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Computer Science and Engineering

  1. Mar 1, 2008 #1
    I'm currently in my junior year high school and thinking about majoring in either Physics, astrophysics, Electrical/chemical/mechanical/or nuclear engineering. I heard that computer science is a huge part of engineering. I'm currently taking AP Comp Sci A in school and find it really hard. It's the first time I've taken a comp sci course as my school doesn't offer a regular comp sci course. Maybe I find it hard because we have to learn from the online course rather than the teacher actually teaching us or maybe it's because I'm not a year ahead in math unlike almost everyone else in the class (although even students who are a year ahead in math are finding the course rather difficult). So should I be worried? I know Electrical Enginerring involves a lot of comp sci, but are there other engineering courses which don't involve as much comp sci?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 1, 2008 #2
    I wouldn't worry too much about it, becoming an efficient programmer happens with practice. There is programming related topics in practically all engineering disciplines, with Computer engineering obviously having it as a main staple of its curriculum. I have no idea what they teach in AP comp sci, so maybe you could tell me.
     
  4. Mar 1, 2008 #3
    Basics and fundamentals of Java are taught in AP Comp Sci A: ints, doubles, strings, booleans, arrays, blocks, while/for/for-each loops, static/recursive/overloaded methods, Classes, object-oriented programming, etc. We just completed the section on ArrayLists.
     
  5. Mar 1, 2008 #4
    Most people have a hard time when first starting out with computer science. I took my first computer science course at a university in a class full of computer science majors! Of course, it was challenging at first, but like math, the more you practice, the better you will become. All engineers at my school are required to take at least one computer science course (similar to the one you're taking now, except in C or C++). Most people spend a lot of time on that class. If it's your first computer science class and you find it difficult, then it's perfectly normal. Just keep practicing and learn to think logically and like a computer.
     
  6. Mar 1, 2008 #5
    That sounds exactly like my very first comp sci course, and if i remember correctly, there were plenty of people pulling their hair out. Eventually you'll learn to think very logically and the language and its advantages (as well as disadvantages) will seem like second nature. Many of my friends stopped their comp sci progression right then and there, instead going into engineering fields that don't require any more programming classes. It gets better though, there are so many types of languages with different paradigms and such. Explore.
     
  7. Mar 2, 2008 #6
    I'm doing comp engineering in grad school at the moment. The amount of programming you have to know is almost minimal. Since CE is more hardware oriented and comp sci is more software related, my level of programming doesn't need to be at the expert level. I can read and decode any code (PHP, C++, assembly, Java, etc.) much better than I can write. When I have to write code, I'll really need a reference guide, such as a text book or internet source.

    When I first learned C++, I had a difficult time getting use to the syntax and logic behind it. It actually master C++ is by practice and making your own programs. Use your imagination and creativity. Write a pseudo code of it on paper and implement it through C++.
     
  8. Oct 6, 2008 #7
    I'm a mechanical engineer and the only program we have to learn is matlab... which I find awful. Most other universities though require their engineers to learn C or C++. Regardless the knowledge of programming required for these classes is rather minimal. We leave the hard programming to the computer science majors when it comes to the work field. If you're currently taking an AP comp sci course you should definitely be fine.
     
  9. Oct 8, 2008 #8
    Basics and fundamentals of Java are taught in AP Comp Sci A: ints, doubles, strings, booleans, arrays, blocks, while/for/for-each loops, static/recursive/overloaded methods, Classes, object-oriented programming, etc. We just completed the section on ArrayLists.
     
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