Studying Industrial Engineering Abroad: Countries, Costs, Universities and Colleges

Industrial Engineering is a crucial field for economic and industrial development. Various countries offer training programs in industrial engineering, with prestigious universities and colleges.

Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering

Studying Industrial Engineering at the undergraduate level provides opportunities to gain knowledge and skills for a successful career in the industry. To become a student at a foreign university, meeting specific requirements and completing the enrollment process is necessary.

Most universities and colleges are looking for motivated, talented and ambitious students who are willing to put effort into their studies. Candidates must be analytical, as well as interested in Technical Sciences and Mathematics.

  • Complete secondary education and the relevant certificate or diploma;
  • Passing standard tests (such as SAT or ACT for the USA, A-levels for the UK);
  • Proof of the English language proficiency (TOEFL, IELTS, or an equivalent test);
  • Motivation letter or personal statement that demonstrates your interest in studying industrial engineering and your motivation;
  • Letters of recommendation from teachers or employers;
  • Sometimes a successful interview or pre-testing.

  1. Analyze the information about and choose from universities that offer programs in industrial engineering and find out their enrollment requirements;
  2. Collect and prepare all the required documents, including certificates, test results, letters of recommendation and essays;
  3. Register for the required standardized tests, if applicable, and pass them on time;
  4. Filling in electronic applications for enrollment in the selected universities. Note the application deadlines since they may vary at different educational institutions;
  5. Send applications and documents to the selected universities, as well as pay fees for reviewing your documents, if applicable;
  6. Wait for a decision on enrollment. If the decision is positive, you should confirm your plans to study at this university and pay the tuition fee;
  7. Get a student visa (if required) and complete the necessary paperwork for living and studying abroad;
  8. Plan and organize relocation, as well as adapt to a new country and academic environment.

Master’s Degree in Industrial Engineering

Master’s Degree in Industrial Engineering abroad allows students to further develop their knowledge and skills they’ve acquired at the undergraduate stage, as well as to prepare for managerial and scientific positions in the industry. 

Universities and colleges are interested in attracting ambitious, motivated and talented students with experience in and knowledge of industrial engineering. Candidates must be ready for engaging in serious scientific work, being proactive in research projects and developing their professional competencies.

  • Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering or a related major and the relevant diploma;
  • Proof of English proficiency (TOEFL, IELTS, or an equivalent test) to study in English-speaking countries;
  • Motivation essay;
  • Letters of recommendation from teachers or employers confirming your experience and competence;
  • Sometimes your portfolio with scientific publications, projects, or research;
  • Successful interview or pre-testing, if required.

  1. Do research and select a program: Compare the education quality, tuition fees and career opportunities to find suitable graduate programs in foreign universities;
  2. Study the requirement and collect documents: Study the enrollment requirements, collect the necessary documents (certificates, transcripts, letters of recommendation, CV, and motivation letter) and prepare for exams (GRE, GMAT, IELTS, and TOEFL);
  3. Send the application: Fill in the online application form on the university’s website or via a specialized platform, attach the documents and pay the registration fee;
  4. Wait for a decision and accept the offer: Wait for the university’s decision, take additional interviews/exams and accept the enrollment offer;
  5. Pay for education, get a visa, and plan your relocation: Apply for scholarships, get a student visa, book tickets and accommodation;
  6. Arrive and adapt in the country: Adapt to a new country, use the resources the university provides to support students and international students.

Major in Industrial Engineering

Industrial engineering is a diverse and fast-moving field that offers a wide range of majors to train and develop your professional competencies. By specializing in any major, students can further develop their knowledge of a particular field of industrial engineering and obtain expertise required for a successful career.

