Best Jobs for an Electrical Engineering Degree (With Salaries)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Updated October 23, 2022

Published July 26, 2021

The Indeed Editorial Team comprises a diverse and talented team of writers, researchers and subject matter experts equipped with Indeed's data and insights to deliver useful tips to help guide your career journey.

Getting an electrical engineering degree offers you an opportunity to explore several career paths. While there are many job opportunities available, your specific degree can affect your career path. Therefore, it's important to understand the degrees and the qualifications you need to get the best electrical engineering jobs. In this article, we explore the degrees available for electrical engineering, how to earn a degree, and the best jobs you can get with these degrees.

What is electrical engineering?

Electrical engineering is a field that concerns the design, development, maintenance, and application of electrical systems, equipment, and machinery. It also includes electronics engineering, which involves the large-scale manufacturing and circulation of electrical products. This field interrelates with other areas, such as civil and mechanical engineering.

Related: What Does an Electrical Engineer Do? (And Requirements)

Electrical engineering degrees you can choose

Here are some electrical engineering degrees you can pursue:

Associate degree

The associate program provides you with a good foundation in electrical engineering practices and theories. The program duration is two years, after which you can assume entry-level positions in the electrical engineering industry and related areas. After completing this program, you can also elect to earn a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution.

Bachelor's degree

To advance your career in electrical engineering, you need to complete an undergraduate program in an institution accredited by the Canadian Engineering Accreditation Board. Usually, most employers consider a professional engineer licence with a bachelor's degree the minimum requirement for employment.

It takes four to five years to earn a Bachelor of Applied Science degree. A bachelor's degree comprises two years of classroom instruction and two years of practical learning under licensed professionals. In addition, it requires students to write an engineering research paper during the final year of study.

Master's degree (optional)

You may consider obtaining a master's degree to specialize within the industry. This program spans from one to two years, involving a mix of technical teaching and laboratory work, including research and development and design of computer and electrical systems. It's a great option because it allows you to gain expertise and experience in a particular aspect of the field.

For example, engineers can choose to specialize in technical areas such as artificial intelligence and computer hardware engineering. This program is available for students with a bachelor's degree in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics-related courses.

Doctorate (optional)

This is an advanced degree that's available for those interested in academia and research. This program spans between four and six years, and it's open to students with a master's degree in electrical engineering. In addition, in some exceptional cases, students with an impressive undergraduate record in science and math can also obtain this degree.

Related: 5 Steps To Become an Electrical Engineer

How to obtain an electrical engineering degree

Follow these steps for how to obtain an electrical engineering degree:

1. Pick a degree or specialization

The field of electrical engineering is vast and has many sub-specialties. Most sub-divisions of electrical engineering require separate education, certification, and licensure requirements depending on the industry. Thus, both aspiring and professional engineers can consider an area of interest within the discipline to specialize.

2. Apply to an institution

It's helpful to research the various institutions that offer the degree of your choice. Currently, there are over 60 available electrical engineering programs with specific requirements depending on your province or territory. In addition, consider the university or college ranking, the cost of tuition, and proximity when choosing an institution.

3. Complete your degree

You earn your degree at your institution by completing coursework, maintaining a good GPA, and passing your exams. You can also pursue internship opportunities while obtaining your degree. This helps you gain work experience that's relevant to job applications.

4. Get a licensure

After graduation, you must register as an engineer-in-training with the licensing body in the province or territory you plan to work. Registration allows you to meet the experience requirement for licensure. A professional engineer (P. Eng.) candidate must have progressive work experience of four years, one of which you must complete in Canada. Once you apply and get the P. Eng. title, you obtain a licence to practice as an electrical engineer within the province.

Related: How to Create a Career Plan in 9 Steps

Best electrical engineering degree jobs

The best electrical engineering degree jobs offer different opportunities and wages, depending on your work experience, level of education, and geographical location. Here are some jobs for electrical engineering careers you can opt for:

1. Broadcast engineer

National average salary: $55,231 per year

Primary duties: A broadcast engineer works in media houses to ensure the broadcast of programs at the highest quality and at the correct times. They also repair and maintain the equipment necessary for broadcasting. To work in broadcast engineering, you must have an associate degree.

