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Computer Engineering or Computer Science Program

  1. Apr 12, 2009 #1
    My university offers 2 programs that I am interested in; Computer Engineering and Computer Science. I am currently a freshman, and recently declared into Computer Engineering. After some more thinking, however, I can't figure out if it will be the right choice, or if Computer Science is what's really right for me. I can get by next term with courses that fulfill either degree, but I need to make a choice by the term after that.

    Here's my thought process:
    I've always done computer science type stuff on my own (programming since I was little)
    I've always ALSO been interested in computer engineering (wanted to play with microprocessors and such)
    I like some subjects in math (multivariable calculus and differential equations are somewhat interesting to me, already took both)
    Not sure about physics yet.... I am in Mechanical/Newtonian physics right now and am doing very average in the class, which is rare for me (and doesn't feel good!)
    I haven't taken Electricity and Magnetism yet (next term), but I have heard it is hard.

    The reason I'm considering switching to Computer Science is because I'm worried about the physics, signal processing, etc. I know that I am good at programming concepts, and I know that I am not as good at physical science concepts.

    Hopefully this is enough to get a small picture of my interests and abilities... I thank you for any input you might have!
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 13, 2009 #2


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    Depends on your school. Some that I've applied to require only basic physics for computer engineering and lots for computer science, while others might be just the opposite. At the school I'll be attending, a CE is just an EE with advanced programming experience so I probably won't be able to avoid physics (I don't really mind). Again, check with your school.
  4. Apr 13, 2009 #3
    It sounds like you want to do computer engineering but are worried about it being too hard. It might be harder for you than CS, but that just means you'll need to work a bit harder. If you're doing well in your math classes, signal processing should be alright for you. In classes like E&M, you'll just need to step up your game. It's worth it if that is what you're interested in.
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