How To Become an Instrumentation Engineer (and Their Primary Duties)

Instrument engineers hold bachelor’s or master’s degrees and must continue with some form of education even after they are employed in order to maintain a current knowledge of new technologies. Licensure is required, obtained through a combination of exams and work experience.

What is an Instrumentation Engineer || Career in Instrumentation and Control Engineering

What does an instrumentation engineer do?

Throughout their career, an instrumentation engineer performs several duties, including:

What is an instrumentation engineer?

An instrumentation engineer is a trained professional who uses their technical skills and engineering knowledge to help different fields with projects or tasks. For example, a manufacturing company might hire an instrumentation engineer to help them design and maintain the equipment and machines used in their production, while another company might hire them to work on aerospace projects or develop biomedical tools. Instrumentation engineers might work full time for various companies assisting them with their goals, or they might freelance their services to multiple clients looking for help.

Salary

Here is a list of steps you can use to help you become an instrumentation engineer:

1. Earn an undergraduate degree

To pursue an instrumentation engineering position, you first have to pursue a bachelor of science in instrumentation engineering technology or a related field, such as electrical, chemical or systems engineering. These degrees often have courses that can help you develop crucial knowledge and skills for the career, including automation, instruments and transducers and electrical power systems. Many universities and institutions will also offer students the ability to practice their engineering expertise through labs and other forms of hands-on experience.

2. Gain relevant experience

Gaining relevant experience for an instrumentation engineering position is important because it can help you develop key skills and expertise you can use throughout your career and help your resume and credentials become more noticeable to employers. Two great ways to gain relevant work experience are internships and entry-level positions. Though you can pursue internships after graduating, it can be beneficial to look for internship opportunities during your time as an undergraduate. Internships can provide you with beneficial knowledge and skills that you can add to your resume for future entry-level job applications.

Entry-level engineering jobs can provide you with unique experiences and help you develop occupational skills for an instrumentation engineering career. If you cant find an opportunity that specifically works with instrumentation and control, it can be beneficial to find entry-level jobs or positions that work with electronics or electrical systems, because they can provide you with helpful experience you can use in an instrumentation engineering position.

3. Pursue higher education

Though many instrumentation engineers can find jobs with a bachelors degree, most choose to attend a graduate program to help increase their engineering knowledge and generate additional job opportunities. Completing a masters program in instrumentation or electrical engineering can often allow individuals to pursue mid-level or senior-level instrumentation engineering positions and continue to advance in their career.

A graduate education can also be important for instrumentation engineers because working with electrical systems can often require continuous education and training to keep up with growing technologies. Its also possible that some instrumentation engineers may need to pursue higher education in order to renew certain certifications and licenses.

4. Obtain certification

Though certifications and licenses for engineering professionals can vary from state-to-state, most often after receiving their undergraduate degree, instrumentation engineers will take the Fundamentals of Engineering exam, which tests their engineering knowledge and understanding over the course of six hours and 110 questions. Once they pass, individuals then receive the title of engineer in training (EIT) and use their newly acclaimed credentials to pursue engineering positions.

After gaining relevant engineer experience, instrumentation engineers prep for the last step of their engineering licensure: passing the Principles and Practice of Engineering exam. The National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) offers the exam in different engineering disciplines, such as mechanical, electrical and control systems. The control systems exam lasts for eight hours and asks the individual 80 questions on the related subject material. After passing the exam, individuals receive the title of professional engineer (PE), which can help them pursue more job opportunities and advance in their career.

Skills

Here are a few skills that instrumentation engineers use throughout their career:

Problem solving

Whether theyre figuring out creative ways to create new medical devices or theyre trying to understand how to implement and achieve company goals, instrumentation engineers use powerful problem-solving skills to help them complete their daily duties. Problem-solving capabilities can also be helpful when trying to determine whats wrong with certain machines or equipment and how to fix them.

Collaboration

Instrumentation engineers often work with a team of engineering professionals or with other departments of a company or business. Thats why they often require the use of powerful collaboration skills in order to communicate important ideas to team members and understand how to listen to advice and take suggestions from others. This can help them perform their job duties more efficiently and find creative solutions to challenges or problems.

Analysis

When running tests on different machines and systems or diagnosing issues and challenges, it can be important for instrumentation engineers to have strong analytical skills to understand the causes for machine malfunctions and the best way to fix them. Using analytical skills often involves strong attention to detail and powerful understanding of engineering principles.

FAQ

Is Instrumentation Engineering a good career?

In the private sector too, Instrumentation engineers are in high demand. A skilled Instrumentation engineer with sound knowledge of operations and machinery controls is in great demand in private sectors. The average salary for Instrumentation engineers in the private sector ranges from INR 3,00,000 to INR 4,00,000.

Which course is best for Instrumentation Engineering?

Top Short term Courses
  • Design Engineer (Instrumentation) Course.
  • Safety Engineer Course.
  • Pumps, Valves and Pipelines.
  • Motors and Drives.
  • Petrochemical Refineries.
  • SCADA and DCS Course.
  • VLSI – Design, Process and Fabrication.
  • Embedded Systems.

How do I become an instrumentation and control engineer?

How to Become an Instrumentation and Control Engineer
  1. Excel at calculus, physics, chemistry, drafting and electronics in high school.
  2. Determine if this field is suited to your interests and traits.
  3. Pursue a bachelor’s degree related to electrical engineering.
  4. Get an entry-level job after graduation.

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