The best schools for industrial engineering (IE) will teach you how to design and control a production system. Degree programs in the field are in-depth and comprehensive, and the best Industrial engineering universities and colleges ensure there are numerous opportunities for students.
Industrial engineers work in a broad range of industries, from research and development to manufacturing and consulting. This article discusses the best industrial engineering colleges and jobs you can find with a degree in this subject. If you’re looking into industrial engineering education, we list the best industrial engineering schools and include everything from a certificate to a doctoral degree.
Best Industrial Engineering College and University Rankings: Top 10 Industrial Engineering Schools at a Glance
|School||State||Formats Available||US News Ranking|
|Auburn University||AL||Online, in-person||99|
|Binghamton University||NY||Online, in-person||83|
|Clemson University||SC||Online, in-person||75|
|Columbia University||NY||Online, in-person||2|
|Kennesaw State University||GA||Online, in-person||299-391|
|North Carolina State University||NC||Online, in-person||79|
|Northwestern University||IL||Online, in-person||9|
|Texas A&M University||TX||Online, in-person||68|
|Texas Tech University||TX||Online, in-person||213|
|University of Michigan-Ann Arbor||MI||Online, in-person||23|
Industrial Engineering School Rankings: Best Industrial Engineering Colleges and Universities
These ten schools hold some of the best programs for industrial engineering degrees in the nation. Each one also lets you choose between an in-person and online format, which is good for flexibility. Below, we go into more detail on each school and its industrial engineering programs.
The Best Schools for Industrial Engineering: Types of College Degrees and University Programs Offered
Below is a list of the various degree types and university programs offered in industrial engineering. We look at everything from undergraduate certificates to doctorates and which schools offer them.
Comparing Popular Degree Options
Best Industrial Engineering Schools: Other Industrial Engineering University Rankings
The best industrial engineering schools are the College of Engineering at Columbia University, Northwestern University, and the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. Even though some schools may have a lower university rating on US News & World Report, they can have a highly-rated college of engineering department.
Beyond industrial engineering university rankings, choosing the best industrial engineering colleges for you depends on what you are looking for in a program. You may want online degree programs or a dual degree program. Below we have listed the best degrees in each area to help you make an informed decision.
Best Online Industrial Engineering Schools
- Kennesaw State University. Kennesaw State University is a quality and affordable university that offers an online industrial engineering technology bachelor’s degree. Students may take the program in an online or hybrid format.
- North Carolina State University. The university’s master’s program is offered online and is one of the best terminal degrees in industrial engineering. The degree prepares students for positions in consulting, industry, and government.
- Texas Tech University. Texas Tech University is a productive research institution with an excellent online master’s program in industrial engineering. Online students can choose from five specializations for the online program.
Best Community Colleges for Industrial Engineering
- California Community Colleges. California Community Colleges offer various programs in industrial engineering. Students may choose to get an associate degree or a certificate. California Community Colleges has low tuition rates and offers quality education and career support.
- Rowan-Cabarrus Community College. This community college has some of the best technical programs and offers an Associate of Applied Science degree, a diploma, a certificate, and a management certificate in industrial engineering technology.
- Sinclair Community College. Sinclair Community College is one of the most renowned community colleges offering quality education. They offer an Associate of Applied Science in Industrial Engineering Technology.
Best Undergraduate Schools for Industrial Engineering
- Columbia University. The Bachelor’s program of Columbia University for IE has a comprehensive curriculum emphasizing a quantitative approach. Columbia University is one of the most prestigious schools, offering high-quality education.
- Kennesaw State University. Kennesaw State University offers two different bachelor’s degrees in IE. One integrates systems engineering with IE, while the other focuses on industrial engineering technology. Undergraduates can choose between two paths with first-rate curricular content.
- University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. This top university in Ann Arbor offers an excellent bachelor’s degree concentrating in industrial and operations engineering. It is one of the best schools for undergraduates who want the freedom to choose between various specializations for their bachelor’s degrees.
