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Best Jobs For Computer Science Major

Many people have a tough time finding a job right out of college. But for those with a computer science major, career opportunities tend to be plentiful. By looking through millions of job listings and 175,566 computer science major resumes, we were able to discover which are the preferred jobs for computer science majors.

Find Computer Science Major Jobs

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Starting Salary
$65,000
Job openings
115,778
Top Locations:
San Francisco, CA;  New York, NY;  Austin, TX;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$63,000
Job openings
114,982
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Austin, TX;  Houston, TX;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$31,000
Job openings
88,299
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Seattle, WA;  San Francisco, CA;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$82,000
Job openings
115,949
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Atlanta, GA;  Austin, TX;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$55,000
Job openings
64,005
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Houston, TX;  
Job Description:
A business analyst is someone who analyzes an organization or business domain (real or hypothetical) and documents its business or processes or systems, assessing the business model or its integration with technology.
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary
Starting Salary
$55,000
Job openings
86,525
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Los Angeles, CA;  
Job Description:
Web developers design and create websites. They are responsible for the look of the site. They are also responsible for the site’s technical aspects, such as its performance and capacity, which are measures of a website’s speed and how much traffic the site can handle. In addition, web developers may create content for the site.
Starting Salary
$51,000
Job openings
63,495
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Management analysts, often called management consultants, propose ways to improve the efficiency of an organization. They advise managers on how to make organizations more profitable through reduced costs and increased revenues.
Starting Salary
$29,000
Job openings
87,208
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Austin, TX;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$71,000
Job openings
37,753
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  San Francisco, CA;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Computer and information research scientists invent and design new approaches to computing technology and find innovative uses for existing technology. They study and solve complex problems in computing for business, medicine, science, and other fields.
Starting Salary
$23,000
Job openings
53,758
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Washington, DC;  
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.
Starting Salary
$41,000
Job openings
69,667
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Atlanta, GA;  
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.
Starting Salary
$61,000
Job openings
54,277
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Dallas, TX;  
Job Description:
Web developers design and create websites. They are responsible for the look of the site. They are also responsible for the site’s technical aspects, such as its performance and capacity, which are measures of a website’s speed and how much traffic the site can handle. In addition, web developers may create content for the site.
Starting Salary
$44,000
Job openings
32,604
Top Locations:
Houston, TX;  New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Civil engineering technicians help civil engineers to plan, design, and build highways, bridges, utilities, and other infrastructure projects. They also help to plan, design, and build commercial, industrial, residential, and land development projects.
Starting Salary
$54,000
Job openings
76,695
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Los Angeles, CA;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Computer programmers write and test code that allows computer applications and software programs to function properly. They turn the program designs created by software developers and engineers into instructions that a computer can follow.
Starting Salary
$63,000
Job openings
80,409
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$55,000
Job openings
70,212
Top Locations:
Washington, DC;  New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.
Starting Salary
$22,000
Job openings
43,117
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Washington, DC;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Market research analysts study market conditions to examine potential sales of a product or service. They help companies understand what products people want, who will buy them, and at what price.
Starting Salary
$54,000
Job openings
49,201
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Washington, DC;  
Job Description:
Computer networks are critical parts of almost every organization. Network and computer systems administrators are responsible for the day-to-day operation of these networks.
Starting Salary
$66,000
Job openings
66,656
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Dallas, TX;  
Job Description:
Web developers design and create websites. They are responsible for the look of the site. They are also responsible for the site’s technical aspects, such as its performance and capacity, which are measures of a website’s speed and how much traffic the site can handle. In addition, web developers may create content for the site.
Starting Salary
$56,000
Job openings
76,355
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Dallas, TX;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$54,000
Job openings
76,979
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Boston, MA;  Austin, TX;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$89,000
Job openings
144,618
Top Locations:
Redmond, WA;  Seattle, WA;  Bellevue, WA;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$59,000
Job openings
243,563
Top Locations:
Houston, TX;  New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.
Starting Salary
$54,000
Job openings
96,357
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Houston, TX;  
Job Description:
Management analysts, often called management consultants, propose ways to improve the efficiency of an organization. They advise managers on how to make organizations more profitable through reduced costs and increased revenues.
Starting Salary
$74,000
Job openings
81,531
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Austin, TX;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$24,000
Job openings
56,754
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Los Angeles, CA;  Washington, DC;  
Job Description:
Computer and information research scientists invent and design new approaches to computing technology and find innovative uses for existing technology. They study and solve complex problems in computing for business, medicine, science, and other fields.
