Software Development

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Ireland is one of the world’s largest exporters of software. Courses in software development are noteworthy for producing graduates with excellent career prospects – both in Ireland and abroad.


Software Development degrees are available from numerous institutes of technology and from NUI Maynooth (Computer Science & Software Engineering). These courses introduce students to computer programming – effectively the ‘language’ used to create all software. In addition, students study mathematics for computing, before moving on to more complex areas as the degree progresses, such as software testing, computer system/software design, and artificial intelligence.

Some degrees enable students to focus on a particular area of software; for instance, Athlone IT’s Software Design – Web Development (four years’ duration) provides perfect preparation for a career as a web designer; while Cork IT’s Software Development & Computer Networking course (also of four years’ duration) targets the telecommunications and computer networking industries.

Software-related Level 5 and Level 6 certificates are available from a range of PLC colleges around the country. Some focus on a particular area of software development, such as Plunket College, which concentrates on e-business; while St John’s Central College’s programme (Cloud Computing Telecommunications) prepares students for a career in the emerging field of cloud computing – an area of IT that many software companies are now eager to secure their place in.

The Work

Software programmers, designers, and engineers are at the cutting edge of the information technology sector. While their roles may initially involve system testing and validation, with experience they may move on to the modification and development of existing software as well as the creation of new computer programmes that enable the functioning of everything from a network of PCs to a factory of industrial robots. Additional tasks may include customer and client consultation, analysing design feasibility, and compiling user manuals.

Alternative career paths for graduates of Software Development courses are available in sectors such as e-learning, e-business, website development, mobile applications, and interactive TV and DVD technology.

Did you know?

Alan Turing’s famous 1950 Turing Test measures a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behaviour. A talented individual, Turing also worked as a code-breaker with the Allies during World War Two.

Further Resources

Irish Software Innovation Network

Irish Developer Network

InfoWorld is a national database of universities, colleges, institutes and providers of third level and PLC courses in Ireland. We operate a national search database of courses at certificate, diploma and degree level as well as providing information about career paths and directions.
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