Python is gobbling up the world! A degree in Software Engineering is what all school-level tech enthusiasts aim at. You’re at the right place if you’re determined to begin your search for the future software engineer in you.
What is Software Engineering?
Software Engineering deals with designing, developing, installing, and maintaining different kinds of software solutions to meet various requirements of businesses, consumers, and individuals. Using standard software engineering principles, programming languages, programming tools and technologies, software engineering helps in product development, service delivery, education, entertainment and a myriad of other needs that a business, consumer, or an individual might have.
Apart from this, software engineering alsofocuses on testing software systems for finding out bugs/errors, debugging, resolving system errors, and auditing& evaluating software systems to identify the scope of improvement in the software and upgrade it accordingly.
“Software engineering is the establishment and use of sound engineering principles in order to obtain economically software that is reliable and work efficiently on real machines.”Fritz Bauer, a German computer scientist
A laptop, a Kindle, a mobile phone, a camcorder, Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PowerPoint etc.), search engines like Google or DuckDuckGo or Tor, Windows Operating Systems, a Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) Network, a GPS unit, a social networking site, a payment transaction service, are all examples of IT products and services – all of these are driven byoperating software systems and application software.
Software Engineering: A Deep Dive
Software Engineering deals with designing such independently operating software systems and software agents. All software inside these products and services are designed, developed, and programmed by Software Engineers.
Software Engineering deals with:
- Programming and development of computer system operating software (such as Windows 10, Linux, Ubuntu, etc.) as well as mobile operating software packages including Symbian, iOS, Android, Windows Mobile, Blackberry OS, or Pocket PC etc.
- Development of Computer programming languages such as C++, HTML, Java, Python, Ruby, etc.
- Research, design, and development of computer software development tools, development frameworks, cloud computing tools, and project management tools such as – Linx, Atom, Cloud 9, GitHub, Bootstrap, code Lobster, Jira, etc.
- Development of algorithms (a set of rules or processes for solving a problem using computers) for solving computational problems – such as finding out all the millions of possibilities of mutation of the Corona virus or screening of millions of molecules to find out which molecule can kill the virus.
- Development of system architecture of complex computer systems and computer networks such as the systems and software that run banks, airline ticket booking, e-commerce portals, etc. Networks like the Internet, networks within an organisation, etc.
- Development of application software – such as MS-Word, cloud technology application software, etc., various computer software such as those used in business – for e-commerce, customer relationship management, database management, accounting, etc.
- Development of encryption software, firewalls and other cyber security software – such as BitlBee, Barracuda NextGen, SonicWall TZ, McAfee, Norton, etc.
- Development of mobile application software – such as the Uber App, Swiggy App, and so many others you use daily.
- Installing, testing, running and maintaining computer software systems including computer networks.
Usually, thosetrained in software engineering need to specialize in a particular area of software development including operating systems, desktop applications, applications on the cloud (network of servers on the internet), web/mobile applications, database architecture, computer networks, etc.
Each of these areas demands a specific set of skills and knowledge (programming languages such as Java, Python, Ruby, C, C++, HTML, development environments, various tools and technologies, etc.)
What you will do in Software Engineering?
You, as a trained software engineer, will spend most of your time:
- Researching, designing, and writing new software programs (codes).
- Applying standard Mathematical and Statistical procedures to solve complex coding problems.
- Analyzing data to effectively facilitate the installation of new systems or aid the modification of existing systems.
- Testing new software and fixing bugs and errors.
- Developing and executing project plans.
- Managing the complete development lifecycle of software.
- Maintaining existing systems by monitoring and fixing software defects/faults.
- Upgrading existing programs by analyzing and identifying areas for modification.
- Integrating existing software products with compatible platforms for optimal efficiency.
- Monitoring system performance.
- Writing operational documentation with Technical Writers.
- Working in close collaboration with clients and cross-functional departments to communicate project statuses and proposals.
- Continually updating technical knowledge and programming skills by attending in-house as well as external courses, reading manuals and experimenting with new applications/technologies.
