Top 7 Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees for 2023

Best Online Engineering Doctorate Colleges - badge

Mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, and aerospace engineering are just a few of the specializations available in the engineering field.

While a master’s degree helps you start your career as an engineer, earning a doctorate will increase your chances of landing a better position that pays more. 

Featured Programs

Online Doctorates in Engineering provides you with the opportunity to obtain a high-quality education while spending little time on campus.

This study enables students to perform ground-breaking research and answer issues in various sectors, including the environment, technology, healthcare, and aerospace. The job of engineers has a direct impact on the lives of individuals from all walks of life.

Typically, a doctorate in engineering takes 3-5 years to complete. A student’s enrollment status and job background, the specific engineering area, and the degree requirements are all factors that determine program length.

Professionals with a doctorate in engineering are frequently qualified for technical leadership positions in the business and governmental sectors and tenure-track academic jobs.

Quick audio summary:

cc methodology

We will assist you in taking the shortest path to your Doctorate in Engineering! This list includes ten colleges in the United States that provide online Engineering Ph.D. degrees and accept advanced scholars. 

College Cliffs has selected to include the Top 10 Online Schools for Easy Online and Hybrid Doctoral in Engineering Programs in random order so that you can carefully investigate each choice to choose the program that is right for you! These factors were taken into account:

– Asynchronous classwork is available via an easy-to-use Learning Management System.
– Outstanding instructors experts in their fields of study will instruct you.
– Graduates have access to job placement, career services, and networking opportunities.
– It provides a choice of simple online doctoral degree options, allowing students to get their graduate degree through accelerated programs, save money, and complete a Ph.D. while retaining their present employment and family responsibilities.
– The dissertation process is simple; it is frequently performed entirely through the online distance learning format.

Of course, we only included accredited online Ph.D. in engineering schools! Accreditation is critical for the acceptance, dependability, and authenticity of online doctoral programs. Without it, students put in the effort without reaping the benefits. 

Explore our Methodology page to see how we came up with the 10 Best Online Programs.

7 Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees

National University

This non-profit university provides one of the world’s greatest fully online doctorate degrees, with no physical residency restrictions.

Students at National University can complete an Engineering Management, Ph.D.-TIM degree program without visiting the campus. Students can swiftly take the next stage in their studies with weekly course starts.

The Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) degree is a research-based program that prepares leaders for roles in the private and public sectors by strengthening knowledge and competencies relevant to a leadership role in technology management and administration.

Students who complete the Ph.D. program are required to have a broad knowledge of business and technology management and comprehension of at least one specialty area of study. A Ph.D. demands both original ideas and a high methodological/scientific rigor in a particular area.


San Diego, California


  • WASC Senior College and University Commission
  • Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology

Program Features:

  • Students are encouraged to contribute to the existing body of technology management theory and practice. In addition, they will develop strategies for managing technology and innovation in global organizations.
  • Learn to evaluate ethical and risk management theories in computers and emerging technologies. Communicate with diverse audiences on technology and innovation theories, applications, and views.
  • Create technology and innovation knowledge based on a synthesis of current theories.

Course Options:

  • Quality Management
  • Engineering Law
  • Data Warehousing & Decision Support
  • Systems Analysis & Design
  • IT Project Management
  • Quantitative Methods for Data Analytics and Business Intelligence


  • GPA of 3.0 or higher
  • Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree from an accredited institution
  • Official transcripts
  • Resume
  • Statement of Purpose


Financial Aid:

  • Title IV
  • Veterans Administration benefits
  • Grants
  • Private Education Loan

What’s Unique About The Program:

Students can tailor their courses around their schedules because there are no planned lecture hours or group assignments. Graduates can lead engineering and information systems efforts in the government, corporate, and non-profit sectors.

Mississippi State University

Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees 2

Mississippi State University is a comprehensive, doctoral-granting university with a student body both nationally and internationally diversified.

Ph.D. students can take advantage of a wide range of opportunities and challenges for learning and growth; the world of knowledge can benefit from vigorous and expanding contributions in research, discovery, and application, and people in every region of Mississippi can take advantage of a variety of expert services.

