Computer Programming

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Computer Programming: A Career Worth Pursuing When one thinks of computer programming, one might think of complicated problems and challenges. People may think that computer programming is hard, well it’s really rather easy if you have the right training and education. Someone may think that it requires a lot of work and years in college, when it really does not require much. There are many job oppurtunities opening every day for computer programmers. Computer programmers have several job opportunities these days. A career as a computer programmer would be very interesting and rewarding. Definition Of Occupation Computer programmers write software for computers. The software for computers are the detailed instructions computers follow while they run. Work of a computer programmer involves updating, repairing, and modifying codes for programs that have already been written. Computer programmers follow guidelines prepared by systems analysts. Programmers code instructions using programming languages such as “C” and “FORTAN”. Programmers usually specialize in one or two languages. Programmers keep records of their programming so that others can work on the software. Most programmers test their work by running the program to see if it works correctly. Programmers usually do one of two broad types of programming: applications or system. System programmers maintain the software that controls the operation of an entire computer system. Applications programmers write software that handle specific jobs (OCIS). Worker Characteristics To be a computer programmer one must have many characteristics. One must have the desire to be a leader and influence others. The peron must have a good ability to work with numbers. Must have the ability to follow set procedures and make few errors. Ability to solve problems and make decisions. Also, one must have a good ability to look at written information,such as computer code, and find errors. The soon to be programmer must have a good ability to understand or use words when talking or writing. A computer programmer having all these characteristics will do great in the programming world (OCIS). Requirements There are really very little requirements for the career of computer programming. Most computer programming jobs do not require a certificate or license, but it does vary from job to job ( Cosgrove). Computer programmers must usually complete either a bachelors degree in computer science or in another course with a significant programming component (Computer Programmers, Febuary 1999). All in all, the basic job for a computer programmer requires very little. Training On The Job As a computer programmer you also get training on the job even after you get out of college. Many skills are gained on the job because you work everyday with new and improved things. Programmers also attend a wide range of courses to update their knowledge and their techniques. Even after you get out of college you learn more things every day in the computer programming business ( Programmer ). Wages The pay for computer programmers varies by experience and education of the worker. Systems programmers tend to earn more than applications programmers. The average wage for a computer programmer is $28.83 per hour. Half of all programmers earn between $18.51 and $35.23 an hour. The average salary for computer programmer aides is $15.30 an hour. All in all computer programmers don’t make that bad of money (OCIS). Outlook In the future as the demand for computer programmers goes up so will the wages for computer programmers. Nationally, employment of computer programmers is expected to grow faster than average through 2006 ( The Complete Guide For Occupational Exploration ). The fastest growing area of the computer industry is expected to be computer and data processing services such as computer programming. There are really few factors that will limit the growth in demand for programmers. Competition for programming jobs will also come from other contries. People who only have a few years of experience or education will face strong competition for programming jobs (OCIS). Current Employment Right now computer programmers hold about 647,780 jobs nationally. In Ohio there are about 19,020 computer programmers that work in the state. Systems programmers are more limited than applications programmers in where they work. Systems programmers are mainly found in large computer centers or software development firms. Computer programming jobs are available in all areas of the country. Programmers work in nearly all industries. All in all computer programmers do not really hold many jobs in the U.S. (OCIS). Advantages There are many advantages for computer programmers starting out. The money that programmers get starting out is rather good. Computer programmers coming right out of high school can earn as much as some programmers that have experience depending on the company and job situation. For must programmers starting out though the salaries are lower in smaller companies. Also the entry-level wages are the lowest in government jobs (OCIS). Another advantage to computer programmers is working in offices in comfortable surroundings (Computer Programmers April 1999). Disadvantages There are also disadvantages though with computer programming. Some programmers starting out don’t make as much as others (OCIS). Programmers may have to work overtime to finish writing software for the computers. In programming jobs, some may work long hours and even on weekends to meet or fix critical errors that occur during off hours. The main disadvantage of computer programming is that it is very time consuming and can be a real pain (Computer Programmers April 1999). Day To Day Activities As a computer programmer you don’t do a wide variety of things everyday, mainly you do the same things over and over again. Almost everyday you will be on a computer. There will be some days that you won’t be on the computer though. You will write lots and l

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