Best Doctorate in Industrial Engineering Programs

Professionals with a doctorate in industrial engineering can make a significant impact on their field. Learn more about how this degree benefits graduates.

portrait of Thomas Broderick
by Thomas Broderick

Published on July 28, 2022

Edited by Colin Weickmann
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A doctorate in industrial engineering prepares students to make a lasting impact in their field. Graduates can use their online degrees to perform academic research or lead private organizations. A typical online or on-campus program takes 3-5 years.

Some top public schools charge less than $5,000 per year in tuition, while private schools may cost more than $45,000. Prospective degree-seekers can calculate an online program's true cost by considering location, textbooks, and other school fees.

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Students can decide whether to take on debt for a graduate degree by studying the job market. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects an 8% growth in jobs for top executives and a 12% growth in jobs for postsecondary teachers from 2020 to 2030. This is as fast as or faster than the average growth rate of 8% for all occupations during that time. Steady growth makes earning an online doctorate in industrial engineering a good investment for some learners.

Professionals with a doctorate can explore well-paying positions. Payscale reports that the average salary for graduates with a doctorate in industrial engineering was $116,000 as of June 2022.

Best Accredited Doctorate in Industrial Engineering Programs

Rankings compiled by the BestColleges Ranking Team

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Directory of Doctorate in Industrial Engineering Programs
Accredited University Grad Tuition Program Information

