If you are considering a career in engineering mechanics, you will be joining an exciting field of work that involves the use of math, science and physics to solve problems in the realm of engineering. Earning a Bachelor or Master of Science degree for this specialty opens many doors to a rewarding and successful career, as building a solid educational foundation can give you the confidence and knowledge to take on the challenges this field presents. To get you started on your journey, we have compiled a list of the ten best engineering mechanics online classes and some key features of each that may allow you to make the most informed choices when it comes to earning your degree.
How We Chose Our Ratings
In compiling our list, we considered a variety of factors to create a well-rounded group of classes. We included reviews from those who took the classes, what they liked and did not like about them and what might have improved their experience. Because many online campuses now offer a variety of online classes, we also considered the cost, convenience and overall reputation of the classes and the schools themselves. We also included a wide range of schools, from free programs to those that are included in a larger degree plan that may take several years to complete. We understand that value and quality are important when it comes to investing in your education, so we considered as many angles as possible when creating the list below.
Top 10 Best Online Engineering Mechanics Classes
1. Manufacturing Engineering: Colorado State University
If you want to broaden your education by earning a master’s degree in engineering, this class is part of a 30-credit course that can teach you marketable skills that are currently in demand, including engineering jobs in the healthcare, automotive and renewable energy sectors. The cost of the class is $900 – $1,000. However, financial aid is available to those who qualify. This course comes highly recommended by its users, who rated the online courses as both flexible and thorough, with a focus on materials manufacturing, its uses and processes.
2. Statics: The University of Wisconsin
If you are adept at calculus and want to build a solid foundation for an engineering mechanics degree, this online course may be a fine choice for you. It is a three-credit class that provides you with problem-solving skills based on force versus equilibrium and how these issues might affect different engineering processes. This is a bachelor-level course, and students who completed the course gave it high ratings for providing them with the knowledge they would need for more advanced classes later on. Online tuition and fees may vary with residency.
3. Fundamentals of Engineering Mechanics: Udemy
This brief and inexpensive class from the learning website Udemy is surprisingly thorough and provides you with an introduction to the principals of engineering through the use of equilibrium and inertia equations, as you will learn to solve such issues as you move through the class. Students who took this class found it useful for enhancing their existing engineering knowledge and enjoyed the no-nonsense approach of the visual explanations of the equations. The cost of this class is currently $12.99 and includes a free textbook and solutions manual.
4. Introduction to Engineering Mechanics: Georgia Tech
If you have a solid background in calculus and understand the basics of physics, then you might benefit from this online class. You will learn how to solve engineering problems that you may encounter in the real world, which can enhance your existing job skills. Other points this course discusses includes distributed forces, line/axis forces and how to solve equilibrium equations. While most students found this course to be extremely helpful with a wide variety of information offered, some noted that it does not run on Chrome and instead needed to work on Firefox or Explorer to access the class.
5. Engineering Mechanics: Statics and Dynamics: Swayam
This is a free course offered by the learning website Swayam. Over eight weeks, you will learn about a variety of engineering principals that can be applied to the real world, including how certain equations are important to creating mechanical energy, kinetics and the basics of rigid bodies, joints and trusses. If you are interested in how engineering applies to the building of bridges and other load-bearing structures, you may find this bachelor-level course to your liking. Users noted that they enjoyed the convenience of the Swayam app and that the course included a list of suggested readings to enhance their learning.
6. Engineering Mechanics – Statics: Virginia Western Community College
This is a bachelor-level course. However, the school may require some prerequisites classes. There are three lecture hours per week online and completion of the course earns you three credit hours. Cost may vary depending on fees for proctored testing. The course covers inertia, vectors and concepts of force. While some students appreciated the interactive Blackboard Learning interactive tool, others found the additional testing fees and processes for this class inconvenient, which can be a major detractor for online learning. This course may be more suitable for those who live in the West Virginia area and have access to free onsite testing.
7. Engineering Mechanics: edx
This innovative online class offers certification in a variety of engineering concepts so you can apply them to problems you may encounter at your current job. Equilibrium, force, the creation of 2D and 3D diagrams and how to use mathematical equations to solve balance issues in a project are all subjects you will encounter in this course. The certification fee is $40 – $60. Many working adults appreciated that they could work at their own pace and learn when it was most convenient. The certification allowed some users of the course to advance in their workplace or apply for higher-paying jobs.
