Computer engineering can be described as the science of designing and building computers. There are three main areas of specialization. First of all, there are software engineers (or software developers) who make programs for computers, usually run by firms or companies which produce computer software themselves. Software engineers may also specialize in programming languages, object oriented programming (for use in computer games), computer hardware, networking and so on.
Software engineers typically specialize in one or more fields. Some, for example, might be interested in computer music software (for use in making and producing music), video game programming (for creating and designing video games) or database designing. Other software engineers would have a specialization in a single discipline, for example in graphics software or network software. Others might do both programming and graphic design at the same time.
Computer hardware engineers design and develop computer hardware. These hardware engineers are typically involved in hardware design for manufacturing and production. Some hardware engineers may be involved in software design, but this is usually a secondary role and typically limited to some degree. However, hardware designers will often be involved in the research and development that go into computer design, such as hardware design software. Software engineers also participate in software design, although this part of their job involves designing software rather than hardware.
Computer software engineers design computer applications. They usually specialize in a specific program, such as in programming languages such as Java and C++ or in computer graphics, such as in 3D visualizations and so on.
Although computer scientists and engineers are different from computer programmers and graphic designers, they share many similarities. For example, many people in computer science and engineering choose not to become computer programmers or graphic designers, but instead choose to work on academic projects or in industry instead, since both of these fields are considered academic and involve hard work.
A computer scientist or engineer is a person with a PhD in computer science who researches and develops the theories of computer science. In a typical academic environment, a person with a PhD in computer science would have four main areas of specialization: mathematics, programming languages, computer theory, hardware design, computer systems and so on. In addition, a person who has a PhD in computer science would have additional areas of specialization, including software design, data processing and so on.
Computer engineers are generally highly educated, trained, skilled, highly skilled and in demand. They can work as consultants for large companies, government organizations, educational institutions and in academic settings. Some, such as those in academic settings, teach computer science and engineering as part of their careers, while others prefer to specialize in specific areas of computer science. The salary is competitive. There are jobs available all around the world and an increasing number of openings.
A major computer science degree requires that a candidate has completed undergraduate studies, at least two years of graduate study or post-graduate education, and a specific set of courses in computer science. In order to obtain a major in computer science, a student must take computer science courses from the Department of Computer Science at the University of Illinois or another accredited institution. Courses in programming languages and computer architecture are required.
A computer engineering degree requires that a candidate complete undergraduate studies, at least one year of graduate study or up to four years of undergraduate study, and take courses in computer engineering, information science, computer science and software engineering. Other courses include programming languages and computer architecture. In order to obtain a computer engineering major, a candidate must take the approved computer engineering course from either a university or an accredited institution. In addition, a candidate must take a course with an advisor specializing in computer engineering and pass a comprehensive exam.
A master’s degree in computer engineering is the highest level of the Bachelor’s degree. In order to obtain this degree, the student must complete three years of undergraduate study, one year of graduate studies or a year of doctoral study. On completion of the program, a student will receive a Master’s of Science in Computer Engineering, which focuses on the applied aspects of computer science. A Master’s degree in Computer Science also takes a specific number of courses in computer science. It also takes courses in mathematics, applied mathematics and computer systems, as well as a course in computer architecture.
An Associate’s degree in Computer Engineering is earned by taking two years of graduate study or one year of undergraduate study followed by an internship. This degree is similar to a Bachelor’s degree but does not require a full-time program.