A bachelor's program in computer science typically takes four years to complete and involves coursework that focuses on computer operations and programming. After core classes are completed, participation in hands-on work experience is often necessary to graduate. A high school diploma or GED is required to enter this program. Due to the complex nature of the computer science curriculum, students should also have a solid understanding of mathematics and the sciences prior to applying.
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
Students in this program complete a curriculum strong in essential IT coursework, along with statistics and science courses. Students may also be able to choose between a supervised internship, laboratory studies or a research-based senior thesis to fulfill practical experience requirements. Core topics can include:
- Software analysis and design
- Operating systems
- Computer architecture
- Data structures and algorithms
- Database management systems
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
Graduates with strong computer science skills and management abilities can find many career opportunities at various businesses and organizations. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that database administrators earned a median salary of $81,710 in May 2015. The BLS also notes that employment for database administrators was projected to grow 11% from 2014-2024. During the same time period, network and computer systems administrators earned a median salary of $77,810, and employment for that profession was expected to see 8% growth.
Continuing Education Information
Graduates of bachelor's degree programs can pursue graduate degrees in computer science, computer engineering or related fields. While many positions are available to bachelor's degree recipients, candidates may wish to pursue master's degree programs to broaden their employment options or advance in the field.
Professional certifications in different specializations are also available, which can help degree holders advance in their careers or demonstrate professional competency to prospective employers. Certification can be obtained through computer product vendors or independent certifying organizations. Many computer-related training programs offer courses that prepare students to take certification exams in specific areas.
A bachelor's program in computer science combines hands-on experience with courses in software analysis and design, operating systems, and computer architecture to prepare graduates for further education or to enter the workforce.