How to Become a Software Engineer?
Interested in knowing how to become a software engineer? Well, these are some of the pathways to enter the field of software engineering and become a software engineer.
Class 11-12 with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics -> Bachelor of Engineering/B.Tech in Computer Engineering/Computer Science and Engineering/Software Engineering/Information Technology/Similar
Class 11-12 with PCM -> Bachelor’s degree in any Engineering discipline
Class 11-12 in Science stream -> B Tech/ BEin any stream -> Short term course in programming languages / Information Technology / Machine Learning / Coding / Data Science
Class 11-12 in Science stream with Physics, Mathematics & Computer -> Bachelor degree programs in Computer Science / Information Technology / Computer Applications
Class 11-12 in any stream -> Bachelor degree in Computer Applications (BCA)
Class 11-12 in Commerce/ Humanities (Arts) stream with Mathematics and/or Computer -> Bachelor degree programs in Computer Science / Information Technology / Computer Applications
Class 11-12 in Science stream with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics -> Bachelor of Engineering/B. Tech in Computer Engineering/Computer Science & Engineering/Electrical Engineering/Electronics Engineering/Communication Engineering/ Similar -> Master of Engineering/M. Tech in Computer Engineering/Computer Science & Engineering/Software Engineering/Network Engineering/Data Engineering/ similar
Class 11-12 in Science stream with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics -> Bachelor degree programs in Computer Science / Information Technology / Computer Applications/ any Science discipline with Mathematics -> Master’s degree in Physics/ Mathematics/Computer Science/ Computer Applications (MCA) or equivalent -> GATE exam -> ME / M Tech / Master’s Program in Computer Sc. and Engineering, Software / IT / Similar
Class 11-12 in Science stream with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics->Bachelor degree in Engineering, Computer Science, Computer Science & Engineering, Computer Applications or IT->MBA in Information Technology
Class 11-12 in Science stream with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics->Bachelor degree in any Science discipline with Mathematics->Master’s Program (like MCA or M. Sc.) in Computer Applications or IT or similar
Class 11-12 with any subjects and Mathematics -> Bachelor’s degree in any subject -> MCA
Class 11-12 with any subjects and Mathematics -> Bachelor’s in Mathematics / Statistics/ Mathematical Science/ Similar -> MCA/ Similar
Software Engineering Course Curricula
Software engineering is vitally important to the advancement of technology. Without software to run any device hardware, that hardware is simply a clump of plastic, silicon and metal. Not wrong if you use it as an overpriced paperweight!
You will require special training & formal degrees because software engineering is a unique, technical and scientifically-driven field.
By getting a degree in software engineering, youcan work, as a graduate, in any number of fields,for example if you wish, you may be engaged in developing internet applications, creating video games, implementing computer security measures or running computer networks for an organization. How about it?
The practice of software engineering blends in software development, computing, and project management. Those trained in software engineering manage a comprehensive list of critical functions.
These critical functions lie across broad knowledge areas such as Web & mobile applications, networking, embedded systems, security, and systems administration.
Such functions span the entire development process, which mandatorily includes business needs, design & development, implementation, quality assurance testing and product release.
4-year Undergraduate Software Engineering Course Curriculum
This section will give you an idea about what an undergraduate software engineering course deals with.
