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$83k $83k
241k 241k
0.9% 0.9%
3.6/5 3.6/5
Bachelors Bachelors

Industrial Engineer Education Requirements

Students interested in studying industrial engineering should take high school courses in mathematics (algebra, trigonometry, calculus), computer science, chemistry, and physics. Entry-level industrial engineering jobs require a bachelor's degree. Employers also value experience, so cooperative-education engineering programs at universities are also valuable.

Bachelor’s degree programs typically are four-year programs and include lectures in classrooms and practice in laboratories. Courses include statistics, production systems planning, and manufacturing systems design, among others. Many colleges and universities offer cooperative-education programs in which students gain practical experience while completing their education.

Some colleges and universities offer five-year degree programs that lead to a bachelor’s and master’s degree upon completion. A graduate degree will allow an engineer to work as a professor at a university or to engage in research and development. Some five-year or even six-year cooperative-education plans combine classroom study with practical work, permitting students to gain experience and to finance part of their education. Programs in industrial engineering are accredited by ABET (formerly the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology).

Beginning industrial engineers usually work under the supervision of experienced engineers. In large companies, new engineers also may receive formal training in classes or seminars. As beginning engineers gain knowledge and experience, they move to more difficult projects with greater independence to develop designs, solve problems, and make decisions.

Eventually, industrial engineers may advance to become technical specialists, such as quality engineers or facility planners. In that role, they supervise a team of engineers and technicians. Many move into management positions because the work they do is closely related to the work of a manager.

Education History of Industrial Engineers

The most common degree held by industrial engineers is Industrial Engineering. 14 percent of industrial engineers had a degree in industrial engineering before becoming industrial engineers. That is over 53 times the average across all careers. Mechanical Engineering graduates are the second most common among industrial engineers, representing 6 percent of industrial engineers in the Sokanu user base, which is 4.7 times the average.

Industrial Engineer Education History

This table shows which degrees people earn before becoming an Industrial Engineer, compared to how often those degrees are obtained by people who earn at least one post secondary degree.

Degree % of industrial engineers % of population Multiple
Industrial Engineering 14.4% 0.3% 52.9×
Mechanical Engineering 6.5% 1.4% 4.7×
Engineering Management 3.2% 0.1% 22.2×
Business Management And Administration 1.9% 4.9% 0.4×
Mathematics 1.9% 1.4% 1.3×
General Engineering 1.4% 0.3% 5.2×
Materials Science 1.4% 0.1% 21.5×
Physics 1.4% 0.9% 1.6×
Economics 1.4% 3.0% 0.5×

Industrial Engineer Education Levels

69% of industrial engineers have a bachelor's degree. 31% of industrial engineers have an associate's degree.

No education 0%
High school diploma 0%
Associate's degree 31%
Bachelor's degree 69%
Master's degree 0%
Doctorate degree 0%

How to Become an Industrial Engineer

Think you might be interested in becoming an Industrial Engineer? Here are your next steps.

  1. Take the Sokanu Career Test

    Would you make a good industrial engineer? Sokanu's free assessment reveals how compatible you are with a career across 5 dimensions!

    Take the free career test
  2. Get the Education

    • Delaware Technical Community College-Terry | Dover, DE
      Offers: Associates
    • Delaware Technical Community College-Stanton/Wilmington | Wilmington, DE
      Offers: Certificate, Associates
    • Delaware State University | Dover, DE
      Offers: Bachelors
    • University of Delaware | Newark, DE
      Offers: Bachelors
    • Catholic University of America | Washington, DC
      Offers: Bachelors
  3. Get Hired
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Find your perfect career

Would you make a good industrial engineer? Sokanu's free assessment reveals how compatible you are with a career across 5 dimensions!

Take the free career test

Become an Industrial Engineer