A computer without software is like a bicycle tire without air: just an empty shell. Only the software – the program – brings the circuit boards, chips and processors to life and turns the PC into an “intelligent” and helpful machine. Software programs have long been controlling not only the home computer. Cell phones, medical technology devices and huge industrial production facilities only work with the appropriate codes and programs. And the areas of application are constantly expanding. New markets include apps for smartphones and tablet PCs or software as a service . This is a sub-area of cloud computing in which companies can use software over the Internet.
Software engineers not only program these applications, they also deal with all facets of the production process . They estimate the time it will take to develop the software and calculate the costs. They coordinate the programmers, check the quality of the new products and also take care of marketing and sales.
An overview of the software engineering studies
According to maternityetchic.com, the software engineering courses are located at the interface between computer science, engineering and economics . Technical colleges and universities often offer independent courses on the subject of software engineering under the English technical name of software engineering . Prospective students should carefully compare the study programs with one another, as the universities sometimes set very different priorities. Some bachelor programs are designed as dual study programs in which students complete an apprenticeship and study at the same time. At many universities there is also the option of software technology as a focus in a degree in computer science or theChoose applied computer science .
At the beginning of the bachelor’s degree, the students first learn the basic knowledge of computer science . The students learn mathematics , get to know operating systems and databases and practice programming. More than in conventional degree programs in computer science, it is also about economic issues such as cost calculation.
In the higher semesters, further subjects from the field of software technology and business administration are added. The students deal more closely with topics such as software architecture or data protection . They also learn the basics of organizational and leadership management , such as project management and controlling. Depending on the orientation of the course, they either specialize predominantly in business administration or predominantly in information technology . Internships and study projects give them the opportunity to put theory into practice.
After completing their bachelor’s degree, graduates can start their careers directly or pursue a master’s degree. A master’s degree in software engineering qualifies you for a career in research and for management positions in the private sector. Here, too, the universities offer different focal points , such as database development or multimedia. In the software engineering master’s degree, students can also deepen and expand their business administration and management skills.
Studying software engineering: requirements
Applicants should not only have a great passion for computer science and information technology, but also be interested in economic topics. Basic knowledge of programming is certainly useful, but not a mandatory requirement for first-year students. In any case, you should have a solid basic knowledge of mathematics in order to be successful in your studies. Since a large part of the specialist literature is in English, a sound knowledge of the language is necessary.
The number of software companies in Germany is growing steadily. Around 15,000 new jobs are created in this area every year. So the job prospects for graduates are good.
In their professional life, for example, the software technicians take care of the time and financial planning of projects. You coordinate the development of the software and the installation at the customer’s facility and carry out quality controls and maintenance. Depending on your degree and professional experience, you will take on managerial or executive activities in project management. Employers for graduates are, for example:
- Software manufacturer
- IT service provider
- Hardware manufacturer with its own software departments
- Telecommunications provider
Large industrial companies employ in-house software engineers to install and maintain their server infrastructures, to design web portals or to carry out training courses.
Study software engineering internationally
Many software companies and IT service providers have customers all over the world. Especially if you want to work in leading management positions later, you need good foreign language skills and intercultural skills.
As part of a study abroad, you can acquire valuable technical and interdisciplinary qualifications, which are advantageous for later applications. One or more semesters abroad promote your personal development and signal to the employer that you are flexible and that you can find your way around in international teams. Studying abroad is also relevant from a technical point of view , because the host universities offer specific focal points with which you can expand your repertoire.