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Electrical engineering vs. computer science

  1. Sep 26, 2011 #1
    Hi there,

    I'm a sophomore in college and I'm split between electrical engineering and computer science. There's computer engineering at my school as well, but my CS advisor warned that the CoE degree is too scattered and that I should concentrate on EE or CS.

    I know that ultimately it's about my personal preference, but does anybody have some advice? I'm taking Discrete Math and Ordinary Differential Equations this semester, and I find ODE to be painstakingly boring while Discrete Math is much more intellectually stimulating. I'm also taking Data Structures, and from what I've heard, this class is a really important class if I want to work as a programmer.

    Having been to a Maker Faire, I know that there's a lot of cool hardware to work on as an EE. I understand that EE is a vast field, and that there's an energy focus and an information focus. I also appreciate the fact that electrical engineers have more in common with physicists and scientists, while computer science is closer to mathematics.

    The only reason I'm interested in CS is because of the possibility of going into game development. If I decide to go for CS, it'll be three years of developing my coding skills (with computer architecture, theoretical CS, and other upper-level CS topics on as well). I have this personal dream of taking an artistic approach and treating video games as art, and a CS degree would give me a solid technical foundation. But I feel like an EE degree is more respected than a CS degree, and I'm also aware that the software industry/Silicon Valley is incredibly fickle. Besides, someone's going to come up with the next big thing eventually, and people will stop talking about Facebook and social media and whatnot.

    What do you think I should do? I'd greatly appreciate any advice.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 26, 2011 #2
    Interesting squander... I was in a similar position.

    I am no expert but I don't think you should take CS for programming. You don't need a degree if you want to be a programmer. I suggest reading some popular science books regarding these subjects. I highly recommend Godel Escher Bach by Dougls Hofstadter I think it give quite a feel about computer science.
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