Software Engineering FAQs: What to Know About Pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Software Engineering

Do you have strong math and computer skills? Does problem-solving excite you? Do you love to make things? Software engineering is one profession that will allow you to combine those skills and passions.

The field of software engineering is growing rapidly. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for software engineers is projected to grow 22% from 2020 to 2030, much faster than average. At Bethel University, our software engineering program will prepare you to step confidently and successfully into this thriving field.

Here are the answers to some FAQs about software engineering that may be helpful as you explore your career interests:

What is a software engineering degree?

Software engineering is a subfield of computer science—but what sets software engineering apart from computer science is its incorporation of engineering principles. The incorporation of engineering concepts gives you a practical advantage, equipping you with the knowledge and skills necessary to develop, design, test, and analyze computer software.

Is software engineering a four year degree?

A bachelor of science in software engineering typically takes four years to complete if you attend classes full-time. There are two-year associate degrees in software engineering, but the industry standard for entry-level positions in software engineering is a bachelor’s degree.

What courses are required for a bachelor’s degree in software engineering?

You’ll take a variety of courses as a software engineering student. At Bethel University in particular, some of the courses you’d take include Computer Systems, Software Engineering, Object-oriented Design and Programming, and Organization of Programming Languages. You’d also take a variety of general education courses that you can use to explore your other interests.

What can you do with a software engineering degree?

With a bachelor’s degree in software engineering, you’ll have many career options. You could be a software engineer, network architect, video game designer, database administrator, project manager, computer programmer, cybersecurity manager, consultant, and more. Here’s a breakdown of just a few of those roles:

  • Software engineer: Generally speaking, you’ll design, test, and develop software based on the needs of an organization or user. According to Indeed, the average base salary for a software engineer is $93,948.
  • Software project manager: As a software project manager, you’ll lead a team through software projects and development, from the very first stages of conceptualization to the completion of final deliverables. According to Indeed, the average base salary for a software project manager is $96,727.
  • Network architect: You’ll be responsible for designing, building, and maintaining data communication networks that meet your organization’s needs. According to Indeed, the average base salary for a network architect is $124,756.
  • Cybersecurity manager: In the world of cyber security management, you’ll be responsible for maintaining the security systems that protect an organization’s computer networks, information systems, and digital data. According to Indeed, the average base salary for a cybersecurity manager is $102,521.

What is the job outlook for a software engineer?

Thanks to the evolution of technology and the ongoing need for new applications, software engineering and related roles are projected to do nothing but grow. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts a 22% employment growth rate from 2020 to 2030 and about 189,200 job openings each year, on average, over the decade.

What skills will you develop when earning a bachelor’s degree in software engineering?

A degree in software engineering will help you become a well-rounded thinker with a broad knowledge base and specialized skills in:

  • Computer architecture
  • Networking
  • Web programming
  • Programming languages
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Computer graphics
  • Database systems
  • High-performance computing
  • Operating systems
  • Information technology
  • Project management
  • Cross-disciplinary collaboration

Why choose Bethel University for a bachelor’s degree in software engineering?

If you choose to study software engineering at Bethel, you’ll have a variety of unique opportunities, including internships in your interest areas, research projects alongside faculty, competitions in the Association for Computing Machinery, communication and business courses, and more. These components, combined with your course work, will equip you with the relevant, hands-on experience that employers seek.

Housed in the Department of Math & Computer Science, Bethel’s software engineering major is led by highly qualified faculty from a variety of disciplines. Alumni of the program have gone on to work at organizations like Microsoft, Thomson Reuters, St. Jude’s Medical, Infinite Campus, Siemens Energy, and more. Apply today to take your next step toward a career in software engineering.