Do you want to know how much computer scientists make? It’s a lucrative career, that’s for sure! In this article, we’ll break down the average computer science salary by job position and location.
Computer Science Salary in 2022 – Wages by Employer and Job
According to the freshest data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average computer and information research scientist made $130,890 in 2020. Since the term ‘computer scientist’ includes a vast range of jobs, let’s look at how much they made on average in different companies.
- Communications equipment manufacturers: $153,540.
- Software publishing firms: $144,210.
- Scientific research and development companies: $143,400.
- Colleges, universities and professional schools: $95,530.
Software developers, programmers and testers made a mean annual wage of $109,950. Computer systems analysts earned $99,020, and computer support specialists were on the lowest end of the spectrum, at $60,160.
Computer Science Salaries over the Years
The average computer science salary has increased by 27% from 2010 to 2020. In 2010, the mean wage across computer science jobs was $103,150. In 2020, it reached $130,890. Taking inflation into account, it’s still about $8400 more.
There’s no room to compare the changes across all jobs, but salaries for computer scientists have definitely increased in the last decade. The field is growing at a rapid pace, so it’s no surprise. If you’re thinking about a career in computer science, rest assured that you’ll be making a good wage!
Computer Science Salary by State
In some locations, computer scientists make much more than the national average. In California, for example, they earned a mean wage of $150,830 in 2020. Other top-paying states included Virginia ($146,830), Washington ($143,010), New York ($138,190), and Oregon ($137,760).
On the other hand, there are places where computer science salaries are on the lower side. The Ogden-Clearfield metropolitan area in Utah was reported to have a mean pay of $86,150.
What Does a Computer Scientist Do?
In general, a computer scientist is someone who uses their knowledge of computers to solve problems. They may work in a variety of industries, such as information technology, software development, systems analysis, or computer engineering.
Some common tasks they might perform include:
- designing and developing new computer systems or applications;
- identifying and resolving issues with existing systems;
- conducting research to develop new computer technology;
- training users on how to use new systems or applications.
As you can see, computer scientists – including software engineers, web developers, system analysts, and others – play a vital role in many industries. They are responsible for developing new technology and keeping existing systems running smoothly.
History of the Computer Scientist Profession
The profession has been around since the 1950s. However, the early computer scientists were actually mathematicians. The first compilers and algorithms were still in development, so there weren’t many people who specialized in them yet.
In the 1960s, computer science began to be recognized as its own field. The term was coined by George Forsythe, a numerical analyst, and the first university department was formed at Purdue University in 1962.
As computer technology has matured, the role of the computer scientist has become more specialized. There are now many areas of computer science that one can specialize in, such as artificial intelligence, big data, or cybersecurity. This led to an increase in demand for computer specialists, and the profession has continued to grow.
Is Computer Science the Right Career for You?
If you’re interested in computer science, the first step is to ask yourself if it’s the right career for you. Do you enjoy problem-solving and working with computers? Are you able to think logically and analytically? If so, then the tempting computer science salary might just be in your reach.
It’s also important to note that computer science is a rapidly-changing field. Technology evolves at a rapid pace, so you’ll need to be willing to keep up with the latest trends. If you’re able to do that, then it could be a great career choice for you!
What Qualifications Do You Need to Become a Computer Scientist?
In order to become one, you’ll need at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science. However, many employers prefer candidates with a master’s degree or higher.
To make a good career, you’ll also need to be proficient in various programming languages and have strong problem-solving skills. License and certification may also be required in some cases.
If you’re interested in becoming a computer scientist, it’s essential to start building your skills and knowledge now. The computer science salary is only going to increase in the years to come, so it’s a great time to get started.
What Flavor of Computer Scientist Would You Like to Be?
The computer science salary is nothing to scoff at! We hope this article has been helpful and given you a better idea of what to expect if you choose this career. The sky is the limit when it comes to these jobs, so don’t be afraid to start dreaming big.
Now it’s time to decide what kind of computer scientist you want to be! Do you want to work on developing new applications and systems? Or would you rather solve problems and help users understand how to use technology? Share your thoughts in the comments below!