Jobs within the computer industry will increase by approximately 22 percent by 2020, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, attesting to the growing demand for employees with strong computer skills. A degree in computer science technology can lead to a variety of careers in the computer field including research, development and security, working for various organizations including the government.
Computer security jobs require employees to determine causes of events such as hacks, explore vulnerabilities and recover information. Developers create hardware or software systems, sometimes based on examination of the needs of a particular organization, industry or situation, and then install programs. Computer science technology workers may develop new ways to use existing machines and software. Analysts often examine networks and computer systems in place and recommend changes for more efficient or cost-effective use (See Reference 7).
Most jobs in the computer science technology field require a minimum of a bachelor's degree in computer science, although some organizations accept applicants with lesser degrees or those in areas such as business with sufficient computer experience or understanding. Those working in research often need a Ph.D. Besides the degree, computer science technology workers often need certification in a particular language or product. Employers may require continuing education or certification for their workers .
Salary and Hours
Pay within the field varies depending upon the level of expertise and experience, the specific job and the employer. According to the BLS, software developers received a median salary between $87,790 and $94,180 in May 2010. During that same period, those in research earned median salaries of just over $100,000, and systems analysts made $77,740. Such careers are typically full-time positions in businesses, research firms, development organizations and the government. Some employers offer flexible schedules, and some may require overtime work.
The variety of job titles associated with computer science technology careers demonstrates the flexibility within the field. Titles include network security engineer, computer forensic analyst, software developer, computer software engineer, hardware developer or engineer, computer and information research scientist, computer systems analyst, information systems manager, information security analyst, computer network architect and network and computer systems administrator. The computer science label applies to careers within the computer engineering, information technology and information systems domains.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Projections Overview (Chart 6)
- Monster.com: Senior Network Security Engineer/Forensic Analyst
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Software Developer
- JobDescriptions.net: Computer Software Engineer Job Description & Career Opportunities
- Computing Degrees & Careers: Computer Science
- BLS: Computer and Information Research Scientists
- BLS: Computer Systems Analysts
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