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Will mechanical engineers need to learn coding ?

Should I learn machine learning, or image processing or embedded system or any computer engineering technology engineer other related electronic and computer science related field?

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Irene’s Answer

It is not a requirement, but it will definitely help you for landing a job, specially if you're interested in consumer electronics mechanical engineering. It reflects your well rounded interest in consumer electronics products and overall in tech industry.

Irene recommends the following next steps:

Search job listings for mechanical engineering positions from companies you'd consider working for and read the requirements
Search on LinkedIn people that have a mechanical engineering job in a company you'd like to work and send them a message asking for an informational interview where you could ask them this question directly.
Search on LinkedIn people that are alumni from your university and have the same major as you and ask them for a quick call to give you advise base on their experience.
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Cem’s Answer

Mechanical engineers are problem solvers and must have a methodical yet logical approach to defining solutions. sometimes this is an iterative approach and there may be permutations and experimenting that gets involved. Having the ability to program gives you the ability to have a vision of how steps need to be sequenced and can both be helpful in the role as a mechanical engineer to get the results you are looking for. While its not necessary to know how to program, it definitely will compliment you in deriving solutions. it will help distinguish you if you do have this ability, especially in the era we live in which is all digital. being able to run a query in SQL or create a solution using Python to automate things, will get you in the lead. Mechanical engineers can compliment any curriculum and vice-versa.
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Nicholas’s Answer

Mechanical Engineering is VERY broad, so you wouldn’t necessarily need to know coding to be successful. However, it’s a very good skill to have especially if you’re interested in aerospace, controls engineering, robotics, or most technology driven companies. Depending on the industry you want enter, it could be a necessity or useless.
In my collegiate experience, certain coding classes were thought/required (i.e. VBA, Matlab [C++]), I also used C++ to code Arduino boards for robotics and control logic projects. However, in my professional career in the oil/gas and heavy machinery industry I’ve no use for coding skills other than writing a macro on VBA.

In summary, it’s good/helpful to know/understand the basics of a few coding languages, but it isn’t required unless it’s required under a specific title.

Hope this helps.
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Timothy’s Answer

It is not a necessity, but within the field of mechanical engineering, there are ways to apply coding skills if you have them. When I went through college, I took a class that covered microprocessor programming and I also took a class that covered Fortran (a programming language used at that time). As a mechanical engineering graduate, my interest coming out of college was in the field of dynamic loads and vibrations. It so happened that my first job involved writing code for analyzing sensor data collected from the space shuttle. That said, there are likely many more jobs and roles in mechanical engineering that would not require any kind of coding skills at all. In summary, it is up to you. If these are of interest to you, I am sure there are opportunities out there to make use of those skills; however, I would recommend a well rounded curriculum until you gain more insight to and experience (e.g. internships or other related experience) in the field of mechanical engineering .
Thank you! Rainer R.
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David’s Answer

while my background is electrical engineering, i would like to add that i work with mechanical engineers frequently, for example, on the requirements and build around a data center for cloud servers. That mechanical engineering team does a lot with programming and remote work on their systems that is strong growing field. Imagine right now, with the current WFH environment, your ability to contribute as an engineer would rely on remote access and manipulation of data and results.
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Nicole’s Answer

Hi Rainer R.

I totally agree with the answers you have gotten so far. I will add, because i don't know where you are in your education/career journey, that where you start out isn't always where you end...meaning, you may start your education/career as a mechanical engineer but you may find, in the course of learning more about different careers, that you want to try something new. In my exploration, I moved from being a network engineer to applying my engineering skills to sales and marketing environments. Your ability to do a career or focus shift, comfortably, often times can be supported by a a good comfort level in programming.

It has been my experience that having a good coding background can lead to a long, meaningful career, regardless of your starting position or learning discipline.

Best of luck to you!
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Richard’s Answer

It probably wouldn't hurt. Most electro-mechanics and remote controlling is a bit of a standard set of knowledge to mechanize things. Remember, though, that engineers tend to work in teams and there may be specialist at machine language right there beside you. However, some working knowledge wouldnt hurt in any field you may choose in the mechanical area.
Lets clarify that "machine language" is coding at a very low level... not writing Shakespeare for machines to read during break-time.
anyhooo ... that being said "once upon a time" we set machine code in registers bit by bit and taught those early smart machines to do quirky stuff by hand without compilers or interpreters.

But, basically you need to take some kind of programming during that first two years. You can learn much easier by picking up a basic stamp or propeller or pi or whatever "flavor" of electro-mechanical gizmo is on sale this spring, and probably get college credits for not frying it.

Machine vision ( my choice of maddness) is a whole lot more complicated. maybe wait until your senior years ad look into some of the advance electives before tackling gifting your creations with sight and sound .

Richard " moving sight-ation" Wolf
Thank you ! Rainer R.
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Madura’s Answer

Hi,

I would say yes! The coding is a way of answering any problems via a language understandable by computer or machine. So it is needed in every field. If you get interested you can work in the job role which is there in the intersection of computer and mechanical domain [such as design software like solidwork/catia/CAD-CAM development].
None the less if you are discussing somethings with peers who are working in industry and they talk about coding or programming you should have an idea around it , so start learning basics, it will be helpful.
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Nandakumar’s Answer

The way the industry is moving towards automated assembly lines driven by software and programming, it is good to Learn basics of Coding .

From career perspective , Mechanical Engineer with coding knowledge will have better and more career options , competitive advantage and can be future proof .

Learning coding will be a good supplement now and in the future.
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Naga Prasan’s Answer

It depends on your interest and career path. When it comes to what to learn, You can learn all those topics with out going into deep and learn few of them very deep. So first get introduction to all those topics after that select few which interest you and learn them deeper.
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