Mississippi State University offers a fantastic chance to pursue a doctorate in Aerospace Engineering with eleven distinct specialties. This renowned institution of higher education provides superb online and on-campus choices.

Nonetheless, all students have access to cutting-edge facilities and resources, such as the low-speed wind tunnel and the two-stage light gas cannon, fully operational on the Mississippi State University campus.


Mississippi State, Mississippi


  • Higher Learning Commission
  • Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology

Program Features:

  • This degree prepares students for a future as a faculty member in academia or a lucrative researcher in industry or government.
  • A doctoral student typically completes at least 50 hours of classroom work beyond the master’s degree, with 20 hours devoted to dissertation research.

Course Options:

  • Aeroacoustics
  • Aerodynamics
  • Aeroelasticity
  • Autonomous systems
  • Structures and composites
  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • Design optimization
  • Fatigue and fracture
  • Fluid-structure interaction
  • Guidance and control
  • Nondestructive evaluation


  • EAC/ABET Accredited BS degree in Aerospace Engineering or a closely related field, with a 3.00/4.00 GPA for the junior and senior years. 
  • GRE general test scores
  • TOEFL examination: minimum score of 550 PBT (79 iBT) or an IELTS score of 6.5.
  • ABETM.S. degree in Aerospace Engineering or a closely related field.
  • Graduates from an EAC/ABET-accredited program will receive the highest consideration.


  • $514 per credit hour

Financial Aid:

  • Scholarship
  • Grant
  • Assistantship
  • Fellowship

What’s Unique About The Program:

  • The curriculum is planned, implemented, and delivered by industry specialists, and it is always maintained up to date to reflect all advances in aerospace engineering. For students who meet the requirements, there is also an accelerated program available!
  • The program urges students to form a committee of at least three people, including a major professor who is a member of the Aerospace graduate faculty. 

Atlantic International University

Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees 3

Atlantic International University is well regarded and respected in over 110 countries.

The Online Doctor of Civil Engineering (D.Sc) program assists students in designing a highly personalized program of study. It leads to the completion of a dissertation intended to make a significant contribution in their chosen field. This degree is ideal for top research engineers seeking administrative or management jobs in the engineering business.

Candidates with a Doctor of Civil Engineering degree might choose a specialty field. Geotechnical, structural, construction and management, transportation, and environmental are some examples. This Doctor of Civil Engineering degree comprises coursework, exams, and dissertation research.


Honolulu, Hawaii


Accreditation Service for International Schools, Colleges and Universities

Program Features:

  • This program is intended to advance the professional development of experienced civil engineering graduates and professionals in the civil engineering arena by broadening their knowledge and equipping them with broad research and process civil engineering skills, allowing them to make a significant leadership contribution to their chosen fields.

Course Options:

  • Engineering Fracture Mechanics
  • Environmental Chemistry
  • Environmental Biological Processes
  • Viscoelasticity of Solids and Structures
  • Municipal and Industrial Wastewater Treatment Processes
  • Geotechnical Site Investigations
  • Transportation Demand Models
  • Structural Engineering
  • Construction Management Engineering
  • Hydrology
  • Earthquake Engineering
  • Traffic Engineering and Control


  • Admissions Application
  • Curriculum vitae
  • References from two persons (professional and academic communities)
  • A master’s degree in Engineering from a recognized program, or the equivalent
  • Example of scholarly research or professional writing in any format 
  • Published or unpublished research, contributions to the professional or scholarly literature, thesis, and other professional or academic experience


  • $250 per credit hour

Financial Aid:

  • Grants
  • Scholarship
  • Federal PLUS loan

What’s Unique About The Program:

Doctoral students can undertake the same research as their graduate peers. Students are not required to study a standard curriculum. Instead, the ideal plan of study is created following a consultation with an advisor. This strategy is intended to help students build a schedule that meets both their academic and personal demands.

