Hey, this is the Daily Overpass! My name
is Eric and I make apps! Now today, I want to ask, “Do you need a degree to be a
software developer?” I was having a chat with someone on
Skype the other day and he was asking, and we’re talking about different things
related and stuff like that. And then, he was asking me questions about what he
should do with this future. Basically was asking me whether or not he should go to
university and get a Computer Science degree because he was really young. He
got out of high school and he was working at different places for the last
few years. And was wondeiring whether or not he should go back to university and get
a Computer Science degree and I really didn’t want to answer that question. He
was asking me what he should do and I said I really can’t. I’m not – I’m more of an
app developer than like a guidance counselor or anything. I really
I don’t feel comfortable saying that and and besides, I had to tell like I don’t
have a Computer Science degree. I have a degree, but it’s not in computer
science theory. So, basically and I know, I may have told you, guys, this already
before, my degree is in History. My degree is in – I majored in History with a
Psychology minor. So, and as you can guess, you know, you get a degree like that – and
from Central Missouri State University, so I moved all over the place while I
was getting my degree. Kept transferring my credits cuz I’ve got out of the
army and my wife was still in the Air Force, so you know, she was still moving
around, so I was going, you know, going with. And getting little jobs here
and there. But when I finally finished, it was from Missouri, so I
graduated from Central Missouri State University with a History Degree and a
minor in Psychology and as you can guess, the employers were just banging down the
door. I had to beat him up with a stick. Everyone wanted to employ me, so you know… It’s obviously, nobody – nobody wanted to
hire me. There was, yeah, I found such a hard time finding a job mostly because
as soon as I got that degree, I moved to the UK. So, I moved to the UK and I
have a degree in History, mainly American History to teach History which
certification didn’t transfer over. Had no money, I needed a job and I just
started applying everywhere. And I’ve told the story before how I somehow
managed to land it to an IT job, which was way over my head. I just had to
read everything I could and get up to speed with things as fast as I could and
try. Basically, it was – it was trying not to lose that first job because I’m –
I felt like for a while there that I was just, you know, I was hanging on the
edge because they started to think maybe we shouldn’t have hired someone
with so little experience. But I was like no I wasn’t gonna let that happen. I
read as much as I could, I got a up to speed as fast I could.And think
about technology is that wherever you get on, you can become the expert in that
thing. You’re not gonna know everything
in the past but nobody does. Like I, you know, nobody needs skills in COBOL
at the moment, but you might need JavaScript or nodejs. Yeah, nobody needs
vb5 at the moment, but they might need something else, whatever –
whatever the current thing is. So, somebody with 30 years experience,
is someone with two years experience, or five years experience or six months
experience. It doesn’t matter. It’s more how much hands-on technology, hands-on you get with a technology that you’re using. So,
for me, I’ve never placed a lot of value in the Computer Science degree
mainly because I don’t have one. And I’ve worked with people before and
who have argued with me about this because they’ve had that degree.
And they’ve gone through and they’ve done all tha.t I mean, I have a degree, but
it just wasn’t related, right? And I talked to somebody else about changing
careers. I was saying, you know, it’s just nobody has ever asked me about my
education, about my degree, when I go for a job, right? It’s on the CV, so maybe, they
use it to weed stuff out. But I’m sure the history thing’s not gonna
really make a big difference.And you know, so maybe, they used to weed
out, but nobody’s ever asked about my, my jobs. That first job was hard to get.
That my first technology job was difficult to get. And I’m really
still surprised I got it now, but after that everything else was based on my
experience and my portfolio after that. So, when I was talking to this guy,
I was saying, “You know, what I would do in this day and age, I would
focus more on your portfolio. If you can get a job in technology now, do it. If
you want to be an app developer, professional app developer and you can
get a job as an app developer, doing your own apps on the side, that would be
fantastic! If you can’t, maybe you have to goa bit lower down. Maybe
become a software engineer or like a software QA type person or work in a
place that does that kind of stuff. And then work your way – work your way up the ranks. But if you know what you want to
do – because I didn’t know what I wanted to do – when I got out of high school, I went to the army, I didn’t know what I wanted to do. When I
got into the army and went into university, I wanted to be a journalist
and then I changed my mind cuz I thought it would be easier to get a job with a
History degree than with a Journalism degree. Dude, I don’t know what I was
thinking. I just not thought it was easy to get it because I see history teachers
all the time. I thought I could get a job doing that. But it’d be harder to get a
job as a journalist. So, I talked my way out of it, you know, I’m like my low self
confidence just pushed me out of the way. So, you know, if I always base on this. If I had two people come to me for a job, as say like an app
developer or anything in technology and I have one guy who just got out
of university with a really, really nice University and really high grades. I got
another guy who ask me and he’s got a whole portfolio of apps. He said
maybe he worked at a few different technology firms. I’ll go with that guy
or a guy, who says, he’s blogged about it. He’s been active in the
industry all cause up. I’d go with that guy. Another thing I like to look at
is where somebody who’s worked in a team, right? Cuz I I’m a big – I’m a firm
believer that you get better as a developer when you work with other
developers. You will – I could think about in my career, I could think
about there’s certain cases where I think before working with this person,
and after working on with this person. I said before, working with Shola after
work with Shola. Before working with Craig after working with Craig. Before working
with Mark, after working with Mark. Because they’re – because they may meet
better developers, because they were really passionate about what they did.
And it wasn’t so much that they were that their code was great although it
was, but it was more like it made me better because I wanted to improve
what I was doing because I didn’t want to embarrass myself around them. So, when
I’m looking for someone as a developer, I’m looking for someone who’s if it’s
someone with no experience at all. I would want somebody who was passionate
about the industry, somebody who’s built up that portfolio, even though nobody’s
told them to, even though – I think, the thing that I hate the most when I’m
interviewing someone, when I’m hiring someone is if I ask about something, they
say, “I really wanted to do that, but my Boss wouldn’t let me.” I said, “Well, you
know wha, you could have done it anyway.” Development tools are cheap. They’re – I can remember wanting to
buy Visual Basic 5 and it was like a thousand pounds to get a license or
six hundred pounds or something like that, which was way outside my budget. So,
I was like, I would try to stay late after work, so I could work on this kind
of stuff on my own. And now, everything is free and there’s no excuse
to not know this kind of stuff. So anyway, that’s just my opinion.
What do you, guys, think you? You disagree with that? Do you think there’s value in
a Computer Science degree in this day and age? Do you think you’ll stay by any degree at all? So anyway, that’s a – just what I think, you
know, I could be wrong. Yeah, and that’s one of the reasons why I
didn’t want to give the advice on it, because I don’t want to be responsible
for dissuading someone from doing something that could maybe benefit them
in the future. But for me, it’s really had no benefit. Anyway, that’s it for today.
I’ll talk to you tomorrow.

