Computer science is the “study of the principles and use of computers”. There are several occupations in computer and information technology. The outlook for employment in this field is projected to have a higher than average growth rate. Jobs are expected to grow over the 10-year period from 2014 to 2024 by 12%. Computer Science Majors rank among the “30 Best Paying College Majors” in 2016. The following jobs are entry-level occupations within the computer science field.
1. Computer Programmers
A computer programmer generally earns a bachelor's degree with a major in information technology or computer science. As of 2016 they are responsible for writing code as well as testing code. The code is what software programs and applications use as instructions. The code enables computers to read and follow these instructions. A computer programmer can detect bugs in and make changes to programs as needed.
2. Computer Systems Analyst
This is an occupation that requires strong communication skills. A computer systems analyst analyzes computer systems for organizations and recommend solutions to help keep the system running more smoothly. The solutions will include software and hardware upgrades that allow better operation of the system. They will need to keep up to date on technological trends and research in the field. The level of education for entry in this field is a bachelor's degree.
3. Software Developer
Software developers are one of the top ten Computer Science Majors. A bachelor's degree is typically needed to enter this field. This occupation includes developing applications for computers that aid people in performing certain tasks. Some software developers create the fundamental systems responsible for running computers or the systems that control the networks.
4. Web Developers
An associate's degree is required for web developers. They are responsible for ensuring that web pages may be accessed and downloaded. The needs of people who surf the web are analyzed by web developers. They use search engine optimization (SEO) techniques to get maximum page views and traffic to the sites. Web pages and sites are also designed by web developers. Web development also includes designing and creating sites. They must also make certain the site can handle a lot of traffic and that it loads quickly.
5. Information Security Analysts
With the increase in cyber attacks, this occupation is extremely important to computer science. Many people do most of their business online including banking. This means their personal information must be protected. Businesses and organizations have personal and sensitive information on their networks that must be protected. An information security analyst helps individuals and businesses by creating systems that prevent breaches as well as investigating them after they occur. There will continue to be a demand for this occupation as the number of cyber attacks and breaches increase and continue to be a threat. A bachelor's degree as well as experience in a similar occupation is generally desired for this position.
6. Computer Support Specialist
Most computer support specialist occupations require an associate's degree. Computer Science Majors such as network support specialists require a bachelor's degree. A computer support specialist will check network systems to ensure they are working correctly. They also provide maintenance on the networks. Because organizations rely on network systems, maintenance to prevent problems is very important. The specialists may also work in positions that require them to provide support for businesses that purchase items from their company. Continuing education is important for keeping up with advances in technology.
7. Database Administrators
Database administrators are required to have a bachelor's degree in computer science or an associate's degree in database administration. Administrators are responsible for ensuring that only authorized users have access to data. They also are responsible for making sure that servers are operating efficiently to provide access promptly. They may also work with other IT (Information Technology) professionals to safeguard confidential business data. This can include shipping information for customers as well as financial data. This position requires a bachelor's degree.
According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers/Winter 2016 Salary Survey, graduates with bachelor's degrees in computer sciences are second only to graduates with bachelor's degrees in engineering. Occupations in this field have an average annual starting salary of $61,321.
By Andre Bradley