Penn State University

Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees 6

Penn State’s College of Information System Technology provides a wide range of academic backgrounds, including Computer Science, Social Sciences, Health Sciences, Philosophy, and others. Through Penn State World Campus’s Online Learning, the Information System Technology Program offers an industry-focused and practitioner-informed Ph.D. in Computer Science and Engineering. Students must take between 21 and 33 credits, depending on whether they have an MS or not.

Penn State’s educational platform, GradSense, assists its students in keeping costs down. It is available to help prospective students in making the most cost-effective educational decisions. 

Historically, students were sponsored during their four-year curriculum based on their academic standing. This is the most cost-effective Ph.D. program.


State College, Pennsylvania


  • Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Accreditation Board for Engineering Technology

Program Features:

  • Improve your knowledge of complicated networks, computer architecture, and computational methods and code.
  • Introduced to cutting-edge technologies and artificial intelligence systems.

Course Options:

  • Cryptography
  • Information security
  • Database systems
  • Compilers
  • Software engineering
  • Computational theory


  • A one-page statement of purpose
  • Scores from the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) Aptitude Test (verbal, quantitative, and analytical)
  • TOEFL/IELTS (international applicants)
  • Test of Spoken English (TSE) or the TOEFL iBT. 
  • Bachelor’s and Master’s degree from an accredited institution(s)


Financial Aid:

  • Scholarships
  • Fellowships
  • Assistantships
  • Loans

What’s Unique About The Program:

This program features one of the best mentoring programs offered anywhere in the globe. Mentors stay in touch with their students long after they graduate to ensure their success. Mentors provide specific, timely, and constructive performance feedback, including class performance and milestone experiences. They also give resources for research, funding, internships, employment, and other professional possibilities.

University of North Dakota

Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees 8

One of the best and cheapest online Ph.D. in energy engineering is offered by the University of North Dakota. This UND graduate program focuses on the fundamentals of energy engineering and individual research and job preparation. Students will have the freedom to tailor their Ph.D. programs to their interests.

As a world leader in energy-related research and teaching, you’ll have access to one of the best doctoral programs in energy engineerin


Grand Forks, North Dakota


  • Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges & Schools
  • Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology

Program Features:

  • Students will understand key issues in energy engineering and be able to apply them to practical research situations. They will be an expert in research, creating, evaluating, and recording a theory.
  • Students will be capable of designing, conducting, and supervising self-contained energy or energy-related research project.
  • Students can expand their options in a range of energy-related sectors or pursue a career in academics.

Course Options:

  • Energy and Public Policy Analysis
  • Energy Research and Independent Study
  • Alternative Energy Systems
  • Computational Fluid Dynamics


  • Engineering discipline (BS degree) from an ABET-accredited program with a GPA of at least 3.0 
  • Engineering discipline (MS degree) with a GPA of at least 3.0. 
  • GRE Test for those with undergraduate degrees from non-ABET accredited programs.
  •  English Language Proficiency test score


Financial Aid:

  • Scholarships
  • Grants
  • Loans

What’s Unique About The Program:

The University of North Dakota’s School of Graduate Studies is one of the finest values in the country, with lower tuition and fees than comparable Midwest four-year doctorate universities. You can study from great experts and conduct life-changing research for a low tuition fee. Furthermore, there is no residency requirement for this degree.

University of South Carolina-Columbia

Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees 9

The top online Ph.D. in Nuclear Engineering is available from the University of North Carolina. Whether online or on-campus, students in nuclear engineering will collaborate with faculty in various laboratories to research nuclear fuels and structural materials, thermal hydraulics, and sophisticated modeling and simulation.


Columbia, South Carolina


  • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges
  • Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology

Program Features:

  • Students will learn to define, explain, and calculate the quantity of radioactivity involved with nuclear processes and reactor operation.
  • Students will learn how to control material reactivity effects, temperature fluctuations, and fission product poisoning are described and computed. They will also know how to cycle evaluation in terms of processing, costs, and relative benefits.
  • Students will be guided to describe and compute neutron slowing and thermalization processes required in modern reactor physics codes for constructing and assessing nuclear reactors.