Starting Salary
$23,000
Job openings
43,121
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Boston, MA;  
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.
Starting Salary
$56,000
Job openings
66,247
Top Locations:
Houston, TX;  New York, NY;  Atlanta, GA;  
Job Description:
Computer systems analysts study an organization’s current computer systems and procedures and design information systems solutions to help the organization operate more efficiently and effectively. They bring business and information technology (IT) together by understanding the needs and limitations of both.
Starting Salary
$62,000
Job openings
56,421
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Houston, TX;  
Job Description:
Web developers design and create websites. They are responsible for the look of the site. They are also responsible for the site’s technical aspects, such as its performance and capacity, which are measures of a website’s speed and how much traffic the site can handle. In addition, web developers may create content for the site.
Starting Salary
$26,000
Job openings
78,063
Top Locations:
Houston, TX;  Phoenix, AZ;  Las Vegas, NV;  
Job Description:
Heavy vehicle and mobile equipment service technicians inspect, maintain, and repair vehicles and machinery used in construction, farming, rail transportation, and other industries.
Starting Salary
$59,000
Job openings
103,963
Top Locations:
Austin, TX;  San Diego, CA;  Philadelphia, PA;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$58,000
Job openings
33,888
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Computer networks are critical parts of almost every organization. Network and computer systems administrators are responsible for the day-to-day operation of these networks.
Starting Salary
$27,000
Job openings
61,775
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.
Starting Salary
$53,000
Job openings
105,555
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Atlanta, GA;  
Job Description:
Computer systems analysts study an organization’s current computer systems and procedures and design information systems solutions to help the organization operate more efficiently and effectively. They bring business and information technology (IT) together by understanding the needs and limitations of both.
Starting Salary
$71,000
Job openings
64,314
Top Locations:
Atlanta, GA;  Chicago, IL;  Austin, TX;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$52,000
Job openings
67,569
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Dallas, TX;  
Job Description:
Computer programmers write and test code that allows computer applications and software programs to function properly. They turn the program designs created by software developers and engineers into instructions that a computer can follow.
Starting Salary
$61,000
Job openings
75,609
Top Locations:
San Francisco, CA;  New York, NY;  San Jose, CA;  
Job Description:
A Quality Assurance Engineer develops and executes exploratory and automated tests for new and existing products to meet client needs. They monitor the debugging process and track quality assurance metrics.
Starting Salary
$63,000
Job openings
104,573
Top Locations:
Austin, TX;  Atlanta, GA;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$75,000
Job openings
41,364
Top Locations:
Atlanta, GA;  Houston, TX;  New York, NY;  
Job Description:
Solutions Architects generally work for information technology (IT) firms. They are responsible for designing information solutions and integrating such solutions with computer hardware.
Starting Salary
$18,000
Job openings
37,121
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Phoenix, AZ;  
Starting Salary
$59,000
Job openings
35,405
Top Locations:
Washington, DC;  Arlington, VA;  Fort Meade, MD;  
Job Description:
Information security analysts plan and carry out security measures to protect an organization’s computer networks and systems. Their responsibilities are continually expanding as the number of cyberattacks increases.
Starting Salary
$36,000
Job openings
62,483
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.
Starting Salary
$41,000
Job openings
65,211
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Houston, TX;  Chicago, IL;  
Job Description:
An Information Systems Technician is responsible for maintaining communications and computer systems. They write programs to handle the collection, manipulation, and distribution of data for a wide range of applications and requirements.
Starting Salary
$61,000
Job openings
62,169
Top Locations:
Houston, TX;  New York, NY;  Atlanta, GA;  
Job Description:
Computer systems analysts study an organization’s current computer systems and procedures and design information systems solutions to help the organization operate more efficiently and effectively. They bring business and information technology (IT) together by understanding the needs and limitations of both.
Starting Salary
$99,000
Job openings
145,568
Top Locations:
San Diego, CA;  Sunnyvale, CA;  Santa Clara, CA;  
Job Description:
Software developers are the creative minds behind computer programs. Some develop the applications that allow people to do specific tasks on a computer or another device. Others develop the underlying systems that run the devices or that control networks.
Starting Salary
$56,000
Job openings
68,429
Top Locations:
Houston, TX;  New York, NY;  Los Angeles, CA;  
Job Description:
Mechanical engineering is one of the broadest engineering disciplines. Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices, including tools, engines, and machines.
Starting Salary
$56,000
Job openings
49,226
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Chicago, IL;  Atlanta, GA;  
Job Description:
A Quality Assurance Analyst tests software and other computer applications to ensure that there are no defects and that it is made to meet the company's standards. They also recommend program improvements and corrections to programmers.
Starting Salary
$57,000
Job openings
27,351
Top Locations:
New York, NY;  Atlanta, GA;  Houston, TX;  
Job Description:
Database administrators (DBAs) use specialized software to store and organize data, such as financial information and customer shipping records. They make sure that data are available to users and are secure from unauthorized access.
Starting Salary
$64,000
Job openings
61,277
Top Locations:
Washington, DC;  Charlotte, NC;  New York, NY;  
Job Description:
Information security analysts plan and carry out security measures to protect an organization’s computer networks and systems. Their responsibilities are continually expanding as the number of cyberattacks increases.
Starting Salary
$58,000
Job openings
73,212
Top Locations:
Austin, TX;  Parkton, NC;  Wichita, KS;  
Job Description:
Computer support specialists provide help and advice to people and organizations using computer software or equipment. Some, called computer network support specialists, support information technology (IT) employees within their organization. Others, called computer user support specialists, assist non-IT users who are having computer problems.

