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Why Study Computer Science?

No one will argue that computers are as important as ever in the business world, or even more important now than ever.  But computer science?  Didn’t that go out with 486 processors?  Isn’t that limited to people running around in white lab coats, building microchips?

Actually, computer science is alive and well.  A degree in this field can open up a number of job prospects for a candidate new to the IT (Information Technology) industry, as well as those who have years of experience or who are changing jobs within IT.  In this article, we’ll discuss who uses computer science, what the average computer science education covers, and whether computer science graduates are getting hired.  Finally, we’ll look at some of the jobs available to those who have studied computer science.

Who Uses Computer Science?

The easiest answer to this question is “everybody”.  You are benefiting from computer science as you read this article, especially if you are reading it over the Internet.  We all use computers; we all benefit from the improvements in them; we all use computer science, in one way or another.  Who specifically in the business world uses computer science?  As we discussed, it’s not just the people in lab coats that develop new technology.  Computer science is the foundation for every IT-related degree, from networking to system design.  Even web developers, who may not work with computers in the same way as a hardware or software engineer, should know some computer science to ensure that their web pages will work properly on different systems.

What Will I Learn When I’m Studying Computer Science?

A good degree in computer science should cover the following areas:

  • Networking principles and basic administration
  • Software development
  • Database management and administration
  • Computer programming (at least one, and often several, languages are taught)
  • System design and architecture
  • Computer architecture
  • Fundamentals of common operating systems

Of course, it is possible to get a degree in computer science that is broad, like the skills outline above.   Or you can study for one that is more specialized, focusing in areas like networking or computer programming.  Degrees in this field range from a two-year associate’s to a master’s and beyond.  (For this article’s purposes, we’ll be focusing on bachelor’s degrees.)

Are Computer Science Grads Getting Hired?

Yes.  A bachelor’s in computer science is a prerequisite to many of the IT jobs listed below.  Even if a degree is not absolutely required, it demonstrates seriousness and commitment to a job.  In other words, it can boost your chances of being hired.

What Jobs Are Available to People With Degrees in Computer Science?

  • Software Developer: Developing new programs to run on computer systems.
  • Senior Software Engineer: Taking a leadership role in designing new software.
  • Programmer Analyst: Developing new software by writing, reviewing, and modifying the programs.
  • IT Manager: Supervising an IT Department in a company.
  • IT Project Manager: Overseeing the new technology projects in the IT Department.
  • System Engineer in IT: Analyzing how complex IT systems should be designed and implemented.
  • System Engineer in Networking: Analyzing how computer networks should be designed and built.
  • IT Consultant: Assisting a business or other entity to meet their technology needs.
  • Business Analyst, Specializing in IT: Guiding a company to meet their business goals by means of IT.
  • Software Architect: Designing the structure of new software applications.
  • Web Developer: Designing and building new webpages, especially the technical aspects.

So as you can see, there are plenty of jobs available for graduates of a computer science course.  As the technology field continues to grow, there is expected to be a corresponding demand for skilled, educated workers.