  1. Operations management: Those students specializing in operations management study the methods and principles of process optimization, of production and logistics management, as well as of developing operations management strategies.
  2. System analysis and management: Students who have decided on this major study the complex systems (production, logistics, information) modeling, analysis and optimization methods.
  3. Quality engineering: Quality engineering specialists are engaged in developing and implementing the quality control processes, standards and methods aimed at improving products and enhancing production performance.
  4. Ergonomics and human factor: This major will help students to study the principles of workplace design and job organization in the light of a person’s physiological, psychological, and social characteristics, which allows to enhance performance and mitigate risks of work-related diseases.
  5. Project and risk management: Students who’ve chosen this major study the methods of project management, risk analysis and control, as well as strategy and plan development aimed at successful implementation of industrial engineering projects.
  6. Industrial ecology and sustainable production. This major is focused on the methods of integrating environmental and sustainable development practices into production processes. Students study the principles of assessing and reducing industrial facilities’ impact on the environment, as well as the principles of developing strategies to improve resource efficiency and waste reduction.
  7. Data engineering and analytics. Data engineering and analytics specialists deal with collecting, processing, analyzing, and interpreting big data to support decision-making and process optimization in industry. Students study the methods of statistical analysis, machine learning and data visualization.
  8. Supply chain engineering. Those students who specialize in supply chain engineering study the methods of material flow and information system planning, coordination, and optimization at all production stages.
  9. Industrial automation and robotics. This major is focused on developing and implementing automatic systems and robots in industrial production. Students study the principles of automatic control, industrial robots programming and integration of automatic systems into manufacturing processes.
  10. Innovation and business in industrial engineering. This major helps students develop skills related to identifying and implementing innovative ideas, creating new products and services, as well as mastering the methods of innovation management and industrial business.

A preferable major in industrial engineering depends on the student’s interests, goals, and career ambitions.

The World’s Best Universities in Industrial Engineering 

By studying industrial engineering at the world’s best universities, students get access to high-quality education, experience of working with advanced research, and a prestigious diploma that opens up doors to a successful career.
Below is a list of the world’s best universities in industrial engineering, according to the Edurank ranking:

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), USA

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is a private research university located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA. It is one of the most prestigious universities in the world, known for its strong programs in science, engineering, and technology. MIT offers undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs in various fields, including industrial engineering.

Purdue University, USA

Purdue University is a public land-grant research university located in West Lafayette, Indiana. It was founded in 1869 and is the flagship campus of the Purdue University system. The university offers a wide range of degree programs and is known for its strong focus on science, technology, engineering, and agriculture. Purdue University is also recognized for its innovative research initiatives and is a founding member of the Big Ten Conference.

University of Michigan – Ann Arbor, USA

The University of Michigan, located in Ann Arbor, Michigan, is a public research university founded in 1817. It is the oldest and largest university in Michigan and a founding member of the Association of American Universities. The University of Michigan is ranked among the top public universities and is recognized for its academic excellence, research initiatives, and diverse student body from over 110 countries.

Carnegie Mellon University, USA

Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) is a private research university located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Established in 1900 by Andrew Carnegie as the Carnegie Technical Schools, it became the Carnegie Institute of Technology in 1912 and later adopted its current name in 1967. CMU is known for its interdisciplinary programs in various fields, including engineering.

Pennsylvania State University, USA

Pennsylvania State University, founded in 1855, is a public state-related land-grant research university with campuses and facilities throughout Pennsylvania. The university is recognized for its commitment to high-quality teaching, expert research, and global service.

Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China

Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU) is a public comprehensive university located in Shanghai, China. SJTU is consistently ranked among the top universities in the Asia-Pacific according to major international university rankings. The university offers undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs in various fields, including engineering.

Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands

Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) is the oldest and largest technical university in the Netherlands, located in Delft. It is a leading institution known for world-class research in science, engineering, and design. The university offers a wide range of academic programs and is ranked among the top 10 engineering and technology universities globally.

National University of Singapore, Singapore

NUS is known for its innovative initiatives, entrepreneurship programs, and sustainability efforts. It is a leading global university centered in Asia, attracting distinguished thought leaders and intellectuals from around the world. NUS is a flagship university in Singapore and is committed to shaping the future for the better.

These universities offer students high-quality education and research opportunities in industrial engineering. They also provide students with access to the most advanced research centers, and a broad academic program covering a variety of engineering aspects. Choosing one of these universities for studying industrial engineering can form the basis for a successful career in the industry.

Careers in Industrial Engineering

There are ample career opportunities for graduates with a degree in industrial engineering, since such specialists are in great demand in various industries and businesses. Industrial engineers possess unique skills and competencies that allow them to solve problems related to the production process optimization, resource management, and performance improvement.

