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IT vs. Software Engineering: Which Course is Right for You?

04 March 2024

Engineering is an ever-evolving field of scientific study and the number of specialisations has gone up from countable to numerous in the past two decades. Information Technology and Software engineering are two booming branches of engineering with comprehensive structure and promising career prospects. Quite often it is noted that people have been mistaking information technology engineering and software engineering as the same. IT engineering and software engineering do have common areas of intersections, however, they are two distinct professional courses in bachelor's ranking with different course structures. In this article, we shall look at the different specifics and everything else a student needs to know before taking admission to either of these engineering courses.

IT vs. Software Engineering: Course Duration and Eligibility

IT or Information Technology Engineering course is designed for a time of 4 years and has been tagged as a professional course. The course structure for software engineering has also been designed for 4 years with the tag of a professional course.

The eligibility criteria for getting admission to both the courses are completing 12th with Maths and Science as primary subjects with a minimum aggregate of 50% in total. Having prior knowledge of computer science and other programming languages is considered a plus, however, it is not a mandatory criterion.

IT vs. Software Engineering: Course Curriculum

The four-year course structure has been designed and well-curated by professionals after wide and rigorous research on industry requirements and employability skills. IT engineering and software engineering curricula are elaborate and practical-oriented.

The course curriculum for IT Engineering is as follows:

Year 1: Mathematics I & II, Physics Lab, Applied Physics, Chemistry Lab, Applied Chemistry, Computer Lab, Basic Civil & Mechanical Engineering, Workshop Practical, Basic Electrical and, Electronics Engineering, Electrical Workshop, Basic Computer Science and Engineering, Environmental Science and Engineering, and Engineering Drawing

Year 2: Engineering Mathematics – III, Applied Statistics And Probability, Signals & Systems, Computer Graphics and Multimedia, Digital Principles & System Design, Data Structures and Algorithms, Principles of Communication, Digital Signal Processing, Computer System Architecture, Microprocessors & Microcontrollers, Object Oriented Programming, System Software, OOPS Lab Using Linux Platform, Data Structures Lab, Digital Lab, Microprocessor/Microcontroller & Assembly, and Language Programming Lab

Year 3: Numerical Methods and Statistics, Data Warehousing and Data Mining, Information Coding Techniques, Mobile computing, Computer Networks, Distributed Computing, Relational Database Management System, Object Oriented System Design, Introduction to Java Programming, Cryptography and Network Security, Operating System, Embedded System, RDBMS Lab, Network Lab Using Linux Plat Form, Java Programming Lab, and Web Technology Lab

Year 4: Software Engineering, Engineering Economics and Management, Professional Ethics and Human Value, Elective – III, Component-Based Technology, Dot Net Technologies, Project Work, Dot Net Lab, CASE Tools Lab, and elective subjects.

The course curriculum for Software Engineering is as follows:

Year 1: Applied Chemistry I, Applied Mathematics I, Applied Physics I, Basic Electricity and Electronics I, Computer Programming I, Communication Skills I, Engineering Drawing I, Engineering Mechanics I, Basic Workshop Practice, Applied Mathematics II, Applied Physics II, Applied Chemistry II, Engineering Drawing II, Engineering Mechanics II, Communication Skills II, Computer Programming II, Basic Electricity and Electronics II, and Basic Workshop Practice.

Year 2: Applied Mathematics III, Electronics I, Electrical Networks, Engineering Materials and Components, Numerical Methods, Computer Methodology and Algorithms, Applied Mathematics IV, Electronics II, Principles of Communication Engineering, Logic Circuits, C Programming, and Business Data Processing.

Year 3: Applied Mathematics V, Computer Organisation, Object-Oriented Programming, Methodology, Discrete Structures, Microprocessors I, Computer Graphics, Operating Systems, Systems Programming, Analogue and Digital Integrated Circuits, Microprocessors II, Database, Management Systems, and Principles of Economics and Management.

Year 4: Structured Systems Analysis and Design, Microprocessors III, Data Communication, Digital Signal Processing, Project I – Theoretical Computer Science, Computer Networks & Communication, Software Engineering and Elective papers.

IT vs. Software Engineering: Career Opportunities

Technology has the potential of solving real-world problems and the rising demand in the field shows the developing aspect of the nation. Information Technology Engineering and Software Engineering hold equal subject value and are career-promising for the graduates of these respective professional courses.

Career options for students after opting for IT

  1. Cyber Security Specialist: Associated with protecting the software and making sure that the network is free of threats and other discrepancies.
  2. Systems Architect: Works as the responsible designation for devising, configuring, operating and maintaining the entire network system in a company.
  3. Principal Software Engineer: Works on developing and maintaining the software that is required for the accomplishment of the organisational goals.
  4. Program Analyst: Engaged in creating computer language codes for the company. Additionally, they are involved in testing the functionality and reviewing the errors.
  5. Cloud Architect: Works with cloud technology, and uses their technical expertise to ensure the smooth functioning of the data and other applications. They are also involved in understanding the right cloud technology and adapting the best cloud application on behalf of the organisation.
  6. Product Manager: Identifies the client's needs and oversees the action plan and working schedules to deliver the best output by meeting the demanded features.
  7. Solutions Architect: Assesses the IT problems and formulates solutions by creating workable technological solutions using their technical expertise.
  8. MIS (Management Information System) Manager: Oversee the usage and transfer of data and take the role of protecting both the client and employee base working information.
  9. IT Management: Oversees the IT sector and ensures the smooth functioning and timely meeting of project submissions and launches.

Career options for students after opting for Software Engineering

  1. Software Developer: Creates and designs computer applications and facilitates the functioning of specific tasks to enhance the user experience.
  2. Business Analyst: Bridges the gap between the IT sector and business to assess and execute necessary strategies for collective growth.
  3. Database Administrator: They are involved with creating and maintaining databases in systems ensuring confidentiality and security of the stored data.
  4. Data Engineer: Engaged in building systems that manage, collect and interpret data to valuable and actionable insights for revenue growth and overall well-being.
  5. Data Scientist: Engaged in analysing and processing the data to infer meaningful outputs through the efficient use of various software and application metrics.
  6. Full stack developer: They are concerned with the entire craft and draft for building a website (front-end and back-end of a website).
  7. Game Developer: Works in designing and developing various aspects of games like visualising, incorporation of artificial intelligence, and inclusion of game logic. They are also responsible for plugin insertion and other requirements to enhance the gaming experience.
  8. Hardware Engineer: Engaged in extensive testing of computer systems and applications along with regular modifications and maintenance tasks of the system.

In Short

IT Engineering and software engineering are two distinct bachelor programmes with different subject approaches. On closely looking at the subject curricula and career aspects of both the streams, it is quite visible that both the courses overlap in specific areas. Both specialisations are dynamic and multi-faceted, which in turn additionally makes the experience of pursuing either of the field knowledge enriching and career promising. The curriculum of both courses has been set at an application-oriented level with supportive workshops, internships and projects to further hone the skillset.

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