Control Systems Engineer

Test and tweak mechanical systems to make them function properly.
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Quick Stats


Salary Range
$50,000 – $139,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Control Systems Engineers do?

Always want to be in control? That’s a good thing if you’re a Control Systems Engineer. Playing on the concept of control theory, Control Systems Engineers are all about taking systems and making them act in predictable, and thus controllable, ways.

The fusion of what were once distinct areas of engineering—including mechanical, chemical, and electrical—requires a new breed of Engineer. Machines used to run off a single system, but with the invention of a wider range of machines, from those as ordinary as washing machines to those as extraordinary as space shuttles, systems that could multitask and control other systems were soon needed.

As a Control Systems Engineer, you take in both the big picture and the little details at the same time. It’s like working a puzzle, except you design the picture yourself. First, you create the box top image so you know what you’re making, then you focus on snapping all the little puzzle pieces together so they look right.

Your work involves lots of math and science as you design, test, and build various control systems. Days are spent in differing stages of research, from taking notes and running calculations to tinkering with machine parts or chemicals to create a system that helps a machine function properly.

Depending on your interests, you may specialize in one branch of engineering, but modern-day technology also allows Engineers to study many fields. In this area of work, being a Jack-of-all-trades doesn’t mean you’re a master of none.

Should I be a Control Systems Engineer?

You should have a bachelor's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • Also known as: Control Integration Engineer, Controls Engineer, Electro-Mechanical System Control Engineer See More

    How to become a Control Systems Engineer

    We recommend at least a Bachelor's degree. Check out these schools offering Control Systems Engineer-related education!
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