Course Options:

  • Introduction to Nuclear Engineering
  • Nuclear Fuel Cycles
  • Radiation Shielding
  • Reactor Systems


  • Bachelor Degree or Master’s Degree from an accredited institution(s)
  • Official College Transcript(s)
  • Recommendation/Reference Letter(s)
  • TOEFL/IELTS (international students)
  • GRE scores
  • PTE Academic score


Financial Aid:

  • Grants
  • Loans
  • Scholarships
  • Student Employment
  • Exchange Programs

What’s Unique About The Program:

Students in the program can take extra engineering and technical electives. They are given a chance to customize their nuclear engineering program of study to their specific interests with the help of a faculty advisor.

Auburn University

Best Online Doctor of Engineering Degrees 10

Fiber and polymer-based materials are becoming increasingly significant in the hunt for more sustainable alternatives. If you’re interested in this field, a degree in Polymer and Fiber Engineering is a great place to start.

Auburn University has an online Ph.D. degree in Polymer and Fiber Engineering. Students are prepared for jobs in research and development, process engineering, product development, composite and polymer engineering, technical services, quality assurance engineering, and technical sales in the public and commercial sectors through the program.

If you hold a master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering, Polymer Science, Materials Engineering, or a related field and wish to further your studies, this program may be for you.


Auburn, Alabama


  • Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Commission on Colleges
  • Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology

Program Features:

  • Students will identify, analyze, synthesize, and evaluate polymer and fiber construction standards. Graduates can use their expertise in several advanced engineering employment possibilities.

Course Options:

  • Structure and properties of polymers and fibers
  • Engineered fibrous structures
  • Polymer and fiber engineering design
  • Rheology
  • Polymer chemistry
  • Unique problems and fiber engineering


  • Master Degree
  • GPA 3.0 or above (4.0 scale)
  • GRE
  • Official College Transcript(s)
  • Recommendation/Reference Letter(s)
  • Resume/CV
  • Statement of Purpose/Intent


  • $949 per credit hour

Financial Aid:

  • Grants
  • Scholarship
  • Loans

What’s Unique About The Program:

The multidisciplinary Doctor of Philosophy in Fiber and Polymer Science program combines the disciplines of mathematics, 

Frequently Asked Questions

Why get a degree in Engineering?

Although a doctorate in engineering involves a significant time and financial investment, the advantages frequently surpass the expenditures. Engineers with a doctorate often have various benefits, including the five listed below.

  • Higher Salary: According to the BLS, professionals with doctoral degrees earn approximately 17% more than those with master’s degrees and about 30% more than those with bachelor’s degrees. 
  • Increased Research Opportunities: Doctor of engineering degrees provide students with numerous opportunities to do in-depth research on a wide range of topics with far-reaching ramifications.
  • Improved Employment Opportunities: According to BLS data, doctoral degree holders had the second-lowest unemployment rate among US workers, at 1.7 percent. Only professionals, such as doctors and lawyers, have a lower unemployment rate (1.5 percent ).
  • Professional Advancement: Engineers with a doctorate are more likely to be offered leadership positions by companies due to their considerable training and breadth of expertise in the industry.
  • Job Security: Tenure-track academic positions in colleges and universities in the United States sometimes require candidates to have a terminal degree in their subject. A doctorate in engineering meets this prerequisite.
Engineering courses
What are the common courses for a Doctorate in Engineering?

Many doctors of engineering programs require students to finish at least 90 courses above their bachelor’s degree or 60 credits beyond their master’s degree. Schools that provide both on-campus and online Ph.D. programs in engineering often have the same academic requirements for all students, regardless of the delivery schedule their program uses.

Students study a range of coursework since each school has a curriculum that supports their academic aims and engineering focus. Here are some of the common doctor of engineering classes.

Simulation Modeling

Students learn how to model various types of engineering applications using some tools. The course gives students numerous opportunities to develop their abilities to complete engineering and scientific computations for research and design. 

