Mechatronics Engineering Degree Programs

Mechatronics engineering is a multidisciplinary segment of the engineering field. Rather than embrace traditional divisions of engineering as distinct entities, it combines electrical engineering, computer engineering, mechanical engineering, and control engineering.

A mechatronic engineer’s role is to unite various principles from all the above engineering disciplines to create more economic, reliable, and simplified systems. Industrial robots are a primary example of mechatronics systems, as they incorporate computing, electronics, and mechanics in performing routine tasks. Anti-lock brakes and ordinary electronic products such as PC hard drives and CD players all represent hybrid forms of mechatronics.

Mechatroncs Engineering Degree

Mechatronics engineers typically act as the link between technicians and engineers, and work from conception of a project to the completion of the project. They also assist with design, development, and testing of electrical or electronic equipment. When mechanical equipment includes electrical or electronics components (which nowadays is very likely), mechatronics engineers also design, develop, and test that machinery.

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Typical Curriculum with a Mechatronics Engineering Program

Curriculum within a mechatronics program typically includes a wide variety and blend of electrical, electronics, audio, and mechanical engineering. The study of applied mechanics, computer hardware and software, electronics and communications devices (digital and analog), materials sciences, testing and measurements, hydralics/pneumatics, and control systems are very common within any mechatronics program.

Mechatronics Engineer Courses & Training

Mechatronics Engineering
Below is a lineup of required courses typical of mechatronic engineering educational programs:

  • Electronic engineering subjects
  • Mechanical engineering subjects
  • Materials science subjects
  • Computer science subjects
  • Systems subjects
  • Control engineering subjects
  • Optical engineering subjects
  • Robotics subjects
  • MATLAB, Lab VIEW, Simulink, SolidWorks and C++ code and programming languages

Mechatronic Engineering Careers

Mechatronics engineers employ computer science and control theories alongside mechanical engineering concepts to create new products with enhanced adaptability and efficiency. Mechatronics engineering personnel routinely work with smart devices and artificial intelligence to implement, create, and test new and existing systems. Mechatronics engineers also design safety procedures for hazardous activities and research the feasibility, cost and relative pros and cons of the equipment they develop.

Due to the field’s novelty, you will rarely find the word “mechatronics” explicitly stated in job postings. The nature and scope of available positions vary as widely as the actual discipline itself. Indeed, the word “mechatronics” is derived from the terms “mechanical” and “electronic.”

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This reflects the mechatronic expert’s duty to integrate concepts from both these fields to generate practical applications. As a relatively novel discipline, mechatronics offers engineering graduates much flexibility. It is also open to a diversity of engineering backgrounds.

Some common mechatronics positions include:

  • Systems engineer
  • Electro-mechanical engineer
  • Mechanical design engineer
  • Robotics engineer
  • Software programmer
  • Electronics technician
  • Project engineer
  • Mechanical design engineer
  • Controls engineer
  • Electro-mechanical engineer
  • Mechanical modeler
  • Simulation engineer

As the above list indicates, most mechatronics engineering job listings do not include the actual term. It is therefore necessary to read the entire description of job duties in order to increase the odds of landing a suitable position.

It is also important to know the main industries that rely most heavily on mechatronics. The “Big Three” are manufacturing, automotive, and medical. Other fields that are heavy technology users are also likely to provide mechatronic jobs.

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Outlook and Caveats for the Mechatronics Engineering Field

The emergent mechatronics field offers its trainees a broad range of career options with higher-than-average starting salaries. You need to be aware of certain inherent drawbacks of the profession in order to make an informed decision, however. Many mechatronics engineering jobs require substantial prior experience of three or more years and/or a graduate degree.

Also, diverse job duties such as creating models, product implementation and testing, file maintenance, and having to interact with a variety of internal departments can be considered challenging. Despite the disadvantages, mechatronics engineering is the place to be for those who are ready to take on the challenges and play a direct role in improving the quality of life for millions of their fellow human beings.

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