Arizona State University

Phoenix, Arizona

In-State | $11,720

Out-of-State |$26,160

Admission Rate | 86%

Auburn University

Auburn, Alabama

In-State | $9,828

Out-of-State |$29,484

Admission Rate | 81%

Binghamton University

Vestal, New York

In-State | $11,310

Out-of-State |$23,100

Admission Rate | 41%

Clemson University

Clemson, South Carolina

In-State | $10,600

Out-of-State |$22,050

Admission Rate | 51%

Columbia University in the City of New York

New York City, New York

In-State | $47,600

Out-of-State |$47,600

Admission Rate | 5%

Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University

Tallahassee, Florida

In-State | $8,019

Out-of-State |$22,108

Admission Rate | 36%

Florida State University

Tallahassee, Floria,

In-State | $9,684

Out-of-State |$24,116

Admission Rate | 36%

Georgia Institute of Technology

Atlanta, Georgia

In-State | $14,064

Out-of-State |$29,140

Admission Rate | 21%

Iowa State University

Ames, Iowa

In-State | $9,758

Out-of-State |$24,720

Admission Rate | 92%

Kansas State University

Manhattan, Kansas

In-State | $10,212

Out-of-State |$23,050

Admission Rate | 95%

Lehigh University

Bethlehem, Pennsylvania

In-State | $27,000

Out-of-State |$27,000

Admission Rate | 32%

Mississippi State University

Mississippi State, Mississippi

In-State | $8,800

Out-of-State |$23,800

Admission Rate | 54%

New Jersey Institute of Technology

Newark, New Jersey

In-State | $20,624

Out-of-State |$30,540

Admission Rate | 73%

North Carolina A & T State University

Greensboro, North Carolina

In-State | $4,745

Out-of-State |$17,545

Admission Rate | 58%

North Carolina State University at Raleigh

Raleigh, North Carolina

In-State | $9,095

Out-of-State |$26,421

Admission Rate | 45%

North Dakota State University

Fargo, North Dakota

In-State | $6,743

Out-of-State |$10,115

Admission Rate | 94%

Northeastern University

Boston, Massasschusetts

In-State | $24,793

Out-of-State |$24,793

Admission Rate | 18%

Northwestern University

Evanston, Illinois

In-State | $56,067

Out-of-State |$56,067

Admission Rate | 9%

Ohio State University-Main Campus

Columbus, Ohio

In-State | $11,560

Out-of-State |$35,114

Admission Rate | 54%

Oklahoma State University

Stillwater, Oklahoma

In-State | $5,531

Out-of-State |$21,034

Admission Rate | 70%

Oregon State University

Corvallis, Oregon

In-State | $12,933

Out-of-State |$24,975

Admission Rate | 82%

Pennsylvania State University

University Park, Pennsylvania

In-State | $21,960

Out-of-State |$37,694

Admission Rate | 76%

Purdue University

West Lafayette, Indiana

In-State | $9,208

Out-of-State |$28,010

Admission Rate | 60%

Rutgers University, the State University of New Jersey

New Brunswick, New Jersey

In-State | $17,736

Out-of-State |$30,144

Admission Rate | 61%

Texas A & M University

College Station, Texas

In-State | $6,677

Out-of-State |$18,700

Admission Rate | 58%

Texas Tech University

Lubbock, Texas

In-State | $5,958

Out-of-State |$13,428

Admission Rate | 69%

The University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Knoxville, Tennessee