Computer Science Major Jobs

Average Salary For a Computer Science Major

Depending on the industry that computer science majors work in, their salaries can vary significantly. In fact, we found that computer science majors who work in the telecommunication industry have an average salary of $93,033, while those who work in the government industry have an average salary of $31,444. If salary is the most important thing to you, then you should look for jobs in the telecommunication industry.

1. Telecommunication
$93,033
Avg. Salary
$44k
$111k
2. Technology
$87,985
Avg. Salary
$44k
$111k
3. Manufacturing
$62,544
Avg. Salary
$44k
$111k
4. Retail
$61,503
Avg. Salary
$44k
$111k
5. Finance
$61,093
Avg. Salary
$44k
$111k

Entry Level Jobs For Computer Science Majors

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Computer Science Internships

How To Get A Job With A Computer Science Degree

But more than a paycheck, jobs in Computer Science are fascinating to those who work them because of the opportunities they present to solve real problems. In a nutshell, that's what Computer Science is anyway -- problem-solving using computers and employing technical skills.

There are a number of jobs that fit this description, from computer programming to web developer to any number of analytical jobs that involve sorting through various data. Given all the ways a Computer Science Major can be used in the "real world," upon graduation it can be a bit overwhelming when it comes to deciding in which field you should begin to specialize.

Well, that's where we come in. We literally created a map, just for Computer Science Majors such as yourself, to navigate your way through the choppy waters of recent graduation.

Feel free to focus on the map alone -- it's pretty cool, if we do say so ourselves. But for those of you who prefer step by step navigation on your path, keep reading. We'll give you the rundown on:

  • What skills you'll need
  • How to begin
  • What jobs you can expect to find as a Computer Science Major
  • Some quick interview tips
  • Consider graduate school
  • External resources

First thing's first: what skills you'll need to get started.

1. Skills for Computer Science Majors

Hard skills for Computer Science Majors are easy enough to figure out -- for the most part, they're just the programs you use or the tasks you complete on a daily basis. These include things like programming languages, database management,

The soft skills are the larger, less easy-to-classify abilities that come from studying a particular discipline for a long enough period of time. For Computer Science, these skills tend to focus on your ability to process and solve specific problems, as well as your capacity for interacting with other members of your team.

Let's take a closer look at what this means for Computer Science in particular:

Critical Thinking and Analysis

You've got to have a good head for pattern recognition and data analysis in order to be successful in Computer Science. Having a logical understanding of your chosen Computer Science discipline will go a long way toward helping you establish your analytical skills.

Creativity

Contrary to what you might think, creativity is extremely important when it comes to Computer Science. You'll often be asked to do the impossible, or at least improbable, and being able to think outside the box when it comes to problem-solving will allow you to think of better and more efficient solutions to problems.

Communication Skills

Another unexpected skill for those who imagine Computer Science Majors to be doing most of their work in some dark basement, apart from humanity. In fact, it's very likely you'll be working with some sort of team, and in order to work effectively with others you need to have some understanding of how to translate your skills and work experience into something that your other less-technical coworkers will understand.

2. Where to Begin Your Career After Getting a Computer Science Degree

Internships are an excellent way to start accumulating experience in any discipline, gaining valuable resume cache while also helping you start your network of industry contacts.

In Computer Science, an internship will allow you to start learning to code and develop software early on, putting the math and programming skills you've been developing in school to a practical test.

Tech industries, especially startups, are an excellent place to cut your teeth in Computer Science if you're looking for a little more autonomy than an internships would typically provide. More traditional internships can be found at more established companies in the IT department, where working with senior employees will allow you to start learning industries skills in a lower stakes environment.

Before you settle on an internship or placement, though, you'll want to make sure it's the right fit for you. Ask yourself these questions:

  • Where (in the state/the country/the world) do you want to work?
  • What size and type of organization do you want to work for?
  • Do you need compensation in an internship, or might you be able to consider alternative compensation (experience, work samples, references, networking, etc.)
  • Is relocation an option?