8. Engineering for Energy and the Environment: Penn State World Campus
Penn State was one of the first universities to offer online degrees and has since become a leader in distance learning. This course is part of the school’s Master of Engineering Management degree and earns you three credit hours. We found the tuition, $900 – $1,000 per credit hour, to be one of the costliest on our list, but as it is part of a master’s course, the expense is to be expected. You will learn a variety of applications that relate to renewable energy sources, how to design software for today’s environmental concerns and product information systems. This course is only one of the eleven you will need to complete before you can earn Penn State’s Master of Engineering Management degree.
9. Introduction to Engineering Mechanics: Georgia Tech/Coursera
This class is offered by the learning website Coursera with support from Georgia Tech’s online and distance learning program. If you have little or no experience with engineering or its applications, this class may be a good place for you to start. You will learn how to define and calculate moments, be introduced to equilibrium analysis techniques and how force and equilibrium affect engineering. The course takes about 10 hours to complete and includes readings and quizzes. You will have to register to enquire about tuition costs, but financial aid is available.
10. Strength of Materials: Oakton Community College
This is an online class offered by Oakton Community College for the upcoming summer 2018 semester. It is mostly focused on the strength, strain torsion and bending of beams. If you are considering a job in the engineering sector that focuses on the building of steel bridges, then this class may be an ideal choice for you. Costs may vary depending on whether you plan to take this course on its own or with other engineering courses offered during this semester. You may be able to qualify for financial aid, but it is important to inquire early. Former students found this online class to be flexible, convenient and highly applicable to real-world situations.
By now, you may have some idea about which of the above courses might best suit your educational needs. However, since each course has its own pros and cons, making a final choice can be challenging. The following guide contains tips and advice on what to look for when choosing an engineering mechanics class and which factors to consider as you narrow down your options.
Your educational budget can be a major factor in which engineering classes you choose. While low-cost and free classes can ease the strain on your wallet, it is important to remember that ultimately, you get what you pay for. Free classes may be informational and easy to access, but they may only scratch the surface of engineering concepts and only give you some of the information you need. Courses offered by non-profit or public colleges are likely to cost you several hundred dollars per credit hour, but earning a degree or certification with these institutions may be more impressive to companies and managers who review your resume.
If you believe you might qualify for financial aid, it is wise to look into any of these opportunities early. Even online schools may have stringent deadlines when it comes to turning in applications. Some schools may even require that you apply the semester before you begin your classes, as the application process may take several months to complete.
As you peruse the above courses, consider which will give you the most extras for your money. Access to recommended reading lists, help with your homework, interactive classroom forums and other perks may help you complete a course faster and with a higher grade. Supplementary learning aides, such as study guides and free textbooks, can also benefit you. Keep in mind that not all extras are offered each semester, so you may want to sign up for a class well before the deadline.
Comments From Past Students
Reviews and comments from former students can give you insight to the pros and cons of each class in a paragraph or less. This can give you an edge as you choose courses because while the schools may offer detailed descriptions of what you might learn, a former student can let you know what you might experience in the virtual classroom and details about the instructor’s teaching style. This can be important if you are a visual learner or absorb information by following step-by-step instructions.
If you do decide to browse comments or reviews from students as you choose an online school, remember to note the dates they were left. Online schools usually take steps to improve their students’ experience so reading the newer comments might give you the best idea of what it might be like to take an offered class. It is also wise to read negative comments. However, you may want to take them with a grain of salt, as students who receive a poor grade might blame the instructor.
While most students take online classes because they are convenient, some might be more flexible than others, and this is something you may want to consider as you choose from the list above. For example, some classes allow you to learn at your own pace, while others have fixed deadlines for assignments and quizzes. It is wise to consider your schedule and lifestyle before you commit to any of these classes.
For example, if you work full time during the day and want to take engineering classes to supplement what you already know or take graduate classes online, you may want to consider those that are more flexible and allow you to choose when and where you study. Being able to watch video lectures or read information at your pace may make your learning experience less stressful. Online classes that are more structured may be better suited for you if you want to earn a master’s degree and take more than a few classes at a time.
Our Final Thoughts
This list of online engineering mechanics classes is designed to help you make the most informed choice when it comes to starting or enhancing your college-level education. While a variety of factors will likely affect how you make your final choice, we hope the information presented above will help you feel more confident about your future in this exciting and innovative field, no matter your interests or which specialties you choose to pursue.
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