Here is a list of different subjects taught as compulsory topics in most colleges conducting a 4-year Bachelor degree courses in software engineering:
- Computer Architecture
- Circuit Theory & Networks
- Computer Organization
- Digital Electronics & Logic Design
- Comparative Programming Languages
- Date Structures & Algorithm Design
- Assembly Language
- Formal Language & Automata Theory
- Operation Research &OptimizationTechniques
- Engineering Physics
- Differential Equations
- Language Processor
- Artificial Intelligence
- Visual Programming and Web technology
- Computer Graphics & Multimedia
- System Software and Administration
- Communication Engineering
- Object Technology & UML
- Database Design and Management
- Management Concepts
- Engineering Reporting
- Computing Systems and Data Communication
- Managerial Accounting
- Legal Aspects of Software Design
- Numerical Analysis
- Real-time systems
- Digital Control & Microcomputers
- Human Factors
Here is a list of 20 choices of optional papers/ electives offered by popular colleges conducting Bachelor degree courses in software engineering:
- Distributed Database
- Bio Informatics
- Parallel Programming
- Advanced Operating System
- Computational Geometry
- Modeling & Simulation
- Image Processing
- Network Applications
- Robotic Control
- Soft Computing
- Digital Signal Processing
- VLSI Design
- E-Commerce and ERP
- Pattern Recognition
- Mobile Computing
- Real Time & Embedded System
- GIS & Remote Sensing
- Network Security
- Advanced Java Programming
- Natural Language Processing
2-year Postgraduate Software Engineering Course Curriculum
Here is a list of the general software engineering 2-year course curriculum (most common 22 topics) at the post graduate (Master’s) level:
- Advanced Software Modeling & Architecture
- Software Verification & Validation
- Pattern Recognition
- Mathematical Modeling
- Advanced Software Design & Testing
- Intelligent Systems
- Parallel Processing
- Fault–Tolerant Computer Systems
- Analysis of Algorithms
- Information Retrieval
- Distributed Computing
- Ethics in Engineering Practice and Research
- Simulation Models for Operations Analysis
- Systems Theory
- Software Project Management
- Web–Based Software Systems
- Usability Engineering
- Bayesian Analysis
- Risk Modeling & Assessment
- Advanced Economics of Systems
- Experimental Investigation in Advanced Industrial Engineering Applications
- Control Theory
Software Engineering: Jobs
The demand for software engineering isn’t going to slow down anytime soon. This is a lucrative and empowering field with multiple available industrial roles across various sectors. Nevertheless, it goes without saying that, it is also a highly competitive field with maximum of the best opportunities reserved for engineers graduating from premier engineering colleges with B Tech or BE degrees, in computer science engineering or software engineering especially.
You can find employment opportunities in:
- Engineering consultancies
- Tech Consultancies
- Research & development agencies
- Software developmentagencies
- Gaming and Media companies
- IT department in MNCs
You may find a job in any of these following roles
- Software Engineer
- Software Developer
- Computing Solutions Engineer
- Openstack Engineer
- AR/VR Engineer
- Gaming Engineer
- Computer Vision Engineer
- Search Engineer
- NLP Engineer
- Machine Learning Engineer
- Security Engineer
- Embedded Engineer
- Data Engineer
- Frontend Engineer
- Backend Engineer
- Blockchain Engineer
- Mobile Engineer
- Full-stack Engineer
- Application Developer
- Systems Engineer
- System Integrator
- Computing Architect
- System Analyst
- Quality Assurance Specialist
- Intelligence Engineer
- DevOps Engineer
- Database Administrator
- Subject Matter Architect
- Migration & Modernization Specialists
- Enterprise Architect
Various types of companies may recruit you:
Remember, the best options shall be available to you after your graduation from a premier engineering institution (pathway 1 above)
- Software and IT industry leaders such as Google, Facebook, Tencent, Twitter, Amazon Web Services etc.
- Indian IT &IT Enabled Services companies such as Tata Consultancy Services, Cognizant, etc.
- Behemoths ruling the global systems market: Microsoft Corporation, SAP SE, etc.
- Big Data and computing leviathans (large groups of companies) which are dealing with power analytics and business intelligence
- Gaming, media and entertainment industry with biggies such as Nvidia, Sony Interactive Entertainment etc. as well as multiplayer game software & customer relationship management (CRM) systems
- Online retailing companies such as Flipkart, Amazon Services Inc., Alibaba etc.
- Automobile leviathans including the ones dealing with futuristic technologies such as Lockheed Martin Corporation, Toyota Corp, Uber Air etc.
- IT companies focused on software engineering in the field of AI, machine learning or automation
- Space research and administration organizations
- Networking & Technology / research divisions of companies or digital channels of consultancies such as Deloitte, Goldman-Sachs, JP Morgan Chase.
