Becoming a computer engineer starts with attending one of the 14 computer engineering programs in Illinois. Of these 14 schools, eight have Associate's degree programs. There are 10 schools that offer Bachelor's and Master's degree programs. PhD programs are available at eight schools.
If you decide to earn an Associate's degree in computer engineering, you need to complete 60 credits. If you attend school full-time, this should take about two years. To earn a Bachelor's degree, you have to complete 120 credits in engineering and general education courses. Some of the classes you have to take include Computer Organization, Digital Systems Design, and Computer Architecture.
You may be a good candidate for a Master's program or PhD program if you already have a Bachelor's degree in engineering. Among the classes required at this level are Advanced Coding Theory, Microprocessor Design, and Embedded Systems. You need about two years to earn a Master's degree and seven years to earn a PhD. This difference is because you have to write and defend a thesis to earn a PhD.
Tuition costs are very different between schools, although public schools and two-year universities tend to have lower tuition. In general, the average cost of tuition in Illinois is $14900.
Applying for Illinois engineering scholarships can help you minimize your out-of-pocket costs. One organization that offers engineering scholarships is the Illinois Society of Professional Engineers. This group awards $1000 scholarships to local students every year. The Illinois Section of ASCE is another local organization that awards $2000 scholarships.
Before you can start working as a professional engineer in Illinois, you must earn your license from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation. The first step to licensure is passing the NCEES Fundamentals of Engineering exam. After you pass this exam and send your scores to the board, you can fill out an application to earn your license. This involves filling out your educational information, your relevant experience, and providing references. Once your application is approved, you can receive your license in the mail.