The ongoing IT Boom and software revolution in India has made Computer Engineering one of the most sought after career choices available to Indian students. If we talk about Computer Engineering in general, the field has become an integral part of our daily lives and has also penetrated all major industrial processes as well as service sectors. Be it social media being used by a semi-literate rickshaw driver in a remote village of India to doctorate level scientists running simulations and calculations to measure the size of the universe or weight of sub-atomic particles at CERN; computer technology has become an all-encompassing field that is everywhere. As a subject of study, computer engineering offers excellent options in terms of higher studies, research as well as lucrative job opportunities that are rewarding for the candidates.
Scope of Computer Engineering
Computer Engineering is an expanding subject that is growing at exponential pace with establishment of different domains and sub-domains within its purview. However, if we try to look at the more basic or limited understanding of the subject, Computer Engineering can be defined as design and prototyping of computing systems and devices. In simpler terms, computer engineering deals with the amalgamation of electrical engineering and computer science to develop both computers and computer systems. Broadly speaking, computer engineering can be bifurcated into two sub-domains:
- Hardware aspects: Computer engineers are involved in building of computer components like PCs, workstations, and supercomputers, mobile phones, chipsets, graphic cards, sound cards and other similar components.
- Software aspects: Computer engineering is also concerned with the creation of computer-based systems that are widely used in computer as well as industrial products. Common examples include computer operating systems, mobile operating systems, car interfaces, information display systems and others.
However, in recent past several new and innovative fields and sub-domains of Computer engineering has come up. Information technology is the biggest and most popular field of computer engineering that is preferred by students as an academic field.
Eligibility for Computer Engineering
Students keen on building a rewarding and lucrative career in the field of computer engineering can do so by enrolling themselves into any of these following academic programmes:
- Diploma Level: Students can join a short term diploma programme in computer engineering after class 10, which familiarizes them with the basics of computer technology and foundational engineering concepts of the field. After completion, students can get entry level positions in public/private sector companies as junior engineers.
- Undergraduate Level: Undergraduate level courses offered in the field of computer engineering are one of the most sought after career options in India today. Interested students can join 4-year B.Tech Computer Engineering programme at any reputed institute like IITs and NITs. The minimum educational qualification required to join the programme is of Class 12th/10+2 pass with Physics, Chemistry and Mathematics as primary subjects. Generally, there are entrance exams like JEE Mains, JEE Advanced and BITSAT that students need to clear in order to be shortlisted for admission to B.Tech Computer engineering courses.
- Postgraduate Level: Students planning to pursue further studies can also go for M.Tech / M.E academic programmes offered by different institutes. These are more theoretical in nature and prepare students for research and doctorate-level studies. The minimum academic qualification required to join this programme is a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering.
Being a relatively new and expanding field of study, computer engineering offers excellent higher study options even after master’s degree. These include M.Phil, research and doctorate level programme. Students can also opt for the 5-year integrated M.Tech programme in computer engineering offered by some institutes.
Career Prospects for Computer Engineers
Computer Engineering is one of the most lucrative and rewarding career options available in the country right now. Supplemented by the Software revolution and Information Technology Boom, the demand for trained and qualified computer engineers is really high in the Indian market. In addition to this, the presence of computer technology in almost every industrial process, as well as daily life of end consumers, has opened up new avenues of employment for computer engineers.
Talking about the flipside, the employment scenario for computer engineers is excessively competitive and the evolutionary nature of the subject means that students have to keep themselves updated about emerging technologies to be relevant in the job market. Apart from that, the computer technology industry of India is dependent upon outsource model and, therefore, is highly volatile to external factors and is also affected by recessionary pressures.
Talking about the top employers, Computer engineering graduates can find exceptional job opportunities in the following sectors:
- Media houses
- IT companies
- Educational institutions
- Product development
Pay Package for Computer Engineers
Looking at today’s employment scenario, Computer Engineers have emerged as the top paid engineering professionals across different domains. Development and expansion of software sector, as well as rising demand of products and services provided by it, has led to significant rise in the total payout offered to the computer engineering graduates. Like all other engineering domains, the private sector, especially IT companies are considered to be the best paymasters for computer engineers. Apart from these, other factors like specialization, work experience, technical knowledge and qualifications also affect the pay package offered to computer engineers.
- Diploma Holder: Candidates holding short-term diploma degrees in computer engineers are hired at entry level or junior level positions that offer Rs 8,000 to 15,000 salary per month.
- B.Tech Degree holders: Computer engineering graduates can join IT companies as freshers at an entry level positions. Salary offered can range between Rs 15,000 to 25,000 for such candidates.
- Experienced Candidates: Candidates who possess relevant work experience in the field of computer technology with working knowledge and technical understanding of the IT projects can be offered a package of Rs 50,000 per month. For right the candidate there is no upper limit of remuneration, especially when it comes to students who also possess MBA degrees.
- Premium Institute Pass-Outs: Candidates who have an engineering degree from premium technical institutes like IITs, NITs, BITSAT and others are known to be hired by tech majors at handsome packages starting from 10 Lakhs Per Annum.
Top Computer Engineering Institutes
Being one of the most popular and wanted academic programmes on offer, Computer Engineering programmes are offered by all major technical institutes of the country. Premium institutes like IITs, NITs and others have also started offering specialization within this subject in the form of computer applications, software development and information technology to adopt a more targeted approach to learning pedagogy being followed.
Top institutes offering Computer Engineering Courses in India are:
- All IITs – different locations
- All NITs – different locations
- College of Engineering, Pune
- College of Engineering, Trivandrum
- Jamia Millia Islamia University, Delhi
- School of Engineering (SOE), Cochin University of Science and Technology (CUSAT)
- School of Engineering And Technology, Ansal University Gurgaon