Plastics & Polymer Engineering
Types of Degrees Plastics & Polymer Engineering Majors Are Getting
The following table lists how many plastics and polymer engineering technology/technician graduations there were in 2020-2021 for each degree level.
|Education Level||Number of Grads|
What Plastics & Polymer Engineering Majors Need to Know
In an O*NET survey, plastics and polymer engineering tech majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.
Knowledge Areas for Plastics and Polymer Engineering Tech Majors
This major prepares you for careers in which these knowledge areas are important:
- Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
- Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
- Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
- Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
- Design - Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Skills for Plastics and Polymer Engineering Tech Majors
A major in plastics and polymer engineering tech prepares you for careers in which the following skill-sets are crucial:
- Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Mathematics - Using mathematics to solve problems.
- Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
- Systems Analysis - Determining how a system should work and how changes in conditions, operations, and the environment will affect outcomes.
- Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
Abilities for Plastics and Polymer Engineering Tech Majors
Plastics and Polymer Engineering Tech majors often go into careers where the following abilities are vital:
- Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Mathematical Reasoning - The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.
- Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
- Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
What Can You Do With a Plastics & Polymer Engineering Major?
People with a plastics and polymer engineering tech degree often go into the following careers:
|Job Title||Job Growth Rate||Median Salary|
|Manufacturing Engineering Technologists||5.2%||$63,200|
Who Is Getting an Associate’s Degree in Plastics & Polymer Engineering?
At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of plastics and polymer engineering tech majors is as follows:
|Race/Ethnicity||Number of Grads|
|Black or African American||1|
|Hispanic or Latino||5|
How Much Do Plastics & Polymer Engineering Majors Make?
Salaries According to BLS
The median salary for someone in a career related to plastics and polymer engineering tech is $65,720. This median refers to all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.
To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.
Amount of Education Required for Careers Related to Plastics & Polymer Engineering
Some careers associated with plastics and polymer engineering tech require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.
Find out what the typical degree level is for plastics and polymer engineering tech careers below.
|Education Level||Percentage of Workers|
|High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED)||9.1%|
|Some College Courses||4.6%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||40.9%|
Online Plastics & Polymer Engineering Programs
In 2020-2021, 45 schools offered a plastics and polymer engineering tech program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.
|Degree Level||Colleges Offering Programs||Colleges Offering Online Classes|
|Certificate (Less Than 1 Year)||0||0|
|Certificate (1-2 years)||14||0|
|Certificate (2-4 Years)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Research)||1||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Other)||0||0|
Is a Degree in Plastics & Polymer Engineering Worth It?
The median salary for a plastics and polymer engineering tech grad is $65,720 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.
This is 65% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $516,400 after 20 years!
Explore Major by State
District of Columbia
Trades Related to Plastics & Polymer Engineering
You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to plastics and polymer engineering tech.
*The racial-ethnic minorities count is calculated by taking the total number of students and subtracting white students, international students, and students whose race/ethnicity was unknown. This number is then divided by the total number of students at the school to obtain the racial-ethnic minorities percentage.
- College Factual
- College Scorecard
- National Center for Education Statistics
- O*NET Online
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers First Quarter 2020
- Image Credit: By ICAPlants under License
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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