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BTech in Sustainable Energy Systems FAQ

  • What makes the program different?
    1. i) The program is interdisciplinary: Students take courses in math, science, technology, business, communications and social sciences.
    2. ii) The program is designed around a systems-perspective, meaning students are getting the complete picture of the technology they are assessing.

    iii) Graduates are prepared to work in a multitude of sectors and positions, and to enable change.

  • What is a BTech?

    In Canada, Bachelor of Technology degrees are geared toward students who want to work with technology in a business environment.  Students are necessarily interested in technology and want to know how things work.  At the same time, they want the skills and training to be able to work effectively in a management, sales, analytical or policy-making role.  Graduates of the BTech will be able to assess different technologies (existing and emerging) for their suitability in given situations, and lead projects to implement them.

  • What is the difference between the BTech and a Technology/Technologist program at a college?

    The BTech program leads to a Bachelor’s (Honours) degree.  It is a university program that emphasises analytical skills.

    A Technology/Technologist program at a college leads to a diploma.  The learning outcomes differ between university and college programs.

  • What is the difference between the BTech and a BEng degree?

    A BEng degree is specifically designed to educate future engineers.  If the program is accredited by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board (CEAB), graduates of the program will be well on their way toward licensure as P.Engs.  However, engineering curricula are tightly standardized, with little room for students to choose their own courses or to study topics outside applied science and math.

    By comparison, the BTech allows students to study a broader range of topics, and gives them more flexibility (i.e., electives) to tailor their program to their own interests and future goals.  In their careers, BTech graduates will be able to do much of the analysis associated with energy systems, and will be sufficiently knowledgeable to converse with Engineers.  BTech graduates will also be cognizant of the point at which a project must be turned over to Professional Engineers for completion of technical details.  BTech graduates will be skilled in energy system planning, but technical design work will fall to Engineers.

  • What are the specializations?

    BTech students can choose between two specializations:

    The Technologies specialization is for students who are interested in focusing their degree on energy technologies.  While students still learn about the economic and social aspects of energy systems, they take more technology-specific courses, broadening their technical expertise.  This specialization is expected to appeal to students who are more interested in working directly with energy technologies, or in careers where the ability to assess many different energy technologies is a particular asset.

    The Programs and Policies specialization is for students who are interested in taking an even broader approach to understanding and working with energy systems.  While students still learn about multiple energy technologies, in detail, they also take more courses focused on the business, social, and political elements of energy systems.  This specialization is expected to appeal to students who are more interested in working in a business or policy-making environment.

  • Can a BTech graduate pursue postgraduate studies?

    Yes, BTech graduates will be well placed to pursue graduate studies in engineering, science or the social sciences.