Students can take computer engineering degrees either online or on campus and start from associate degree programmes over two years to advanced study at doctorate level. Teaching starts from focusing on specific careers like an electronics technology associate degree to PhD programmes that focus on research in digital signal processing. Each step in a student’s academic route gives them the opportunity to build on their current skill base, as well as developing knowledge in new or highly specialised areas.
At this level, those considering higher education can look at two different career paths: Pre-Engineering with an emphasis on Computer and Electrical Engineering, or Computer Technology. An associate degree in Computer Technology and Electronics provides a curriculum that emphasises a professional career that enables students to either seek entry-level work once they’ve graduated or to progress their education with a bachelor’s degree.
Alternatively, a pre-engineering degree exists for students looking to transfer their education to a four-year university in order to complete their computer engineering bachelor’s degree. Each option is meant to provide the student with an introduction to the fundamentals in electronics design and computer engineering, such as maintenance and repair, instrumentation, electronic systems, software and hardware, electric systems, networking and communications, and programming.
Students could, for example, choose classes in such areas as digital electronics, Internet technologies and networking, circuit theory, object-orientated programming, and computer architecture. Students can complete these programmes in two to three years, typically requiring 65-72 hours in order to graduate, depending on the programme and school itself.
At bachelor’s level, there are varying degree formats, such as the Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering Technology, the Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering. and the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Engineering. While curriculums differ from one programme type to the next, each offers a balanced approach to computer engineering study with a focus on designing, integrating, and supporting networking systems, and computer hardware and software.
This usually requires 120-128 semester credits in order to complete, with the curriculum encompassing both computer engineering and general education classes. Students are asked to build fundamental technical skills through the study of electro-mechanical systems, computer and network architecture, databases, and programming languages.
Examples of more specific fields of study include computer and electrical engineering design, microcomputer systems, digital integrated circuit design, and software. Some colleges offer students the chance to personalise their education by focusing their programme in Web design, information assurance, Web technologies, hardware, software, and related fields like robotics.
Computer engineering at postgraduate level is meant to ensure that students are ready to advance their career or continue their education at PhD level. Master’s degrees can be studied either online or on campus. Depending on their goals, students can choose from a Master of Engineering in Computer Engineering or a Master of Science in Computer Engineering.
Essentially, the Master of Engineering in Computer Engineering is a professional programme of study, designed to enable students to explore professional interests, both inside and outside of computer engineering. The Master of Science in Computer Engineering is focused on research and expects that students undertake independent research, culminating with a thesis project.