How to Become a Robotics Engineer
Robotics Engineer Careers & Degrees

The majority of people have merely grown up with fantasies about the possibility of robots doing humanity’s bidding.

With the creativity and engineering concepts from Robotics Engineers, this fantasy has become a reality in a handful of industries such as in the manufacturing sector.

Robotics development is a specialty in engineering that focuses on designing and creating androids that are used to replace functions typically performed by humans.

Robots are created for different purposes; Robotics Engineers use their skills to plan and develop androids for specific functions related to the industry they will be used in.

Robotics Engineers use a combination of engineering concepts to design, create and maintain robotic machines.

Candidates who want to become a Robotics Engineer must understand and be able to apply principles on engineering, technology, electronics and computer systems in order to create these special machines.

Education Requirements to Become a Robotics Engineer

Students who have strong skills in mathematics and the sciences and wish to become a Robotics Engineer need a minimum of a Bachelor’s degree in order to find employment in this niche.

There are only a handful of colleges and universities that offer a specialized Robotics engineering program.

Therefore candidates can choose a school that will provide them with this specific degree.
For candidates who want to become a Robotics Engineer but want to join a program that doesn’t offer this specialized degree will need to join a program that provides them with the necessary skills and knowledge that fulfills the educational requirement for this profession.

This profession draws from a handful of engineering specialties.

Therefore students can choose from many engineering subspecialties.

If a student wants to attend an educational institution that doesn’t provide a Robotics Engineer degree, they can choose from the following engineering specialties in order to become a Robotics Engineer:

  • Electrical Engineering
  • Electronic Engineering
  • Mechanical Manufacturing
  • Industrial Engineering
  • Civil Engineering

Candidates need to grasp a variety of skills during their undergraduate career and be able to apply and use them in order to be competitive in this field.

Students will learn how to apply engineering principles, techniques and procedures.

Students must also know how to use circuit boards, electronic equipment, hydraulics, microprocessors as well as computer applications and programming techniques.

Students who do not enter a specialized Robotics Engineering program will benefit from taking classes in laboratory and design, science, math and computers.

Robotics Engineer Job Description

Robotics Engineers use their expertise in mathematics, science and engineering in order to plan, develop and maintain robots.

Robotics Engineers must be able to create these machines with a lot in mind during the planning phase.

They must be able to consider and follow safety protocol.

They are responsible for planning a machine that is able to perform their work efficiently but that is also safe to use.

In addition, Robotics Engineers have to plan an android with a budget in mind.

Robotics Engineers must also be able to create a layout that would lead to an android that is affordable for consumers and easy to maintain.

Because robotic machines need to be created for a variety of purposes, Robotics Engineers must be able to determine the type of characteristics an android must have during the planning phase.

These professionals plan and develop robotics for many industries.

Some typical industries that Robotics Engineers plan and develop include the following list

  • Aerospace
  • Nuclear
  • Auto
  • Mining
  • Agriculture
  • Space
  • Power plant maintenance
  • Medicine
  • Military

Robotics Engineer Salary and Career Path

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that Engineers make some of the highest wages amongst professionals with a Bachelor’s degree.

The BLS groups Robotics Engineers under a general engineering category and estimates a national starting salary at approximately $60,000 per year.

The salary range for these professionals is approximately $49,000 to $132,000 per year depending on location and specialty.

The projected growth for this specialty is expected to be 7% to 13% through the year 2018.

The top hiring industries that seek Robotics Engineers include the manufacturing, scientific and technical sectors although there are many industries that require robotic machines in order to run their business more efficiently.

The below information is based on the 2019 BLS national averages.
  • Annually
  • Monthly
  • Hourly

National Average Salary


Average Salary by State

StateAvg. Annual Salary
District of Columbia$122,330
New Hampshire$110,670
New Jersey$119,430
New Mexico$117,190
New York$106,360
North Carolina$98,680
North Dakota$97,640
Rhode Island$106,850
South Carolina$89,200
South Dakota$87,480
Vermont- NA -
West Virginia$92,160
Puerto Rico$63,400

The top earning state in the field is District of Columbia, where the average salary is $122,330.

These are the top 5 earning states in the field:

District of Columbia - $122,330
New Jersey - $119,430
New Mexico - $117,190
California - $117,070
Washington - $115,990
* Salary information based on the May 2019 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Electrical Engineers, OCC Code 17-2071, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

QuestionWhat is a robotics engineer?

Robotics engineers create robots and systems that are able to perform a variety of complex actions.

They design robots that perform many tasks, especially in the manufacturing industry, thus making the job of the workers safer, easier and more efficient.

Most of the robots are created for the automotive industry and are used to assemble vehicles.

Robots are also used in the medical field; some of the tasks that can be performed by medical robots include surgery assistance, medical transportation or disinfection.

Sometimes robots may also be used by physicians to help them examine and treat patients in remote locations.

Rehabilitation robots can be programmed to help people recover from injuries or surgery and to improve their strength, coordination and overall quality of life.

Creating a robot is a difficult task that requires a lot of technical skills and scientific knowledge.

Robotics engineers start by researching the task that the robot is meant to complete and finding the best way to build the robots.

Afterward, they design the robots and the processes that make the robot run correctly and some also design the machines that assemble the robots.

QuestionHow much does a robotics engineer make?

How much a robotics engineer makes depends on a wide range of factors, including their level of experience, the region, the local economy, and the employer.

Wages usually start at a little over $50,000 a year and can go up to over $180,000 a year.

QuestionHow much does it cost to become a robotics engineer?

The robotics manufacturing field requires knowledge from a variety of engineering disciplines.

Robotics engineers usually hold a degree in electrical, industrial, electronic, manufacturing, or mechanical engineering.

Tuition costs vary widely, depending on the college and the program you choose.

Bachelor’s degree programs in mechanical or electrical engineering cost, on average, around $42,000 a year.

Holding a master’s degree in engineering can get you better job prospects and will cost you, on average, an additional $30,000-$40,000.

QuestionWhat is the demand for robotics engineers?

Nowadays, robots are crucial in the manufacturing industry because they perform tasks that are sometimes too difficult or too dangerous for humans to perform, thus making the work environment safer and easier.

Robots are used frequently in the manufacturing industry but are also used in other industries, such as medicine.

As more tasks are delegated to robots, the demand for these types of machines will grow and this will increase the demand for engineers specialized in robotics.

QuestionHow long does it take to become a robotics engineer?

The answer to this question depends on the job you are targeting.

Robotics engineers need at least a bachelor’s degree in a related engineering field, such as mechanical, electrical or industrial engineering.

Most bachelor’s degree programs can be completed in approximately four years.

Some universities and colleges offer intensive five-years programs that lead to both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree.

While a bachelor’s degree may be enough for entry-level employment in robotics engineering, some positions may also require a master’s degree or a Ph.D. and several years of experience in the field.

A master’s degree will usually take you around 2 years of studying, while a Ph.D. can be earned in about 3-5 years.

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