How does one decide what category of engineering they want to go into?

Im a senior in high school and want to go into engineering. How do I decide which category I want tot do (out of Electrical, Mechanical, and Chemical). Do I Just go for the engineering category Im good at for example: for chemical engineering, If Im good at chemistry, should I go for it?).

If you’ve taken physics classes you can probably rule out one or both of the first two. I didn’t like electricity and magnetism much. Couldn’t imagine doing electrical.

I have only taken chemistry, Im going to introduce myself to physics this summer (online course). Should I base it off what I am good at in Physics?

Three very different options. You should base it on what you find intriguing, stimulating.

@eyemgh What if I find all three intriguing and stimulating. how do I decide then?

Make a list of pros and cons for each. Think it through and make the best choice you can at this point and give yourself the freedom to change later as you learn more. At least it’s in the same department and the core classes will likely be the same. I wish you the best!

Prospects for employment should be part of the selection criteria. Given expected job openings (, degrees awarded by engineering discipline ( and the number of jobs in chemical engineering vs. the others advertised on, the employment prospects in the US for chemical engineers relative to those for mechanical and electrical engineers are poor.

Since the core course requirements are pretty much the same, you don’t need to permanently commit to a subcategory right away.

Prospects for employment can, and many times do, change dramatically in the 4 years it takes to get one’s degree. What is a hot area one day gets flooded with graduates 4 years later because it was such a hot field. Also market drives demand in some areas; just look at the history of aerospace or petroleum engineers.

I always recommend to find what you do best and enjoy the most and go that way. I say that because you’ll enjoy the work more and typically be better at what you enjoy.

If you are not sure what area you want to go into then concentrate on those schools that either delay one’s choosing a department until your sophomore year or allow easy transfers between departments. Your freshman year in engineering is pretty much the same no matter what department you choose. Use your freshman year wisely to look into what area you might like to go into.

FYI, chemical engineering is much different than chemistry. I’ve known several people who did well in chemistry but did not fare so well in chemical engineering. The same can be said for other areas of engineering but not to the degree I’ve seen with chemistry/chemical engineering. Just my observation and may not be universally true.

Each of the links on this page has a short video about the type of engineering.

I suspect there is lots of stuff like this online.

“I have only taken chemistry, Im going to introduce myself to physics this summer (online course)” - It’s good you will learning about physics. Most students have it in high school, especially if going into engineering.