An important aspect of the job description of an electrical engineering graduate engineer is that they must be licensed to do the job. The licensing process varies by state and usually takes about two years of college courses and classes, plus at least one year working experience, according to the state board of examiners. A typical electrician must be licensed through one of several means. Two of the most common include passing the examination offered by the division of the National Electrical Contractors Association or NICE, and having completed a program at a vocational-technical school or technical college.
In addition to having a license, electrical engineering majors must pass the National Council for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) examination. Students must first complete a course of study that includes theory and practical instruction in electrical engineering, along with a substantial amount of practical experience. After they complete their NCCER examination, electrical engineers may sit for the national examination. Many electrical engineering employers prefer electrical engineers with at least a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. However, many companies may pay electrical engineering graduates as little as one or two years of experience in lieu of a bachelor’s degree.
Electrical engineers may choose to be licensed and earn their degree in a university that is part of a system of higher education that offers engineering as a separate division. For example, in some states, electrical engineers need to have earned their degree from a university that is part of the South Carolina Industrial Partnership (SCIP), which brings together engineering schools from across the state. Several universities in SCIP-approved system of higher education have been accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of Professional Engineers (COPEA) and are therefore eligible to participate in the Partnership’s accreditation process.
Students interested in earning an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree in electronics engineering should keep in mind that they will spend four years in school and also pay attention to their work during those four years. They will likely begin with a four-year undergraduate degree. They can then transfer to a four-year college, which typically requires a year of graduate-level coursework in electrical engineering. The student may then pursue a bachelor’s degree in electronics engineering. Some of the bachelor’s degrees in electronics engineering that may be pursued are an Electronics Engineering degree or a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering.
You can get an Associate’s degree in electrical engineering by attending and completing a four-year college or by enrolling in an online program. In most cases, students opt for an online program, because it allows them to study from the comfort of their home or from where they already are–perhaps at work. The first year of an electrical engineering degree program usually involves an introduction to electrical engineering principles. After this period, students must decide what type of coursework they would like to undertake in their four-year educational program.
During their first two years of study, students learn about the concepts of electric and mechanical engineering. They may choose to focus on one of these areas. After this period, they can elect to specialize in electrical engineering or energy transfer engineering. Electricians, who earn less than $40K per year, usually specialize in one of these areas.
The job outlook for electrical engineers is very good. The demand for qualified engineers is expected to grow faster than average over the next few years. This means that those engineers who earn a graduate degree in electronics engineering or electrical engineering could soon command salaries that start out in the high five-figure range and then go up into the hundred-million dollar range.