Congratulations, you’ve done it! You finally know what you want to be when you “grow up” – and it’s something cool. Becoming a game and simulation programmer can open a lot of doors for you in terms of job opportunities, but it’s natural that you want to do some research before deciding on your degree.
First, you should know what you’re getting into because there can be some confusion about what people in this field actually do. To clarify, game and simulation programmers don’t create and develop the story of the game, those are tasks left to game designers. Instead, game and simulation programmers write code that brings to life the story of the game. They use principles of mathematics, engineering and physics to write software programs that ensure games function as intended.
You’ll undoubtedly be the envy of your friends when you land your first game and simulation programming job, but first you have to get it. And for that to happen, be sure you know the industry outlook and the most common job titles to look for.
Game and simulation programming job outlook
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects 406,800 computer programmers will be employed across the country by 2020. That number represents a 14 percent increase over the same industry in 2010.
Will this field continue to grow? The answer is a resounding yes. Computers are increasingly becoming a part of our everyday lives – these days we have biometric scanners on phones, cars that drive themselves and nearly every electronic device seems to have a touchscreen. And who will eventually configure the software, write the code and develop the applications behind this technology? People like you.
Game and simulation programming job titles
No two game and simulation programming jobs are exactly the same, so you could end up with any one of several different job titles. The different titles represent the varied functions and responsibilities required from different organizations in the industry. That said, you’ll be qualified for all of them with the right amount of experience and a game and simulation programming degree.
We analyzed 20,087 jobs posted between May 31 and Aug. 26, 2013* and identified the 10 most common positions available across the industry.
If you’re a first-time job seeker with no other career experience, start looking for jobs titles like “associate programmer,” “junior programmer” or “entry-level programmer.” That way you can use the higher profile titles from this chart – and the lucrative salaries that come with them – as motivation to excel once you get in the industry.
The bottom line
Now that you finally know which career is for you, it’s time to earn your degree. There are a multitude of job titles you could have because of your game and simulation programming degree, so the question is simple: Which one do you want to pursue? Tell us in the comments!
Learn more about what it will take to earn a game and simulation programming degree on the Rasmussen College School of Technology page.
*Source: Burning Glass.com (An analysis of 20,087 online job postings between May 31, 2013 and Aug. 26, 2013)