Technology is critical in modern society, and this is particularly true in the workplace. Computers are the backbone on which all businesses are founded now, as is the software they run on. Technology in business is also key when it comes to companies being able to collect data on customers and analyze it effectively.
Due to the importance of tech and computers in the workplace, careers in computer science are a popular choice with many now. When you see the varied roles the industry has to move into and the projected 21% rise in demand for computer and information research scientists in the coming years, it is clearly a sector on the up.
If you plan to carve out a successful career in this field, consider boosting the qualifications you may already hold. But how can you do this, and why does it matter?
How can you boost your computer science qualification?
Before considering why doing this makes sense, it is first sensible to think about how you can go about it. The most popular option by far is continuing your education in this field and picking up extra academic qualifications in computer science.
As most people following a career in this area will already hold a bachelor’s degree, enrolling in a course representing the next step up makes sense. The online CS masters from Baylor University shows what this kind of program looks like and what it offers students. Developed to teach higher-level skills, which employers in the sector are looking for, it also comes with small class sizes and 1-1 student support.
Before enrolling in a course like this, you may wonder why it is worth the time and effort. The truth is that boosting your credentials in computer science is a good move – but why is this the case?
Also read: How to Get Started in a Career in Tech
Boost for career prospects
One of the most obvious reasons boosting your computer science qualifications makes sense is the positive impact it can have on future career plans. Holding a higher-level award gives you something impressive to put on your resume and makes you more appealing to prospective employers. As a result, studying for a new degree can open more senior roles up to you.
If you want to move into high-level data science or software engineering positions, for example, moving back into education is the best way to achieve this. Jobs like this often ask for master’s awards as a standard when applying for them. On the flip side, if you do not make an effort to study for higher-level CS qualifications, you might find you hit a glass ceiling in your career and are stuck below a certain level in the industry.
More qualifications can lead to better pay
As well as being able to apply for more senior roles with higher status and extra responsibility, picking up more qualifications in computer science can benefit your salary levels. This is because roles that require higher-level awards usually have more competitive pay rates.
When you consider that the average annual salary for a US data scientist is around $98,000, it is easy to see how this works in practice. But why do jobs which require more qualifications pay better in general?
Much of this revolves around the additional responsibility roles of this nature include and how people who fill them usually have to manage teams of people. These kinds of jobs also tend to pay better as a reward for the time, money, and effort people put into getting the qualifications required for them.
Broaden your knowledge of computer science
Just as knowing the latest DNS troubleshooting tips for network teams is wise for IT managers, computer scientists should always be aware of the latest knowledge in their field of expertise. While extra pay or more senior roles might be most important to some CS professionals, it is more than just about these for others.
Any decent higher-level CS program will be chock full of the latest knowledge, news, techniques, and tools professionals in the industry need to know about. It will also cover subjects that bachelor-level awards did not and help you develop professionally.
This knowledge is then something you can then bring into your current role to perform better or make improvements to your workflow. If you work outside computer science but want to break into it, studying for a master’s award is the ideal way to pick up skills not learned in your existing bachelor’s degree in another subject. If you are really into computer science, boosting your qualifications in the field will also be very interesting and something you will enjoy.
Opportunity to network with other students
Perhaps the last major reason pursuing further education in computer science makes sense is the chance it gives to network with others in your program. Even if you study online, you will be likely to go onto campus for specific events or have the chance to chat with your cohort via video conferencing platforms.
This ability to network as you study gets even more powerful when you think that most of your class will likely work in computer science. This means it gives you an easy way to organically build your professional network for the future.
Connections made when studying can often remain strong post-graduation and help you find new career opportunities to consider. Building up a strong professional network through study can also give you people within the industry to turn to when you have a query or problem in your current role.
Further education is a good decision for computer scientists
If you work in a computer science-based role or plan to break into the industry, the above shows that boosting your qualifications makes perfect sense. Whether it is more senior roles, better pay, the chance to build a vibrant professional network, or simply to pick up more knowledge in the sector, there are many reasons to consider it.