Should I Become an Electronics Engineering Technician?
An electronics engineering technician helps develop and troubleshoot electronic components and products under the direction of an engineer. Duties of an electronics engineering technician might include assembling prototypes, testing products and analyzing results, or assembling circuitry and electronic components. These professionals must often work in teams, and they can perform job duties in offices, laboratories or plant floors. They might be exposed to some hazardous materials in the course of their job.
|Degree Level||Associate's degree|
|Degree Field||Electronics engineering technology|
|Experience||Previous experience requirements may range from 0-5 years, depending on the employer|
|Key Skills||Math, manual dexterity and problem-solving; computer skills in Visual Basic, C++ programming, Microsoft Office and simulation software; experience with electronic testing devices, soldering and troubleshoot electrical problems|
|Salary||$59,820 per year (2014 median salary for electronics engineering technicians)|
Sources: The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, CareerBuilder.com and Monster.com job ads (August 2012).
Step 1: Get an Associate's Degree
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), an associate's degree in electronics engineering technology is the typical requirement for a position in the field. These programs cover core electronics engineering courses, such as circuits, digital systems and networking systems, in addition to various math, science and communication-related courses.
- Look for ABET-accredited programs. ABET-accredited electronics engineering technology programs cover essential engineering subjects, such as algebra, trigonometry and physics. ABET accreditation ensures both students and employers that the degree program meets industry standards.
- Learn C++ programming. Many employers prefer to hire individuals who are knowledgeable in C++ programming, so it could be important to find a program that includes it in the coursework. If the coursework doesn't cover it, consider completing a C++ certificate program.
- Complete an internship. Some schools offer electronics engineering technology students the opportunity to complete an internship. These opportunities may give students the chance to start gaining valuable hands-on work experience.
Step 2: Gain Work Experience
Many employers require electronics engineering technicians to have some level of previous work experience. Individuals can look for entry-level positions with fewer requirements in order to gain experience and qualify for higher-paying positions. If unable to find a job in this field initially, finding a job working with electronic equipment, programming languages or power systems may help individuals gain the experience they need to qualify for a position.
Step 3: Get a Bachelor's Degree
Some employers prefer to hire individuals with bachelor's degrees, and a bachelor's degree may also increase employment opportunities. Graduates of a bachelor's degree program may qualify for engineering technology or applied engineering positions, which typically carry a greater level of responsibility.