Diploma in engineering is a program that focuses more on providing technical expertise and hands-on knowledge to students which make them industry-ready by the time they graduate. It is excessively technical at its core and does not delve into a deeper theory as engineering does. A diploma generally lasts for up to 2-3 years and most countries recognize it as a beginner step towards an engineering degree. Many engineering programs provide a platform for diploma holders to enhance their specialization and equip them for both analytical and research-oriented roles. The benefit that the diploma provides is its flexibility which can allow one to pursue either higher studies or look for career opportunities in fields such as technicians, junior engineers, foreman, machinist, draftsman, etc.
Most countries provide opportunities for diploma courses after the completion of 10th standard and involve fields such as aeronautical, mechatronics, automobile/automotive, civil, chemical, computer sciences, electrical, electronics, communication, instrumentation and control, mechanical, industrial and production, mining, marine, materials, manufacturing, petroleum, polymer, power, software, IT, textile, plastic, food and environmental engineering. In India diploma is generally a 3-year long course. Polytechnic universities usually offer various courses and are recognized by the State Boards of Technical Education.
Diploma holders can apply for the Associate Member of the Institution of Engineers exam which certifies them as a member of the Indian Institution of Industrial Engineering which is equivalent to the Associate engineering bachelor’s degree. Once diploma holders acquire some professional exposure they can opt for advanced programs. Apart from the already mentioned points, diploma holders are also eligible for direct lateral entry into the third semester of engineering programs. Diploma holders can also take up part-time courses in conjunction with various state universities. Recently many of the state governments have been revamping their diploma programs to make it more in line with current job scenarios.
The most preferred role of a diploma holder is that of an engineering technician who is primarily trained in the skills to help assist floor engineers in the field of their specialization. They often help out in a range of skills ranging from research to operational activities. Engineering technicians help to solve technical problems across various spheres. They are often involved in the process of setting up experiments, conducting research work, and help to collect and analyze data. Some are also involved in the process of quality control and carrying out a variety of tests.
The most lucrative aspect of pursuing a diploma in engineering is the technical know-how that it equips one with the required skillset and makes them industry-ready. Another benefit is that you can directly enroll for a diploma after 10th standard rather than the conventional bachelor’s degree after 12th standard. A typical diploma course also involves facets of physics, chemistry, and mathematics that are generally covered at the 12th standard level. If you are someone who is looking for quick exposure to the technical industry, diploma not only opens up a plethora of opportunities for you but is also an extremely viable option in the long run.