Best Graduate Schools for Industrial Engineering
- Auburn University. Auburn University is an excellent public school that offers two master’s degree programs in industrial and systems engineering and one PhD. Graduate students who attend this school will enjoy a diverse curriculum and research work opportunities.
- Binghamton University. Binghamton University offers different concentration paths for students who wish to pursue a master’s degree in industrial and systems engineering. The school also offers a PhD program for students to transition to after completing their master’s degree.
- University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. The University of Michigan offers a Master’s Degree in Industrial and Operations Engineering that students can personalize to a particular focus area. They also have a PhD program that ensures the student has sufficient research and skills training.
Best Industrial Engineering Schools With Dual Degree Programs
- Auburn University | MISE/MBA program. This is a 55-hour program that allows students to gain two master’s degrees in a shorter time frame. The dual degree includes a Master’s in Business Administration and a Master’s in Industrial and Systems Engineering. These two industries tend to work closely together, making them one of the best dual degree programs.
- Northwestern University | Combined Degree Programs. Northwestern University offers multiple combined degree programs. Engineering students of all types have the opportunity to earn a degree in liberal arts, music, medicine, or communication at the same time as their engineering degree.
- Oregon State University | Double Degree in Manufacturing Engineering and Industrial Engineering. Oregon State University offers a dual bachelor’s degree program in industrial engineering and manufacturing engineering. The program requires the completion of an extra 32 credits.
Best Schools With Accelerated Industrial Engineering Programs
- Binghamton University | Watson College 4+1 Program. Binghamton University offers students the opportunity to take their Bachelor of Science and Master of Science in Industrial and Systems Engineering at an accelerated pace. By senior year, they may start taking up to three graduate courses. Students can also choose to match their BS in Industrial and Systems Engineering with an MS in Systems Science.
- Clemson University | Combined Bachelor of Science/Master of Science. The combined BS/MS program in industrial engineering allows students to take graduate courses and earn graduate credits in their senior year of undergraduate studies. It helps accelerate their studies and reduces time spent to earn their bachelor’s and master’s degrees.
- University of Michigan-Ann Arbor | Sequential Undergraduate/Graduate Studies Program (SUGS). This program offered by the University of Michigan allows students to accelerate their bachelor’s and master’s degrees in any field. Students complete their master’s degree with only two extra semesters added to their bachelor’s.
Easy Colleges to Get Into
Is Graduate School for Industrial Engineering Worth It?
Yes, a graduate school for industrial engineering is worth it. It’s a competitive industry, and getting a master’s degree or higher can give you an edge over other candidates. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average growth rate for industrial engineers is 14 percent. This growth rate is faster than average.
What Jobs Can You Do With an Industrial Engineering Degree?
Jobs you can do with an industrial engineering degree include roles in manufacturing, quality assurance, health and safety, and industry. You can also become a professor if you have a PhD. You should land a well-paying job as long as you have an accredited education from the best industrial engineering universities and colleges.
How Much Can I Earn With a Degree in Industrial Engineering?
You can earn between $30,000 and $127,000 per year with a degree in industrial engineering, according to PayScale. A bachelor’s degree can make you a salary of $80,000 per year, while a master’s degree can get you $95,000 per year. A PhD holder can earn an average salary of $127,000 per year.
Highest-Paying Industrial Engineering Careers
|Profession||Minimum Education||Average Salary|
|Sales Engineers||Bachelor’s degree||$103,710|
|Industrial Production Managers||Bachelor’s degree||$103,150|
|Health and Safety Engineers||Bachelor’s degree||$99,040|
|Industrial Engineers||Bachelor’s degree||$95,300|
|Postsecondary Teachers / Professors||Master’s degree or PhD||$79,640|
|Industrial Designers||Bachelor’s degree||$77,030|
|Process Engineers||Bachelor’s degree||$75,686|
|Cost Estimators||Bachelor’s degree||$65,170|
|Industrial Engineering Technologists and Technicians||Associate’s degree||$60,220|
Best Jobs With an Industrial Engineering Degree
Some of the best jobs with an industrial engineering degree are sales engineers, industrial production managers, and health and safety engineers. However, whether or not you have access to the jobs you want may depend on your degree level. Below, we detail the available positions for each degree type.
