Software engineers are the people who put principles of application to use of software engineering for the purpose of developing, designing, evaluating and testing of software and the systems that make the computer to work. They are said to work for long hours as well as overtime if need be and earn good money, have the advantage of working at home and they use computers most of the time. They are also called software developers.

This has brought a lot of controversy because the engineers need to be highly trained people in the line of their education professionalism and this does not apply to software developers. According to R. Brown 1978, there are 1. 4 million software engineers in America and are employed. The software engineers are also called programmers because they are classified as the people who are not able to use the tools that are available to make quality software. This has made them to call themselves engineers to avoid the stigma that is going on.

The other reason why they use the term engineers is because most companies use the term to avoid confusion. They major their education in the field of software engineering. Software engineering is the applying of a discipline, system and using an approach that is quantifiable for the purpose of developing, operating and maintaining software that is quality. There are various procedures that are used in the process and are usually followed in the process of developing the software.

This is usually for the purpose of making the software of high quality by maintaining and improving its reliability. The software is made up of very many lines of code and it is these codes that can be manipulated to produce software that is desired. (Prentice Hall, 1981) Duties and Responsibilities of Software Engineers Basically the work of the engineers is to develop software that is of high quality all the time. The writing of the software is an art as well as a science.

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To be able to do this they carry out research about the needs of the consumers in order to have an idea of what they are client wants. They are also responsible for studying computer mechanisms for the purpose of making them effective and efficient. The next thing that they do is to design and develop the software with the requirements of the clients. This practice involves a lot of art and skills. They do this with the knowledge they have on the various languages of programming that they have.

There are typical activities that are involved in the process of software development and they include: carrying out research on the programs that are involved in the writing and designing, carrying out tests for the purpose of finding faults and errors, developing software from existing programs by modifying them, making software compatible to the platforms that are available to the client, incorporating new technologies, creating test plans and the specifications that they are going to use, writing down the codes according to the language that the client has specified, drafting a documentation that the user can understand and put it to use, carrying out the maintenance practices to the software to effectively monitor the defects and errors that keep occurring, training the users of the system on how to use the software and finally updating the software from time to time for the purpose of using applications that are new and easy to use. According to Fenton, Norman 2000 p 800 they are also responsible for assemblage of code to put them to work and fix faults that occur. They also develop software that works for the purpose of creating solutions.

The quality of the software is usually determined by the satisfaction of the client. However it is difficult to produce software that is free from faults and that is why it is important to carryout maintenance practices. In senior management the software engineers are responsible for recruiting new software engineers as well as recommending new qualified staff, sharing of the knowledge that they have with other people like updating presentations, writing of articles that are to be published and finally they serve as project managers. When they serve as project managers they ensure that the project is done within the specified time, in the boundary that it was set, within the budget and scope.

They are also responsible for providing leadership skills in the entire process of the software development. This means that they have to participate in all the stages of the development that includes planning, implementing, designing and testing the software. They are people who are highly innovative and this helps in the solving of the problems. (McGarry et al 2002) Schooling of a Software Engineer Most of the software engineers have degrees in computer sciences. There are also a few who have degrees in software engineering. The first degree was introduced in Imperial London College and it was in the UK. This then spread to the world as University of Sheffield introduced the same course the following year.

Those who take the course undertake various units that are in the standard curriculum. The body that defines the curriculum is the CCSE. In the recent decade the universities that offer the course teach and train students in computer engineering as well as practices and principles that apply in the engineering fields. There are also master degree programs that are offered in the world today. This includes the Master of Science in Software Engineering. This is the program that the graduates take after the completion of the first degree in computer science or computer engineering. There are also PHD programs that have been established for those who have undergone the masters program.

There are other degree programs that one can engage in and still practice the software engineering. This includes the MIS. This is a business degree and includes computer science. This is because business is embedded with computer science. They are the people who develop the software that the business uses and help in the understanding of the computer hardware and software in the business environment. Most of the engineers work in business environments as well as government agencies in the world. Some also work for the non-profit organizations. There are others that work for as freelancers. There are also some certifications that the software engineers must acquire to show that they are competent in the field that they are working on.

These certifications are oriented in certain technologies and are managed by the vendors who produce the software. They have become of great demand because employers look for the technologies and they employ those that have done the latest. Once out of college the software engineers practice first as programmers before being promoted to full engineers. The career path of a software engineer is said to be rough but it is a very good career in the long run. There are no threats to being a software engineer and one can practice engineering in any part of the world. Since most software engineers are employed in the business world, they are required to go on with the acquisition of the certifications that come about from time to time.

This makes them people who are competitive in the business world and in other parts that use software engineers. Interests The interest is in the use of the computer. It is clear that the field is practiced by the people who love computers and I am one of them. The profession requires a person who is innovative and I believe that I am one of those people. It also requires people who are of good conduct and I am one of them. When it comes to handling clients I believe that I am good, as I can beat the deadlines that are set. The other important factor is that one can either work at home or in the office. This provides time to work in an environment that one cannot be supervised, as well as work well.

There are professional responsibilities that one is required to have such as to work with the client, to meet their requirements as well as work within the time frame that is provided an within the budget. This requires a person who is honest in their work and I believe I am one of them. (Humphrey, Watts 1995) In conclusion the software engineering course is very interesting to study and one that needs a lot of patience. Software engineers are classified as one of the most successful people in the world and they work to improve the quality of the work that they do. This has made them to take businesses into another level as well as the work that the people do in all the areas that are covered by the engineers. The profession also requires hardworking people in order to beat deadlines of the clients.

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