Computer and Information Sciences, General

Overview of Computer and Information Sciences as a College Program

Computer and information science programs generally fall under the Mathematics department of most colleges and universities or are a separate computer science entity. Regardless of the program's classification, students will be required to take a number of math courses such as discrete mathematics, logic, and statistics.

Computer and Information Science Curriculum

Many schools vary their computer and information science curriculum slightly, but there are significant similarities between all curriculums. Much of the courses and topics presented in a computer and information science program are uniform and include:

  • Calculus
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Computer Science
  • Data Structures
  • Discrete Structures
  • Computer Architecture
  • Computer Programming
  • Computer Algorithms
  • Operating System Design
  • Probability
  • Systems Design
  • Software Design
  • Computer Security
  • Compilers

Education Levels Available for a Computer and Information Science Degree

Computer and information science degrees are available at all levels and your attainment depends on your career goals. An entry-level position in information technology can be found by earning an Associate's degree in computer and information science, which usually takes about two years. Career prospects, however, improve significantly with a Bachelor's degree of Science, which generally takes another two years to complete.

While a Bachelor's degree is the standard requirement for most careers in the computing field, a more advanced degree will vault the graduate to an upper echelon of positions. Earning a Master's degree of Science in computer and information science will open the door to senior positions for the graduate straight out of college due to the enhanced knowledge they will gain. This degree will take another two years to attain. Further education is necessary if interested in pursuing academic research or professorship. These career paths require a Doctorate degree in the field which typically requires two to three additional years of study.

Skills Developed through a Computer and Information Science Degree Program

The curriculum for a computer and information science degree will teach students the technical aspects of creating programs, database, and other information structures on a computer as well as the underlying concepts behind a computer's operations. Graduating with a degree in computer and information science will also provide students with a number of skills that can help in their career or other aspects of life. Some of these skills include:

  • Ability to interpret problems logically and arrive at the optimal solution
  • Ability to find research opportunities and undertake the necessary steps to prove your hypotheses
  • Understanding of the technological environment in America and other parts of the world, and the economic shifts which are changing this environment
  • Ability to utilize computing skills to improve processes for various causes/organizations
  • Knowledge of mathematics and physics that can be applied to other disciplines
Where to Obtain a Computer and Information Science Degree

Computer and information science degrees are offered at a variety of locations. They can be earned at any university with an accredited computer and information science program. Those who do not want to attend a brick and mortar school can earn their degrees through various online universities.

Career Opportunities for Computer and Information Science Majors

According to the government agency which tracks employment growth and the job markets, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are several careers available to computer and information science majors. These include network, systems, and database administrators, computer scientist, software engineers, computer programmers, support specialists, and systems analysts. Growth between 2008  and 2018 ranges from – three percent to 53 percent according to the BLS, with all professions aside from computer programmers showing positive, above average growth. Graduating with a computer and information science degree bodes well for the student as they should have many job opportunities available.

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