Software Developers

Last updated December 31, 2014

You’re on vacation with your family, and just as you lie down on the beach, it hits you -- you forgot to mail those bills your mom asked you to drop in the mailbox as you ran for the bus the other day. Not to worry, thanks to a software developer (and a nearby Internet cafe), your mom can pay those same bills online and avoid any late fees.

Software developers instruct computers how to perform functions like online bill paying through step-by-step processes of programming and problem solving.

Software developers combine their expertise in computer science, engineering, and math to design, develop, and test software for home, school, and business use.

Did You Know?

Software developers usually begin their careers testing ongoing designs, but with greater experience, they eventually design and develop software. 

Are You Ready To...?

  • Try several approaches to the same programming problems
  • Spend many hours debugging programs
  • Keep up with a constantly changing and growing technology by reading and taking classes
  • Be patient and tactful, but also relentless in getting the job done
  • Work as part of a team

It Helps To Be...

Someone who pays attention to details and can handle more than one task at a time. You’ll need to work both independently and with a team of other software developers. And you’ll need to be a good listener if you’re going to understand what clients and users need your software to do.

Make High School Count

  • Take as much advanced math and science as your high school offers.
  • Sign up for computer science classes. If your high school doesn’t offer any, look into summer classes for precollege students at local two- or four-year colleges.
  • Consider attending computer science summer camp.
  • Pay attention to your foreign language studies. You’ll need to catch on quickly to new computer languages, and you may end up working for an international company where speaking more than one human language may come in handy.

Did You Know?

After several years of experience, you may have the skills to start your own computer consulting business