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Computer Engineering

In this program you’ll learn how software and hardware interact in computers. You’ll learn software design and how to integrate computer systems with the larger world. You’ll study:

  • control systems
  • high performance supercomputers
  • sensor systems
  • software for low-energy/high-performance systems
  • embedded systems

Potential careers

What can you do with a computer engineering degree? Here are a few jobs that relate to the program:

  • biomedical implant controls designer
  • computer network designer
  • control systems engineer
  • cyber-security officer
  • data systems engineer
  • design engineer
  • design validator
  • embedded system engineer
  • embedded system software engineer
  • hardware engineer
  • microprocessor designer
  • operations manager
  • product manager
  • program manager
  • research engineer
  • sensor systems designer
  • supercomputing software developer
  • systems designer
  • wireless network systems engineer

Some of these roles may require post-graduate studies or training. 

Find a career that fits you

Experience & connections

Opportunities in the computer engineering program

  • With the Co-op Program you can alternate study with paid work. 

Opportunities outside your program

  • With a work study position you can develop skills during your study term.
  • Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community while you build skills.

Networks you can connect to

Here are a few professional associations related to computer engineering:

Hands-on learning opportunities

These courses in the computer engineering program offer extensive hands-on learning.


Co-op work terms   
Alternate academic study with paid work terms to gain workplace experience

Creative or design project   

ECE 299 - Introduction to Electrical and Computer Engineering Design
Gain experience with the tools used in electrical and computer engineering design

ECE 399 - Design Project I                 
Engage in real-world, team-based projects proposed by external clients

ECE 441 - Design of Digital and VLSI Systems                    
Learn about advanced combinational and sequential logic design through a design project

ECE 449 - Computer Systems and Architecture   
Design and use a processor based on the specification of a simple instruction set

ECE 455 - Real Time Computer Systems Design Project                    
Complete a project involving real-time design and implementation

ECE 498 - Honours Thesis
Do a major engineering design and research project

ECE 499 - Design Project II          
Do a technical design project       

ENGR 110 - Design and Communication I     
Work on practical projects and engage with industry experts

ENGR 120 - Design and Communication II
Work on practical projects and engage with industry experts

MECH 458 – Mechatronics
Design a mechatronics system, such as a conveyor belt system

SENG 440 - Embedded Systems
Program and design an application-specific instruction-set processor

Professional and technical skill development  

ECE 299 - Introduction to Electrical and Computer Engineering Design
Gain experience with the tools used in electrical and computer engineering design

ENGR 110 - Design and Communication I
ENGR 120 - Design and Communication II 
Develop writing and presentation skills

ENGR 130 - Introduction to Professional Practice    
Gain skills like résumé writing and career development

Research project        

ECE 498 - Honours Thesis                    
Research, write and orally defend a graduating honours design or research project

MECH 458 – Mechatronics
Design mechanical, electrical and software components of a mechatronic system

These courses are not always offered as described.

What you'll learn

Every student at UVic builds skills all employers look for. At UVic Co-op & Career we call these  "competencies". This is what you’ll learn in the computer engineering program.

Professional practice

  • focus on the safety, health and welfare of the public
  • focus on environmental protection
  • promote health and safety in the workplace
  • take on professional assignments only when qualified
  • maintain confidentiality and avoid conflicts of interest
  • keep informed to maintain competence
  • act with fairness, courtesy and good faith toward clients, colleagues and others
  • extend public knowledge and appreciation of engineering

 Reliability, safety and failure analysis

  • understand quality assurance standards and testing procedures
  • ensure that systems or components perform their required functions
  • maintain a current knowledge of safety standards
  • understand the consequences of failure and reduce their impact
  • establish the mean time between failures when assessing reliability


  • gather full requirements for a project
  • understand the client’s needs
  • model a solution using the appropriate tools
  • communicate the design process to the client
  • use designs that are safe and effective
  • understand how a design integrates into its environment

Engineering tools

  • design equipment and systems using a variety of software packages
  • simulate mechanical and electronic systems 
  • analyze systems, equipment and data
  • operate mechanical equipment in a lab or workshop
  • use electronics and electrical equipment
  • develop software and scripts in a variety of environments and languages
  • use computer software and systems
  • understand and use databases
  • research and recommend new tools where existing tools are inadequate
  • choose tools based on their strengths and weaknesses

Engineering knowledge

  • understand the mathematical fundamentals of engineering
  • use the correct statistical methods to analyze and investigate data
  • understand the natural sciences for their discipline of engineering
  • understand engineering fundamentals
  • understand engineering economics
  • understand how engineering specifics integrate into a larger project
  • study related subjects to help projects’ success

Computer hardware and systems

  • use the fundamental components of electronic circuits
  • assess the electrical properties of materials
  • create test benches to verify design
  • understand semiconductor structures
  • use differential equations to analyze and design circuits
  • read and interprets electrical schematics
  • research and develop electronic devices
  • use electronic test equipment

Software development, practice and theory

  • work within different software development lifecycle stages
  • take business, product and process requirements into consideration
  • use different software development methodologies
  • use process improvement models, such as ISO 9000
  • solve software development problems using formal methods
  • consider software evolution issues during development
  • design and program embedded systems

Control theory and systems

  • apply control theory in the design of dynamic systems
  • understand feedback control systems
  • identify design specifications
  • assess system performance
  • identify components of a dc servo system and its use in motion control
  • use a control system using feedback circuits
  • understand processors and microcontrollers

Circuits and electronics

  • use the necessary tools to improve system performance
  • understand the transfer of information from one system component to another
  • compare the performance of similar systems using common metrics
  • identify the optimal system for a given problem
  • work with different CPU architectures
  • use different operating systems
  • use different memory management methods

Networks, hardware and communications

  • understand layered network architecture
  • use different digital communication networks to transmit data
  • work with LANs and WANs
  • use different network protocols at different layers
  • protect networks from unauthorized access
  • identify mobile wireless communications techniques and issues affecting multimedia quality of service
  • use different types of buses, interrupts, families of processors and instruction sets

What's next?

To explore more visit the computer engineering site. For degree planning contact your adviser for help.