  1. Production Engineer: Production Engineers deal with the production process design, planning and optimization. These specialists work on improving the product quality, reducing production time and costs.
  2. Quality Management Engineer: Specialists in this field are responsible for monitoring and enhancing the product quality and production processes. They develop and implement quality control systems, as well as carry out audits and examinations.
  3. Project Management Engineer: Project Engineers coordinate and control various stages of project development and execution – from planning to implementation and support. They are responsible for resource management, including finance, personnel, and equipment.
  4. Automation Engineer: Specialists in automation develop and implement automatic systems for production process control that increase performance and reduce costs.
  5. Logistics Engineer: Logistics specialists deal with optimization of the product delivery and distribution processes, as well as supply chain management and warehouse operations.
  6. Industrial Engineering Advisor: Industrial Engineering Advisors provide organizations with professional advice and recommendations on the production process optimization, product quality enhancement and performance improvement.
  7. R&D Specialist: These specialists work on the development of new technologies, materials and methods that can be applied in the industry, thus improving processes and products.
  8. Educator: Many graduates with Industrial Engineering degrees also choose an academic career, teaching Industrial Engineering and conducting research in this field.
  9. Safety and Health Engineer: These specialists are responsible for ensuring the employees’ safety and health at the workplace, as well as developing and implementing preventive measures against industrial accidents and injuries.
  10. Environment and Sustainable Development Engineer: Industrial engineers, who specialize in the environment, work on developing and implementing technologies and methods aimed at reducing damage to the environment and resources inflicted by the industry.

A career in Industrial Engineering can offer graduates a variety of opportunities to achieve their professional ambitions. Specialists in industrial engineering enjoy great prospects in the labor market since many industries and businesses demand their competencies. With technological development and changes in the economic climate, the demand for industrial engineers will further grow, providing them with ample opportunities for career promotion and professional development.

The table below shows the average pay in North America, Europe, and Australia:


Average pay

Number of job openings


65,000 – 80,000 CAD



70,000 – 90,000 USD



50,000 – 70,000 EUR



40,000 – 60,000 GBP



70,000 – 90,000 AUD


The number of job openings may vary depending on the season, the economic situation and other factors.

Scholarships for International Students in Industrial Engineering

Many universities offer financial aid to students. Scholarships are distributed among students depending on their financial needs, as well as academic and personal achievements. Payments range from partial coverage of tuition fees to full coverage of all tuition and housing expenses. Many universities offer discounts for students who pay tuition fees in advance. For more information, students should visit the official website of the university and check the available scholarships.

Please note that the conditions and requirements for getting scholarships are subject to change. It is strongly recommended that students should check the up-to-date information on the official websites of the universities and contact their enrolment boards to get complete and accurate information.

Most Frequently Asked Questions about Studying Industrial Engineering Abroad 

Industrial Engineering involves the design and analysis of systems that include people, equipment, and materials, and their interactions and performance in the workplace. It encompasses a broad range of topics, including work design, human-machine systems, probability, statistics, engineering economy, simulation modeling, engineering database systems, quality assurance, logistics and supply chain management, operations research, facilities planning, computational methods, economics and finance, human factors, and industrial engineering fundamentals. Industrial engineers work in various industries, such as technology, healthcare, communications, manufacturing, and government, and are involved in improving processes and products to save time, money, and resources.

At the graduate program in industrial engineering, students study more advanced and specific aspects of process optimization and management, as well as carry out research activities and put their knowledge into practice in real projects.

The undergraduate programs in industrial engineering cover such subjects as Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, electronics, mechanics, as well as specialized subjects related to process optimization and production management.

The following majors are available for studying at the graduate programs in industrial engineering: production management, logistics, quality, ergonomics, process optimization and system analysis.

Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering is a higher education degree aimed at training specialists capable of optimizing industrial processes and systems.

The graduate program in Industrial Engineering includes specialized subjects, research work, and practical use of knowledge in real-life projects.

An industrial engineering specialist works on analyzing, designing, optimizing, and managing industrial processes, systems, and organizations to increase performance and reduce costs.

Industrial engineering offers career opportunities in a variety of industries (car, aerospace, electronics, and energy), where the specialists can deal with process optimization and management.

Industrial engineering requires analytical thinking skills, proficiency in mathematical modeling, and ability to apply statistical methods. Communication and organizational skills will be an advantage.

Graduates with Bachelor's or Master’s degrees in Industrial Engineering have good career opportunities since they can work in a variety of industries and deal with project management, process optimization, and innovative solution development.

Anna Pukshanskaia