There are many ways you can learn software testing and engineering skills. You can earn a degree in computer science, attend a coding bootcamp, or take free online courses to develop your skills in software testing. You can also get valuable experience by working as an apprentice at a tech company.
This article is a comprehensive guide to software testing apprenticeships. We tell you about the tasks and responsibilities associated with these programs as well as the salaries. We also bring you the best apprenticeship in software testing available at the time of writing.
What Is a Software Testing Apprenticeship?
Apprentice software testers learn how to design and prepare test plans and perform software testing to ensure that software is fully operational. Students in a software testing apprenticeship gain a good understanding of software development practices and the software lifecycle. During an apprenticeship, you will develop and execute test plans, conduct software testing, in addition to documenting and reporting your findings.
What Does a Software Testing Apprentice Do?
As a software testing apprentice, you will be involved in quality assurance. It’s your job to test software created by developers to ensure that any bugs or issues are addressed before it’s released to users. You will use both automated and manual testing techniques.
Software testers are primarily responsible for ensuring that software functions according to plan. To ensure that software is fit for its purpose, testers design and prepare test plans and conduct software testing as appropriate. Test results are documented and reported.
Most development projects would not be possible without the help of software testers. End-users no longer have to deal with buggy software or applications that simply don’t work, which greatly reduces requests for tech support from frustrated customers.
Software Testing Apprenticeship Salary
According to ZipRecruiter, software engineering apprentices earn an average salary of $83,408 per year. In comparison with many other apprenticeships in different fields, this is quite a high salary. The apprentice is usually paid hourly for the duration of the apprenticeship.
Software Testing Apprenticeship Requirements
Types of Software Testing Apprenticeships
Apprenticeships in a field you’re interested in will help you learn and grow while you build networks within the industry. There are quite a few departments you can choose from, so pick the one you enjoy the most. Listed below are some common types of apprenticeships for software engineers and testers.
Cyber Security Analyst
A cyber security apprentice works for a cyber security company to learn more about the profession and gain the necessary skills to succeed at the job. Cyber security apprentices learn how to secure systems from threats, risks, and vulnerabilities.
Working knowledge of cyber security procedures can be an excellent addition to any software tester’s arsenal. Many testing procedures focus on improving software security and having hands-on experience in the field can be beneficial.
Software developers identify and report any issues impeding the development process and suggest possible solutions. They ensure that the software products accurately reflect customer expectations and make sure to meet functional and non-functional requirements.
App development is directly related to software testing, as a developer will have full access to the software system from the beginning. App developers understand the software better than most and an app developer’s insights offer invaluable help when testing software.
Computer Systems Analyst
The purpose of a computer systems analyst is to analyze an organization’s current computer systems and procedures and then develop solutions that will help the organization function more efficiently and effectively. The work of a computer systems analyst goes hand-in-hand with software testing. They ensure that all of the software and hardware are fully operational.
During penetration testing, computer systems and networks deal with simulated attacks. Security vulnerabilities and weaknesses are identified via these tests before malicious hackers can exploit them. Just like cyber security specialists, penetration testers are excellent at checking software for weaknesses and imperfections.
Software Testing Apprenticeship Jobs
With most apprenticeship programs, you begin your career journey the moment you walk through the door. With the guidance and support of your supervisor, your apprenticeship plan will outline the on-the-job experiences you will receive, as well as the education you will receive to ensure your professional growth.
As part of this apprenticeship job with Lockheed Martin, you will be mentored by industry experts. They will encourage you to grow your skills in computer systems, hardware, software, and networking.
As an apprentice, you will assist in setting up and maintaining integrated software environments for developing, integrating, testing, and deploying mission-critical military systems in a lab setting.
In this position, you will lead the development of environments that enable anti-submarine warfare defense systems. Successful candidates will be part of a team that is currently developing, delivering, and operating integrated systems for military users around the world.
IBM and its clients depend on the success of software development, whether it is done internally or for clients. You will work with IBM’s leading minds to build solutions that you can be proud of using the latest software development tools, techniques, and approaches.
This program is sanctioned by the Department of Labor (DOL) and lasts approximately one year. As a result of completing a registered apprenticeship program, graduates receive a nationally recognized credential.
To ensure you are developing the skills necessary for the job, you will be required to complete specific learning hours and on-the-job training outlined during your apprenticeship. IBM expects most apprentices to complete their learning within 12 months, but you will be able to learn at your own pace. You can apply to full-time roles at IBM once you complete the apprentice program and receive your certificate.
For individuals with non-traditional technical backgrounds, this six-month apprenticeship program provides access to entry-level software engineering positions at Asana. With a strong emphasis on mentoring and feedback, this program provides individuals with experience in building, testing, and implementing software projects.
Implementing subtle interactions, testing infrastructure, or designing data models are just a few projects you may work on. Asana’s culture of transparency and distributed responsibility will allow you to learn how the business operates and how decisions are made.
