ODU Eng Tech/ABET Accreditation

Discussion in 'General Distance Learning Discussions' started by RREEBB, Jun 9, 2008.

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  1. RREEBB

    RREEBB New Member

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    Does anyone in this forum know anything about ODU's Engineering Technology Programs, especially the Electrical Systems Technology Specialty?
    I found CIE's and Penn Foster's course offerings interesting, but they are DETC accredited, not ABET accredited. From what you all have heard, is ABET accreditation that important?

    Any information would be helpful.
     
  2. Ted Heiks

    Ted Heiks Moderator and Distinguished Senior Member

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    You would need to check your state's professional licensure requirements for engineers. My guess would be that many, and maybe even most, states would require ABET accreditation, some would allow RA only, a few might even allow NA, and there might be one or a handful that could allow even an unaccredited engineering degree for licensure. The key would be to find out what your state requires and then you will know how important ABET is to you.
     
  3. Jonathan Whatley

    Jonathan Whatley New Member

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    If I am not mistaken, Engineering Technology graduates are only eligible for licensure as Professional Engineers in a very limited number of states anyway, and there may be additional requirements such as longer periods of practical experience? For the most part, I think Engineering Technology degrees are pursued by people seeking careers as unlicensed technologists, who are not always, but often, junior to engineers in position and pay.
     
  4. Andy Borchers

    Andy Borchers New Member

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    Jonathan - you are right on target. Whenever you see the word "technology" in an engineering degree you are talking about something different than what most people think of when they talk about "engineering".
    Technology degrees typically include less theoretical math and more hands on courses.

    Regards - Andy

     
  5. Daniel Luechtefeld

    Daniel Luechtefeld New Member

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  6. edowave

    edowave Active Member

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    TESC says on their website: "While programs at Thomas Edison State College are not ABET accredited, our graduates MAY be permitted to take the New Jersey Professional Engineer exams IF they select the appropriate courses, which will include courses beyond the minimum degree requirements. The NJ PE Board reviews applicants on a case by case basis. Students interested in pursuing professional engineering licensure should work closely with the Advisement Center." Would anyone happen to know which courses are these? I tried emailing TESC, and they said they would tell me after I pay the $75 application fee. I could not find a straight answer on the NJ licensing board website.
     
  7. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

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    ABET accreditation is less important for "engineering technology" programs than it is for "engineering programs". Technically, these types of programs are accredited separately: technology programs have ABET/TAC accreditation, while engineering programs have ABET/EAC.

    ABET accreditation can be important if you plan to use your bachelor's degree to apply to graduate school or for a professional engineer's license. However, engineering technology programs don't usually lead to either of these outcomes (whether they are ABET accredited or not). Technology programs don't have the same emphasis on math and basic science as engineering programs, and aren't intended to prepare students for engineering graduate school or engineering licensing exams.

    Furthermore, ABET accreditation is most important in fields like civil engineering, where state licensure is required. Fields like electronics are typically exempt from licensure requirements, and so few professionals pursue it, regardless of whether their degrees are ABET or non-ABET or in engineering or in technology.

    In summary, for an "engineering technology" degree in electronics, I don't think ABET accreditation is particularly valuable, unless:

    - you want to work in a field where NICET certification might be helpful
    - you want to get a master's degree in engineering technology (but such programs are rare)
     
  8. CalDog

    CalDog New Member

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    A few thoughts:

    - Seems like a remarkably unhelpful response from TESC. I would try emailing a faculty member directly, or someone at the NJ licensing board.

    - Eligibility for the NJ PE exam would primarily be a concern for students in the TESC Civil Engineering Technology program. If you are interested in other TESC Engineering Technology programs, then it may not really matter. Most engineers in most other disciplines never pursue a PE license, regardless of their degree status.

    - Even if a TESC engineering technology degree was accepted for the NJ PE exam, there is no assurance that it would be accepted as qualifying by other states. Some states automatically reject any engineering technology degree; others are more flexible.
     

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