Computer Engineering

Earnings Potential

An engineer in specializing in computers or electronics can make over $52,000 a year with a bachelor's and up to over $80,000 a year with a masters degree.

Facts at a glance

  • Employment is projected to decline 7 percent over the 2004–14 period due to productivity improvements, imports, and the movement of some jobs to lower wage countries. 
  • The industry is characterized by significant research and development activity and rapid technological change. 
  • Professional and related personnel account for 1 out of 3 workers.

Summary of what this career entails

The computer engineering industry concerns the study and development of all things computer technology. Someone in the industry is dealing with both the hardware and software designs of a computer system. To put it best someone in the field should have the knowledge of an electrical engineer and a computer scientist. Someone in the field must be well versed in terms of the technology field, because there is the potential for many new concepts and the need is there for an individual who knows how to apply the concepts, especially in the 21st century. Computer engineers work with many types of computers including personal computers and workstations. A computer engineer’s main function is working with embedded computers that are used in aircraft, cars, communication switching systems, biomedical instruments, industrial robots and household appliances. He or she must also know computer programming.


Examples and or details of work

The nature of work depends on the position of the individual. A professor obviously has to teach college-level students in some aspect of the computer engineering field. The trend in the computer engineering field now is to move away from the building and repairing of actual products, to maintaining the areas in which the products are built. With that said an example of a computer engineer oversees (especially before the industry changes) includes the making of computer appliances such as your keyboard or your printer. The field is also becoming more and more diverse as time passes, so much so that certain schools are expanding the curriculum of the computer engineering concentration because as technology increases so does the knowledge someone who desires to get in the field has to have. Even more importantly the diversity in the teaching of this field has to do with the United States wanting to train computer engineers to be able to compete globally.


Degrees that lead to this career

Degrees that lead to a career in computer engineering include math and systems design, computer science, computer information systems, and engineering


Specific Career openings in this field

Specific jobs in the computer engineering field include computer hardware engineer, computer software engineer, programmer, software developers and professor

Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2006-07 Edition, Engineers, on the Internet at
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Career Guide to Industries, 2006-07 Edition, Computer Systems Design and Related Services, on the Internet at
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2006-07 Edition, Computer Software Engineers, on the Internet at
“Electronics/Computer Engineering Programs Keep Pace with Industry College of Technology. 18 September 2006. 16 October 2006.