Career FAQs: Engineering

What are the skills required to do well in this career?
Man has always asked questions and he has always sought answers. But today, we are seeking answers and asking questions on a scale which is unprecedented in history. In most of the cases, these questions deal with scientific and technological advances, and the answers seem to come rather easily. The majority of the answers are provided by a breed of people known as "Engineers". The word 'engineering' has been derived from the Latin word 'Ingeniare' which means to design or create. Engineering as a profession is the function of imagination and innovation. It is more about developing the best possible option. This, in turn, involves great utilisation of your mental faculties as compared to the professions where practice and pattern aid a lot in performing the job. Engineering is also about fixing things so as to make the object serve its purpose in the best possible and the most efficient way. Engineers need to be high on creativity/innovation, analytical & logical reasoning, spatial reasoning, data analysis and application orientation.
What are the various professional paths in this career?
Engineering, as a profession, offers a wide range of career possibilities. From the design of fighter planes to that of pacemakers for hearts, from boring holes deep in the earth to stepping on the Moon, engineers play a pivotal role. And this role can be segregated into different fields- while a software engineer can develop cheap and user-friendly software for the disabled, a civil engineer can design models for easing out traffic congestion and an electrical engineer can devise ways and means for optimum utilisation of electricity! Following are the various paths which can be pursued by Engineers:

Aeronautical Engineering offers courses in Aviation, Air Traffic Control, Aircraft Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul of Aircraft, Aircraft Production, Aircraft Design and Development, etc. The course is based on the fundamentals of fluid dynamics, materials science, structural analysis, propulsion, electronics, automatic control and guidance. This discipline offers lots of job opportunities in research, development and design in reputed organisations like Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Defence Services as well as in Civil Aviation Department, National Aeronautical Laboratory Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) and Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) etc.

Agricultural Engineering focuses on the application of engineering science and technology to agricultural production and processing. It can be seen as a discipline which applies a combination of agricultural and chemical engineering to food materials. The subjects that are taught are Crop Production Technology, Soil Science, Farm Implements and Machinery, Principles of Food Engineering and Irrigation Engineering. Agricultural engineers perform tasks such as planning, supervising and managing irrigation, water control systems, environmental impact assessments, agricultural product processing etc.

Automobile Engineering, though an independent discipline now, is thought to be a specialised branch of Mechanical Engineering. It consists in designing, manufacturing and maintenance of various types of automobiles. Automobile Engineering has become very popular in recent years because of the introduction of a range of hi-tech vehicles. These high-tech vehicles have ushered the Indian auto-industry into a new era. The core subjects that are taught are as follows Transmission Principles, Engine Electrical Systems, Circuits and Electronics, Engine Principles, Powertrain Systems, Automotive Design and Manufacturing, Steering and Suspension, Fuel and Emission Control Systems, Fluid Mechanics and Heat Transfer.

Biotechnology is a very important discipline of Engineering, because it implies a set of powerful tools which employ living organisms to make or modify products, improve plants or animals. It finds immense application in developing micro-organisms for specific uses. It is, in fact, a research-oriented discipline, which, as the very name suggests, is a combination of both Biology and Technology. The subjects it covers are Genetics, Biochemistry, Microbiology, Immunology, Virology, Chemistry and Engineering. Its nature links it with Health and Medicine, Agriculture and Animal Husbandry as well as Crop Management, Ecology, Cell Biology, Soil Science and Soil Conservation, and Seed Technology.

Chemical Engineering deals with the application of physical science, life sciences and mathematics and involves the process of converting raw materials (chemicals) into forms which make them ready for use. The core subjects that are taught are: Chemical Process Principles, Fluid and Particle Mechanics, Thermodynamics, Process Dynamics and Control, Economics and Management of Chemical Industries. Wide opportunities exist for chemical engineers both in public and private sectors in the design, development, fabrication, production and control of chemical and processing plants.

Civil Engineering is related to the creation of constructed facilities. The activities involve planning, analysis, design, construction and maintenance of a variety of facilities such as buildings, highways and railroads, waterways and canals, dams and power houses, water treatment and sewage disposal system, docks and harbours, bridges and tunnels.

Computer/IT Engineering deals with design and construction of computers and development of computer programmes. Computer programmes are known as computer software. It has immense career opportunities in computer system design and manufacturing industries, management services and data processing departments of modern industries, organisations which develop computer programmes for industries and export software, organisations developing system models and application programme for computer-controlled systems in various industries. While Computer Science deals with the design and development of new software and hardware of computer, Information Technology's main focus is to design, develop, implement and manage computer-based information systems. It includes software applications and hardware. Actually, it is the combination of computer and communications technologies. IT professionals work in database management, IT embedded systems, Telecommunication, Computer Hardware and Software Implementation and Maintenance, Multimedia, Web Designing, Gaming etc.

