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Quality Assurance Training Overview with Career Info

Quality assurance training is available in a range of certificate and degree programs. Here is an overview of available programs, as well as career and salary information for future graduates.

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Students studying quality assurance have a few different career options after graduation. Quality control inspectors, computer systems analysts, and architectural and engineering managers are all considered quality assurance professionals. In each of their respective fields, these professionals work to make sure that their employers meet the established quality indicators for their industry.

Essential Information

Colleges and universities offer majors in quality assurance (QA) at the certificate, associate's degree, bachelor's degree and graduate levels. Quality assurance programs typically include coursework covering a variety of topics, including: inspection methods and techniques; compliance; statistics for quality assurance; lean manufacturing; technical documentation; and human factors in quality assurance.

Career Quality Control Inspector Computer Systems Analyst Architectural and Engineering Managers
Required Education High school diploma; postsecondary training often helpful Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024) 0%* 21%* 2%*
Median Salary (2015) $36,000 for all production inspectors, testers, sorters, samplers & weighers* $85,800* $132,800*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Options

Quality assurance professionals work in a variety of settings to ensure that an organization meets its established quality standards. They may work in various industries and organizations, including manufacturing, healthcare, engineering and technology, and may serve a variety of technical roles.

Quality Control Inspector

A quality control inspector helps ensure that a company's products meet industry and regulatory standards by inspecting and examining the products and materials before they are sold. Inspectors may work on a production line, examining products for flaws or they may perform more in-depth testing.

Salary and Job Prospects

According to PayScale.com, the median annual salary of quality control inspectors as of January 2016 was $43,948. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) employment growth for quality control inspectors will show no change from 2014 and 2024, with the best opportunities going to those with advanced skills who work in the plastic product manufacturing and employment services industries.

Computer Systems Analyst

As the job title suggests, computer systems analysts evaluate a company's computer systems and advise company management on improving performance. In some cases, the analyst may also design programs to meet the company's needs or may even specialize in performing quality assurance testing.

Salary and Job Prospects

According to the BLS, the median annual salary for computer systems analysts as of May 2015 was $85,800 per year. The BLS also expected employment growth to be 21% from 2014 and 2024.

Architectural and Engineering Managers

Architectural and engineering managers oversee the planning and execution of building and engineering projects. They are responsible for ensuring that project plans, and the execution of these plans, are carried out properly and accurately.

Salary and Job Prospects

The BLS states that as of May 2015, the median annual salary of an architectural or engineering manager was $132,800. Employment growth for this profession was estimated to be 2% from 2014 and 2024.

A quality control inspector helps companies meet industry and regulation standards. A computer systems analyst evaluates company computer systems and their performance, and an architectural or engineering manager oversees projects. All three of these professions are examples of quality assurance professionals.

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