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What Are the Different Types of Robotics Jobs?

Robots working on an automobile assembly line.
Police and military forces employ specialists who operate robots that can be used to defuse bombs or carry weapons.
Robotics engineers design and oversee the building of robots.
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  • Written By: L.K. Blackburn
  • Edited By: Allegra J. Lingo
  • Last Modified Date: 30 September 2014
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Different types of robotics jobs are available in research science, academic teaching, professional design, software development, and industrial operation. Robots are used everyday in manufacturing factories throughout the world to make a variety of products. Industrial robots need to be built, maintained, and controlled. Robotics jobs are available in each of these functions. Research in robotics and artificial intelligence is conducted by scientists and engineers employed at universities and within in the private sector.

It is usually necessary to hold a college level degree before obtaining a robotics job. The level of education needed varies based upon the type of position. Many robotics jobs require a graduate school level of education, which could include the need for a doctorate degree in computer engineering or a related field.

Robots have been used in industrial operations for many decades, and are often utilized in assembly line production of items such as cars, heavy machinery, and computer equipment. While the robots complete the physical labor in a factory, robotics jobs are needed to ensure the machines are operating safely and correctly. Robots in factories run around the clock, so robotics operators work in shifts so someone is always present to manage their operation. Panel operators, technicians, and software control specialists are all responsible for work completed by factory robots.

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Engineers and robotics software developers are employed by industrial companies to design the equipment and programs that operate the machines. Individuals hired for these positions are trained in computer and electrical engineering. They produce robot design schematics and write the code that manages the basic functions of the robot to complete its tasks.

Innovation in robotics is achieved by academic and private research scientists. After completing an undergraduate program, individuals who seek robotics jobs can choose to complete a doctorate program that is focused on robotics research. During this time, they take classes and work towards submitting a thesis project. Robotics laboratories employ students and research assistants in internship level work to complete experiments.

As robotics knowledge increases and robot use becomes more ubiquitous among industries, university programs that specialize in robotics education are being created. These programs train the next generation of robotics scientists, engineers, and programmers. Robotics jobs in universities are available for professors and researchers. Software developers working at university robotics laboratories focus on creating control programs that utilize concepts of artificial intelligence to allow decision making and fine tune motor operations.

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KoiwiGal
Post 3

@umbra21 - It's a pretty exciting field at the moment so it wouldn't surprise me if a lot of people ended up going into it. I'm looking forward to seeing what kinds of jobs in robotics open up because I'm sure no one could have predicted what would happen with computers a few decades ago. And we are at that edge of exciting developments at the moment with robotics as well.

umbra21
Post 2

@bythewell - But using a computer and truly being "in computers" are two different things. Computers are designed so that the average worker can use them with minimal training, and I imagine the day will come when there are a lot of robots around doing jobs like that as well.

But if you really work in computers, I imagine someone who has a degree in making or fixing software or hardware, and does nothing except that kind of work. Most IT jobs do require a college degree and robotics would be even more complicated because robots are far more diverse than computer systems (and, of course, include computer systems in most cases these days).

Working with robots is likely to be no different from any other job in industry. A lot of people do it already. But robotic jobs are for specialists and they always will be.

bythewell
Post 1

It will be interesting to see if the knowledge needed to work with robotics ends up becoming more or less specialized. If robotics become part of everyday life, they will probably end up becoming more simple to fix as well. You don't exactly need a degree to become the guy who fixes the computers at the local store if you know how to turn them off and on again at the switch.

And millions of people work with computers every day who never got a college degree. I can definitely imagine construction jobs, for example ending up as being mostly about caring for the robots rather than about human labor, but I don't think they would demand a degree before you could start.

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