With the official announcement of JEE Main Exam notification in the month December, students have already intensified their efforts to prepare for this national level engineering entrance test. With the participation of over 12 Lakh students, there is no doubt that JEE is an extremely competitive test. In the effort to crack this much-coveted engineering entrance test, students often ignore the engineering course and engineering major that they would opt for after cracking the JEE main exam. With a diverse range of options and several new and upcoming fields dominating the race, students are often confused about the best engineering specialisation they can choose. Although, all engineering branches are equally great in terms of subject knowledge as well as the employment opportunities available; it is very important for the students to make an informed choice that meet their interest as well as aptitude.
In order to help JEE Main aspirant pick the right engineering discipline, we have compiled a list of top five engineering majors. The list below includes all necessary information like the scope of study, core subject matter, employment opportunities and top institutions offering courses for each of the top engineering branches.
Computer Science / Information Technology
Computer Science and Information Technology Engineering is the most popular engineering branch in India today. With the advent of IT revolution in the past decade, the demand for software engineers and computer engineers has risen to monumental proportions in India. Therefore, it is only logical to find Computer Science and Information Technology at the top of this list.
Scope: A graduate level engineering programme like B.Tech in the field of computer science and information technology can engineers develop technical skills required to handle computer hardware and software research, development and manufacturing process. Although this discipline is relatively new to the engineering domain, its rapid expansion fuelled by the rampant need of trained and skilled computer technology professional in the IT industry. Currently, B.Tech in Computer Science or B.Tech in IT covers a diverse range of topics such as linear circuitry, data structures and digital systems along with special focus upon internet technology and associated fields and digital programme designs.
Employment: In terms of employment opportunities, there is no dearth of jobs for computer engineering and software engineers. Students are often directly hired by top technology majors like IBM, TCS, Wipro, Microsoft and Google from campus place drives at top institutes. Software engineers generally start their careers as trainee or development engineers and subsequently rise to higher designations such as design engineer, project manager and a few lucky ones even make it to the post of CTOs.
Salary: As far as pay is concerned, candidates can freshers can expect basic pay of Rs 4.5 lakh to Rs 6 lakh with a colossal rise in few years with respective promotions to Rs 20 lakh to Rs30 lakh per annum.
Top Institutes: When it comes to top institutes, apart from the obvious choices of IITs and NITs, students can also look at institutes like ISM-Dhanbad, IIIT-Hyderabad and BITS-Pilani.
Electrical / Electronic / Communication Engineering
Electrical Engineering is considered to be one of the ‘core branches’ of the domain by many experts. It is a rapidly evolving field and has thrown up many news engineering subjects from its core subject matter. The classical Electrical engineering is an evergreen field with its application spread across a variety of industrial subsets like manufacturing, healthcare, automation and power generation and distribution.
Scope: Students, who have keen interest and aptitude for physics and calculus, should opt for this field. In terms of subject scope, the field covers electronic sensors, semiconductors, linear systems of robotics, electromagnetic and circuitry. Apart from this, the new field of electronic communication has been another field that has made progress by leaps and bounds thanks to the rapid development of the telecommunications industry & mobile development sector. If you choose an undergraduate B.Tech programme in electronic communications, the course will focus upon fundamentals of communication engineering, logic design, signals and systems development, digital electronics, integrated circuits and VLSI concepts.
Employment: As far as employment opportunities are concerned, electrical engineering is a very dynamic field that finds it presence in a host of industries and business processes. The advent of innovative sub-domains like telecommunications, which are in great demand in the market, makes it one of the most lucrative engineering branch to build you career in. Top recruiters for electrical engineers include public sector units like Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL), Electronics Corporation of India Limited (ECIL) and private consumer electronics giants such as Intel, CISCO, Sony, Toshiba, Phillips, Texas Instruments, Nokia, LG and Samsung.
Salary: Being an evergreen discipline that offers excellent job opportunities in a variety of domains, there is no dearth of salary for the right electrical engineer in the industry. A fresher can expect to join a firm at the base salary range of Rs 4 Lakh to Rs 6 Lakh per year. With experience and skill enhancement in terms of architectural, implementation and design elements; senior electrical engineers can attract pay of Rs 10 to 15 Lakh annually.
Top Institutes: In addition to the most popular IITs and NITs, aspiring electrical engineers can opt for Delhi Technological University (DTU) and PEC University of Technology – Chandigarh.
Mechanical Engineering is again one of the oldest and still one of the most relevant engineering majors in the world today. Mechanics forms an integral part of a variety of machinery that we use in our daily life, therefore, the field of Mechanical Engineering has found applications in all major industrial processes. Like all other classic engineering branches, Mechanical Engineering has also come a long way to develop several sub-disciplines and sub-domains of the subject.
