While some head off to college to pursue liberal arts, others will go the tech route into computer programming schools. A career in computer programming can mean many things. From the financial advantages of a lucrative career, a computer programming degree provides professionals with plenty of other opportunities. Some say with a computer programming degree, you'll never have to worry about your job outlook because computer programming professionals are always in demand. Find out what it takes to get there.
The Hardware of a Career
A career in computer programming can entail various things. While most computer programming degree holders get jobs doing just that, there's so much more to the career. For starters, a computer programmer is in charge of imputing sequenced instructions in order to direct a computer to do an assigned task or action. In order to achieve this, computer programmers must write, test, and maintain programs that computers must follow in order to perform specific functions. A knowledge of computer networking is important as many programmers will work for companies that have multiple workstations and systems in place. Problem solving is also a key ingredient for someone with a career in computer programming. A computer programmer must develop system solutions using appropriate methodologies and techniques. Those with a computer programming degree with knowledge in computer hardware and computer networking should have a firm grasp of this upon graduation.
The Ins and Outs of a Computer Programming Degree
So what will you learn as a computer programming student? Since computer programmers have to review, analyze, and modify programming systems, he or she must learn the tricks of encoding, testing, debugging, and documenting programs. Although this might sound complicated, a seasoned computer programmer -- one with a computer programming degree and experience -- has this down to a science. Until then an associate's computer programming degree in a related area or higher, combined with up to three years of experience in the field will get you there.
A career in computer programming takes more than just the technical mumbo-jumbo. Common concepts, practices, and procedures within a specific field is also beneficial to a computer programmer. Once you're ready and able (and can land a job), you can expect to earn around $50,979. That's the median expected salary for an entry level computer programmer in the United States according to the Basic Salary Report, an estimate based on broad national data reported by human resource departments of tens of thousands of employers.
Now that you know what it takes and what you can earn, you can take the first step to computer programming success. Begin by going for an associate or bachelor's computer programming degree. A degree in computer science is generally what's required for employment at more prestigious technology companies. Keep in mind science, mathematics, and engineering also provide the kind of base knowledge employers look for (beyond computer programming courses). And don't forget about specific programming language -- employers typically want computer programming professionals to be certified and/or familiar with those they use.
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Ysolt Usigan is a frequent contributor to The CollegeBound Network. Learn more about finding a school or career that's right for you!