Software engineering is a young profession, and yet software engineers have quickly become vital to the software industry because they bring a broad, systematic approach to developing, operating and maintaining software. Their work is especially important because of the impact of today’s large software systems, including safety-critical applications in aviation and national defense.
Like most high-tech professionals, software engineers generally work on teams of engineers from various disciplines. Within those teams, software engineers are responsible for seeing the big picture, helping ensure the team produces software that addresses customer needs, complies with industry standards and can evolve over time.
The expanding integration of Internet technologies and the growth in electronic commerce have resulted in rising demand for software engineers. And as computer systems in business and government alike continue to become more sophisticated, growing numbers of software engineers are expected to be needed to implement, safeguard and update systems. Software engineers also play an important role in the continuing shift toward mobile technology and in protecting networks and electronic infrastructure from attacks.
Software engineering requires strong high school preparation. A minimum of elementary algebra and geometry should be completed, while trigonometry, calculus, physics and chemistry are highly recommended. Any Advanced Placement courses in computer science or advanced technology are a plus, and solid communication skills are very important.
The software engineering program is part of the University’s Computer Science Department, which features an internationally recognized faculty and a 150,000-square-foot building with state-of-the-art laboratories.
Like the BS degree in computer science, the BS in software engineering is based on a mathematical foundation that includes calculus, linear algebra and discrete mathematics. The two programs also have the same computer science core, including modern programming methodologies, the analysis of algorithms and data structures, and the study of operating systems. But whereas the computer science program continues with courses in advanced data structures, programming languages and automata theory, the software engineering program includes courses in requirements engineering, software validation and testing, and software architecture. There’s also a rich choice of application areas, including digital systems design, computer networks, embedded systems, computer imaging, artificial intelligence and cognitive modeling, and human-computer interaction.
The Erik Jonsson School operates one of the largest internship and cooperative education programs of its kind, averaging more than 500 student placements a year at Dallas-area high-tech companies, including Texas Instruments, Research In Motion, Raytheon, Alcatel-Lucent and Tektronix.
The Fast-Track Program enables exceptionally gifted undergraduate students to include master’s level courses in their undergraduate degree plans. When Fast-Track students graduate with a bachelor’s degree, they are automatically admitted to graduate school at UT Dallas. The hours required to complete the master’s degree are reduced by the number of Fast-Track graduate hours completed. So a Fast-Track undergraduate who passed 12 hours of graduate coursework would have only 21 hours of graduate coursework left in order to complete a master’s degree.
Strategically located in the Telecom Corridor, home of the second-largest high-tech economy in the U.S., the Jonsson School recently completed a major public-private initiative that greatly expanded its capabilities and included construction of a new state-of-the-art 192,000-square-foot interdisciplinary research building.
With more than 130 faculty, 4,000 students, and $47 million in research funding, the Jonsson School has six academic departments:
In addition, the school recently added a minor in nanoscience and technology.
Bachelor of Science: Biomedical engineering, computer engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, software engineering, telecommunications engineering
Master of Science: Biomedical engineering, computer engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, materials science and engineering, mechanical engineering, systems engineering and management, telecommunications engineering
Doctor of Philosophy: Biomedical engineering, computer engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, materials science and engineering, mechanical engineering, software engineering, telecommunications engineering
Research efforts under way at the school involve such cutting-edge technology as:
Read what recent Jonsson School graduates think about their education and how it prepared them to be successful in their subsequent careers:
Software Engineering Program
Erik Jonsson School of Engineering and Computer Science, EC-31
The University of Texas at Dallas
800 West Campbell Road
Richardson, TX 75080-3021