Computer Science Careers: Top Ten of 2014

computer science careersComputer Science is a hot major for many college students and an even hotter industry to enter. Let’s start with some really interesting statistics on computer science careers. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS):

  • In the 2009-2010 school year alone, 128,318 bachelor’s degrees, 57,299 master’s degrees, and 9,370 doctoral degrees were awarded in the field of computer science. It has only grown since then.
  • Computer Science professionals earned a median pay of about $100,660 annually with a doctoral degree.
  • Employment opportunities for computer scientists are expected to increase 19% between 2010 and 2020 and the jobs all pay well.
  • The average salary for the most in-demand positions for computer science majors is about $89,000 and rising.
  • If you think it’s too late for you (which it’s not), maybe you can get your child started with this computer science course for children.

With all of our great, new technology driving up the demand for skilled scientists, it’s no surprise to see that computer science professionals have a number of exciting career opportunities open to them. From cloud computing to mobile application development, this field is seeing significant growth due to businesses and organizations increasing their reliance on technology to not only run their business but also advertise their products and services.

Here are the top ten computer science careers.

Software Developer

There is hardly a thing we see and touch that software developers haven’t developed. Whether it’s that game you always play on your iPhone every morning on the train or the spreadsheet you spend countless hours on at work, software developers made it possible for you to be more productive and entertained.  While designing code and programs is the job’s most identifiable component, software developers are also responsible for testing and debugging software. But the job doesn’t end there – the maintenance and improvement of the software while it’s operating and sold on the market is an incredibly important aspect of this job. Much like raising a child, they have to create, care for, and nurture the software until it’s no longer available on the market.

Software developers work in a range of industries, including computer systems design, electronic product manufacturing and finance. Collaboration is key to being a successful software developer as they frequently consult with management, clients, and other developers to solve technical challenges and determine the requirements of the software system. Developers are often natural problem-solvers who possess strong analytical skills and the ability to think outside the box. Considered the next frontier in web development, take this with this widely acclaimed HTML5 course today. If it’s mobile software development that you’re interested in, this Windows 8, iOS, and Android game development tutorial course that will get you started with HTML5 game development.

Software Engineer

First off, what’s the difference between a software developer and a software engineer? While the developer creates the software, the engineer applies technical and scientific knowledge to the software to optimize its productivity. There’s a large debate on the exact usage and separation of those two terms, but what remains fact, is that software engineering is an ever-increasing industry with a high salary potential. These engineers specialize in either computer software applications or computer software systems to make our software run smoother. They analyze software users’ needs and then design, test, and develop software by applying the theories and principles of computer science and mathematical analysis. Software engineering is concerned with developing and maintaining software systems that behave reliably and efficiently, are affordable to develop and maintain, and satisfy all the requirements that customers have defined for them. It is important because of the impact of large, expensive software systems and the role of software in safety-critical applications. It integrates significant mathematics, computer science, and engineering practices. Try this course on software testing today from the experts.

Systems Engineer

They are the wide-thinking project managers for large, complex projects, such as highway networks to military defense programs. They figure out the technical specifications required and coordinate the efforts of their engineers working on specific aspects of the project. How is this related to computer science? These large networks, such as transportation systems or building temperature control, require a mastery of computer programs that help to design and evaluate these systems. Systems engineers focus on how to design and manage complex projects not only at inception but over the course of their life cyle. They coordinate a massive amount of logistics to make a project happen and need to have a strong handle on risk management, control engineering, industrial engineering, organizational studies, and of course, project management to succeed. Pay can easily hit six figures for top performers, and there’s ample opportunity for advancement. But though pay is good, many systems engineers say the greatest benefits are the creative aspects of the job and seeing projects come to life.

Java Developer

Java developers are responsible for programming Java/JavaScript on commercial websites. This involves creating intricate logic that enables processes within a company to perform computerized tasks that involve complex processing. These professionals also work closely with JavaScript to enable security settings that validate users and process business transactions. Java developers also much have great communication skills to frequently interact with their management team and end-users to ensure that the scripting language addresses user and business requirements, improves website functionality, and enhances the overall design and usability of the site. Other duties for java developers include gathering and documenting user requirements, analyzing data and conducting unit and quality assurance testing. Java developers often characterize themselves as application developers, Web developers, or even embedded operating system engineers. If you’re a beginner, try this course on Java programming basics. If you’re ready to master the next level, this advanced Java programming course moves you beyond the fundamentals into advanced Java concepts.

