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What Can You Do With a Computer Science Degree?

What Can You Do With a Computer Science Degree? main image

If you’ve studied computer scienceyou will have gained many technical and non-technical skills which are highly valued by employers, from leadership to programming.  The increasing scope of computer science means you have plenty of choice in a wide variety of highly specialized areas. 

Computer technologies are integral to modern life, so you’re likely to find your computer science skills in high demand across many different industries. These include financial organizations, management consultancy firms, software houses, communications companies, data warehouses, multinational companies, governmental agencies, universities and hospitals. 

As always, it’s extremely beneficial to have completed relevant work experience. You should also consider compiling a portfolio of your own independent projects outside of your degree, which could be in the form of programming, moderating online or even building an app. This will demonstrate to employers your interest in the subject and your problem-solving skills, creativity and initiative.

Read on to discover some careers where your computer science degree would be a perfect fit...

IT consultant 

IT Consultant

Working in partnership with clients, an IT consultant advises clients on the planning, design, installation and usage of information technology systems to meet their business objectives, overcome problems or improve the structure and efficiency of their IT systems.

As you represent a broad role in IT, your job will be similar to that of systems analysts, systems designers and applications programmers, whose roles are more specialized but nonetheless work on a consultancy basis.

You may also become involved in sales and business development, identifying potential clients and maintaining good business contacts. There is fierce competition in this role, so gaining work experience in a commercial environment would help increase your prospects.

Cybersecurity consultant 

Cybersecurity consultant

Depending on what computer science specializations you studied during your degree, you may wish to specialize as a cybersecurity consultant or an information security specialist. Maintaining cyber security has become increasingly important, so in this role you will focus on understanding the risks to the security of information or data.

You’ll analyze where security breaches may occur or have occurred, and restore or reinforce systems against such breaches, to ensure that confidential data is protected. This role could include ‘ethical hacking’, meaning deliberately attempting to hack into your employer’s network to expose any weaknesses. Alternatively, you could work as a computer forensics analyst or investigator to combat the increasing phenomenon of cyber-crime.

Information systems manager 

Information systems manager

A similar role to an IT consultant, an information systems manager is usually a full-time member of staff, responsible for the secure and effective operation of computer systems within their company. You’ll be responsible (perhaps with the help of a team of IT staff) for the entire upkeep of the ICT infrastructure within your organization, with typical tasks involving the overseeing of system installation; ensuring systems are backed-up and that the back-up systems are operating effectively; purchasing hardware and software; setting up secure access for all users; ensuring security of data from internal and external attack; and providing IT support and advice for users. 

You’ll need to make sure the ICT facilities meet the needs of your company and are current, while remaining within a set budget, and within all relevant software licensing laws. You may also need an understanding of business and management principles in order to contribute to organizational policy regarding quality standards and strategic planning in relation to IT.

Database administrator 

Database administrator

database administrator (DBA) is responsible for accurately and securely using, developing and maintaining the performance, integrity and security of a computerized database. The specific role is always determined by the organization in question but is likely to mean being involved purely in database maintenance or specialized in database development. 

The role is also dependent on the type of database and processes and capabilities of the database management systems (DBMS) in use in your particular organization.

Typically, this role includes ensuring data remains consistent, is clearly defined, easily accessible, is secure and can be recovered in an emergency. You’ll also be required to troubleshoot should any problems arise; liaise with programmers, operational staff, IT project managers and technical staff; provide user training, support and feedback; and write reports, documentation and operating manuals.

Multimedia programmer 

Multimedia programmer

multimedia programmer is responsible for designing and creating multimedia computer products, making sure they’re functional and maintaining fidelity to a designer’s specification. You’ll use creative as well as technical skills to develop multimedia features including text, sound, graphics, digital photography, 2D/3D modelling, animation and video. 

You’ll need to work with the designer to understand the design concept, discuss how it can be technically implemented, identify the operational rules necessary, write efficient computer code or script to make the features work, run tests of the product to test for bugs and rewrite or add new code if necessary.

You’ll also be available for technical support after the product is completed and need to keep abreast of industry news and developments in order to suggest and implement improvements.

Systems analyst 

Systems analyst

systems analyst uses computers and associated systems to design new IT solutions, as well as modifying and improving current systems to integrate new features or enhancements, all with the aim of improving business efficiency and productivity.

This role requires a high level of technical proficiency and clear awareness of current business practices. Clients may be internal, e.g. departments within the same organization, or external, depending on your employer.

Games developer 

Games developer

Games developers produce games for personal computers, games consoles, social/online games, arcade games, tablets, mobile phones and other hand-held devices. This role splits into two main parts. First, there’s the creative side of designing a game and dealing with the art, animation and storyboarding. Second, there’s the programming side, using programming languages such as C++.

To increase your chances of entry into games development careers, it would be helpful to have studied related aspects during your degree. It is also essential that you create a portfolio (for artistic roles) or working demo (for programming roles) with examples of work to show employers.

Technical writer 

Technical writer

Required in many industries, technical writers produce descriptions or instructions to help people understand how to use a product or service. The strong technical knowledge that you’ve gained during your computer science degree will be very useful in this role, particularly your knowledge of software packages, as you could be writing manuals for high-tech products.

Technical writers work for an extensive assortment of industries, from finance to nuclear energy. Again, relevant experience is useful, as are strong writing skills and the ability to convey instructions clearly in the relevant language/s.

Other computer science careers

If none of the above computer science careers suit you, other options with a computer science degree include: working in other areas of development (such as web, games, systems, products, programs and software), as an analyst (be it business continuity, systems or technical), as an administrator (of databases or networks), or in an academic or industrial research capacity, contributing to the ongoing development of computers and related technologies. You could also pursue computer science careers in teaching, IT training, journalism, management or entrepreneurship.

 

‘What Can You Do with a Computer Science Degree?’ is part of our ‘What Can You Do With…’ series. We have also covered artbiologybusinesscommunicationsEnglishengineeringfashionhistorygeographylawmarketingmathematicsperforming artsphilosophypoliticspsychologysociologychemistryeconomics and physics.

 

This article was first published in November 2015 and most recently updated in April 2020.

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Sabrina Collier's profile image
Written by Sabrina Collier
The former Assistant Editor of TopUniversities.com, Sabrina wrote and edited articles to guide students from around the world on a wide range of topics. She has a bachelor's degree in English Literature and Creative Writing from Aberystwyth University and grew up in Staffordshire, UK. 

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5 Comments

"Programmer" is super broad, there are so many different types of programmers. There is web, mobile, embedded, gaming, machine learning, just to name a few options, and all those can branch off too.

hello i am in school and i need a list of 20 jobs and this gives me a few do you have annymore on this subject

Hey Camron, I have some resources I used that really helped me out.

For internships, you can use: intern.supply
For new grad jobs, you can search newgrad.tech
Good luck with your career!

Hi Sabrina. I am new here and in search of a good University that teaches IT for affordable price. Can you provide me with information how I can find universities to study?

i want to study in delta state university,do you think its worth to study there and i will be able to find a job?