The course includes integrated modeling, computational model verification and validation, synthesis and simulation, and multidisciplinary optimization. Students acquire hands-on experience by improving the capabilities of their simulation projects.

Systems Engineering Architecture

This course covers an overview of object-oriented design principles and the essential features of a model-based system architecture approach. Students learn how to create new architectures or optimize current ones to handle complex information-intensive systems. 

Enterprise architectures, implementable architecture models, information assurance, and reference frameworks are among the topics covered. Degree candidates must demonstrate mastery of course material by completing an architecture project on a system of their choice.

Engineering Project And Program Management

Students investigate various areas of program management as the practice is closely related to highly sophisticated engineering projects. 

Risk assessment, costing options, control measures, and job breakdown structures are among the subjects covered in the course. 

Practitioners who work on or manage a technical team learn new abilities like analyzing and improving team activities, organizing project needs, and setting realistic goals. The course prepares students to take the Project Management Institute’s certification exam.

Engineering Risk Analysis

This course will teach students how to identify and evaluate risks in engineering systems and projects. Students will learn how to reduce system uncertainty and predict potential risks by implementing tried-and-true risk-mitigation measures. 

The course offers case studies that show effective and timely risk responses in several businesses and settings. Students will learn to prioritize and implement risk management strategies based on costs and rewards.

Engineering Optimization: Methods And Applications

Students balance theory and practice when working with complicated electrical, environmental, civil, and industrial engineering systems.

The course covers a variety of optimization techniques, including linear programming, network flow algorithms, mathematical modeling, and interior-point approaches. For classwork and course projects, students must be comfortable with Python and MATLAB as computational tools. Students can benefit from built-in tutorials.

What is the career and salary outlook for Engineers with a Doctorate?

Engineers contribute significantly to professional fields such as agriculture, aircraft, electronics, and computer hardware.

Engineers with advanced degrees frequently qualify for top pay and leadership roles, as well as access to cutting-edge research in their field. The four engineering careers listed below represent only a small portion of the available career paths for well-qualified engineers.

Aerospace Engineer

Aerospace engineering is one of those professions in which you are responsible for the safety of others. As an aerospace engineer, you will design and test airplanes, planes, and aerospace machines. You could concentrate your research on a specific aspect of aerospace, such as thermodynamics, acoustics, aerodynamics, or propulsion. 

You can specialize in aeronautical engineering, which involves working on an aircraft, or astronautical engineering that involves spacecraft and satellites. The research component of the Ph.D. can prepare students to work with prestigious and advanced research programs.

Mechanical Engineer

Turbines, electric generators, internal combustion engines, freezers, and air conditioning systems are just a few of the machinery that these specialists build and maintain.

They also test mechanical and thermal equipment and sensors and carry out improvement and maintenance processes. Mechanical engineering has various subspecialties, such as automotive, robotics, and HVAC systems engineering.

Environmental Engineer

These engineers, who frequently collaborate with urban planners, hazardous-waste experts, and scientists, research and develop solutions to ozone depletion, carbon dioxide emissions, and climate change.

Environmental engineers who work with municipal governments frequently assess the ecological impact of construction projects, design methods for treating and managing hazardous waste and create long-term sustainability strategies.

Electrical and Electronics Engineer

These engineers use their understanding of engineering equipment and design software to solve a variety of engineering problems. They are primarily responsible for designing electrical equipment such as radar and navigation systems, power generators, and electric motors.

Electronics engineers create electronic gadgets such as communication and recording equipment, GPS devices, and computer hardware.

Nuclear Engineer

Nuclear engineers work in nuclear energy, designing and testing nuclear equipment such as radiation shields. You will be in charge of the nuclear power plant’s equipment. You will also conduct tests to ensure that safety standards and laws are followed and that equipment is functioning correctly. 

In addition, you will draft protocols for nuclear waste disposal and plant shutdown scenarios. For entry-level positions, many businesses prefer candidates with master’s degrees and PhDs; therefore, a Ph.D. in engineering would be quite valuable for anyone seeking a career in this industry.

