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The Requirements to Become an Electronic Engineer

by Neil Kokemuller, studioD

Electrical engineering is a common field within the broader engineering job arena. Engineers in this field conceive, design and manage development of various electrical devices and pieces of equipment. Electrical motors, communication technology, power generators, radar detectors, music players and GPS products are among the common items they develop. To become an electrical engineer, you must typically earn a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering and possess qualities like attention to detail, strong communication skills and teamwork.

Earn Your Degree

A bachelor's degree in an accredited electrical engineering program is the standard educational requirement for this career. An organization called ABET accredits electrical engineering programs, which include courses in digital technology and electrical circuitry. Along with classroom instruction, you also normally engage in lab classes, where you experiment with various types of electrical circuitry and development. Field studies and internships are common as well.

Get More Education and Training

You can obtain a master's degree to increase your employment options and to pursue management positions in the field. Many schools offer five-year dual programs where students can complete bachelor's and master's program requirements. Cooperative programs are also common in electrical engineer degree programs. Coop degrees simply involve a greater degree of field-based experience during the course of completing degree requirements. This type of program is especially useful to gain entry-level experience in electrical engineering.

Possess Key Qualities

Employers also look for certain traits when hiring electrical engineers. A willingness to learn is critical, since technology and electrical products evolve significantly over time. You must stay current with a changing field. Attention to detail and precision help in developing and testing products. Math is an essential skill in any area of engineering. Teamwork and communication skills are also valuable, because you typically work with a development team and must communicate directions and discuss problems and solutions.

Improve Your Career Options

Electrical engineers don't necessarily need a professional license, but getting one can improve employment options. With a master's degree or work experience combined with leadership qualities, you can become a manager or team leader in an electrical engineering department. Some electrical engineers also combine their technical expertise with selling abilities to become sales engineers. A sales engineer works on a sales team and helps explain the technical features and benefits of solutions to customers.

About the Author

Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.

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