Computers are ubiquitous in modern society.
Computer engineers generally specialize in one of three disciplines: computer hardware systems, computer systems’ software or computer software applications. Those who specialize in computer software are often referred to as software developers or engineers and in many cases, work closely with computer hardware engineers. These professionals design computers and their software, then oversee the development of their designs from conception to completion. Computer engineers combine education and personal qualities to be successful in these careers.
Becoming a computer engineer generally requires a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, computer engineering, computer science or a combined discipline. Coursework generally covers mathematics, electrical design, computer programming, computer architecture and mathematical structures related to computer hardware and software. Students also take general requirements such as chemistry, calculus and physics.
Along with the appropriate education, qualifications for a computer engineer include analytical and critical thinking skills, as well as an aptitude for mathematics. Designing computer hardware and software requires testing and debugging until the design functions properly. Computer engineers also must be able to communicate, because they work in a team environment. They should be able to translate non-technical needs into technical requirements, and have the ability to communicate with non-technical coworkers.