Professionals in robotics technologies blend computer science with electrical and mechanical engineering to create automated, intelligent machines. If you're interested in this field, read on to learn how to turn your interest into expertise and begin a career in robotics technologies.
Inside Robotics Technologies
Robotics technologies consist of all processes necessary to design, build and maintain robots and other intelligent machines. Robots are sophisticated, intelligent systems used to assist pilots and maneuver spacecraft without direct human intervention. They're also the commonplace automated systems that fill our factories and everyday lives.
Because of this diversity of robotics applications, professionals in the field work in a wide variety of industries, from defense and aerospace to manufacturing and design. Within these industries, there are two main roles for personnel with training in robotics technologies. Robotics workers can be divided into robotics engineers and robotics technicians. Robotics engineers are responsible for developing new robotics systems and upgrading the old ones to meet contemporary demands. Technicians, on the other hand, maintain and repair already-existing robotics technology.
Robotics technology is a multifarious field with many different opportunities for education and employment. The articles at Study.com have the information you need to choose the path in robotics technologies that's right for you.
Robotics engineers must have bachelor's degrees in an applicable field and state licensure to qualify for entry-level employment. According to The Princeton Review, advancement to more competitive jobs in robotics design and research usually entails a graduate degree (www.princetonreview.com). The review also notes that robotics engineers with backgrounds in both engineering and computer sciences may see greater advancement opportunities.
Compared to engineers, the education requirements for robotics engineers are less stringent. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), a robotics technician associate's degree is typically sufficient for employment as a technician (www.bls.gov). Further postsecondary education, such as a 4-year degree in robotics technology, may open possibilities for a career as an applied engineer or technologist.
Some universities offer degrees specifically in robotics technologies, but a degree in computer science or mechanical or electrical engineering can be just as attractive to employers. Here are a few links to start you on your education search.
- Robotics Degrees by Level
- Computer Science Bachelor's Degree
- Computer Science Graduate Degrees
- Mechanical Engineering Bachelor's Degree
- Electrical Engineering Bachelor's Degree
Distance Learning Options
Since so much of robotics is hands-on work, most distance learning degree programs in the field require some on-campus instruction. There's a variety of online degrees to choose from, and these articles will help you explore your options.
- Choosing an Online Robotics Program
- Online Robotics Certificate
- Online Robotics Degree
- Online Robotics Courses
As discussed above, there are opportunities for employment as both a technician and engineer within the field of robotics. Below are links to articles that delve further into these careers.
In May 2013, the BLS reported that electro-mechanical technicians (the group in which robotics technicians fall) made an average annual wage of $$54,160. Employment of these techs is expected to increase four percent between 2012 and 2022, which is slower than average. During the same decade, the BLS projects that employment of electrical and electronics engineers will also grow at the same rate. The average income of these engineers was $93,380 as of 2013.
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