The successful candidate for this position will work as an apprentice engineer and become part of Peraton’s Cyber Intelligence Systems Business Unit. The apprenticeship is focused on turning candidates into market leaders that drive innovation through creativity, investment, and teamwork to solve challenging problems.
The software engineer apprenticeship involves joining a product team and participating in software design, software development, testing, and product lifecycle tasks for a product that company users will enjoy.
Software engineer apprentices work in a team with more experienced engineers, building and growing their skills as they deliver production-quality code. This role can be converted to a permanent position after approximately 90 days.
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How to Get a Software Testing Apprenticeship
The job of a software tester is to ensure that the software is functioning as intended. Your role as a tester involves:
- Developing test plans
- Conducting testing to ensure that software meets its purpose
- Documenting and reporting your results
A great way to advance your software tester skills is by joining an apprenticeship. You will gain an understanding of software testing types, procedures, techniques, and terms. You will also master important software testing tools.
Furthermore, an apprenticeship experience will give you a good understanding of the software development lifecycle and software development practices so that you can become a software tester or test analyst.
Most apprenticeships require the candidates to have existing experience in software engineering. There are many ways you can advance your skills and test knowledge without attending a four-year university. Below are some of the ways you can learn software testing before attending an apprenticeship.
It’s a great idea to attend a bootcamp if you want to learn a skill as fast as possible. A software testing bootcamp usually does not require you to give up your job because you can study part-time. You can maintain job security while growing professionally with flexible schedules and online learning.
A software testing bootcamp consists of intensive lessons that focus on the crucial skills needed for this career, following proven and rigorous curricula. In addition, the best software testing bootcamps grant you access to extensive hiring networks that will help you land a job in the industry quickly. They also offer career services that will thoroughly prepare you for the job search and for your professional life.
Internships differ slightly from apprenticeships. Internships give you a taste of the industry you are considering joining. They are meant for students or recent graduates and many of them are not paid. Apprenticeships, on the other hand, are full-time programs that provide on-the-job training. Apprentices are always paid.
There are several benefits to doing a software engineering internship. Internships allow college students to gain work experience while earning college credits. Employers highly value the practical experience that a software testing internship can provide. Companies often use internships as a way to recruit talent, acting as a “long interview” for full-time positions.
A software testing internship can give an entry-level software tester essential skills and work experience. The internship program also offers interns a slew of opportunities to network with industry veterans and gain valuable knowledge.
Many trade schools now offer software engineering programs, though these learning centers have been traditionally associated with trades like construction and auto repair careers. They are often more comprehensive than your average coding bootcamp, ranging from one year to two years in length.
Programs at trade schools that teach software engineering focus on the design and implementation of software systems and programs. The coursework is usually more focused on programming languages and product design than computer science programs.
Upon completing a trade school program, a software engineer or tester receives a certificate or degree as proof of completion. An associate degree from a trade school can propel an entry-level tester’s credentials by a large amount!
Vocational training refers to instructional programs or courses that focus on the technical skills required for a particular job function or trade. Udemy, Coursera, Pluralsight, and edX offer software testing training programs ranging from beginner to advanced levels. Several Udemy sales happen each month and some courses cost only $10.
Students can access these courses online from anywhere in the world. Vocational training classes and courses are an excellent way to get your foot in the door of the software testing industry. Additionally, these courses offer certificates upon completion of the program. These certificates are a great way to show off your software testing expertise.
Is a Software Testing Apprenticeship Worth It?
Apprentices in the software testing field have a lot of advantages. If you are fresh out of school or a coding bootcamp and aren’t ready to enter the workforce right away, an apprenticeship could be an excellent option.
A software testing apprenticeship can be the ideal venue to receive the training you need to become a quality assurance (QA) engineer or software tester. You will learn everything you need to launch a career in this competitive industry while getting paid. In addition, you will make valuable connections and start growing your industry network.
Some of the largest tech companies offer apprenticeship programs, including Google, Airbnb, and LinkedIn. Many apprentices at these companies eventually become full-time employees. If a career in software testing sounds like a good idea to you, we recommend you send your application for one of the programs on this list today!
Software Testing Apprenticeship FAQ
Learning software testing on your own is possible through online tutorials and other materials available for free on the web. However, this is a complex field and any student would benefit from the structure provided by a certificate program, bootcamp, or college degree.
You need some professional qualifications to work as a QA tester. Most QA analysts have a bachelor’s degree either in computer science or computer programming. Other relevant qualifications include knowledge of basic concepts in software testing and an understanding of the tools used to test software.
Software testing involves analyzing a software program to determine its efficiency and errors and evaluating its features. Software development refers to how the software program is developed. It is simply the process of writing computer code and maintaining it.
Software quality assurance (SQA) does not require advanced programming skills. While you will need to learn some coding, it won’t be as intensive as learning to code for a web or software development job. Web development training typically takes between 12 to 26 weeks, while SQA testing training typically takes six to ten weeks.
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