What Can You Do With a Computer Science Degree?

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While you’re considering earning a computer science degree, you’re probably curious about what your options will be after graduation. You’ve got bills to pay and other expenses, so you’re seeking a career that’s a pretty safe bet.


When it comes to the future, there are few guarantees. But you’re not likely to find a field with a more optimistic outlook than computer science (CS). With job opportunities increasing significantly and above-average starting salaries that escalate with experience, it’s no wonder you’re considering this field.  


We know you haven’t made your decision yet. But as you explore different types of computer degrees, it’s always helpful to know as much as possible about the types of jobs that will be available to you once you earn your diploma. To help you in your research, we analyzed more than 730,000 job postings from the past year to identify the most common positions available for computer science degree holders.

Top 6 computer science jobs for degree holders

Computer scientists are employed in all sorts of positions in nearly every industry. But you may be wondering: How much do computer scientists make? What types of duties are they responsible for? What does the computer science job outlook look like?

Find the answers to your questions below, as we provide you with a detailed breakdown of six of the most common careers that call for a computer science degree. Learn a bit about the duties, outlook and earning potential for each of these computer science jobs.


1. Software application developer

Typical duties:


  • Designing or customizing computer applications software
  • Modifying existing software to optimize operational efficiency or correct errors
  • Evaluating software requirements and user needs to determine software feasibility

Projected growth (2016–2026): 30% (much faster than average)


Median annual salary (2016): $100,0802


2. Computer systems analyst

Typical duties:


  • Analyzing data processing problems to improve computer systems
  • Developing and testing system design procedures
  • Enhancing system compatibility so information can be shared easily

Projected growth (2016–2026): 9% (as fast as average)


Median annual salary (2016): $87,2202


3. Software systems developer

Typical duties:


  • Designing, developing and testing software for a variety of industries
  • Altering existing software to correct errors or improve performance
  • Analyzing data to identify, recommend and plan new system installations or modifications

Projected growth (2016–2026): 11% (faster than average)


Median annual salary (2016): $106,8602


4. Web developer

Typical duties:


  • Writing, designing or editing web page content, or directing others producing content
  • Identifying and correcting problems uncovered by testing or user feedback
  • Backing up website files for immediate recovery in case of problems

Projected growth (2016–2026): 13% (faster than average)


Median annual salary (2016): $66,1302


5. Network systems administrator

Typical duties:


  • Installing and supporting an organization’s network system
  • Examining website functions to ensure performance without interruption
  • Performing data backups and disaster recovery operations

Projected growth (2016–2026): 6% (as fast as average)


Median annual salary (2016): $79,7002


6. Database administrator

Typical duties:


  • Testing and administering computer databases
  • Coordinating changes and correcting errors to computer databases
  • Applying security measures to safeguard information

Projected growth (2016–2026): 11% (faster than average)


Median annual salary (2016): $84,9502


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