Materials Engineer

Materials engineers collaborate with other engineers to assess the use and efficacy of materials used in the construction of machinery and goods. You could specialize in one material type, such as ceramics or plastics. You can, however, analyze new applications for these materials, research the use of new material kinds, and examine how the materials hold up over time. 

You might also provide budgets and reports for other engineers and project managers to assist them in determining which materials will perform best. A Ph.D. can help you become a professional engineer and gain the research and writing abilities you’ll need for this vocation.

Post-secondary Teacher

These individuals create course syllabi, prepare lectures and other classroom activities, and evaluate students’ progress. They also stay current on the newest research discoveries and innovations in their profession.

Most postsecondary educators collaborate with colleagues from other disciplines to identify shared areas of instruction and expose their students to interdisciplinary learning.

Engineering college
Are there any available independent scholarships for Doctor in Engineering programs?

A doctorate in engineering is likely to be one of the most expensive degrees ever offered. Many people want to pursue the highest level of education possible for various reasons, but the cost of education is a barrier. They may have a particular lifestyle or familial duty that necessitates additional funding.

Colleges and universities that provide doctorate degrees in engineering also support doctoral students, common in fellowships. Several independent organizations and private philanthropic associations, on the other hand, provide a variety of financial support packages. The five programs listed below are some of the possible financial aid options for students pursuing a doctorate in engineering.

ASCE Trent R. Dames and William W. Moore Fellowship

Applications are accepted by professional engineers and earth scientists currently enrolled in a graduate engineering program by the American Society of Civil Engineers. 

  • Applicants must be current ASCE members. 
  • Applicants for the fellowship must submit a research project, preferably addressing geotechnical engineering elements of environmental, political, or socioeconomic challenges.

Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship Program

Students seeking a master’s or doctorate in the transportation industry are eligible to apply. Civil, environmental, mechanical, and structural engineering are among the engineering specialties that qualify. US citizens and international are welcome to apply. 

  • Applicants must maintain full-time enrollment status during their program participation.

AAUW Dissertation Fellowship

Doctoral applicants who identify as female may apply to the American Association of University Women’s program. 

  • Applicants should be in their final year of the dissertation. 
  • Applicants pursuing a doctorate in any discipline are welcome to apply, but doctoral candidates in engineering are especially encouraged to apply.

AGC Education and Research Foundation Graduate Scholarship

The Associated General Contractors of America administers this program, which accepts students seeking a doctoral degree in construction management or engineering. 

  • Applicants must submit two completed assessment forms from an academic advisor, a current (or former) employment, and other application requirements.

The Link Foundation Ocean Engineering and Instrumentation Ph.D. Fellowship

Doctoral students pursuing a full-time degree in ocean engineering and instrumentation are encouraged to apply. Fellowships assist doctorate students in meeting their living expenses. The fellowship funding cannot be used to pay for tuition, overhead research expenditures, support staff salaries, or compensation for a research adviser.

How long does it take to earn a Doctor of Engineering degree, and what other factors should I think about while considering earning a Doctor of Engineering degree?

Earning a doctor of engineering degree requires a significant commitment of time and resources. Consider the amount of time you have available for your studies, as well as the cost of tuition and other associated expenses that come with earning a degree.

Most Doctor of Engineering degree programs are typically completed in three to five years, although the exact time frame can vary. Other considerations include:

  • Specialization: Make sure you research the various specializations available in an engineering doctorate program to find one that best fits your interests and goals.
  • Reputation: It is important to consider the reputation of the engineering doctorate program when making your decision. Consider the quality of faculty, faculty-student ratio, and other related factors that will affect the quality of the program.
  • On-Campus vs. Online Learning: Determine whether you prefer traditional on-campus learning or if an online engineering doctorate program fits better with your lifestyle and schedule.
  • Career Advancement: Consider the degree’s potential to help you advance in your career. Make sure the degree will be recognized and help you achieve your long-term professional goals.