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Online Computer Engineering Degrees

Computer engineers apply engineering, computer science and math to analyze, design, implement and evaluate computer hardware and software. Hardware engineers focus on technology such as computer chips or circuit boards, while software specialists develop applications or the systems that control computers. Specializations include:

  1. Artificial intelligence
  2. Coding and information security
  3. Computer networks, including communications and wireless networks
  4. Computer systems, including architecture
  5. Robotics

Online computer engineering degrees can give you the background to seek careers ranging from telecommunications to digital software design.

Computer engineering: training and education

You can find campus-based or online computer engineering degree programs at all levels. A bachelor's degree is common in the field, although an associate degree could lead to entry-level employment or lay the groundwork for transition into other studies. A master's degree is preferred for some positions. If you're interested in research or enlightening the minds of tomorrow's computer engineers, you can pursue a Ph.D.

Certificate programs provide intensive knowledge in a specific area, such as software engineering, networking, IT business management or information assurance. If you are a professional working in the field, online computer engineering degree programs allow you to seek a certificate without interrupting your career, since you can balance your studies and other responsibilities.

Because technology is changing so rapidly, certifications are an important aspect of training. General certifications include those from professional organizations such as the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, IEEE, or vendor-specific or third-party credentials that demonstrate expertise with specific products.

Computer engineering: career salary and outlook

The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the best opportunities for employment in software engineering, which is expected to grow by 32 percent between 2008 and 2018; little growth is projected for hardware engineering as more jobs are outsourced. The BLS reported these median salaries in 2010:

  • Computer hardware engineer: $98,810
  • Software systems developer: $94,180
  • Software applications developer: $87,790

The future looks bright for engineers who have expertise in business strategy, marketing and project management, according to the article "Surviving the Current Market" on the IEEE website. Sectors with the most potential may include gaming, entertainment, media, 4G networks, social networking, emergency clean tech and energy management.

Campus or online computer engineering degrees can also be springboards to a new crop of careers. The ComputerWorld article "Up and coming tech jobs and how to land one" describes new job titles such as director of cloud transformation, augmented reality specialist, chief agile officer and health informatics expert.

Computer Engineering Schools

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An accredited online university, Capella University offers bachelor’s, master’s/MBA, doctoral, and certificate programs designed to take you to the forefront of your profession. Our competency-based curriculum delivers foundational knowledge and real-world skills, so what you’re learning is immediately applicable to your career. Right now, more than 36,000 students are expanding their opportunities with Capella programs.

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