Electrical Engineering is a very popular discipline among young engineers, as it is related to research, development and operation of electrical machinery, various components and parts. It is interconnected with other parts of engineering like electronics, computers and telecommunication, because electrical engineers generate and utilise electrical power for all the machines. The subjects it comprises are Electricity Technology and Machines, Circuit Analysis, Electronics, Electromagnetism, Material, Instrumentation, Control Systems, Power Engineering, and Transmission and Distribution.

Electrical and Electronics Engineering covers a broad spectrum in the sense that it has to do a lot with Electrical Power Engineering and Electronics. The Power Engineering is related to generation, distribution and use of electrical power and power control and instrumentation applications. The Electronics, on the other hand, is related to the application of electronics in the processing of the formation in the areas of communication and control system, electronic computers, industrial electronics and instrumentation. This discipline offers a vast scope in public sector and private enterprises dealing with design, manufacture and application of electronic devices and equipment.

Food Technology is a new discipline in which quality of food materials, preparation, preservation of prepared food materials, packaging, etc., are taught. As food industry is a global industry, everything, needs to be fit for consumption. Food technologists are recruited by companies that deal in canned food products, frozen food products, etc.

Mechanical Engineering has played a major role in popularising science and in its evolution. It comprises design, manufacture, installation and operation of engines, machines, robotics, heating and cooling systems, and manufacturing processes. Mechanical engineers ate responsible for designing and developing machines of all shapes and sizes. It comprises areas like Thermodynamics, Manufacturing Processes, Fluid Mechanics/Machinery, Refrigeration & Air-conditioning, Heat & Mass Transfer, Automobiles, IC Engines, Machine Design, Dynamics of Machines etc.

Mining Engineering comprises planning, design, construction, operation and maintenance of mines, their safety, and excavation and transport of minerals.

Nanotechnology is of very recent origin. As far as the nature of this course is concerned, it is interdisciplinary. There are mainly three divisions of Nanotechnology: Nanomaterials, Nanoelectronics and Nano-biotechnology. It is a vibrant area and lots of research activities are going on in the areas like non-invasive surgery, suture less surgical applications, targeted surface medical applications and Nano-probes.

Production Engineering is a very recent development in the field. It has been designed to cater to modern manufacturing-units and enterprises. This is a special branch of Engineering which aims at a balanced approach towards Mechanical Engineering and Management Science. A range of subjects are taught in this discipline—Engineering Materials, Machining Science, Welding, Forming, Casting, Tool Design, Process Engineering and Tooling, Mechatronics as well as Management subjects like Operation Research, Economics, Finance, Accounting, Costing, Entrepreneurship Development, Modern Quality Management Practices like Total Quality Management, Concurrent Engineering Lean Manufacturing, Just in Time, etc.

Textile Engineering is that discipline of technology which is mainly concerned with textile fibres, their transformation into yarns and fabrics. Textile engineers are very much in demand, as there is immense demand of clothes on account of ever- changing fashion and increased rate of purchasing power of the Indian masses.
Which are the top institutes to study engineering?
Today, India has nearly 3500 engineering colleges (be it government or privately-owned institutes) imparting over 234 degrees and 399 diploma courses across its various states and union territories. For Engineering Admission purposes, engineering enthusiasts must have opted for Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics (Biology for Biotechnology and Bioinformatics courses) in their senior secondary classes (Class 11 and 12). In addition to that, they also need to qualify the entrance examinations at national, state or university level to take admission in these engineering colleges.

The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) are perceived to be the finest for imparting excellence in technical education in India. Following is a comprehensive list of all the IITs:

Apart from the IITs, the National Institutes of Technology (NIIs) and the Indian Institutes of Information Technology (IIITs) are considered to be promising launchpads for a career in engineering.

National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF), approved by the MHRD ranks institutions across the country. The list of top engineering colleges, ranked by NIRF, is given in the following link:
What is/are the entrance test/tests for seeking admission in a graduation program in law?
Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Main
JEE Main is applicable for admission to NITs (National Institutes of Technology), IIITs (Indian Institutes of Information Technology) and CFTIs (Central Funded Technical Institutes) participating though Central Seat Allocation Board subject to the condition that the candidate should have secured at least 75% marks in the 12th class examination, or be in the top 20 percentile in the 12th class examination conducted by the respective Boards. For SC/ST candidates the qualifying marks would be 65% in the 12th class examination. Please note the following regarding JEE Main:
  • It will be conducted by the NTA (National Testing Agency) from 2019 onwards. This Examination was being conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) till 2018. NTA is a society, registered as an autonomous self-sustained premier testing organization to conduct entrance examinations for higher educational institutions.
  • It is a Computer Based Test and will be conducted throughonline mode only.
  • As per the new scheme, the JEE (Main) exam would be conducted twice in a year (January and April). The number of attempts for admission in a particular academic session will be treated as one.
  • The exam has two papers, Paper-1 (B. E. /B. Tech.) and Paper-2 (B. Arch. /B. Planning.). Candidates may take Paper-1 (B. E. /B. Tech.), or Paper-2 (B. Arch. /B. Planning.), or both as per the course(s) they are seeking admission to. Subject combinations for each paper, type of questions in each paper and mode of examination available is given in the table below:

    Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Advanced
    JEE Advanced is conducted by one of the IITs. The performance of a candidate in this examination forms the basis for admission to the Bachelor’s, Integrated Master’s and Dual Degree programs (entry at the 10+2 level) in all the IITs. Only the candidates who qualify JEE Main are eligible to appear in JEE Advanced.The examis conducted in computer-based mode and has two papers of 03 hours each- Paper I and Paper II, with both papers being mandatory. Questions in each paper are asked from physics, chemistry and mathematics. Question types are multiple choice (objective) and numerical. An interesting feature of the JEE Advanced exam is related to its marking scheme – as it has the concept of full, partial and zero marks. For example, if a candidate attempts a question with multiple correct answer, the candidate will be awarded different marks depending on whether the candidate gets all or a few options right, or doesn’t attempt at all.

    Birla Institute of Technology & Science Admission Test (BITSAT)
    BITSAT is a Computer based online test for Admissions to Integrated First year Degree Programmes in BITS Pilani Campuses at Pilani, Goa and Hyderabad.

    Manipal University Online Entrance Test (MUOET)
    Manipal University conducts its own online entrance exam. on the basis of their rank/score in Manipal University Online Entrance Test (MU OET), candidates are offered admissions in the various programmes of the University. The examination is conducted across various centres all over India.

    SRM Joint Entrance Examination
    The SRM Joint Entrance Examination for Engineering commonly known as SRMJEEE is conducted by the SRM University for admissions in various UG and PG Engineering courses. The examination mode is online and various centres across India. Aspirants need to qualify the examination to take admission in various campuses of the university located in Chennai, Amravati, Haryana and Sikkim.

    VITEEE VITEEE is an entrance exam that is conducted by Vellore Institute of Technology (VIT) University. By qualifying this exam, the candidates will be able to get admission in the various branches of engineering courses, provided by the institute. VIT has four campuses such as Vellore Campus, Chennai Campus, Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh), and Amaravati (Andhra Pradesh).
  • What is the syllabus for engineering entrance examination?
    Units and dimensions, dimensional analysis; least count, significant figures; Methods of measurement and error analysis for physical quantities pertaining to the following experiments: Experiments based on using Vernier calipers and screw gauge (micrometer), Determination of g using simple pendulum, Young’s modulus by Searle’s method, Specific heat of a liquid using calorimeter, focal length of a concave mirror and a convex lens using u-v method, Speed of sound using resonance column, Verification of Ohm’s law using voltmeter and ammeter, and specific resistance of the material of a wire using meter bridge and post office box.

    Kinematics in one and two dimensions (Cartesian coordinates only), projectiles; Uniform circular motion; Relative velocity. Newton’s laws of motion; Inertial and uniformly accelerated frames of reference; Static and dynamic friction; Kinetic and potential energy; Work and power; Conservation of linear momentum and mechanical energy. Systems of particles; Centre of mass and its motion; Impulse; Elastic and inelastic collisions. Law of gravitation; Gravitational potential and field; Acceleration due to gravity; Motion of planets and satellites in circular orbits; Escape velocity. Rigid body, moment of inertia, parallel and perpendicular axes theorems, moment of inertia of uniform bodies with simple geometrical shapes; Angular momentum; Torque; Conservation of angular momentum; Dynamics of rigid bodies with fixed axis of rotation; Rolling without slipping of rings, cylinders and spheres; Equilibrium of rigid bodies; Collision of point masses with rigid bodies. Linear and angular simple harmonic motions. Hooke’s law, Young’s modulus. Pressure in a fluid; Pascal’s law; Buoyancy; Surface energy and surface tension, capillary rise; Viscosity (Poiseuille’s equation excluded), Stoke’s law; Terminal velocity, Streamline flow, equation of continuity, Bernoulli’s theorem and its applications. Wave motion (plane waves only), longitudinal and transverse waves, superposition of waves; Progressive and stationary waves; Vibration of strings and air columns; Resonance; Beats; Speed of sound in gases; Doppler effect (in sound). Thermal physics
    Thermal expansion of solids, liquids and gases; Calorimetry, latent heat; Heat conduction in one dimension; Elementary concepts of convection and radiation; Newton’s law of cooling; Ideal gas laws; Specific heats (Cv and Cp for monoatomic and diatomic gases); Isothermal and adiabatic processes, bulk modulus of gases; Equivalence of heat and work; First law of thermodynamics and its applications (only for ideal gases); Blackbody radiation: absorptive and emissive powers; Kirchhoff’s law; Wien’s displacement law, Stefan’s law.

