Telecommunications Engineering

Telecommunications are a major component of the so-called ICT (Information and Communication Technologies), together with Electrical and Electronics Engineering, and Computer Science. Someone sometimes says that "Telecommunications are something in between Electronics (hardware) and Computer Science (software)". This is false. Telecommunications are about both hardware and software, and integrate them.

Telecommunications (from the Greek prefix tele- (τηλε-) = "far", and the Latin verb communico which comes from cum = "with" and munus = "gift") include all activities related to the transmission and processing of information over distances with the purpose of communication. Wireless and fiber communications are the two mostly used means for transmission of information.

Telecommunications are pervasive, with applications to all sectors of modern society (health, environment, energy production, etc) and everyday objects (cities, buildings, civil infrastructures, cars, etc). The Telecommunications Engineer should have a solid background on electrical circuits, computer science and math, deep knowledge of all disciplines of telecommunications, an attitude towards both analytical and design methodologies.

Telecommunications are a field of application of three major disciplines: Electrical and Electronics Engineering, bridging the physical world with the communication devices; Computer Science, dealing with software languages, content and applications used and processed by communication devices; Advanced Mathematics, which allow formalisation of complex problems, communication systems and networks.

Telecommunications are built on top of these three disciplinary pillars, realising the link between the physical world (which connects remote devices) and information (transmitted, and processed by devices).

Telecommunications Engineering therefore is not a sub-space of other disciplines, rather it makes use of them to realise higher goals; this requires a broader view and a multi-disciplinary approach.