3. Available Jobs For Computer Science Majors

As a Computer Science Major, you're most likely going to be looking for jobs in IT or communication technology in general. The specifics will obviously be tied to your specific skillset -- such as the programming languages you know, what sort of technology or software you're familiar with, etc. -- but in general, you'll want to be looking at companies that have either a strong focus on technology or that need very specialized computer assistance.

With our map, you can click the Job Titles and learn more specific information for each position (what their responsibilities are, how much they get paid, etc.). But here, we wanted to call out some of the most common jobs for recent Computer Science Major grads.

Here are a few of the most interesting jobs for recent grads such as yourself:

  • Java Developer.
  • Java Developers use their proficiency with the Java programming language to develop things like user interfaces, multimedia applications, documentation and assistance tools, and various other software that can be accomplished through Java specifically.

  • Software Engineer.
  • Software Engineers apply the principles of engineering to the field of software design, designing and developing software for a variety of computer programs, applications, and systems.

  • Programmer Analyst.
  • Programmer Analysts identify the requirements of clients, then help to develop programs designed to meet these requirements. Their exact involvement with the programming process depends on individual position, and can range from supervisory to programming it themselves.

    4. Some Quick Job Search Tips for Computer Science Majors

    While You Can, Work on Big Projects

    It's hard to find time in the so-called "real world" to try working on enormous projects that have no guarantee of money or even success, but these kind of projects are essential to getting early practical experience in the Computer Science field.

    If you're still in colleges, keep an eye on classes with significant lab components. These classes will give you an opportunity to immerse yourself in a given project and make use of the expertise you already have while figuring out exactly how this expertise translates to the reality of Computer Science.

    If you're no longer in school but are still having trouble finding a job, it's worth your time to work on some of these larger projects on your own. Try experimenting with creating something new in a programming language you already somewhat understand, or maybe contribute to an Open Source project. Look to see if there are any easy freelancing gigs you can cut your teeth on. The more you can find to help you gain experience, the better off you'll be for trying it.

    Look for Startups

    It's tough out there to find a good position with minimal experience required. Most job listings out there seem to be looking for people with a certain level of education or so-and-so many years of experience.

    But while that is often also the case with computer science jobs, the story changes a little when it comes to startups. Once they start to scale up, startups are often less concerned about how experienced a person is and more concerned with how talented and driven they are. They're willing to hire young people with almost no experience, so long as those people are willing and driven to learn everything they can as fast as they can.

    Of course, the fact that they get to pay these folks a little less has something to do with their willingness to take risks, but the potential rewards for helping a startup become successful are very high, especially if you can find your way into getting some equity options.

    5. Continuing Education and Certifications in Computer Science

    Pursuing an advanced degree

    Obtaining a graduate degree in your course of study can serve as an excellent way to separate you from the herd - but you must first decide whether it's worth your time.

    A Master's in Computer Science is largely useful as a means of getting a chance to learn some extra skills, take time to earn some extra certifications, and ensure that down the line you won't be barred from any promotions that might require a higher education level. These sort of paywalls are not always present, but they do occur.

    PhDs in Computer Science, rather than preparing you for working in the Computer Science industry, instead has you working with research and writing papers. While the PhD does primarily prepare you for working as a researcher or educator, the Computer Science PhD also tends to be more industry-focused than other PhD programs. Many of those who receive a PhD go on to work in the industry, typically in more specialized analyst positions.

    Here are common advanced degrees that people with a Computer Science degree normally consider:

    Master's in Computer Science

    • Primarily geared toward getting students to be a little more confident in a particular skill or specialization, many Master's degrees are also designed so that graduates will also leave with teaching certifications.

    PhD (Doctor of Philosophy in Computer Science)

    • PhDs in Computer Science focus on conducting research, writing papers, and teaching college students about the field of Computer Science.

    6. External Resources

    If you're still not sure what to do with your degree here are some external sites, to help you with your decision:

    Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)

    The largest science and education computing society in the world, the ACM has been helping fields like Computer Science become educated and make professional connections for over 50 years.

    Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI)

    An organization devoted to the study and development of artificial intelligence, the AAAI is a great group for those interested in working with computers in the information age.

    USAJobs

    Enter "Computer Science" into the search bar and you can get a sense of what kind of government jobs are available to Visual and Performing Arts Majors. Find a job title you like and come back here to learn more about it.

    Bureau Of Labor Statistics

    The BLS offers detailed data on pay, location, and availability of different kinds of jobs across the country.

    In fact, we draw a lot of our research on the best places for jobs from the information provided on the site.

    And if this all seems like a lot - don't worry - the hard part (getting your degree!) is already over.

    Updated July 15, 2020