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Software developers usually have a bachelor’s degree in computer science and strong computer programming skills.Education
Software developers usually have a bachelor’s degree, typically in computer science, software engineering, or a related field. A degree in mathematics is also acceptable. Computer science degree programs are the most common, because they tend to cover a broad range of topics. Students should focus on classes related to building software in order to better prepare themselves for work in the occupation. For some positions, employers may prefer a master’s degree.
Although writing code is not their first priority, developers must have a strong background in computer programming. They usually gain this experience in school. Throughout their career, developers must keep up to date on new tools and computer languages.
Software developers also need skills related to the industry in which they work. Developers working in a bank, for example, should have knowledge of finance so that they can understand a bank’s computing needs.Other Experience
Many students gain experience in software development by completing an internship at a software company while in college.
Some software developers first work as computer programmers and then are given more responsibility as they gain experience. Eventually, they become developers.Advancement
Software developers can advance to become information technology (IT) project managers, also called computer and information systems managers, a position in which they oversee the software development process.Important Qualities
Analytical skills. Developers must analyze users’ needs and then design software to meet those needs.
Communication skills. Developers must be able to give clear instructions to others working on a project. They must also explain to their customers how the software works and answer any questions that arise.
Computer skills. Developers must understand computer capabilities and programming languages in order to design effective software.
Creativity. Developers are the creative minds behind new computer software.
Detail oriented. Developers often work on many parts of an application or system at the same time and must therefore be able to concentrate and pay attention to detail.
Interpersonal skills. Software developers must be able to work well with others who contribute to designing, developing, and programming successful software.
Problem-solving skills. Because developers are in charge of software from beginning to end, they must be able to solve problems that arise throughout the design process.
Average Length of Employment
Top Careers Before Developer/Consultant
Top Careers After Developer/Consultant
Hispanic or Latino9.2%
Black or African American0.9%
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University of Phoenix10.8%
New York University7.9%
Pennsylvania State University5.6%
University of Southern California5.3%
Johns Hopkins University5.3%
George Washington University4.8%
University of Houston4.8%
University of Washington4.6%
Arizona State University4.3%
Michigan State University3.9%
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|Job Title||Company||Location||Start Date||Salary|
|Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant||Accenture LLP||Rahway, NJ||Nov 16, 2016||$193,918|
|Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant||Accenture LLP||Boston, MA||Nov 16, 2016||$193,918|
|Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant||Accenture LLP||Raleigh, NC||Nov 16, 2016||$193,918|
|Pharmaceutical R&D Pharmacovigilance Consultant||Accenture LLP||North Wales, PA||Nov 16, 2016||$193,918|
|Quantitative Analytics and Model Development Consultant SR.||The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.||Washington, DC||Sep 28, 2015||$155,000|
|Software Development Consultant||Dell USA L.P.||Plano, TX||Nov 30, 2015||$142,000|
|Principal Sap/Tm Development Architect/Consultant||GOPA It Consultants Inc.||Bellevue, WA||Jan 02, 2016||$142,000|
|Application Development Consultant HT||Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc.||NY||Aug 28, 2016||$140,771 -
|Corporate Development Consultant||Dell Products L.P.||Austin, TX||Feb 23, 2015||$140,000|
|Application Development Consultant||Dow Jones & Company, Inc.||New York, NY||Nov 16, 2015||$140,000|
|Quantitative Analytics and Model Development Consultant SR.||The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.||Pittsburgh, PA||Aug 15, 2016||$138,000|
|Tech Labs R&D Open Innovation Consultant||Accenture LLP||San Jose, CA||Aug 13, 2015||$137,000|
|Quantitative Analytics and Model Development Consultant SR.||The PNC Financial Services Group||Pittsburgh, PA||Jun 15, 2016||$135,000|
|Application Development Consultant||Optum Services, Inc.||Horsham, PA||Nov 30, 2015||$111,426 -
|Application Development Consultant||Optum Services, Inc.||Atlanta, GA||Apr 18, 2016||$111,384 -
|Java Developer Consultant||Proficient Business Systems, Inc.||Alpharetta, GA||Oct 16, 2015||$111,384|
|Applications Development Consultant||Optum Services, Inc.||Richardson, TX||Jul 19, 2016||$111,100 -
|Systems Development Consultant||Xerox State & Local Solutions, Inc.||Germantown, MD||Dec 20, 2016||$111,092|
|Systems Development Consultant||Xerox Hr Solutions, LLC||Rochester Hills, MI||Oct 15, 2016||$110,000|
|Software Development Consultant||TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation||Columbia, MD||Aug 31, 2015||$110,000|
|Applications Development Consultant||Tech Mahindra (Americas), Inc.||Ridgefield, NJ||Apr 22, 2015||$95,000|
|Applications Development Consultant||Tech Mahindra (Americas), Inc.||Ridgefield, NJ||Apr 14, 2015||$95,000|
|J2Ee Development Consultant||Ciber, Inc.||Dearborn, MI||Aug 29, 2016||$95,000|
|Application Development Consultant||Dow Jones and Company||South Brunswick, NJ||Feb 12, 2016||$95,000|
|Cloud Application Development Consultant||10Th Magnitude, Inc.||Chicago, IL||Sep 15, 2016||$95,000|
|.NET Developer/Consultant||Calance Corporation||North Brunswick, NJ||Jul 06, 2016||$94,440|
|Application Development Consultant||State Street Bank and Trust Company||Cambridge, MA||Aug 31, 2016||$94,200 -
|Application Development Consultant||State Street Bank and Trust Company||Cambridge, MA||Aug 15, 2016||$94,200 -
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