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What does a systems analyst do?

Computer hardware engineers design computer chips, boards, systems, modems, and printers. (Computer software engineers design the programs to run computers.)

Computer hardware engineers are much like electronics engineers, but work only with computers The rapid advances in computers are a result of their work. To keep up, these workers must stay up to date on what they know.

How do you get ready to become a systems analyst?

A bachelor's in engineering is needed for almost all entry-level engineering jobs. College grads with a degree in a science or mathematics may get some jobs.

Getting into engineering school requires a strong report card in math and science, and courses in English, social studies, and computers.

In a typical college, the first 2 years are for studying math, science, engineering basics, the arts, and social sciences. In the last 2 years, most courses are in engineering, mostly in a single branch.

Engineers should be creative, curious, analytical, and detail-oriented. They should be able to work as part of a team. People skills are important. This is because engineers often work with people in a wide range of fields.

How much does a systems analyst get paid?

The middle half of all computer hardware engineers earned between $56,490 and $91,730 per year in 2002. The lowest-paid 10 percent earned less than $46,190. The highest-paid 10 percent earned more than $114,880.

How many jobs are there?

The number of computer hardware engineers is pretty small compared with other computer-related workers. They held about 74,000 jobs in 2002. Most worked in the computer manufacturing, services, or telecommunications industries.

What about the future?

Computer hardware engineers may have to try hard to find jobs. This is because the number of degrees granted in this field has gone up rapidly and employment is only expected to grow more slowly than average.

Are there other jobs like this?
  • Computer and information systems managers
  • Electrical engineers
  • Engineering and natural sciences managers
  • Sales engineers
  • Science technicians
Where can you find more information?

More information about computer hardware engineers can be found in the Careers Database.

Source: Occupational Outlook Handbook -- U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics

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