How Do I Become a Software Trainee?

Bobby R. Goldsmith

The process to become a software trainee begins with planning the proper educational path. For an entry level software trainee position, you will need at least a bachelor's degree or to be in the final year of a bachelor's degree program in software engineering, programming, or testing at an accredited college or university. You can either apply for an entry level position to become a software trainee or you can find a paid or unpaid internship in software development or management during the final year of your bachelor's degree program. Once you acquire a position working with software, your training will occur on the job, though in some instances continued formal education will still be necessary.

Woman doing a handstand with a computer
Woman doing a handstand with a computer

Entering a bachelor's degree program in computer science or software development is the first step to becoming a software trainee. Two paths are available to accomplish this: entering a four-year college or university directly or obtaining your first two years of general education and introductory courses at a community college before transferring into a four-year program. The application for direct entry to a four-year college or university involves completion of the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT®) or the American College Testing (ACT®) assessment, the completion of a standard form, and an admissions essay. For a community college, you typically only need to fill out a standard form and to provide proof of your high school diploma or general education diploma (GED®).

Once you are in a four-year institution or a community college, you should file a study plan with the school guidance office to ensure that you remain on track. At either institution, you will need to declare a major of study and then to begin your introductory coursework in the major. While you complete these introductory courses, you will also take general education courses that fulfill the requirements for the state that the institution is in. These courses will comprise between 60 and 80 credit hours of study.

When you begin your upper division courses, you will focus primarily on software design and development. Use these courses to cement your knowledge of the subject, and then apply for any available internships to become a software trainee. Generally, you can find such internships through your college's career center or academic department. Though you should attempt to find this internship during the final year of your bachelor's degree program, you can also begin an internship during your junior year.

Once you have completed your degree, whether you have an internship on your resume or not, you can become a software trainee by applying for and accepting an entry level position with a software development or maintenance firm. The position will likely involve checking code and for bugs and errors. You may also be required to perform various other tasks as necessary.

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