    Electricity and magnetism
    Coulomb’s law; Electric field and potential; Electrical potential energy of a system of point charges and of electrical dipoles in a uniform electrostatic field; Electric field lines; Flux of electric field; Gauss’s law and its application in simple cases, such as, to find field due to infinitely long straight wire, uniformly charged infinite plane sheet and uniformly charged thin spherical shell. Capacitance; Parallel plate capacitor with and without dielectrics; Capacitors in series and parallel; Energy stored in a capacitor. Electric current; Ohm’s law; Series and parallel arrangements of resistances and cells; Kirchhoff’s laws and simple applications; Heating effect of current. Biot–Savart’s law and Ampere’s law; Magnetic field near a current-carrying straight wire, along the axis of a circular coil and inside a long straight solenoid; Force on a moving charge and on a current-carrying wire in a uniform magnetic field. Magnetic moment of a current loop; Effect of a uniform magnetic field on a current loop; Moving coil galvanometer, voltmeter, ammeter and their conversions. Electromagnetic induction: Faraday’s law, Lenz’s law; Self and mutual inductance; RC, LR and LC circuits with d.c. and a.c. sources.

    Rectilinear propagation of light; Reflection and refraction at plane and spherical surfaces; Total internal reflection; Deviation and dispersion of light by a prism; Thin lenses; Combinations of mirrors and thin lenses; Magnification. Wave nature of light: Huygen’s principle, interference limited to Young’s double-slit experiment.

    Modern physics
    Atomic nucleus; α, β and γ radiations; Law of radioactive decay; Decay constant; Halflife and mean life; Binding energy and its calculation; Fission and fusion processes; Energy calculation in these processes. Photoelectric effect; Bohr’s theory of hydrogen-like atoms; Characteristic and continuous X-rays, Moseley’s law; de Broglie wavelength of matter waves.

    Chemistry: Physical chemistry

    General topics
    Concept of atoms and molecules; Dalton’s atomic theory; Mole concept; Chemical formulae; Balanced chemical equations; Calculations (based on mole concept) involving common oxidation-reduction, neutralisation, and displacement reactions; Concentration in terms of mole fraction, molarity, molality and normality.

    Gaseous and liquid states
    Absolute scale of temperature, ideal gas equation; Deviation from ideality, van der Waals equation; Kinetic theory of gases, average, root mean square and most probable velocities and their relation with temperature; Law of partial pressures; Vapour pressure; Diffusion of gases.

    Atomic structure and chemical bonding
    Bohr model, spectrum of hydrogen atom, quantum numbers; Wave-particle duality, de Broglie hypothesis; Uncertainty principle; Qualitative quantum mechanical picture of hydrogen atom, shapes of s, p and d orbitals; Electronic configurations of elements (up to atomic number 36); Aufbau principle; Pauli’s exclusion principle and Hund’s rule; Orbital overlap and covalent bond; Hybridisation involving s, p and d orbitals only; Orbital energy diagrams for homonuclear diatomic species; Hydrogen bond; Polarity in molecules, dipole moment (qualitative aspects only); VSEPR model and shapes of molecules (linear, angular, triangular, square planar, pyramidal, square pyramidal, trigonal bipyramidal, tetrahedral and octahedral).

    First law of thermodynamics; Internal energy, work and heat, pressure-volume work; Enthalpy, Hess’s law; Heat of reaction, fusion and vapourization; Second law of thermodynamics; Entropy; Free energy; Criterion of spontaneity.

    Chemical equilibrium
    Law of mass action; Equilibrium constant, Le Chatelier’s principle (effect of concentration, temperature and pressure); Significance of ΔG and ΔG0 in chemical equilibrium; Solubility product, common ion effect, pH and buffer solutions; Acids and bases (Bronsted and Lewis concepts); Hydrolysis of salts.

    Electrochemical cells and cell reactions; Standard electrode potentials; Nernst equation and its relation to ΔG; Electrochemical series, emf of galvanic cells; Faraday’s laws of electrolysis; Electrolytic conductance, specific, equivalent and molar conductivity, Kohlrausch’s law; Concentration cells.

    Chemical kinetics
    Rates of chemical reactions; Order of reactions; Rate constant; First order reactions; Temperature dependence of rate constant (Arrhenius equation).

    Classification of solids, crystalline state, seven crystal systems (cell parameters a, b, c, α, β, γ), close packed structure of solids (cubic), packing in fcc, bcc and hcp lattices; Nearest neighbours, ionic radii, simple ionic compounds, point defects.

    Raoult’s law; Molecular weight determination from lowering of vapour pressure, elevation of boiling point and depression of freezing point.

    Surface chemistry
    Elementary concepts of adsorption (excluding adsorption isotherms); Colloids: types, methods of preparation and general properties; Elementary ideas of emulsions, surfactants and micelles (only definitions and examples).

    Nuclear chemistry
    Radioactivity: isotopes and isobars; Properties of α, β and γ rays; Kinetics of radioactive decay (decay series excluded), carbon dating; Stability of nuclei with respect to proton neutron ratio; Brief discussion on fission and fusion reactions. Inorganic chemistry

    Isolation/preparation and properties of the following non-metals
    Boron, silicon, nitrogen, phosphorus, oxygen, sulphur and halogens; Properties of allotropes of carbon (only diamond and graphite), phosphorus and sulphur.