2. Technical writer

National average salary: $68,754 per year

Primary duties: A technical writer is a professional communicator that transfers information between an electrical engineer and other team members. They describe scientific materials concisely and clearly by synthesizing original writings and providing edits to researchers. For a career as a technical writer, an associate degree is the minimum educational requirement.

3. Electrical technician

National average salary: $61,613 per year

Primary duties: An electrical technician maintains, repairs, and creates devices that use electricity. They troubleshoot and modify electrical equipment and install wiring based on the specification of electrical engineers. The minimum educational requirement for an electrical technician is an associate degree or an equivalent qualification.

4. Electronic communications engineer

National average salary: $82,580 per year

Primary duties: An electronic communications engineer designs, produces, installs, and maintains telecommunication systems for mass and individual communication. Their concerns include radio, traditional broadcasting, and satellite and wireless communications. An electrical engineering bachelor's degree is the least requirement employers expect to work as an electronic communications engineer.

5. Electrical controls engineer

National average salary: $74,592 per year

Primary duties: An electrical controls engineer applies control theory, develops, supervises, and designs all electrical control systems, machinery, and equipment. They're also responsible for the technical support and installation of programmable logic controller-based hardware and software. The minimum educational requirement for an electrical technician is a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.

6. Computer engineer

National average salary: $69,122 per year

Primary duties: A computer engineer aids the development of computer technology by driving advancements in computer hardware. They work with software developers to craft innovative blueprints to improve hardware capacity, function, and power. A bachelor's degree represents the least educational requirement to work as a hardware engineer.

7. Electrical engineer

National average salary: $79,231 per year

Primary duties: An electrical engineer develops and designs a variety of small- and large-scale electrical systems. Electrical engineers work in lift systems, manufacturing, power generation and distribution, transport networks, lighting, ventilation, and heating systems. The minimum educational requirement for an electrical engineer is a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.

8. Systems engineer

National average salary: $85,104 per year

Primary duties: A systems engineer is responsible for monitoring and managing all installed infrastructure and systems within an organization. They install, configure, test, and ensure proper maintenance of operating systems and application software. The minimum educational requirement to work as a system engineer is a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.

9. Electrical project manager

National average salary: $79,126 per year

Primary duties: An electrical project manager oversees the supply of electricity and the installation of electrical systems in homes, businesses, and other infrastructures. In addition, they manage budgets, communication, and scheduling between building sites and office administration. The minimum educational requirement as an electrical project manager is an associate's degree in electrical engineering.

10. Network architect

National average salary: $78,713 per year

Primary duties: A computer network architect builds and designs computer communication networks for a local web, intranet, and wider area networks. They're also responsible for installing hardware, software and securing data. You need a bachelor's degree in a computer-related field and electrical engineering to function as a network architect.

Related: What Is an Electrical Engineering Resume? (With Example)

Tips to advance careers in electrical engineering

Follow these tips to advance your career and find the best electrical engineering degree jobs:

Make valuable connections

Building long-term relationships with professionals in your industry can help you find career opportunities to advance in your field. In addition, it provides an avenue for research advancements and scientific collaborations with others. Joining professional organizations, alumni organizations, attending symposiums, and conferences are excellent means to network.

Develop useful soft skills

While developing your technical skills, building soft skills is vital. Examples of soft skills include communication skills, collaboration skills, organizational and presentation skills, and problem-solving skills. They help you to work efficiently in a team.

Enroll in certificate programs

On-campus and online programs are standard methods to gain certification, further specialization, relevant skills, and expertise within your field. This ensures you can offer more value to your employers. For example, you can opt for certificate programs in biomedical engineering, signal processing, electromagnetic, and wireless communication. The requirements for these exams vary by province and territory, so research the requirements for your province before applying.

Related: 15 of the Highest Paying Jobs in Engineering (With Salaries)

Now that we've explored the degrees available for electrical engineering and how to earn a degree, you'll be better prepared to pursue the best electrical engineering degree jobs.

Please note that none of the companies, institutions or organizations mentioned in this article are affiliated with Indeed.

Salary figures reflect data listed on the quoted websites at time of writing. Salaries may vary depending on the hiring organization and a candidate’s experience, academic background and location.

Explore more articles