Do You Need a Degree to Be a Software Developer?

17 thoughts on “Do You Need a Degree to Be a Software Developer?

  • February 15, 2018 at 4:40 pm

    The Companies still in 2018 ask for a major science degree, from a reputed college or university.. For a software developer job. There is no way this going to change, still it's about those useless degree papers unfortunately.

  • February 15, 2018 at 5:01 pm

    I dropped out of college before getting my degree 😛

  • February 15, 2018 at 5:13 pm

    If I were looking at two job candidates and everything was equal except one had a degree, that might make the difference, but I think whether you have a degree or not you're going to have to demonstrate your work, and the scrappy punk with little education but who loves to code and stays up all night doing it and has real world experience might be more capable than the guy or girl with the expensive paper. I would hire passion and initiative and resourcefulness before a degree. And thankfully many job ads when they mention the degree say something like "… or equivalent work experience."

  • February 15, 2018 at 7:42 pm


  • February 15, 2018 at 7:42 pm

    No. Fake into your first few jobs then you’re in the club.
    Oh… and be clever

  • February 15, 2018 at 7:49 pm

    Programming is almost a by product. Experience in Partnering and working with unfamiliar technologies is paramount.

  • February 15, 2018 at 10:05 pm

    haha a history degree

  • February 15, 2018 at 10:11 pm

    So, I'm believing you got into app development AFTER you worked with the IT guys? Am I correct? If not, could you give me the full story?

  • February 15, 2018 at 10:41 pm

    could you please check out my app — https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=github.wallbiq & how can I market it, improve it; any suggestion would be appreciated.

  • February 15, 2018 at 11:04 pm

    I think that degrees are more important for people with no work record or for use with big companies. Anyone taking the degree route should plan on taking a class / certification every year or two afterword. The technology moves so fast that what you learned a few years ago no longer applies.

    When I was in college we took a field trip to see a computer through a glass window. Then we went back to class to put pencil marks on cards that represented our programs code – i.e. punch cards. The first computer I worked on had "hand wound core memory". (tiny magnetic donuts with wire wrapped around them representing one bit.) That was 1972 . . . . . .

  • February 16, 2018 at 1:37 am

    Hey Eric, may b you can do a video on all the hardware and software you use like i use FS Photo resize tool for resizing my images, Express VPN, MakeAppIcon software, BB Flashback screen recorder. u use any voice assistant as of now?

  • February 16, 2018 at 5:33 am

    Hey Eric. I agree even I am still a history student. 18 yrs old very passionate to be a app developer. Created 5 games so far. No one needs a degree to be an app developer. Anyone can become a developer

  • February 16, 2018 at 7:43 am

    Degree is just the key to enter the job

  • February 18, 2018 at 10:56 pm

    I tried to complete my education at 3 universities but I couldn't because of the war in Syria and Iraq now I live now in Turkey i made my first app its an android game it took me around 9 months to complete it but it was a great learning project throw it I learned to programme and how to work with 3d animations particle systems UI elements and texters but I didn't make any money from it currently I am learning android development, if you Eric or anyone of you guys read my comment and have some free time to just chek out my game and give me any advice to put me in the right trak I tried to geet some feed back from other expert developers but I didnt sucsed ,Thank yu very much in advance
    the game name is: Viking adventure : epic battles
    google play store link:

  • February 20, 2018 at 3:27 pm

    why did you add snapchat logo

  • July 20, 2018 at 2:56 pm

    Nice story. I have psycholgy major with philosophy minor from u of michigan. Total waste of 4 years, never used it, wish i had pursued computed science and also not have spent 3 years making app whose only liked feature seems to be that it can be uninstalled.

  • November 19, 2018 at 6:32 am

    It is going to be A LOT harder for someone without ANY degree to get a job as a software engineer than someone with an unrelated degree. If you are in a position to go to college, then go.


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