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#1
I understand that it's not about plumbing or fixing cars.

I remember reading on here that a lot of people in the pit were studying engineering.

So what exactly is it?

I don't know because engineers aren't lawyers or doctors whom you may see a few times a year, if that makes any sense...

Where do they work? What do they do all day?

Also, is it difficult? I've heard that it's as difficult as studying medicine or law, yet there is a big lack of them, at least here in the UK.

Please eradicate my ignorance, Pit.
#3
Warning: extreme layman's response here

Engineering is basically the science behind building stuff...electronics, structural engineering etc, engineers basically take concepts and find ways of making them physically work.


this is basically right, right?
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#4
Quote by Wikipedia
Engineering is the discipline, art and profession of acquiring and applying scientific, mathematical, economic, social, and practical knowledge to design and build structures, machines, devices, systems, materials and processes that safely realize a solution to the needs of society.


Is your google broken?
#5
enginears invent design and create mechanical and electrical devices and somtimes other stuff.

edit: and structures
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#6
^^That. I study Mechanical Engineering. You don't necessarily meet a lot because you don't need to see them related to their work


It is pretty difficult, lots of complicated maths basically.
Last edited by monkey_dancer at Sep 10, 2010,
#7
Chemical Engineers too.
They create and manufacture chemicals.
The company defines what chemicals they work with.
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#9
Engineers make stuff work.

That's about the simplest answer you'll ever get!
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#10
I've always understood it as the application of science to making things. I work with a few engineers and the spectrum of things they have to be able to do is batshit insane.
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#11
Quote by The_Sophist
I've always understood it as the application of science to making things. I work with a few engineers and the spectrum of things they have to be able to do is batshit insane.

pretty much this. Scientists discover, engineers make.
#12
Quote by Nameless742
Chemical Engineers too.
They create and manufacture chemicals.
The company defines what chemicals they work with.

Actually chemical engineers are more towards the chemical production process.
#13
engineering is crazy!
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#14
I do Chemical Engineering and these pretty much are what i do


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#15
Quote by CoreysMonster
pretty much this. Scientists discover, engineers make.

Electronic engineers make mistakes, electricians make things work.
#16
2 years of math then some other stuff


then if you have any will left to do anything you get access to a bunch of labs with cool equipment if you ask nicely, just don't expect to make anything genuinely awesome directly for class
#17
Quote by LtBrenton
Warning: extreme layman's response here

Engineering is basically the science behind building stuff...electronics, structural engineering etc, engineers basically take concepts and find ways of making them physically work.


this is basically right, right?


Yeah its essentially working out the best way to build/make something. I found the engineering planning and drawing classes I took for my apprenticeship difficult but once you understand how it works, its quite easy. Granted I dont do any plans or drawings in the job but I can pretty much read a plan for an aeronautical part
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#18
Quote by Philip_pepper
Also, is it difficult? I've heard that it's as difficult as studying medicine or law

I'd say it's a lot harder.
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#19
It's applied scientific research, basically.
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#20
engineers do for 50p what a scientist does for a £1
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#21
Quote by damian_91
I'd say it's a lot harder.


Balls.

What are prospects for chemical engineering like?

That's the only kind of engineering I would consider since I suck at physics.
#22
Quote by Philip_pepper
Balls.

Saying law is harder than engineering is beyond ridiculous.
Quote by Philip_pepper
What are prospects for chemical engineering like?

That's the only kind of engineering I would consider since I suck at physics.

Do you think chemical engineers don't have to study physics?
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#23
Well, the engineer is the second most important field, just behind physics. If it weren't for engineering, you would have the modern world. Engineering takes all the principles of physical science and applies them to construction or design.
#25
Quote by Thrashtastic15
Lolnah

Lolyah, you can't compare the two and law doesn't go anywhere beyond reading books, how can you compare that to quantum physics and complex variable mathematics?
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#26
After studying a Law module in my Engineering degree I can confirm it's pretty difficult.

Any degree can be difficult, if you choose to make it so. It all depends on your attitude and how hard you work and how high you aim.

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#27
Quote by damian_91
Lolyah, you can't compare the two and law doesn't go anywhere beyond reading books, how can you compare that to quantum physics and complex variable mathematics?

I could never pass a law course. I'd be to busy ranting about the stupidity I discovered and spend all my class time trying to fix it.
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#29
If math isn't your thing, why not consider Medicine?

I have a knack for things mechanical and chose Dentistry. Besides, job prospects/salaries for engineers are not what they are cracked up to be.

