If you wish to enter the growing field of artificial intelligence, consider a career as an AI engineer. Learn more about this occupation and how a computer science degree from Fairfax University of America can help you become an AI engineer. We take a student-centered approach to higher education at our Virginia campus near Washington, D.C., giving students from diverse backgrounds and with different needs the flexibility to pursue their studies.
To understand what an AI engineer does, you must first grasp artificial intelligence (AI). AI is a broad term for the systems and machines that use human-like aptitude to conduct tasks and solve problems. Like people, AI can learn from past mistakes by collecting data to improve its abilities with future assignments.
AI can create an adverse reaction from some people, particularly those who fear new technology. Additionally, some science fiction novels and films have spread the false notion that AI will replace humans. While AI experiments have produced incredibly life-like robots, the field of study is more concerned with advancing data analysis and super-powered thinking to improve human efforts.
People often use the phrase machine learning alongside AI, but the two terms are slightly different. Machine learning is essentially applied AI—it empowers computers to learn from experience. Machine learning specialists use data and models to teach systems this skill.
AI engineers play an integral role in industries using artificial intelligence to augment operations. Their primary responsibility is to design new AI applications and systems to boost decision making, efficiency, performance, and ultimately revenue at organizations. While tasks will differ depending on the specific position, daily duties for most AI engineers include:
Once you develop competency in these areas, you will be able to perform many jobs related to AI and machine learning. Most positions in this field involve similar responsibilities. AI touches many industries, meaning engineers can find work in healthcare, manufacturing, entertainment, transportation, and technology, among other sectors.
Research indicates a career in AI engineer can be financially rewarding. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary for computer and technology professions is approximately $97,430. Additionally, employment in these jobs is projected to grow 13% through 2030, faster than the average for all occupations. Whether you want to enter the field or are seeking to advance your career, the following steps can help you find a job as an AI engineer:
To become an AI engineer, you need theoretical knowledge and practical ability with the various skills associated with the job, including programming, software development, data science, and machine learning. You also must have a firm understanding of different techniques used in testing, and how agile processes function within technology businesses. You will need around five to 10 years of experience in AI jobs to gain this level of proficiency.
As with any other job, you will need transferrable skills to solve problems and interact with co-workers, including effective communication, critical thinking, and creativity.
Technological developments are expanding job opportunities in AI, but they also are increasing competitiveness. Having extra AI credentials can distinguish you from other candidates. Numerous organizations offer AI certification programs, including universities and big tech companies such as IBM.
Without a bachelor’s degree in a related field, it is difficult to gain the skills needed to become an AI engineer. You can acquire multiple degrees in mathematics, statistics, engineering, or physics to pursue this career path, but a computer science degree typically is the easier route to an AI engineering position. To access more advanced opportunities and higher-paying salaries, consider earning a master’s degree in computer science or a similar area.
The School of Computer and Information Systems at Fairfax University of America offers several programs for people looking to become AI engineers. You can enroll in the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science program to explore different opportunities within the field, or you can concentrate your studies by participating in the Master of Science in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning program. Both programs enable students to become transformative leaders and experience personal and professional growth in AI positions and other fields.
Located in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area in Virginia, Fairfax University of America is a non-profit academic institution dedicated to setting a new standard in higher education. You can complete an application or request information today to learn more about our computer and information systems programs.