Computer technology has changed human life on this planet so rapidly that almost all jobs now involve computers. The rate of change in computer technology seems to be increasing. Even if your job does not directly involve computers, you can expect changes (at least in your working environment) as advancing computer technologies affect other businesses associated with your job.
Computer Education and Training
To work in any job involving computers, you must learn before you can earn. You need both education (learning computer concepts) and training (learning how to apply computer concepts). For example, while learning to perform even a relatively simple task, such as creating a word-processor document, you must learn:
- Fundamental computer software and file concepts.
- How to run word-processing software.
- How to write a document through the word-processor.
- How to name and save that document as a computer file.
To extend this simple example, its educational part (step 1 above) also applies to your subsequent training as you learn to use other software programs, such as spreadsheet, database, and presentation applications. Despite needing additional education, such as learning relational-database concepts, your education in fundamental computer software and file concepts still applies.
You can obtain computer education and training through universities, community colleges, and technical schools. You can either attend classes or take courses online (if available). For example, you can take free fundamental computer courses through GFC LearnFree.org.
Computer-career job titles and actual responsibilities vary among corporations, and often among organizations within corporations. For example, if you work in a large corporation, you might be a computer programmer who writes code for only spreadsheet applications. In a medium-size company, you might be a computer programmer who writes code for multiple applications. In a small company, you might be the only computer programmer and the only computer-repair technician.
Computer careers include:
- Computer Programmers
- Computer Repair Technicians
- Database Administrators
- IT Support Specialists
- Systems Analysts
- Website Authors
For more computer-career information, see infoplease Jobs Involving Computers.
Computer Programmers – Computer programmers are also known as software engineers or software developers. These people, who usually work in corporations, write computer code for software applications, such as word processors, spreadsheets, databases, and games.
Computer Repair Technicians – Computer repair technicians fix and maintain computers for corporations and individual clients. Because modern electronic components, including those in computers, are usually non-repairable modules, you will seldom do more than replace computer modules. However, as easy as this is, you still need specific skills, such as being able to:
- Troubleshoot a problem to identify its defective module.
- Disassemble the computer to where you can access that module.
- Replace the module while wearing a grounding wrist strap to guard against static-electricity damage.
- Reassemble the computer.
- Test the computer to ensure that the new module is functioning correctly.
Note: Steps 2 and 4 are relatively easy to perform on desktop computers. Not so easy on laptops.
Database Administrators – Database administrators create and maintain large corporate databases. These people are also responsible for database security.
IT Support Specialists – IT (Information Technology) support specialists are also known as computer specialists. These people help other employees maintain their computers according to company standards. IT support specialists help employees correctly install hardware, install and update software, connect to the company network (intranet), and connect to the internet through the company firewall.
Systems Analysts Systems analysts evaluate both hardware and software in corporate computer systems to determine whether they match current business objectives.
Website Authors – Website authors are also known as website developers or webmasters. These people design, create, and maintain websites for corporations or individual clients.