In-State | $11,468

Out-of-State |$29,656

Admission Rate | 79%

The University of Texas at Arlington

Arlington, Texas

In-State | $8,474

Out-of-State |$21,206

Admission Rate | 83%

The University of Texas at Austin

Austin, Texas

In-State | $11,998

Out-of-State |$22,996

Admission Rate | 32%

University at Buffalo

Buffalo, New York

In-State | $11,310

Out-of-State |$23,100

Admission Rate | 61%

University of Alabama in Huntsville

Huntsville, Alabama

In-State | $10,632

Out-of-State |$24,430

Admission Rate | 83%

University of Central Florida

Orlanda, Florida

In-State | $6,916

Out-of-State |$25,759

Admission Rate | 44%

University of Houston

Houston, Texas

In-State | $8,370

Out-of-State |$17,746

Admission Rate | 65%

University of Illinois at Chicago

Chicago, Illinois

In-State | $13,276

Out-of-State |$23,850

Admission Rate | 73%

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Champaign, Illinois

In-State | $14,997

Out-of-State $28,404

Admission Rate | 59%

University of Iowa

Iowa City, Iowa

In-State | $10,079

Out-of-State |$29,026

Admission Rate | 83%

University of Louisville

Louisville, Kentucky

In-State | $13,000

Out-of-State |$27,114

Admission Rate | 69%

University of Massachusetts Amherst

Amherst, Massachusetts

In-State | $14,014

Out-of-State |$29,529

Admission Rate | 64%

University of Miami

Coral Gables, Florida

In-State | $37,800

Out-of-State |$37,800

Admission Rate | 27%

University of Michigan

Ann Arbor, Michigan

In-State | $23,890

Out-of-State |$48,204

Admission Rate | 23%

University of Minnesota Twin Cities

Minneapolis, Minnesota

In-State | $17,500

Out-of-State |$27,204

Admission Rate | 57%

University of Missouri

Columbia, Missouri

In-State | $9,264

Out-of-State |$25,363

Admission Rate | 81%

University of Oklahoma

Norman, Oklahoma

In-State | $6,583

Out-of-State |$21,242

Admission Rate | 80%

University of Pittsburgh

Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

In-State | $23,530

Out-of-State |$39,898

Admission Rate | 57%

University of Rhode Island

Kingston, Rhode Island

In-State | $13,734

Out-of-State |$26,512

Admission Rate | 75%

University of South Florida

Tampa, Florida

In-State | $8,350

Out-of-State |$19,048

Admission Rate | 48%

University of Southern California

Los Angeles, California

In-State | $46,272

Out-of-State |$46,272

Admission Rate | 11%

University of Washington

Seattle, Washington

In-State | $18,198

Out-of-State |$32,439

Admission Rate | 52%

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Madison, Wisconsin

In-State | $10,728

Out-of-State |$24,054

Admission Rate | 54%

Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

Blacksburg, Virginia

In-State | $13,701

Out-of-State |$27,614

Admission Rate | 70%

Wayne State University

Detroit, Michigan

In-State | $16,285

Out-of-State |$35,274

Admission Rate | 72%

Western Michigan University

Kalamazoo, Michigan

In-State | $16,360

Out-of-State |$30,432

Admission Rate | 80%

Wichita State University

Wichita, Kansas

In-State | $5,435

Out-of-State |$13,348

Admission Rate | 92%

Featured Online Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

How We Rank Schools

Each year, the BestColleges Ranking Team evaluates hundreds of programs to produce our annual Best Doctorate in Industrial Engineering ranking. In 2022, the team sourced the most recent data available from the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System and College Navigator, both of which are hosted by the National Center for Education Statistics. We identified 53 schools that qualify for our ranking, listed in alphabetical order. The programs in our list are based on the following criteria.

The BestColleges Ranking Team is made up of contributors from our data science and product management teams. These contributors operate independently from the editorial team. All BestColleges school rankings are produced by the ranking team and are free of editorial influence. Read our Editorial Policy and Standards to learn more.

Frequently Asked Questions About Industrial Engineering Programs

Is a doctorate in industrial engineering worth it?

The answer depends on prospective students' career aspirations. Many graduates with a Ph.D. enter academia. Postsecondary teachers instruct the next generation of industrial engineers and perform original research.

Some professionals pursue a Ph.D. to fulfill a personal goal. Other reasons to enroll in a program include job security. The BLS reports that workers with a doctoral degree in 2021 experienced the lowest unemployment rate of all U.S. adults, only 1.5%.

An online doctorate in industrial engineering from an accredited university features the same advantages as in-person education. Other benefits may include an asynchronous curriculum. This learning style lets degree-seekers complete many educational requirements at a convenient time.

What can I do with a doctorate in industrial engineering?

Ph.D. graduates need not limit their job search to postsecondary teaching positions. Some professionals lead a private or public research firm. Major employers include manufacturing companies, wholesale traders, construction firms, and healthcare providers.

Students earning an online doctorate in industrial engineering may qualify for a leadership position after graduation. Degree-seekers should speak with a manager about how a degree may benefit them.

Students without a job turn to their university's career services department to learn how a doctorate in industrial engineering may launch their career. Counselors may recommend career and interest inventories. Other opportunities include networking with alumni.

How long does it take to get a doctorate in industrial engineering?

Degree-seekers with a master's in industrial engineering typically need four years to graduate. Students with only a bachelor's in industrial engineering or another subject may need longer to earn a Ph.D.

Students complete coursework in engineering and academic research. They must pass a qualifying examination before moving on to the dissertation. This examination assesses learners' proficiency with advanced topics.

Students who fail one or more parts of the qualifying examination may need to retake classes before starting the dissertation. Learners spend one or more years researching and writing. A program ends with the dissertation defense.

How much money can I make with a doctorate in industrial engineering?

The BLS reports that postsecondary teachers earned a median $79,640 salary in May 2021. This salary exceeds what the typical American worker made by approximately $24,000. States with the best-paying engineering teacher jobs included California, Illinois, Rhode Island, Washington, and Alabama.

Top executives with an online doctorate in industrial engineering earned a median $98,980 salary in May 2021. The BLS reports that executives working in technical services, manufacturing, and other engineering subfields made considerably more than their peers specializing in another field. Top executives earning the most in May 2021 lived in the District of Columbia or Hawaii.

What are the highest-paying jobs with a doctorate in industrial engineering?

Payscale reports that the highest-paying jobs for workers with a doctorate in industrial engineering include vice president of analytics, senior data scientist, and senior process engineer. These professionals earned an average salary of $131,380-$169,200 as of June 2022. Principal scientists and industrial engineers also made much more than the average U.S. salary of $58,260.

Students and recent graduates should note that state of residence, years of experience, and employer may affect salary as much as education. Research salary ranges for industrial engineering professionals to determine what you can expect to earn if you relocate or change jobs.

Feature Image: PixeloneStocker / Moment / Getty Images

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