    Preparation and properties of the following compounds
    Oxides, peroxides, hydroxides, carbonates, bicarbonates, chlorides and sulphates of sodium, potassium, magnesium and calcium; Boron: diborane, boric acid and borax;

    Aluminium: alumina, aluminium chloride and alums; Carbon: oxides and oxyacid (carbonic acid); Silicon: silicones, silicates and silicon carbide; Nitrogen: oxides, oxyacids and ammonia; Phosphorus: oxides, oxyacids (phosphorus acid, phosphoric acid) and phosphine; Oxygen: ozone and hydrogen peroxide; Sulphur: hydrogen sulphide, oxides, sulphurous acid, sulphuric acid and sodium thiosulphate; Halogens:hydrohalic acids, oxides and oxyacids of chlorine, bleaching powder; Xenon fluorides.

    Transition elements (3d series)
    Definition, general characteristics, oxidation states and their stabilities, colour (excluding the details of electronic transitions) and calculation of spin-only magnetic moment; Coordination compounds: nomenclature of mononuclear coordination compounds, cistrans and ionisation isomerisms, hybridization and geometries of mononuclear coordination compounds (linear, tetrahedral, square planar and octahedral).

    Preparation and properties of the following compounds
    Oxides and chlorides of tin and lead; Oxides, chlorides and sulphates of Fe2+, Cu2+ and Zn2+; Potassium permanganate, potassium dichromate, silver oxide, silver nitrate, silver thiosulphate.

    Ores and minerals
    Commonly occurring ores and minerals of iron, copper, tin, lead, magnesium, aluminium, zinc and silver.

    Extractive metallurgy
    Chemical principles and reactions only (industrial details excluded); Carbon reduction method (iron and tin); Self reduction method (copper and lead); Electrolytic reduction method (magnesium and aluminium); Cyanide process (silver and gold).

    Principles of qualitative analysis
    Groups I to V (only Ag+ , Hg2+, Cu2+, Pb2+, Bi3+, Fe3+, Cr3+, Al3+, Ca2+, Ba2+, Zn2+, Mn2+ and Mg2+); Nitrate, halides (excluding fluoride), sulphate and sulphide.

    Organic chemistry
    Hybridisation of carbon; σ and π-bonds; Shapes of simple organic molecules; Structural and geometrical isomerism; Optical isomerism of compounds containing up to two asymmetric centres, (R,S and E,Z nomenclature excluded); IUPAC nomenclature of simple organic compounds (only hydrocarbons, mono-functional and bi-functional compounds); Conformations of ethane and butane (Newman projections); Resonance andhyperconjugation; Keto-enol tautomerism; Determination of empirical and molecular formulae of simple compounds (only combustion method); Hydrogen bonds: definition and their effects on physical properties of alcohols and carboxylic acids; Inductive and resonance effects on acidity and basicity of organic acids and bases; Polarity and inductive effects in alkyl halides; Reactive intermediates produced during homolytic and heterolytic bond cleavage; Formation, structure and stability of carbocations, carbanions and free radicals.

    Preparation, properties and reactions of alkanes
    Homologous series, physical properties of alkanes (melting points, boiling points and density); Combustion and halogenation of alkanes; Preparation of alkanes by Wurtz reaction and decarboxylation reactions.

    Preparation, properties and reactions of alkenes and alkynes
    Physical properties of alkenes and alkynes (boiling points, density and dipole moments); Acidity of alkynes; Acid catalysed hydration of alkenes and alkynes (excluding the stereochemistry of addition and elimination); Reactions of alkenes with KMnO4 and ozone; Reduction of alkenes and alkynes; Preparation of alkenes and alkynes by elimination reactions; Electrophilic addition reactions of alkenes with X2, HX, HOX and H2O (X=halogen); Addition reactions of alkynes; Metal acetylides.

    Reactions of benzene
    Structure and aromaticity; Electrophilic substitution reactions: halogenation, nitration, sulphonation, Friedel-Crafts alkylation and acylation; Effect of o-, m- and p-directing groups in monosubstituted benzenes.

    Acidity, electrophilic substitution reactions (halogenation, nitration and sulphonation); Reimer-Tieman reaction, Kolbe reaction.

    Characteristic reactions of the following (including those mentioned above)
    Alkyl halides: rearrangement reactions of alkyl carbocation, Grignard reactions, nucleophilic substitution reactions; Alcohols: esterification, dehydration and oxidation, reaction with sodium, phosphorus halides, ZnCl2/concentrated HCl, conversion of alcohols into aldehydes and ketones; Ethers: Preparation by Williamson’s Synthesis; Aldehydes and Ketones: oxidation, reduction, oxime and hydrazone formation; aldol condensation, Perkin reaction; Cannizzaro reaction; haloform reaction and nucleophilic addition reactions (Grignard addition); Carboxylic acids: formation of esters, acid chlorides and amides, ester hydrolysis; Amines: basicity of substituted anilines and aliphatic amines, preparation from nitro compounds, reaction with nitrous acid, azo coupling reaction of diazonium salts of aromatic amines, Sandmeyer and related reactions of diazonium salts; carbylamine reaction; Haloarenes: nucleophilic aromatic substitution in haloarenes and substituted haloarenes (excluding Benzyne mechanism and Cine substitution).