- Fin Tech – Companies which are into the BFSI industry such as insurers, consultancies, banks, financial institutions, investment banking companies or others
- Health Tech –
- Providers of medical image and information products and technologies.
- Deep learning networks, image recognition, text analysis, machines / systems / devices to cater to the healthcare sector or
- Healthcare analytic solutions & services to support personalized, patient-centered care
- Products to protect patient safety, mitigate operational risks, and reduce cost and time of drug development
Software Engineering Jobs: Professional Certifications
These certifications will take you a notch up over others in this field. These are some of the top certifications desired by recruiters.
The C++ Institute has designed multiple certification programs.
There are associate, professional and senior examinations available for both the C and C++ programming languages.
|Associate certifications are foundational. They demonstrate your basic knowledge of C/C++ programming.|
|Professional certifications are advanced. These measure your understanding of complex C/C++ programming techniques.|
|Senior is expert-level certification. These test your knowledge of highly complex C/C++ coding problems.|
- C Programming Language Certified Association (CLA)
- C Certified Professional Programmer (CLP)
- Certified Senior Programmer (CLS)
- C++ Certified Associate Programmer (CPA)
- C++ Certified Professional Programmer (CPP)
- C++ Certified Senior Programmer (CPS)
IEEE Professional Software Developer (PSD) Certification
The Professional Software Developer (PSD) Certification tests your knowledge of software engineering requirements, design, construction and testing. It is sponsored by the IEEE Computer Society.
IEEE Professional Software Engineering Process Master (PSEPM) Certification
The Professional Software Engineering Process Master (PSEPM)Certificationmeasuresyour critical knowledge of software engineering. This is a 2-pronged examination.
The 1st test spans areas including software requirements, software construction and testing as well as software design, maintenance and configuration management.
The 2ndpart of the examination reviews your skills for software engineering processes, software models and methods, software engineering management, quality and engineering economics, and software project management.
IEEE Software Engineering Master (PSEM) Certification
As an advanced professional qualification, the PSEM tests your technical skills as well as your knowledge of software engineering principles through an applied examination.
This applied examination places you in a position of a professional developer and requires the completion of 2 performance tasks. These tasks are subsequently reviewed and rated.
Microsoft Certified Solutions Developer (MCSD) Certification
MCSD certification is designed for professionals who have been working in the field with Microsoft languages and Microsoft’s enterprise development tools.
The MCSD covers several certification areas. These include Azure Solutions Architect, Windows Store apps, SharePoint applications, application lifecycle management, Web applications, and Universal Windows Platform.
Software Engineering Jobs: Tools & technology
You will be using these tools and gear in your job as a software engineer.
Integrated Development Environment
- Microsoft Visual Studio .NET
- Oracle Netbeans
Object-Oriented Programming Languages
Program Testing Software
Web Development Software
- Apache Tomcat
Software Engineering Jobs: 16 Top Coding Languages
Software Engineer Salary Guide: How much will you earn?
- In entry-level Software Engineering jobs, you can expect a monthly salary package of around Rs. 18,000 – 45,000. After 2-3 years of experience, Rs. 20,000 – 60,000 or more a month
- As you gain about 6-10 years of experience and move on to mid-level roles in the field, your average monthly salary will be anywhere around Rs. 30,000 – 1,50,000, depending upon your job title and position.
- For senior-level job positions (with 12-20 years of experience), software engineer salary package is much higher and ranges anywhere between Rs. 50,000 – 5,00,000 or even more per month.
Software engineer salary also depends on the companies you’re working for. For instance, the salary package of a Software Engineer at Google ranges between Rs. 4,50,000 – 38,00,000 lakh per annum in the mid-level only; at Microsoft, it usually ranges between Rs. 3,60,000 – 26,00,000 lakh per annum in the mid-level, and at Intel, the average salary package is around Rs. 6,90,000 – 29,00,000.
