Electricity is defined as the energy stored in the motion of particles in free air, plus the energy of rotation and vibration that are present in objects and materials, such as a bicycle wheel or a leaf. Energy is also defined as the amount of work performed by an electric circuit. In order to develop new and improved products, electrical engineers must first understand the concept of how electricity works, how it is produced, and how it affects different objects and the environment.
Many people think of engineering as a way to create things from nothing, but this is not true. Electrical engineers also use their knowledge and training to develop and manufacture products that do not exist without their help.
A person who holds a degree from an accredited college and program in electrical engineering will have the knowledge and training needed to become an electrical engineer. There are various degrees available to people with these skills, including electrical engineering (EEE) graduates, master’s degrees in electrical engineering, doctoral degrees, bachelor’s degrees, associate’s degrees and professional degrees. Each program has specific requirements and prerequisites that the student must meet before they may enroll into the coursework.
The duties of an electrical engineer depend upon the type of job that is sought. A licensed electrician must be licensed to practice engineering in the state in which he/she practices. All states require a license for anyone seeking employment as an electrician.
Most electrical engineering graduates enter the profession in various ways. Many electrical engineers start out as engineers at a company or construction site, working as an assistant or lab technician, then advancing to a more advanced position once they have a bachelor’s degree. There are also electrical engineers that work as computer hardware specialists, software engineers and network and computer systems engineers.
Electrical engineers can obtain a license to practice engineering in all fifty states of the United States and in the District of Columbia. These engineers are called Registered Electrical Contractors (RCEs). and can also hold the title of Registered Electrical Mechanic (REM). and the title of Certified Practical Engineer (CPE).
Most states require that all engineers be licensed prior to taking their exam. Passing the exam to become a licensed electrical engineer requires knowledge and experience in electrical engineering as well as completion of a recognized accredited four-year program. The exam is typically given by national organizations such as the National Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (NIE). For additional information on these exams, contact your state’s licensing board.
The National Association of Schools and Colleges in Engineering and Technology (NASCE) has a website with information on schools that offer electrical engineering programs. They also have lists of accredited schools. A school will be on this list if the school meets all the standards for accreditation. These accreditation standards should include accreditation from the National Commission for Engineering and Technology (NCE) or National Underwriter’s Laboratory Accreditation (UNLAC). These accreditations show that a school is recognized for providing quality education by industry-accepted bodies.
Electrical engineers are required to take continuing education courses every two years in order to maintain certification. The requirements vary depending upon the state in which they work. and whether they are licensed. In addition, they will also need to complete refresher courses to keep up on continuing developments and advances in technology.
There are many other engineering career options open to those who have completed a college or engineering program. Some employers will consider a candidate’s work experience prior to hiring.
For people who are interested in becoming an electrical engineer, a four-year degree in this field is usually the first step. Other higher education programs will enable people to gain some work experience and then progress to the next level in their electrical engineering career. The most popular higher education program is a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering (BSE).