How Can I Pay for Industrial Engineering School?
You can pay for industrial engineering school by looking for scholarships, grants, and work-study programs. You can find several of these by filling out the FAFSA in the school application process. College costs, including university housing, can be expensive, and many need to alleviate student debt by applying for funding.
- Scholarships. Scholarships tend to be merit-based, so try to perform well academically to be eligible for as many scholarships as possible. Many of these scholarships will need a FAFSA application with other additional applications and requirements.
- Work-study program. You can get a job at your college while studying, and it will significantly lessen the cost of your tuition. These jobs will often be related to your major, which will help you gain more experience.
- Grants and funding. If you are financially disadvantaged, you are probably eligible for some federal and private grants. Seek these out to lessen your tuition costs without the need for a loan.
- Employer sponsorship. If you’re looking to attain graduate degrees and are currently employed, your employer may be willing to sponsor you. If you’re reliable and performing well in your job, a graduate degree will add value to your company.
How to Pay for Your Chosen School Education Path
Choosing the Best Industrial Engineering School for You
To choose the best industrial engineering school for you, you should consider factors like the accreditation and the degree levels offered by the school. This will help you make a wise choice while considering the quality of education and your own goals.
The school’s accreditation is one of the most crucial factors. Ideally, ABET-accredited schools ensure the best engineering program. The school and program you choose should have industry-standard accreditations to provide quality engineering education.
The degree levels offered by a school are also very important, especially if you plan to pursue multiple. For a smooth curriculum transition, it would be more convenient for undergraduate students to pursue their graduate studies at the same school.
You should also ensure that the curricular content meets your expectations. An IE curriculum should cover project management and operations research. It should also teach you in-depth mathematical skills, including linear programming.
The cost is one of the first and most important factors. Education can get expensive, but not all quality schools have to be a considerable burden on your finances. Go through each program and school to choose one that offers quality education without over-the-top tuition rates. You can find ways to cut costs by studying online programs, as they are sometimes cheaper than in-person programs.
Consider the school’s reputation for its programs, facilities, and student career services. This information will help you gain insight into whether a school and program are worth it or not. A school with a well-known reputation can also help your resume stand out to potential employers.
How to Get Into the Right School for Your Profession
Does It Matter What College I Go to for Industrial Engineering?
Yes, it matters what college and program you go to for industrial engineering. Choosing the correct college helps ensure that the education you will be getting is high quality and taught by competent faculty. Your effort and how you use all learning resources will still play a large part in your skills and expertise.
Industrial Engineering University Ranking Methodology: How We Ranked the Best Schools for Industrial Engineering
We ranked the best industrial engineering schools by consulting the university rankings conducted by US News & World Report and Times Higher Education. To further refine our industrial engineering university ranking methodology, we gave special consideration to things like reputation, graduation rate, student-to-faculty ratio, and breadth and depth of industrial engineering degree program offerings.
Additional Reading About Industrial Engineering
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Best Industrial Engineering Schools FAQ
The more expensive industrial engineering schools will not necessarily provide better education. They will most likely have better facilities and more finances to fund various activities and projects, but these are not the basis of quality education.
Yes, a school with accelerated options is a good choice if you wish to get your degree faster. It saves time for the student while still providing the same amount of training and education.
You do not have to get your undergraduate and graduate degrees at the same school, but it will have benefits. Most schools structure the curricula of their undergraduate and graduate degrees in a way that they build off each other so that it will be a smoother transition.
Yes, industrial engineering schools will help you land internships while studying. Most colleges have career services and career fairs to help students meet potential employers and jumpstart their careers.
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