Top 10 Engineering Grad Schools in the U.S.

Considering taking the next step in your engineering education? For those who have received their undergrad degrees and are contemplating the idea of graduate school, check out this list of the top 10 engineering grad schools in the U.S., compiled by U.S. News & World Report.
Toward 50K Diverse Engineering Graduates

Considering taking the next step in your engineering education? For those who have received their undergrad degrees and are contemplating the idea of graduate school, check out this list of the top 10 engineering grad schools in the U.S., compiled by U.S. News & World Report. Find out how U.S. News ranks its graduate engineering programs here.

#1: Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Cambridge, Massachusetts

MITAt the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), graduate students have 15 areas in which to earn degrees, most of which are highly ranked. There are close to 20 research centers on campus, which explore topics as varied as cancer research, ocean engineering, and soldier nanotechnologies. Students can also get involved with university initiatives like Transportation@MIT, an interdisciplinary program that examines travel issues. Students with ideas for new businesses can enter the $100K Entrepreneurship Competition for a chance to win start-up money. In addition to coming in as the #1 engineering grad school, MIT also rated #1 and #2 for the following engineering specialties:

  • #1: Aerospace / Aeronautical / Astronautical Engineering (tie)
  • #1: Biomedical Engineering / Bioengineering (tie)
  • #1: Chemical Engineering
  • #1: Electrical / Electronic / Communications Engineering
  • #1: Materials Engineering
  • #1: Mechanical Engineering (tie)
  • #2: Computer Engineering
  • #2: Nuclear Engineering

Read more about MIT and its rankings here.

#2: Stanford University

Stanford, California

Stanford UniversityStanford University‘s nine departments and the Institute for Computational and Mathematical Engineering (ICME) offer dozens of graduate programs that align academic course work with research. Related aspects of particular areas of graduate study are commonly covered directly from the department. Stanford rated #1 and #2 for the following engineering specialties:

  • #1: Aerospace / Aeronautical / Astronautical Engineering (tie)
  • #1: Mechanical Engineering (tie)
  • #2: Environmental / Environmental Health Engineering
  • #2: Civil Engineering (tie)
  • #2: Electrical / Electronic / Communications Engineering (tie)

Read more about Stanford’s rankings here.

#3: University of California, Berkeley

Berkeley, California

UC BerkeleyGraduate students at the UC—Berkeley College of Engineering can complete an advanced degree in eight areas, including Industrial Engineering & Operations Research and Applied Science & Technology. Earning a master’s in engineering typically takes two years at Berkeley, but students can also opt for the accelerated Berkeley Engineering Professional Master’s Program, which graduates students in just one year. The College of Engineering has about 40 research centers and institutes where students can get involved. For a break from school work, students can explore nearby San Francisco or take a quick trip to local beaches. To travel in and around San Francisco, students can take the Bay Area Rapid Transit, which stops a block from campus. UC—Berkeley rated #1 and #2 for the following engineering specialties:

  • #1: Civil Engineering
  • #1: Computer Engineering
  • #1: Environmental / Environmental Health Engineering
  • #2: Electrical / Electronic / Communications Engineering (tie)
  • #2: Chemical Engineering (tie)

Read more about UC-Berkeley and its rankings here.

#4: Carnegie Mellon University

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Carnegie Mellon UniversityGraduate students at the Carnegie Mellon Institute of Technology have many ways to make their advanced engineering degree more robust. Students have about 10 interdisciplinary majors to choose from, each completed in conjunction with other departments at Carnegie Mellon, including the highly ranked Tepper School of Business. Engineering students can pursue course-based or research-based master’s degrees, and Ph.D. programs are offered in most departments. Students also have the option to give their education a global slant with study and research programs in Chile, Portugal, and Japan. For students short on time, there is an accelerated master’s program in Engineering and Technology Innovation Management, which takes a year to complete. Undergraduates at Carnegie Mellon University can also complete an accelerated master’s in one year after graduation. Faculty and students are actively engaged in research projects, and there are about 30 research centers on campus.

Read more about Carnegie Mellon and its rankings here.

#5 *TIE*: California Institute of Technology

Pasadena, California

CaltechThe traditional science powerhouse of the California Institute of Technology (CalTech) has a Division of Engineering and Applied Science for graduate students, as well as a separate chemical engineering program. Students can earn a master of science in a year, or a special engineer’s degree in aeronautical, civil, electrical, or mechanical engineering in two years. There are Ph.D. programs, as well as part-time study programs. Students interested in becoming medical scientists can enroll in a joint M.D./Ph.D. program offered with either UCLA’s Geffen School of Medicine or USC’s Keck School of Medicine. Students can get involved in on-campus research centers, like the Center for the Science and Engineering of Materials and the Center for Neuromorphic Systems Engineering. For support outside the classroom, students can join organizations like the CalTech Women’s Club, a group of mostly women that hosts events throughout the year.

