How to Become a Software Developer - Essentials

How to Become a Software Developer

How to Become a Software developer

The Basics of Becoming a Software Developer

Are you investigating how to become a Software Developer? The main job of a Software developer is to design and create computer programs to meet the needs of users. They design each aspect of an application or system and plan how the pieces will work together. Software developers are behind everything you do with a computer. They design, build, and test computers systems in order to help people get their work done. They might develop the underlying systems for devices or networks, or they might develop specific applications for computers. These days many developers design applications for devices like tablets and smartphones too.

In general, Software Developers usually have a bachelor’s degree,typically in computer science, software engineering, or a related field. Some employers may prefer a candidate with a master’s degree. To work as a system software developer, you need to understand the technical aspects of electronics and computers. You need to have a background in computer programming too.[v] While it may be possible to learn this stuff on your own, it may be a lot easier to have instructors guiding you. Plus colleges or training centers generally give you access to all the equipment you’ll need to learn how to use!And throughout their career, software developers are often required to keep up to date on new tools and computer languages.[ii]

What Are Hurdles to Becoming A Software Developer?

Take the time to test your code.

One tip I would give to entry level developers is to take the extra time to really test your code. I notice many entry level developers, including myself a few years back, trying to get their code finished and up fast. This speedy coding often leads to bugs. Take the extra time to extensively test your code and there will be fewer issues later on. Dominic Acito - Developer
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- Dominic Acito, Developer @DomsTechBlog

An Application Software Developer's Salary Potential

Average Software Developer Salary
[ABOVE] National Salary Averages for an Application Software Developer[iii]

Top States with the Highest Salary Averages[iv]

States Lowest 10th% Salary Highest 90th% Salary
Washington $72,190 $151,090
California $66,760 $165,050
Maryland $63,950 $171,610
Massachusetts $63,910 $149,670
Delaware $63,900 $141,710

How Do Your Skills Stack Up?

Day to day life of a Software Developer

As reported by O*NET, these traits are ranked as either extremely or very important to the day to day life of an Applications Software Developer [i]

What Will You Learn with a Software Development Bachelor’s Degree?

A bachelor’s degree in software application development will likely cover some of the following course work:

  • Web Development
  • Networks
  • Operating Systems
  • Software Applications
  • Information Technology Fundamentals

Software application bachelor’s degrees are generally designed to provide students with the skills to pursue careers as software designers or developers. In addition to general education requirements, students may delve into topics including scripting and programming; network and security; leadership and management; business of IT; and even technical writing. In some cases, programs may include certain industry-recognized certifications in the curriculum. Capstone projects to demonstrate competency are also quite common.

Who are some Famous Software Developers?

Software Development has come a long way in the last fifty years. According to Ranker's list of famous software developers, these are a few of the most influential people in development:

  • Sergey Brin and Larry Page: founders of Google
  • Richard Stallman: best known for launching the GNU Project and the Free Software Foundation
  • Pierre Omidyar: Developed eBay, earned a bachelor’s degree in computer science from Tufts

FAQs About How to Become a Software Developer

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Sources: [i] onetonline.org/link/summary/15-1132.00 | [ii] bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/software-developers.htm#tab-4 | [iii] bls.gov/oes/current/oes151132.htm | [iv] earnmydegree.com/sites/all/files/public/SalaryData-ApplicationsSoftwareDev.pdf [v] bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/software-developers [vi] softwareengineerinsider.com/degrees/computer-engineering-degree.html#context/api/listings/prefilter | Job information sourced from onetonline.org/link/summary/15-1132.00