ELECTRICAL ENGINEERING
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What Electrical and Electronics Engineers Do

Electrical engineers design, develop, test, and supervise the manufacturing of electrical equipment, such as electric motors, radar and navigation systems, communications systems, and power generation equipment. Electronics engineers design and develop electronic equipment, such as broadcast and communications systems—from portable music players to global positioning systems (GPS).

Work Environment

Electrical and electronics engineers work primarily in research and development industries, engineering services firms, manufacturing, and the federal government. Electrical and electronics engineers generally work indoors in offices. However, they may have to visit sites to observe a problem or a piece of complex equipment.

How to Become an Electrical or Electronics Engineer

Electrical and electronics engineers must have a bachelor’s degree. Employers also value practical experience, so participation in cooperative engineering programs, in which students earn academic credit for structured work experience, is valuable as well.

Pay

The median annual wage for electrical engineers was $87,920 in May 2012. The median annual wage for electronics engineers was $91,820 in May 2012.

Job Outlook

Employment of electrical and electronics engineers is projected to grow 4 percent from 2012 to 2022, slower than the average for all occupations. Job growth is expected because of electrical and electronics engineers’ versatility in developing and applying emerging technologies.

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