It's also rumored to be a tedious, unrewarding field (can't speak from experience, but I have friends who have expressed this opinion to me.)
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#30
Quote by Bubonic Chronic
It's also rumored to be a tedious, unrewarding field (can't speak from experience, but I have friends who have expressed this opinion to me.)

They aren't too far off, unfortunately. I work as a design engineer at an aerospace company (in the US), but as cool as that is, there is a lot of uninteresting and unrewarding work that I end up doing on a daily basis. All of my friends have experienced the same. Even a cool job is still a chore from time to time.

But I have no doubt that choosing to study mechanical engineering was one of the best decisions I've ever made. It inspires a whole new way of evaluating the world.
Last edited by GC Shred Off at Sep 10, 2010,
#31
Quote by damian_91
Saying law is harder than engineering is beyond ridiculous.


That really depends on how well you can cope with science and maths. If it comes easily to you, then Engineering should be easier than law. Conversely if you struggle with physics and maths then law would be much much easier.
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#32
In a couple of weeks, I'll be starting college with a mechanical engineering major. I'd appreciate it if any "older" engineers ( ) could share their experiences with the workload of the major and what job-hunting/work is like for them
#33
you do something once, you're a scientist, do something twice you're an engineer, do something 3 or more times, you're a technician.
#34
im a design engineer for a medical company atm. Engineering is a MASSSSIVE broad spectrum, not all of it is related or the same. Im a mechanical engineer but half of my course included CAD systems design etc, so i decided id rather do the design half.
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#35
Quote by kirbyrocknroll
In a couple of weeks, I'll be starting college with a mechanical engineering major. I'd appreciate it if any "older" engineers ( ) could share their experiences with the workload of the major and what job-hunting/work is like for them

prepare yourself. The maths is huge and the cad can take hours to do. Jobs are sort of hard to find and get into, but there still is a need for more engineers. I say this because you really need to show some common and mechanical sense when interviewing for a jab and you'll probably need to bring some drawings and stuff with you.
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#36
The workload is massive.
Always.

If you find yourself with a lot of free time, hanging around facebook and posting on internet forums a lot...you're doing it wrong.



Also, giant tuition bills and no job.
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#37
Quote by Philip_pepper
Also, is it difficult? I've heard that it's as difficult as studying medicine or law, yet there is a big lack of them, at least here in the UK.
Yeah, it's at least as hard as medicine or law but it doesn't have the status as either of those professions (in the UK, in some countries an engineers status could match a doctors) and also isn't as well paid as law or medicine considering the difficulty of the work.

That's not to say you can't earn a lot as an Engineer, you just have to be very good (ie. a mediocre doctor will earn a lot more than an equally skilled engineer) and even then your salary will in general still be lower than if you had done something like law or medicine.

So basically, people become engineers because they love engineering (or whatever branch they specialise in, I don't know anyone who likes every type of engineering) because if they didn't love it there wouldn't be many other reasons to do it.
#38
Quote by kirbyrocknroll
In a couple of weeks, I'll be starting college with a mechanical engineering major. I'd appreciate it if any "older" engineers ( ) could share their experiences with the workload of the major and what job-hunting/work is like for them

Don't be a Mech Engineer. There's too many of them already. You'll either (a have a tough time getting a job OR (b get paid less than many other Engineering disciples. I know because I went to an Engineering school for awhile. The MEs outnumbered everyone else, the flipside was that everyone else had a better chance of getting employed than the MEs. The same is true, to a lesser degree, with Electrical Engineers. I mean, do what you want, but just saying it'll be harder to find work...
Last edited by crazysam23_Atax at Sep 10, 2010,
#40
Quote by Philip_pepper
Balls.

What are prospects for chemical engineering like?

That's the only kind of engineering I would consider since I suck at physics.


Chemical Engineering has probably the broadest prospects in the Engineering field. Its more aimed towards the management and planning side of things, which is different to the likes of Mechanical which is very much hands on.

You can get a job in the oil/gas/energy sector, pharmaceutical sector, or if they aren't your thing, then with a couple of professional exams you could (in theory) become an accountant. But there are a lot more other job prospects than i mentioned, these are the only ones that i would be interested in.

Also, don't let the name fool you, there's very little chemistry involved. You just need a basic knowledge, same with Physics. Take it from me, i did Math, Biology and History at A-Level and now i'm going into my 3rd year. There's people in my class who did all 3 sciences + math and i'm doing better than they are.
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