Web Developer

Web developers are not only responsible for designing, coding and modifying websites, they are also responsible for the cosmetic look of the site. Using their client’s needs and wants as a guide, they build a website from layout to functions. It is a must that web developers create visually appealing sites that feature user-friendly design and easy navigation. Developers must take into account a client’s products or services as well as its target market to create a site that appeals to its customers or intended audience. The job requires solid knowledge of software programs, web applications, and programming languages such as HTML and CSS, as well as, of course, a functional eye for design principles. Increased demand for mobile sites is another reason the industry’s employment growth should remain strong in the near future, since this should lead to new opportunities to create sites for mobile devices.

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Network Engineer

A network engineer is the must-have traffic controller for a company’s computers – connecting offices with T1 lines, hooking them up to the Internet, making sure wires are all fitted, and configuring all internal systems such as net routers and firewalls. These engineers are what make a technological workplace run. People always need you but the pay-off is that you’ll be working odd hours. Needless to say, these engineers will always be hugely in demand to keep systems up and running. Learn how to design, implement and manage the most popular automation networking system in the world with this RS485 Network Communication course.

Business Analyst

Business analysts in the computer science world? You can say that again. The rise of information technology has expanded employment opportunities for business analysts that know how to plan and run effective systems. These analysts evaluate an organization and propose ways to improve its structure, efficiency, and profits by determining an organization’s needs or objectives and then improve its ability to meet them. They help an organization solve its problems by analyzing relevant data, reporting their findings, and recommending a course of action. While business analysts need non-technical skills such as organizational, interpersonal, and communication, it is not necessary to pursue a specific educational or career path to become a business analyst. One of the best ways to build a career as a business analyst in technology is to pursue a degree in a related field and then gain experience working in a computer science centric company.

.NET Developer

Web developers use .Net technology to build and implement web services quickly and strengthen them with enhanced security features. Since the .Net framework is a component of Microsoft Windows and provides a large body of pre-coded solutions, .Net Developers can quickly meet common program requirements. The role of a .Net Developer involves the analysis, design, development, maintenance, testing, implementation, training, and support of various business applications using Microsoft technologies..Net Developers need to have an excellent understanding of object-oriented design and development techniques, enthusiasm for design and development work, a strong analytical aptitude, persistence in problem resolution, attention to detail and commitment to quality. Furthermore, .Net Developers require excellent communication skills and highly team focused qualities.

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Systems Administrator

There are the system superheroes that fix network errors to keep a company running smoothly. A network and computer systems administrator’s greatest contribution is maintaining an organization’s work flow and keeping its lines of communication open. Since companies depend on their networks for so much of their work, problems must be corrected quickly, sometimes before employees even notice. Aside from identifying network issues and fixing them, computer systems administrators must also make updates to all equipment and software so they’re current, ensure that email and data storage networks work properly, and employee workstations are connected to the central computer network. They also set up and maintain an organization’s computer servers and train new users on how to use relevant hardware and software.

Project Manager

A project manager oversees the planning, implementing, quality control, and status reporting on a given project. This person also has to have his or her hands in many different processes as a project manager is likely to manage teams and employers from departments as diverse as marketing, IT, and human resources. Project managers are key employees in computer science companies, responsible for launching new products, developing new technologies, and managing alliance programs with strategic partners. Internet companies often look for project managers to oversee site launches or the development of new applications. In greater detail, the project manager is responsible for precisely defining the scope of the project, preparing the project schedule, and updating that schedule as it evolves, proposing the project budget, and then managing the project so that it doesn’t cause cost overruns, making sure the project team has the supplies and human resources necessary to get the project done on time and on budget, identifying and minimizing potential risks to the project timeline and budget, making sure that all project team members understand what their responsibilities are, communicating the project’s progression to management, and ensuring the quality of the team’s work and any supplies or materials used by the team. Those are a lots of talents and expertise expected from a person, but having excellent PM skills will make you an asset in any career path you set your mind to.

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