Learn Software Engineering

A Comprehensive Guide to Start Learning Software Engineering

Software engineering is the application of engineering principles to the design, development, maintenance, testing, and evaluation of software and systems that use software. It is a systematic approach to the analysis, design, implementation, and maintenance of software, taking into account the constraints of cost, performance, reliability, and security.

Discover the ins and outs of software engineering, including its applications, careers, and potential salaries. Learn about Noble Desktop's various software engineering classes that can help you develop the necessary skills and knowledge to pursue a career in this field.

Key Insights

  • Software Engineering involves designing, developing, and testing technologies to solve real-world problems. It's a broad, collaborative field requiring interaction with various professionals.
  • Software engineering skills are in-demand due to the increasing reliance on computer-driven processes in society. Careers in this field range from Full Stack Web Developers to Machine Learning Engineers.
  • According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, software engineering jobs are expected to grow by 22% over the next decade, which is faster than most occupations.
  • Noble Desktop offers a variety of software engineering classes, both in-person and online, suitable for different schedules and experience levels.
  • Software engineering is a rewarding career path, offering lucrative compensation packages, professional growth opportunities, and a creative work environment. For instance, a Full Stack Web Developer or a Machine Learning Engineer can earn a substantial income.
  • Other fields related to software engineering, such as Data Science, also offer equally rewarding career opportunities and compensation packages.

If you’ve always wanted to learn software engineering but can’t figure out how to get started, this guide is for you. Here, you’ll learn about the various ways to learn software engineering, free resources to take advantage of, and the careers that commonly use software engineering.

What is Software Engineering?

Software Engineering is an engineering branch focused on designing, developing, and testing new technologies to solve real-world problems. Software Engineers bring comprehensive knowledge of programming, design, and engineering principles to build software. These computer science professionals can create web applications, mobile applications, video games, robots, operating systems, and network systems that we use daily! 

Software engineering is a collaborative and broad field. The design and development of software solutions will require you to work with other technical and non-technical professionals. These can include engineers, developers, scientists, designers, and other creative and technical professionals. Additionally, Software Engineers can specialize in different areas of the user experience, depending on their interest.

Learn more about what software engineering is and why you should learn it.

What Can You Do with Software Engineering?

Our society continues to rely more heavily on computer-driven processes. Software Engineers are the brain power behind these processes and create the programs and applications we use daily. Software Engineers use programming languages to develop software programs and applications. Programming skills are sought after across fields and sectors, and you can do many cool things with this skill set! 

Low-level programming languages, such as assembly and machine language, can be used to create system software. System software is a general software that develops and runs other application software. A few examples of system software are operating systems, like Mac OS and Android, and video game systems, like the Nintendo system software, which allow video games to run.

You can also create application software using programming languages—software engineers design application software to carry out a specific function. For example, Spotify is an application software that allows you to listen to music or podcasts. Engineers use high-level programming languages like Java and Python to write application software.

Careers that Use Software Engineering

Whether you are pivoting into a software engineering career from another field or are looking to upskill, many careers use software engineering skills to power their computer programs and software solutions. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, software engineering jobs will grow by 22% over the next decade, which is faster than average for most occupations. A few potential careers you may land after adding software development skills to your toolbox include: 

  • Full Stack Web Developer: These developers can manage both the front end (user-side) and back end (server-side) of websites. Working on both ends of development allows engineers to tap into their creative and analytical skills, as they are concerned with what the user will see and how things integrate behind the scenes to keep the software running. 
  • Data Scientist: We live in a data-driven world, and companies generate large amounts of data about their consumers. Data scientists use scientific methods, machine learning algorithms, and other analytical tools to make sense of this data. Businesses use the insights from Data Scientists to inform business decisions. 
  • Machine Learning (ML) Engineers: These programmers research, design, and build artificial intelligence (AI) systems. Examples of AI systems include Apple’s Siri, Tesla’s self-driving cars, and Betterment. ML Engineers use large data sets to create algorithms capable of learning to automate prediction. 
  • Development and Operations (DevOps) Engineer: DevOps engineers oversee code releases and deployments in collaboration with developers and IT staff. In addition, DevOps works across team siloes to ensure new updates and features to software can happen seamlessly and without bugs. These IT professionals have a wide range of knowledge of the software development life cycle and operations.

Why Learn Software Engineering?

Software engineering is an in-demand career path, and the demand has no signs of slowing. Why? Technology is constantly evolving, and it is more important than ever that modern businesses be able to compete and meet user needs with new or updated software solutions. Software engineering skills can prepare you to work in various careers and industries. Thus, it is a rewarding career, offering more lucrative compensation packages, professional growth opportunities, and collaborative and creative work environments. 

Learning software engineering skills will give you in-depth knowledge of various programming languages, databases, and operating systems. There are continuous learning opportunities in this field, and Software Engineers are encouraged to learn new programming languages and technologies to stay up to date on the ever-changing technology, making this job constantly enjoyable! 

Read more about why you should learn Software Engineering skills.

How to Learn Software Engineering

Would you prefer to learn software engineering skills in a class setting? Noble Desktop has developed several tools to help you find a Software Engineering class that meets your needs. 

Noble’s Classes Near Me tool helps students identify in-person software engineering classes available in their area. The tool also lists live online software engineering classes if you prefer to enroll in a virtual class. 

