I went to university for a degree in Computer Science. However, what I do throughout my day-to-day seems an awful lot like software engineering. However, in Canada, “Engineer” is a protected term. I can’t legally call myself a software engineer, even if that’s effectively what I’m doing.
In school, it seemed like all the difference in the world whether or not you were in the faculty of Computer Science or that of Engineering. My assumptions were that software engineers would get paid more for doing the same work. This turned out not to be the case.
Now that I’m in the industry, I see that software engineers do in fact get paid a little more, but for different work. Software Engineers tend to work for large companies you would describe as “firms” and write more unit tests than I do. That’s OK, since I’m pretty happy with where I’ve ended up.
As professionals, we work together regardless of our backgrounds, whether we went to school for a degree, a diploma, or didn’t go to school at all. As long as we share the same goals – no matter what they are – we can accomplish really awesome stuff. If you’re fretting over the differences, don’t worry. After you’re done school, it all seems rather, well, academic.