How a Background in Science Will Prepare Me for a Career in Software Requirements

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 “What do you plan to do with your degree?”

It’s a question most everyone hears in college. For some, it’s easier to answer than it is for others. If you majored in a concentration that traditionally qualifies you to apply for graduate school, this question can be particularly difficult. I received my degree in Neuroscience in May ’13, and after deciding to search for a big boy job, that question seemed to be the first thing people wanted to ask. After a few (long) months, I had an answer for them, as well as myself. I was going to move to Austin, Texas to become a Requirements Analyst for ArgonDigital.

“That’s great Will! What does a Requirements Analyst do? Software? But, you studied the biological sciences…how is your degree going to help you with your new job?”

I’ve heard this more than once in the last few months, and to be honest, I’ve asked myself the same questions. It wasn’t until I started learning about the process involved with gathering requirements that I started to find parallels between the type of thinking my education instilled in me, and what my new job would require. The purpose of these series of posts is to explain why I think a background in science will be beneficial in my new career. Over the next few weeks, I will cover three separate areas in which I feel my degree has equipped me with the tools to do this type of work: requirements analysis as a practice in reductionism, communication and relationships, and understanding functionality. Stay tuned!

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