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microsoft/linux 12-07-2004 08:15 PM

Computer Science vs. Software Engineering
 
I'm a Sophmore in high school, and I've been starting to plan for college. I'd like to be a professional Computer Programmer. My question is (i guess) would a degree in Computer Science work as well as a degree in Software Engineering? I mean, there are obviously more choices for colleges in COmputer Science, but Software Engineering seems to be closer to what I want to do after college. Any thought from anybody would be appreciated.

In case you were wondering...the colleges with degrees in Software Engineering are in Canada, as opposed to the U.S (where I live)

qwijibow 12-07-2004 08:27 PM

I am studying Computer Science In an English University...
i dont know about software enginerring, but computer science is a very very broad course.

im half way through the second year of my 3 year course, and i have studied...

The Java programming language,
the C++ programming language,
Operating System Design,
Processor Design,
Comunication theory,
the Postsctipt Programming language for Printers
The Haskell Programming language
the Prolog AI language.
Atrifical inteligence theory
MATHS !
computer security
ENGLISH !
algorithm design theory
digital buisness
Graphical User interface theory,
DataBase theory and Programming


Some areas of the course are useless to a programmer..... HOWEVER... the broadness of the course means you could rpogram in ANY area of computing.... from programming computer porgrams, to programming computer processor firmware.

nuka_t 12-07-2004 08:56 PM

is CS considered a

Ub3r 1337-haxx0r only class or is it a "mainstream" class everyone takes when they plan on doing something computer related?

microsoft/linux 12-08-2004 09:01 AM

nuka-t, I have no idea? From my understanding, CS is basic (in italics because it's really not basic, but it covers a lot) program, I understood Computer Science to be writing algorithms and so forth where as Software Engineering is more of designing, writing and implementing computer programs

dave_starsky 12-08-2004 09:03 AM

It's a mainstream type thing, although it is very technical, and very maths.

microsoft/linux 12-08-2004 09:10 AM

so is there anyone here who has a degree in, or is working on a degree in Software Engineering? Mainly I was wondering what the difference is. Other thoughts?

dave_starsky 12-08-2004 12:34 PM

At my university there is very little difference. People on CS and SE courses take many of the same modules. Software Engineering focusses much more on the software side, which is pretty obvious. I am taking a Software Engineering module at the moment. It involves using UML and Z to write up software specifications and to model real life processes.

microsoft/linux 12-09-2004 12:32 PM

so why would they offer two different areas of study, if they are so close? Any other thoughts?

microsoft/linux 12-11-2004 08:22 PM

So, would one be able to obtain the same level of programing job with a CS degree as opposed to a SE degree?

dave_starsky 12-12-2004 10:43 AM

Yes, but with a CS degree you get more knowledge of the underlying computer, with SE you get more knowledge of stuff like the development lifecycle and stuff.

Stack 12-12-2004 11:41 AM

Quote:

Originally posted by microsoft/linux
So, would one be able to obtain the same level of programing job with a CS degree as opposed to a SE degree?
No. Firstly you will not be a computer scientist but you will graduate with a Bachelor of Science in Engineering. This means you will be given an iron ring as well as being required to be part of an engineering society. Which will include you having to take a test after working in the industry for four years in order to become a Professional engineer. Software engineers are mostly concerned with the design aspect of a projects, in other words they usually end up as team leaders directing the computer scientists. Make no mistake though the engineering degree is by a long shot a whole lot more work and harder than the computer science one. Depending on the university you might as well be required to take the core engineering courses which would include you spending at least one whole year taking physics classes, chemistry classes, statics classes, dynamics classes as well as some courses on signals. If your not that great in either of those subjects avoid engineering. First year engineering usually has a drop out rate that is pretty scary...

microsoft/linux 12-12-2004 06:29 PM

I'm not against working hard, but if I want to sit and code all day, I should get a CS degree? I'm still not sure I understand the difference. The way it seems you have described it, the may both accomplish the same thing, just different ways to do it. Maybe different technicalities?

Stack 12-12-2004 09:33 PM

Quote:

Originally posted by microsoft/linux
I'm not against working hard, but if I want to sit and code all day, I should get a CS degree? I'm still not sure I understand the difference. The way it seems you have described it, the may both accomplish the same thing, just different ways to do it. Maybe different technicalities?
If you want a simple answer here it is: As a software engineer you are responsible for the project or your part of the project. You are responsible for determining how you are going to implement it, the design of the applications, what functionalities are required and what classes and methods will be needed. Software engineering is more of a management type position. You are responsible for creating and completing something in a set deadline as well as ensuing your underling are properly performing their tasks. You will still most likely write your fair share of code but you will not be typing 8 hours a day.

"if I want to sit and code all day, I should get a CS degree" <- YES

microsoft/linux 12-13-2004 06:42 AM

alright, any other thoughts? I'd been leaning towards SE and I think that's what I'll keep looking at. Anybody know of any good college (U.S. or Canada please) that has a SE program? Thanks again to everyone on this thread.

dave_starsky 12-14-2004 02:09 PM

Your best bet is to either write to or visit the colleges you are interested in, then you can find out exactly what the difference is at that college as it will vary depending on where you go.


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