Your schedule and availability will impact how you best learn software engineering skills. If you are juggling a busy schedule, an on-demand Software Engineering class may be best for you. An asynchronous coding bootcamp allows students to complete their curriculums at a pace that fits their schedules. There are on-demand class options for students of all levels, including beginners. You will also find classes that range from a few days to six months. 

Noble also offers free, in-depth Software Engineering tutorials on YouTube. The videos feature topics such as an introduction to popular programming languages and web design techniques. You will also find an extensive list of free seminars Noble offers related to software engineering, like the Intro to front end Web Development webinar. 

Read the full guide on how to learn Software Engineering.

Free Introductory Software Engineering Course Online 

Are you still trying to decide whether to dive into an immersive software engineering bootcamp? You should consider enrolling in one of Noble’s free introductory software engineering seminars, which cover various topics related to software engineering. For instance, the Intro to Front End Web Development will teach you the programming languages relevant to building the parts of the websites the user sees, including HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. 

You can also find free Software Engineering classes from other online learning providers. Udemy offers a handful of courses that will teach you fundamental programming languages, such as JavaScript, HTML, and CSS. Coursera also offers several free classes related to software engineering, including an intro to Node JS and Express course. Several free tutorials on YouTube cover web development, programming languages, and web design. 

Read about more free Software Engineering videos and online tutorials.

Level of Difficulty, Prerequisites, & Cost 

One significant aspect of software engineering is writing code. Many beginners worry that learning to code will be too difficult, but it is easier than people make it seem. While learning to code can be challenging, you can master it with time and patience. Once you understand one or two programming languages, the barrier to learning other languages drastically decreases, and when you are having a difficult time, there are plenty of resources out there that can help you learn to code and keep you motivated. 

While there are no formal prerequisites that you will need to learn to code, there are a few things you can do to make the experience easier. You should ensure you have a computer that you are comfortable with and powerful enough for programming. A basic understanding of mathematics or propositional logic can also give you a leg up when learning to code. 

Most programming languages, such as Python, are free and open-source, meaning you will not need to pay for them. Programming language compilers, interpreters, and other associated tools can range from free to thousands of dollars. Most of these development tools are free when used for non-commercial use. 

Read about how difficult it is to learn Software Engineering.

How Does Learning Software Engineering Compare to Other Applications/Languages/Fields?

Software engineering has long been the most traditional career path for those interested in pursuing a career in information and computer technology. However, Data Science, an emerging interdisciplinary field within computer science, has increasingly become an alternative popular career path. Like Software Engineering, Data Science jobs offer lucrative compensation packages and enriching career opportunities.

Like Software Engineers, Data Scientists have specialized programming, analytics, and mathematics knowledge. However, Data Scientists use scientific methods, machine learning algorithms, and other analytical tools to make sense of large data sets. Why is this important? We live in a data-driven world where large amounts of data are generated constantly, and companies need Data Scientists to dissect this information so they can use it to inform business solutions. Their insights can help increase efficiency by automating processes and managing the demands between accuracy and speed.

How to Decide the Best Way to Learn Software Engineering

So you decided to enroll in a software engineering class but aren’t sure where to start? With so many options available to learn software engineering, you should first consider which option will work best for you and meet your needs. You should consider a few things: career goal, experience level, cost, and format. 

If you are a beginner and unsure if you want to pursue a career in Software Engineering, consider enrolling in a free introductory course, such as the Intro to front end Web Development seminar. This seminar will give you insight into the field without needing to spend a large amount of money so you can decide if this is the career path for you. If you are a beginner looking to master software engineering skills to embark on a new career, you should consider enrolling in an immersive learning experience that will provide you with a comprehensive curriculum that will have you job-ready such as the Full-Stack Web Development Certificate. Finally, if you’re somewhere in the middle and interested in plugging a skill gap, a bootcamp, like the Python Developer Bootcamp, will be a better option. 

The best way you will learn software engineering depends on your learning style, personal time commitment, and budget. If you are juggling a busy schedule, a virtual software engineering class might be the best option for you, as these classes typically run during the evening. If you thrive in a traditional class setting, consider enrolling in an in-person software engineering class. Additionally, consider whether you have the flexibility to attend a full-time or part-time course. Finally, you should ensure that you enroll in a program that aligns with your budget.

Conquer Software Engineering with Hands-on Training at Noble Desktop

Noble Desktop offers an assortment of Software Engineering classes that will teach you the skills needed to become a Software Engineer. You can join Noble’s courses in-person in Manhattan or virtually from the comfort of your home or office. These courses feature small class sizes led by expert instructors with experience in the field. In addition, Noble classes feature a free retake option that will allow you to retake a course within a year for no extra fees. 

If you want to be a more well-rounded web developer, consider enrolling in either the  Software Engineering Certificate or the Full-Stack Web Development Certificate. Both courses will prepare you to build both the front end and back end of websites. By the end of the Full-Stack Web Development Certificate, students can use programming languages, such as HTML & CSS, JavaScript, and React, to develop and build web applications. If you have a few extra weeks, the Software Engineering Certificate is more comprehensive and will teach you Python, a popular programming language for web development, data analysis, and automation. 

Noble’s Python Developer Certificate program is the perfect course for someone with a shorter-time frame looking to learn a highly used programming language. This certificate will take you from a beginner to an intermediate Python programmer in a few weeks. This course will prepare you for success as a Python Developer, Back End Developer, or Software Engineer. 

If you’re interested in working with data in your career, Noble Desktop’s Data Science Certificate is a good option for you. This immersive training will equip you with skills ranging from Python programming to machine learning models.

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