Scope: Mechanical Engineering deals with the mechanics of the things, be it in terms of design, construction, architecture, technology, automation and many others concepts. In simpler words, mechanical engineers are trained and skilled to be able to design, develop, construct and maintain anything and everything that moves through mechanics. This engineering branch is ideal for students, who have keen interest and ability to tackle complex combination of concepts like physics, calculus and mathematics. In terms of subject matter, B.Tech in Mechanical Engineering will cover thermodynamics, fluid mechanics, motion and momentum, robotics, computer applications and many more. The scope of mechanical engineering has further expanded to include a variety of sub-domains such as combustion engine design, material micro-construction, computer system design, biomechanics and others.
Employment: Seeking employment as a mechanical engineer is not a tough task, as the subject has found integral application in almost all major manufacturing as well as service domains. Top recruiters of mechanical engineers in India include auto majors Mahindra & Mahindra, General Motors, Fiat, Ashoka Leyland and Tata Motors. Other major companies offering lucrative job offers to mechanical engineers are ABB, ISRO, DRDO, Reliance Industries and Reliance Power Ltd.
Salary: With the advent of computer technology and IT sector, the remuneration scope of mechanical engineers has taken a slight dent. Entry level mechanical engineers can expect pay of Rs 1.3 to 3.5 Lakhs PA. Pay hikes for mechanical engineers are corroborative with enhancement of skills and experience of the candidate.
Top Institutes: Excluding the top tier IITs and NITs, students can look to Indian School of Mines –Dhanband (ISM-D), Delhi Technological University and BITS-Pilani for good mechanical engineering programmes.
Civil Engineering is probably the earliest engineering discipline to come into existence. In common parlance, one can even suggest that the foundation stone of this branch was laid, when man first decided to put a roof over his head and create a shelter for himself. A layman’s understanding of civil engineering is limited to an officer supervising construction workers, but the subject is much more than just that.
Scope: Civil Engineering is one of the most diverse engineering branches and its impact is clearly visible all around the world in the form of creative and innovative architectural marvels that we live in and around. As a subject, civil engineering will cover a variety of concepts and topics like structure design, structural mechanics, fluid mechanics, soil mechanics, water recourse engineering as well as hydraulics. In addition to this, civil engineers also have to look after economics of real estate projects being handled by them, right from the planning, design, construction and even saleability aspects. With the focus of real estate and infrastructure projects shifting to green living; civil engineers also have to double up as environmental engineers and implement projects in the most eco-friendly manner as possible.
Employment: The employment scenario for civil engineers in India has shown exponential growth the last decade. With rising demand for residential facilities as well as government push for modern infrastructural projects, there has been a significant rise in the job opportunities available to civil engineers. Top recruiters include public sector majors like Indian Railways, Public Works Department, Engineers India Ltd, DROD and ISRO. Private sector entities like Larsen & Toubro, DLF are also good options for civil engineers.
Salary: Civil Engineers are paid quite handsomely when it comes to infrastructural projects. A Fresh civil engineering graduate can expect a salary of Rs 20,000 to Rs 30,000 a month and the remuneration is likely to rise with experience and skills. A civil engineer with 10-15 year of experience can draw a salary of Rs 75,000 to 1 Lakh per month. The private sector is known to be a better paymaster however, the perks offered in public sector outweighs the incremental salary.
Top Institutes: Looking beyond the apparent options of IITs and NITs, students can look at Delhi Technological University, Birla Institute of Technology-Mersa, BITS-Pilani and ISM-Dhanbad are great institutes for civil engineering programmes.
Although, many students consider that chemical engineering has lost its sheen in the recent past, it still continues to be one of the top 5 engineering branches in India. The main reason behind the continued growth of this domain can be attributed to the high demand of chemical engineers in industries like chemical, refining, food processing and pharmaceutical sectors.
Scope: Being part of the classic engineering branches, chemical engineering has a vast scope of the subject that ranges and affects several sectors. A regular undergraduate level programme in chemical engineering familiarizes students in core concepts like chemicals, organic and inorganic chemistry, petroleum projects, pharmaceutical chemistry, chemical engineering process and many more.
Employment: One of the main reasons behind chemical engineering still being one of the most popular engineering majors is the excellent employment opportunities it offers. Chemical Engineers can land great job offers from top companies like ONGC, Essar Oil Limited, Gujarat Gas Company Limited, Indo Gulf Fertilizers Limited, Reliance Industries, Coromandel Fertilizers Limited and many others. In addition to jobs, students also have great research opportunities in the field of chemical engineering, especially in universities and research centres in India as well as abroad.
Salary: A fresh chemical engineering graduate can expect pay of Rs 15,000 to 25,000 per month, which is likely to rise significantly with experience. A candidate with 5 years of experience as a senior chemical engineer can expect Rs 30,000 and Rs 50,000 a month with perks and benefits.
Top Institutes: In terms of top institutes, students can look to IITs, NITs as well as Nirma Institute of Technology, Vellore Engineering College, BITS-Pilani, M.S. Ramaiah Institute of Technology and others.
The above list of top engineering majors has been created keeping in mind the information needed by the students to make the right choice from a long-term perspective. We hope that the list helps many confused students to pick the right engineering branch based upon their interest and aptitude.