    Classification; mono- and di-saccharides (glucose and sucrose); Oxidation, reduction, glycoside formation and hydrolysis of sucrose.

    Amino acids and peptides
    General structure (only primary structure for peptides) and physical properties.

    Properties and uses of some important polymers
    Natural rubber, cellulose, nylon, teflon and PVC.

    Practical organic chemistry
    Detection of elements (N, S, halogens); Detection and identification of the following functional groups: hydroxyl (alcoholic and phenolic), carbonyl (aldehyde and ketone), carboxyl, amino and nitro; Chemical methods of separation of mono-functional organic compounds from binary mixtures.


    Algebra of complex numbers, addition, multiplication, conjugation, polar representation, properties of modulus and principal argument, triangle inequality, cube roots of unity, geometric interpretations. Quadratic equations with real coefficients, relations between roots and coefficients, formation of quadratic equations with given roots, symmetric functions of roots. Arithmetic, geometric and harmonic progressions, arithmetic, geometric and harmonic means, sums of finite arithmetic and geometric progressions, infinite geometric series, sums of squares and cubes of the first n natural numbers. Logarithms and their properties. Permutations and combinations, binomial theorem for a positive integral index, properties of binomial coefficients.

    Matrices as a rectangular array of real numbers, equality of matrices, addition, multiplication by a scalar and product of matrices, transpose of a matrix, determinant of a square matrix of order up to three, inverse of a square matrix of order up to three, properties of these matrix operations, diagonal, symmetric and skew-symmetric matrices and their properties, solutions of simultaneous linear equations in two or three variables.

    Addition and multiplication rules of probability, conditional probability, Bayes Theorem, independence of events, computation of probability of events using permutations and combinations.

    Trigonometric functions, their periodicity and graphs, addition and subtraction formulae, formulae involving multiple and sub-multiple angles, general solution of trigonometric equations. Relations between sides and angles of a triangle, sine rule, cosine rule, half-angle formula and the area of a triangle, inverse trigonometric functions (principal value only).

    Analytical geometry
    Two dimensions: Cartesian coordinates, distance between two points, section formulae, shift of origin. Equation of a straight line in various forms, angle between two lines, distance of a point from a line; Lines through the point of intersection of two given lines, equation of the bisector of the angle between two lines, concurrency of lines; Centroid, orthocentre, incentre and circumcentre of a triangle. Equation of a circle in various forms, equations of tangent, normal and chord. Parametric equations of a circle, intersection of a circle with a straight line or a circle, equation of a circle through the points of intersection of two circles and those of a circle and a straight line. Equations of a parabola, ellipse and hyperbola in standard form, their foci, directrices and eccentricity, parametric equations, equations of tangent and normal. Locus problems.

    Three dimensions: Direction cosines and direction ratios, equation of a straight line in space, equation of a plane, distance of a point from a plane.

    Differential calculus
    Real valued functions of a real variable, into, onto and one-to-one functions, sum, difference, product and quotient of two functions, composite functions, absolute value, polynomial, rational, trigonometric, exponential and logarithmic functions. Limit and continuity of a function, limit and continuity of the sum, difference, product and quotient of two functions, L’Hospital rule of evaluation of limits of functions. Even and odd functions, inverse of a function, continuity of composite functions, intermediate value property of continuous functions. Derivative of a function, derivative of the sum, difference, product and quotient of two functions, chain rule, derivatives of polynomial, rational, trigonometric, inverse trigonometric, exponential and logarithmic functions. Derivatives of implicit functions, derivatives up to order two, geometrical interpretation of the derivative, tangents and normals, increasing and decreasing functions, maximum and minimum values of a function, Rolle’s theorem and Lagrange’s mean value theorem.

    Integral calculus
    Integration as the inverse process of differentiation, indefinite integrals of standard functions, definite integrals and their properties, fundamental theorem of integral calculus. Integration by parts, integration by the methods of substitution and partial fractions, application of definite integrals to the determination of areas involving simple curves. Formation of ordinary differential equations, solution of homogeneous differential equations, separation of variables method, linear first order differential equations.

