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A testing engineer works in a variety of fields to ensure that products meet the daily demands of usage. By thinking of situations and testing a product's durability, testing engineers are responsible for quality. Testing engineers are commonly found in manufacturing, software development and electrical technology. A great deal of education and specific expertise is required for all fields of testing.
Testing engineers usually are highly educated individuals, because the job has so many technical demands. A engineering degree usually is required, and to become an upper management testing engineer, a master's or doctorate degree often is needed, as are many years of field experience. An electrical engineering degree prepares students for many technical jobs, a degree in computer engineering prepares students for software testing, and a mechanical engineering degree prepares students for manufacturing testing.
A testing engineer does not jump directly into the job, because an overall expertise is required to properly seek out potential problems. For example, a software test engineer might have to work as a software developer, assistant test engineer or even a salesman in order to acquire the essential understanding needed to test. No matter what field the engineer practices in, this experience and mastery helps him or her seek out problems that more inexperienced engineers might overlook.
A software testing engineer uses an educational foundation and software development experience to seek out bugs and gaps in logic of new programs. Video games, accounting programs, entire operational systems and anything found on a computer all need to tested. These engineers provide quality assurance by running through the daily needs of a program as well as by pushing it to extremes of use. If issues are found, the engineer writes a report to developers about how they can improve a program.
A manufacturing testing engineer works exclusively with machines featuring moving parts. Ranging from airplanes to cars to refrigerators and more, these testers run an audit process on a machine, testing not only its structural soundness but its longevity. If there are problems, the engineer works backward to discover what is mechanically wrong and makes suggestions about possible solutions.
An electrical testing engineer deals with the power supply of a piece of electrical equipment. Running a circuit test is a major part of the job and ensures that the flow of electricity is complete. This can be performed for every type of electricity-powered equipment, from a blender to a super computer. This type of engineer seeks out potentially dangerous or inefficient power pathways and helps improve the process.