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SometimesStupid
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28 Mar 2021, 4:02 pm

I have exhausted all of my financial aid on a worthless bloated degree that was easy, but not enjoyable so I quit.

How can I get a degree in engineering?



Mona Pereth
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28 Mar 2021, 10:01 pm

What kind of engineering degree are you looking for? Which branch of engineering?

How are you in math?

To be good at any kind of engineering, you need to be able to handle lots of higher-level math.

To save money on further course work, I suggest learning as much math as possible on your own. Hopefully you can then attend a college that lets you take placement exams so that you can save money by not having to take as many math classes as you otherwise would.

To study math on you own:

1) Find out what textbooks are used in the relevant math courses at the college where you eventually hope to get your engineering degree. Buy them one at a time.

2) Before you try to read the textbook, find relevant videos on YouTube and/or more specifically educational sites like Curiosity Stream. The better videos include animations that, for many people, can make the concepts A LOT easier to understand than even the best textbooks -- or your average college math instructor -- ever could.

Start with videos that just give you an overview of the subject matter. For example, if you don't know what calculus is or what it's good for, start with a few general intro calculus videos.

3) Then, for each chapter of the textbook: (a) Find a few good videos that cover the subject matter of the chapter. (b) Then skim the chapter, paying attention primarily to the example problems. (c) Then, with pen and paper in hand, read the chapter, patiently, to get the finer details that the videos skip over. Take notes on anything you have difficulty keeping track of. (d) Try to do the textbook's example problems on your own, and then look back to see if you did them correctly. (e) Do as many of the chapter's suggested homework problems as you need to in order to feel that you have mastered the material.

If you get stuck, look for more videos. If you get really stuck, you can try asking questions here.

For most engineering degrees, you need at least the following:

- Trigonometry
- Complex numbers
- "Pre-calculus," which may include the above as well as other topics.
- Calculus (a.k.a. "analysis" -- two to three semesters)
- Differential equations
- Linear algebra
- Advanced calculus, including at least the topics of (a) complex variables and (b) Laplace transforms, Fourier transforms, and Z-transforms

Computer science degrees typically have somewhat different math requirements from other engineering degrees. Typically computer science degrees don't require differential equations or advanced calculus, but do require a set of topics known collectively as "discrete math" (different colleges might have different names for this)

In addition to studying math on your own, I also recommend that you study the equivalent of your future college's introductory science and engineering courses on you own, too. Proceed as above with whichever introductory science and engineering courses are required for your future engineering major.

Then go back to college and take only whatever courses you still need to take after having, hopefully, placed out of at least half your required courses. You'll probably have to pay for it with student loans, but at least the loans won't be as big as they would be if you didn't do as much of the work as possible on your own.


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30 Mar 2021, 1:17 pm

Ask 10 people.
In "What color is my parachute" it says "the best way to learn about anything is ask 10 people".
Posting on a list might get 10 replies but you are likely to learn more if you have 10 one-on-one conversations with people you know. Do you know 10 people you could / would want to ask? Is there someone in the yellow pages phonebook that might help?

I am curious - what was your existing degree in?

What do you like about the idea of engineering?

What you do you picture yourself doing of you do get that Engineering degree or job?

What have you done that you really enjoy and would like to do more of (hobby, job, in school, alone, with a friend)?


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Fnord
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30 Mar 2021, 1:21 pm

SometimesStupid wrote:
How can I get a degree in engineering?
Same as every other degree:

1. Fill out an enrollment application.
2. If accepted, apply for financial aid.
3. If received, pay tuition.
4. If paid, attend the appropriate classes.
5. Study.
6. Complete the assignments correctly and on time.
7. Graduate.


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maycontainthunder
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30 Mar 2021, 1:32 pm

I don't in any way mean to be discouraging but I actually have an engineering qualification which has proven to be virtually useless from a career point of view but from a hobby point of view it has; learning how to set a machine is the main thing I learnt. If you want to do the kind of engineering that involves using a lathe or milling machine I may be able to give you some tips on machining.

My advice is have a look around your area and see what companies there are that operate in the area of engineering that interests you and see if there is anyone there you can chat to about it.

I don't know if there is such a thing as an apprenticeship where you are or if there are courses here in the UK where you do some days in the classroom others on a factory floor.


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Mona Pereth
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01 Apr 2021, 1:44 pm

Fnord wrote:
Same as every other degree:

1. Fill out an enrollment application.
2. If accepted, apply for financial aid.
3. If received, pay tuition.
4. If paid, attend the appropriate classes.
5. Study.
6. Complete the assignments correctly and on time.
7. Graduate.

Problem is, as the OP said, he has already exhausted the financial aid he would be eligible for. So he needs to find a way to get his degree at much lower cost than the normal way. Hence my suggestions about learning as much as possible on one's own in order to place out of as many requirements as possible.

Of course he first needs to find out whether the college(s) he is considering attending would allow this.


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01 Apr 2021, 3:19 pm

Have you ever considered getting a Professional Engineer certificate?

  LINK 

The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing professional licensure for engineers and surveyors.

The Principles and Practice of Engineering (PE) exam tests for a minimum level of competency in a particular engineering discipline. It is designed for engineers who have gained a minimum of four years’ post-college work experience in their chosen engineering discipline.

Engineering disciplines:

• Agricultural and Biological Engineering
• Architectural Engineering
• Chemical
• Civil
• Control Systems
• Electrical and Computer
• Environmental
• Fire Protection
• Industrial and Systems
• Mechanical
• Metallurgical and Materials
• Mining and Mineral Processing
• Naval Architecture and Marine
• Nuclear
• Petroleum
• Structural


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SometimesStupid
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15 Apr 2021, 6:45 pm

I love math and want to learn more. I have not graduated with my current degree but I want to switch. The fear of a SAP suspension is screwing me over. I want to change fields fast and quick so I am obtain my dream job.



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15 Apr 2021, 7:18 pm

SometimesStupid wrote:
I love math and want to learn more. I have not graduated with my current degree but I want to switch. The fear of a SAP suspension is screwing me over. I want to change fields fast and quick so I am obtain my dream job.
You've answered a concern expressed by Mona Pereth--You like math. I think you've disqualified yourself from the suggestion from Fnord--following his link which seems to indicate "It is designed for engineers who have gained a minimum of four years’ post-college work experience in their chosen engineering discipline."

I don't know whether you would be eligible for an internship, or if it would help you.

It sounds like you are still a student. If your school has a career counseling office, maybe they could suggest some creative way for you to make the change you want.


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Fenn
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19 Apr 2021, 3:57 pm

I am still curious - what do you see yourself doing as an engineer?


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