology Aeronautical
Civil Nuclear Petroleum

Eligibility Criteria for Engineering Courses

The beginning of the study of engineering is just after high school. Later, students can even pursue post graduation and doctoral degrees in their chosen engineering specialization. The eligibility criteria for each level are:

Study level Name of Engineering Course Years to complete course Eligibility Criteria
Undergraduate level Bachelors of Technology (B.Tech) or Bachelors of Engineering (B.E.) 4 years Marks in the 12th standard board examination and all India or state level entrance test
Post Graduate level Masters in Technology (M.Tech) or Masters of Engineering (M.E.) 2 years Marks in the bachelors level board examination and all India entrance test
Doctoral level Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) 3 to 5 years Marks in the masters level board examination and All India entrance test

Top Engineering Colleges in India

With over 2300 engineering colleges all over India, selecting the right college to study can be a daunting task. To help the students choose, several surveys are conducted every year by reputed magazines such as India Today, Outlook, Daily News & Analysis (DNA), Competition Success Review (CSR), Careers 360 and DataQuest. The survey is done with regard to the following parameters:

  • Infrastructure
  • Previous year placement records
  • Salary offered to graduating students of the previous year
  • Competitiveness of entrance test
  • Academic and co-curricular environments of the school

Students must consider all the factors before applying to the colleges. Here are the 10 best engineering colleges in India according to the survey conducted by Careers 360.

Rank Name of College Location Courses Offered Entrance Exam
1 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Mumbai Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

2 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Delhi Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

3 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

4 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kanpur Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

5 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Kharagpur Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

6 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Roorkee Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

7 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Guwahati Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

8 Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Banaras Hindu University Varanasi Undergraduate: B.Tech (Dual degree)

Post Graduate: M.Tech

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: IIT-JEE

Post Graduate: GATE

9 Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS) Pilani Undergraduate: B.E. (Hons)

Post Graduate: M.Sc. (Tech)

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: BITSAT

Post Graduate: 2 Part Online test conducted by BITS

10 Jadavpur University Kolkata Undergraduate: B.E., B.Arch

Post Graduate: M.E., M.Arch

Doctoral: Ph.D.

Undergraduate: West Bengal Joint Entrance Examination (WB-JEE)/ AIEEE

Post Graduate: GATE

Engineering Entrance Examinations

After the 12th standard examination, students need to sit for entrance tests, the scores of which determine their entry to an engineering college. Most engineering colleges in India accept scores of an all India entrance test such as AIEEE (All India Engineering Entrance Examination). There are many colleges that require students to sit for a state level engineering entrance test, for instance, the Common Entrance Test or CET needs to be taken by students who wish to study in an engineering college located in the state of Karnataka. There are some institutions as well that conduct their own entrance test, such as BIT in Mesra and the IITs. After graduation in engineering, there are many students who wish to pursue a Masters degree or one that is integrated with Ph.D. in their chosen branch. The Graduate Aptitute Test for Engineering, conducted by the IITs of the country is the entrance test to take. There are other tests as well that are conducted at the state level or by the university.

Here is a list of entrance tests that students can consider taking to get the opportunity to study in one of the top engineering institutions in the country.

Exam Level Name of exam Conducting Body Month of Issue of Forms Exam Month
Undergraduate level BITSAT (Birla Institute of Technology and Science Aptitude Test) February May – June
IIT-JEE (Indian Institute of Technology – Joint Entrance Examination) Indian Institute of Technology October April
AIEEE (All India Engineering Entrance Examination) Central Board of Secondary Education November April (offline) and May (online)
VITEEE (Vellore Institute of Technology – Engineering Entrance Exam) VIT University December April
Post Graduate level GATE (Graduate Aptitude Test for Engineering) GATE Committee (comprising professors of IIT and IISc) September January – February

How to Prepare for an Engineering Entrance Examination

For Undergraduate Level:

In a competitive environment where more than 2 million students apply for about 1.5 million seats in engineering colleges, it is but necessary for a student to prepare for the entrance tests with dedication and perseverance. The Joint Entrance Examination conducted by the IITs is considered to be one of the toughest tests in the world. One needs to start their preparation as early as their 9th standard. Several coaching centres such as FIIT-JEE (Forum for Indian Institute of Technology – Joint Entrance Examination), Aakash Institute, Brilliant Tutorials and Bansal Institute have been imparting tuitions for the same to students. There are also a number of books available in the book store that one can use to help prepare for the tests, including:

  • Objective Physics For Medical & Engineering Entrance Examinations by Mahesh Jain
  • CBSE All India Engineering Entrance Exam Mathematics by Dr. N. K. Singh
  • Excellent Engineering Entrance Exam by A K Mishra, Ajay Kumar, B K Garg
  • Objective Mathematics For Engineering Entrance Examinations by Dr. R. K. Gupta
  • Objective Mathematics For Engineering Entrance Exams :Integral Calculus & Differential Equations by R. S. Aggarwal
  • Problems In Physics For IIT And Other Engineering Entrance : Examinations by S. K. Srivastava
  • Chemistry For IIT-JEE And Other Engineering Entrance Examinations by Raman KV

Along with this, one must always remember that no matter how much study material you get from such tuitions and books, finally what matters is your aim towards preparing for the ultimate goal – a place in one of the top engineering colleges.

For Post Graduate Level:

Preparation for GATE is difficult. One needs to prepare in their desired engineering field, which makes the preparation all the more overwhelming. Start preparations at least a year earlier to get better results. Coaching centres such as GATE Academy, Brilliant Tutorials, Elite Academy and GATE Forum teach for such entrance tests. Books are available in the book stores are:

  • Gate Guide (for individual subjects) by R.K. Kanodia, Ashish Murolia
  • GATE (for individual subjects) by Kanodia
  • GATE papers (for individual subjects)  by G.K. Publications

Career Prospects for Engineers

Engineering colleges have placement cells that invite companies to offer placements to students, who are about to complete a bachelors degree. Industrial firms, consulting firms and software companies are some of the companies that attend these placement events in a college. A student graduating from an engineering institute that ranks among the top 50 can expect to get around 2 to 15 lakhs of rupees per annum as starting salary, provided there is no economic problem in the country. At present the market for well educated engineers is booming.

Many students even opt to study management after their undergraduate engineering degree to better their prospects for future.

Students, who are interested in conducting research and have a fondness for inventing something new, pursue further studies in their selected engineering field. These students even make a career in research and development in a public sector or private company. Salary is high. What is more important here is the chance to build a better future for India.

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