It actually becomes possible to work as a software engineer without degree, as the same is true with other branches of engineering.
Engineering is an ancient and respected discipline, but do you need a degree to become an engineer? In most cases, you will, but for some fields such as software engineering, you may not need a degree. Yeah, you can be a software engineer without degree.
While this may sound like a myth, it is indeed true. To be a engineer without degree is undoubtedly a heated debate for generations. With the rising cost of student loans, you may be wondering if a degree is really worth the financial cost in the long run. Let’s dig into the facts whether you can be a engineer without degree in all fields.
In the following article, we will take a look at how this is possible and point you in the direction of actually doing it or not.
Do I require a degree to become an engineer?
Whether or not you need a degree depends on the industry and engineering sector. Say, if you want to become a civil engineer, you need to have one.
But for other fields like software engineering, you may not need to. In fact, there are many high-profile software engineers who have just done it.
It can still be possible to do a job without a government software engineering degree, so long as you have coding skills and experience. But it will not be easy.
That being said, there are few companies out there who are more than happy to hire engineers without a degree. It is also sensible to change software engineering from another industry.
According to sources like US News, the average salary of software developers is $ 95,510 per year. The unemployment rate in the industry is just 2.5%, making it the most lucrative technology career.
It is one of the fastest growing employment opportunities in the next 5 years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, they say that employment opportunities should experience a growth of 17% by 2024.
Despite this apparent wealth of opportunity, very few graduates are currently studying relevant degrees. This will probably lead to a serious understep of degree-worthy labor in the not too distant future.
If this sounds interesting to you, here are some things you can do without an official computing degree, and here is another good source to actually do it.
Qualifications you need to become an engineer
For most engineering subjects you will need a relevant degree on this subject. For some roles, such as electrical or mechanical engineering, it is a process. It will be a very taxing, yet rewarding, process.
Some engineering jobs do not require a degree related to a specific engineering discipline, and simply you will need an engineering degree in general. But, for field like chemical engineering, you will require a chemical engineering degree. Being a Civil/Chemical Engineer without Degree can prove to be harmful.
For others, like software engineering, while you can enroll in an official university course, doing so is not absolutely necessary. But you will have a hard time landing a great position.
In most cases, your journey to become an engineer will begin long before you reach university. For example, you will need to focus on the study of physics and mathematics in school.
For high level universities, like Oxford or MIT, you will also need to make sure that you excel in these subjects before applying. They want the best of the best.
But for other universities, the main emphasis will be on making sure that you have a good grounding in science and mathematics. It is possible to convert from a non-engineering degree to an engineering one but in most cases, a conversion course or other professional qualification is usually required.
Can you call myself an engineer? If you’re an Engineer without Degree
The term engineer gets tagged at the end of many job titles. Mostly, it looks impressive, while the post seems to have a lengthy mess.
This raises a tempting question, “When can you actually call yourself an engineer?” In most cases, the answer is very straightforward. For subjects such as civil, electrical or mechanical engineering, no one would doubt the fact that the practitioner is indeed an engineer.
But what about courses like software engineering or sound engineering?This is indeed a subject of heated debate, and one that you can experience well for yourself.
On one side of the argument are ‘purists with merit’ who insist that a ‘real’ engineer is only someone who has an official degree and can be a formal member of an engineering professional body.
On the other side of the argument are those who believe that as long as you create or create something, you have the right to state that you use the word engineer to describe what you do.
This is an interesting and quasi-philosophical debate at its core and certainly not easy to answer. But we are sure that you will have your own opinion on this subject.
Can you get the title of an ENGINEER without degree?
Engineering is one of the oldest ‘jobs’ in history of employment & development. Ever since our species first evolved, we have been designing and building things.
Famous engineers from history such as Archimedes, Vitruvius or the Isambard Kingdom Brunel were undoubtedly engineers but did they have any official qualifications? For example, Brunel did not have an engineering degree, but completed an apprenticeship as a watchmaker and horologist.
In fact, most engineers in history, like Brunel, undertook apprenticeships under experienced engineers rather than participating in long-term academic studies.
Therefore, it can be argued that most engineers in history are ‘inept’ in the modern sense of the word. But we will not doubt his engineering credentials today.
But you don’t need to go back in history for some examples around us today. Some of the richest ‘engineers’ in the world are completely out of college today. From Mark Zuckerberg to Bill Gates, there are plenty of examples of software engineers who have succeeded in engineering without government credentials. Of course, these are particularly talented and dedicated individuals, but it is possible for someone else to do the same.
You just need to have the passion and drive to do so. Of course, a little capital and connections also help. And maybe a little luck. But being an engineer without degree seems less challenging today.
Ultimately, this debate is one that will divide opinion very easily. We will let you decide.
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