    Addition of vectors, scalar multiplication, dot and cross products, scalar triple products and their geometrical interpretations.
    What are the prospects in this career?
    Engineering professionals can pursue a career in four broad categories:
    Core Engineering
  • Mechanical: Mechanical engineering is considered to be the evergreen branch of engineering that deals with concepts like kinematics, structural analysis mechanics, thermodynamics, robotics, fluid mechanics with their applications in Automotive Sector, Power Sector, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Sector, Aerospace etc. With technological advancement and broadening of scope, the prospects of mechanical engineering are expanding beyond geographical boundaries. As a mechanical engineer you'll provide efficient solutions to the development of processes and products, ranging from small component designs to extremely large plants, machinery or vehicles. You'll work on all stages of a product, from research and development to design and manufacture, through to installation and final commissioning. Most industries rely on a form of mechanical systems, and mechanical engineering is thought to be one of the most diverse of all engineering disciplines. Due to this, there are employment opportunities across several sectors. As a mechanical engineer, you'll need to:
  • research and develop products - for example, mechanical hearts if working in the medical industry
  • improve production processes - such as those in large oil refineries, or services within buildings
  • design and implement cost-effective equipment modifications to help improve safety and reliability
  • develop a project specification with colleagues, often including those from other engineering disciplines
  • develop and use new materials and technologies
  • manage people, projects and resources - this will depend on your role
  • develop, test and evaluate theoretical designs
  • discuss and solve complex problems with manufacturing departments, sub-contractors, suppliers and customers
  • make sure a product can be made reliably and will perform consistently in specified operating environments
  • manage projects using engineering principles and techniques
  • plan and design new production processes
  • produce details of specifications and outline designs
  • recommend modifications following prototype test results
  • use research, analytical, conceptual and planning skills, particularly those in mathematical modelling and computer-aided design
  • consider the implications of issues such as cost, safety and time constraints
  • work with other professionals, within and outside the engineering sector
  • monitor and commission plant and systems.

    Electrical: As an electrical engineer, you'll design, develop and maintain electrical control systems and components to required specifications. The electrical equipment that you'll design and manufacture is used across many sectors, including the building industry and services, including lighting, heating and ventilation, transportation and transport networks, manufacturing and construction, production and distribution of power. Electrical engineers are involved in projects from the concept and detail of the design, through to implementation, testing and handover. You may also be involved in maintenance programmes. Most electrical engineers work in multidisciplinary project teams, which are likely to include engineers from other specialist areas as well as architects, marketing and sales staff, manufacturers, technicians and customer service personnel.

    Electronics: As electronics engineer, you'll design, develop and test components, devices, systems or equipment that use electricity as part of their source of power. These components include capacitors, diodes, resistors and transistors. You may be involved at any stage of a project including the initial brief for a concept, the design and development stage, testing of prototypes and the final manufacture and implementation of a new product or system. You'll usually work in project teams with colleagues in other branches of engineering. You can find work in a variety of areas, as electronics are used in many things. These areas include acoustics, defence, medical instruments, mobile phones, nanotechnology, radio and satellite communication and robotics.You could specialise in a particular subfield of electronic engineering, such as control engineering, instrumentation, signal processing and telecommunications engineering.

    Civil: As a civil engineer you can find work in a range of sectors, particularly in the construction sector, on buildings and large structures of all kinds, transport and communications infrastructure.You can also work for employers involved in the production, storage and distribution of electricity, gas and water.Vacancies arise with a range of contractors and consultancies. You could also work in-house for a variety of national and multinational organisations, particularly within the public sector. Local authorities, government departments and environmental organisations employ civil engineers to set up project specifications and draft tender documents.

    Growth-oriented Engineering
  • Computer Science &I nformation Technology: From games developer to manager of IT and communications services, you'll have a range of opportunities open to you as a computer science graduate. Following are some areas where you can contribute as a computer engineer:
  • Software Application Developer: Builds, tests, and upgrades software & computer applications; Enhances the existing capabilities of existing software by modifying; Increases software feasibility by evaluating software requirements and user needs
  • Web Developer: Coding of web pages from the scratch and updating the content; Testing of websites and modifying them as per user feedback; Backing up and maintaining the data of the website
  • Computer System Analyst: Improves the computer system by analysing the data processing problems; Creates and tests the system design procedures; Amplifies the compatibility of system for easy information sharing
  • Data Administrator: Administers and tests the database of computer system; Implements changes and rectifies errors in database of computers; Safeguards the information by applying safety measures
  • Game Developer: Creates and produces games for personal computers, games consoles, social/online games, arcade games, tablets, mobile phones and other handheld devices.
  • Software Engineer: Create, maintains, audits and improves systems to meet particular needs, often as advised by a systems analyst or architect, testing both hard and software systems to diagnose and resolve system faults. The role also covers writing diagnostic programs and designing and writing code for operating systems and software to ensure efficiency.
  • Network System Administrator: Implements and maintains the network system in an organization; Invigilates the functions of websites to warrant uninterrupted operation; Backs up data and performs disaster recovery functions

    Apart from the scope of computer science engineering graduates in the conventional fields, multiple career avenues have also unlocked with the rise of advanced technologies, such as Machine Learning Engineer, Data Scientist, Artificial Intelligence Experts, Robotics Engineer and IoT (Internet of Things) Experts.