Read more about CalTech and its rankings here.

#5 *TIE*: University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

Ann Arbor, Michigan

University of Michigan Ann ArborThe University of Michigan College of Engineering has curriculums for master’s, doctoral and interdisciplinary programs, and classes emphasize project-based learning. Prospective graduate students can get a feel for the College at the annual Engineering Graduate Symposium, held each November. For current graduate students, it’s a chance to present research projects, find faculty advisers and hear from featured speakers. Outside of class, engineering students can bond and relax at schoolwide events like the CoE Bowling Challenge and periodic luncheons. Each academic program coordinates its own student activities as well.

Read more about the University of Michigan College of Engineering and its rankings here.

#7: Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, Georgia

Georgia Tech Engineered Biosystems buildingStudents at the Georgia Tech College of Engineering have extensive degree options. There are close to 20 areas to specialize in, from medical physics to aerospace engineering. Among many well regarded programs at the Tech Engineering, the industrial engineering and biomedical engineering programs are especially highly ranked.

At Georgia Tech, students can complete a master’s or a doctorate degree, and a handful of the master’s degree offerings include dual programs with universities abroad. The Dual Program in Electrical and Computer Engineering, for example, sends students to a partner school, like France’s Institut d’Electronique de Microelectronique et de Nanotechnologies, Germany’s TU-Munich, or the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology. There are also several dual degree options through China’s Shanghai Jiao Tong University and Italy’s Politecnico di Torino.

Read more about Georgia Institute of Technology and its rankings here.

#8: Purdue University, West Lafayette

West Lafayette, Indiana

Image of Purdue UniversityPurdue’s College of Engineering is among the largest in the United States and includes 13 academic programs, all with high rankings. U.S. News and World Report ranks Purdue’s College of Engineering in the Top 10 nationwide, with six of its twelve schools or divisions ranking in the top ten for undergraduate programs: Agricultural and Biological Engineering, Industrial Engineering, Aeronautics and Astronautics, Mechanical Engineering, Civil Engineering, and Electrical Engineering. As of 2019, Purdue’s Agricultural and Biological Engineering (ABE) undergraduate program has been ranked no.1 for eight consecutive years.

Purdue’s engineering faculty, researchers, graduate students, and undergraduate students are making hydrogen fuel cells more efficient, helping fight AIDS in Africa, developing working evacuation-systems for natural disasters, and creating technologies to prevent and deal with possible terrorist attacks. Purdue equips its students with the capacity to perform in a fast-changing and increasingly global economy, and its engineers are working in virtually any area in which their expertise can benefit humanity.

Read more about Purdue University and its rankings here.

#9: University of Southern California (Viterbi)

Los Angeles, California

Viterbi school of engineeringLocated in the heart of the Pacific Rim, USC Viterbi fosters world class research and practical innovation.

The USC Viterbi School of Engineering is innovative, elite and internationally recognized for creating new models of education, research and commercialization that are firmly rooted in real world needs. The school’s first priorities are the education of outstanding students and the pursuit and publication of new research.

As the engineering grad school’s faculty and students extend the frontiers of engineering knowledge through their research, they also apply engineering and technology to address societal challenges. The school stimulates and encourages qualities of scholarship, leadership, ambition and character that mark the true academic and professional engineer — to serve California, the nation and the world.

Read more about USC Viterbi and its rankings here.

#10: University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (Grainger)

Urbana, Illinois

University of Illinois aerial imageAt the Grainger College of Engineering, Illinois researchers are developing inventive solutions for the most pressing issues facing our global society across every major industry, including energy, environment, health and biology, security and defense, manufacturing, and transportation. The breadth, scope, and influence of Grainger Engineering in terms of research, scholarship, leadership, and service activities are enormous. Grainger Engineering has more than $198 million in research expenditures, 2,000 research projects underway, 70 student-run societies and committees, and 70,000 alumni around the world. Of Grainger’s many graduate degree programs, 15 are ranked in the Top 10 by U.S. News & World Report.

Surrounded by more than 80 research centers and labs housed in multiple buildings across two quads, the Urbana-Champaign campus is at the center of a world-class network. Faculty and students benefit from access to state-of-the-art equipment in highly modern environment that inspires both collaboration and creativity. Grainger’s multidisciplinary, world-renowned research leaders, supported by a motivated and exceptionally gifted student base, collaborate with captains of industry, government agencies, and peer institutions in search of innovative solutions to the world’s technological challenges.

Read more about Grainger Engineering and its rankings here.

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