Software Engineer Salary: The Outsourcing Market
When it comes to IT outsourcing services, India is considered to be the pioneer. This outsourcing market emerged in mid-1980’s. The Indian IT outsourcing market now employs more than3 million engineers, making it the oldest in the world and the largest as well, surpassing China.
For example, in Amsterdam, about 70% of manpower of every tech startup is composed of foreigners mainly from India, France, Brazil, Turkey, and Ukraine.
The average software engineer salary in India (outsourcing market) is Rs. 449663.10 a year. Usually, the local talent pool has below 10 years of experience.
Usually, software engineer salary steadily increases till 10+ years of experience and ceases to grow for those with 20+ years of experience.
The mostappreciated technologies are Java/J2EE and C++.
Entry level specialists earn around Rs 4, 42, 168.71 a year, and the few engineers with close to or more than 10 years of expertise may earn up to Rs 14, 01, 449.99a year.
Minimum wage varies dramatically based on location. In some cities, like Gurgaon, Bangalore, and Delhi, you may make 30% above the national average, while in Chennai or Noida, you will makeslightly below average.
Most of the world’s biggest IT companies employ Indian engineers for a full range of software & related engineering services.
For both India and China, United States is the biggest contractor and customer, followed by Australia, Japan, and China’s internal market. Indian internal market isyet to catch up in this field on revenue lines.
Software Engineer Salary: Top Outsourced Jobs Are In –
The average software engineer salary in Gurgaon is Rs 5, 77, 067.65 a year and can increase with knowledge of SQL & CSS.
It is important to note here that, the local talent pool typically has less than 10 years of experience.
Bangalore, a city with above-average salaries, offers a median software engineer salary of Rs 5, 69, 573.26 a year.
It is important to note here that, Bangalore has high demand for Java/J2EE and C++ engineers as well as younger engineers.
The average software engineer salary in Delhi is lower, at Rs 4, 72, 146.26 a year.
Engineers tend to move on to other locationsbefore/ after 10 years of experience.
Software Engineering: Future Prospects
Software Engineering courses have a great structure in terms of learning outcomes possibilities. You will get to study new engineering topics which are in demand these daysincludingcore mathematical concepts of AI, Machine Learning, Database Management Systems, Neural Networking, and Natural Language Processing,mostly as electives.
According to the pathways, after graduation, you may pursue M Sc, M Tech, ME, MBA, or MCA which are all promising options for lucrative offers in the software and IT sectors.
The figure here depicts the growth estimates of associated industrial sectors.
Software Engineering: Useful Links
- Software Engineering – Ian Sommerville speaks, Pearson Education Ltd. 2016
- State of Software Engineers – Hired
- Universities & Colleges recognized by UGC(University Grants Commission)
- JEE and all details
- Computer software development tools
- Business software
- Robert Walters Salary Guide – 2019 (PDF)
- Study on Top Tech Cities in the World – Nexten.io (PDF)
- Programming languages and skills that pay the best
Software Engineering: Conclusions
Looking forward to be a software engineering graduate? We’ve presented to you here all about what is software engineering, details about software engineering courses, pathways of how to become a software engineer, a curated software engineer salary guide and all about software engineering jobs. You will still need a little handholding to have a clear idea of what’s best for you depending on your inherent interests and abilities. It is important to chalk them out. Try a discussion with our expert counsellors with decades of industry experience.
Honors in Chemistry (Magna cum Laude), Master’s in Biophysics (Summa cum Laude), Dissertation from Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics, India
A specialist in actionable intelligence and knowledge delivery through research and analyses-centric presentations, with demonstrated skills in cross-disciplinary data interpretation/representation with a high degree of proficiency surrounding technical and scientific disciplines. A post-graduate in Biophysics and graduate in Chemistry, she has interned with the prestigious Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics. Sreenanda comes with years of proven experience in scholastic compositions through meta-analytic systemic investigations.
Currently associated with iDreamCareer (India) as an Educational Intelligence Analyst & Careers Profession Expert