    Allied Engineering
  • Control & Instrumentation: Control and instrumentation engineers are responsible for designing, developing, installing, managing and maintaining equipment which is used to monitor and control engineering systems, machinery and processes. Your job is to make sure that these systems and processes operate effectively, efficiently and safely. You might work for companies who manufacture and supply the equipment or for the companies who use it, such as nuclear and renewable energy companies and environmental agencies. You will need a thorough understanding of the operational processes of an organisation as your role is multidisciplinary, working closely with colleagues across a number of functions, including operations, purchasing and design. You'll need to develop skills in specific control disciplines, such as advanced process control (APC), distributed control systems (DCS), programmable logic controllers (PLC) and supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA).
  • Telecommunication: Communications engineers work within a number of industries, including internet and computing technologies, networking and telecommunications, and radio. Some engineers concentrate on applying technical knowledge, while others focus on managerial activities. Many posts include elements of both managerial and technical responsibilities. The technical aspect of the role includes using specialist knowledge to design and deliver solutions, as well as providing technical guidance to others within the employing organisation. Managerial responsibilities involve planning and managing projects, ensuring that they're delivered on time, within budget and to the agreed standards of quality.
  • Mechatronics: Mechatronic engineering is a new focus area in engineering with wide range of application in business and industrial sector. Mechatronic engineering has wide applications in robotics, nanotechnology, automation, aircraft engineering, oceanography, oil and gas, biomedical systems, transport and computer-aided design. Mechatronics engineers design, develop, maintain and manage high-technology engineering systems for the automation of industrial tasks. Mechatronics engineering graduates may work in areas of design, research and development, sales, production management, safety, and quality. A mechatronic engineer designs mechanical devices that incorporate electrical, software and mechanical components. The combination of these three key areas has resulted in the development and design of mechatronic or smart products. Mechatronics engineers can also work in highly niche areas. For example, Biomechatronic is a branch of Mechatronics having electronics, mechatronics and biology as the different fields of study.
  • Industrial Engineering: Industrial Engineering is a branch of engineering, which helps in determining the most effective way for an organisation to use the basic factors of production - material, people, machines, information and energy to make a product or to provide a service. Industrial engineers analyse and evaluate methods of production and point out ways to improve them. They decide how a company should allocate its limited tangible resources (equipment and labour) within the framework of existing physical constraints (physical plant). The large majority of industrial engineers—around 70 percent—works at manufacturing companies, and many have specific areas of specialization, such as assembly, raw-product processing, or administrative practices. As an Industrial Engineer, you may specifically contribute to Production and Operations Planning, International Production and Operation Management, Materials Handling, and Logistics & Operations Research,

    Specialised Engineering
    Petroleum Engineering: A petroleum engineer is involved in nearly all of the stages of oil and gas field evaluation, development and production. Their aim is to drill for hydrocarbons in the most efficient way, and to resolved any operating issues. They also can be responsible for using new drilling tools and techniques, and to get the most out of underperforming or older wells. Throughout the entire extraction process, petroleum engineers are tasked with reducing the effect of drilling on the environment. Petroleum engineers are divided into several groups:
  • Petroleum geologists find hydrocarbons by analysing subsurface structures with geological and geophysical methods.
  • Reservoir engineers work to optimise production of oil and gas via proper well placement, production levels and enhanced oil recovery techniques. They use computer simulations to assist in the identification of risks and to make forecasts on reservoir potential.
  • Production engineers manage the interface between the reservoir and the well through tasks such as perforations, sand control, artificial lift, downhole flow control and downhole monitoring equipment. They also select surface equipment that separates the produced fluids (oil, natural gas and water).
  • Drilling engineers manage the technical aspects of drilling both production and injection wells. They work in multidisciplinary teams alongside other engineers, scientists, drilling teams and contractors.

  • Chemical Engineering: As a chemical engineer, you will be involved in the design and development of a diverse range of products. Your work will focus on changing the chemical, biochemical and physical state of a substance to turn it into something else, such as making plastic from oil.

    You'll need to understand how to alter raw materials into required products, while taking into consideration health and safety and cost issues.You can work in a variety of industries includingenergy, food and beverages, oil and gas, pharmaceuticals, plastics, toiletries, water treatment etc. Modern chemical engineering is also concerned with pioneering valuable new materials and techniques, such as nanotechnology, fuel cells and biomedical engineering.

  • Aeronautical/Aerospace Engineering:As an aerospace engineer, you'll research, design, develop, maintain and test the performance of civil and military aircraft, missiles, weapons systems, satellites and space vehicles. Work is also carried out on the different components that make up these aircraft and systems. You'll be concerned with improving flight safety, fuel efficiency, speed and weight, as well as reducing system costs and using advancing technologies to meet customer needs. The role is increasingly addressing the environmental impact of air travel.
  • Can you give some useful links to explore this career in greater detail?
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