If you’re interested in a career in technology or computer operations, then majoring in computer science may help you gain a stronger foothold in this growing industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics, the job prospect for software developers alone is projected to increase 30 percent over the next decade, which is much faster than other occupations. Those with higher education may fare better in the job market, but how do you know which classes to take in order to boost your chances of getting a computer science degree? Read on to learn about the expectations of this promising career field.

Prerequisites for the Job

Computer and IT professionals show a strong aptitude for math, programming, engineering and working with the public. Contrary to popular belief, those who work with computers are not antisocial, and they rarely shy away from human interaction. Because their work forces them into daily interactions with people, computer professionals often are outgoing, dedicated and patient to explain complex technological issues with the clients they serve.

According to an article posted on Dice related to computer science degrees, students should focus on math and programming when pursuing this type of degree. However, they may also wish to focus on business depending on the type of work they hope to do. If you want to work in the private sector, for example, then getting a business degree may help prepare you for a role in a larger organization.

Choosing the Right Program

Specific prerequisite requirements will depend entirely on the program or institution you attend. ABET, which oversees the accreditation of programs offering courses in applied sciences, offers a general outline on its website of the curriculum required by accredited programs. Many schools don’t necessarily require those who major in computer science to have any prerequisites prior to entering the program, but you should check with your school of choice just to make sure.

While you may not need to meet any prerequisites, you should develop and hone your skills in math and programming, as mentioned above, as well as communication and business organization. These general classes may help you more effectively pursue a career in the technology sector whether you work in the public or private sector.

Standing Out in the Crowd

A degree in computer science will help you advance in the technology job market. In the case of software developers, the annual median salary listed by the bureau is $90,530 for 2010, which is significantly higher than most other jobs. Many software developers hold a bachelor’s degree so you can expect to make a decent living with a degree in computer science.

Across the board, the bureau projects a steady increase for jobs in the computer and technology fields, so those with strong computer skills or a desire to learn will enjoy a better opportunity when it comes to finding a job. When choosing a program, make sure to speak with an adviser on the right classes to take for your specific institution or online program. You may not need special classes in advance, but it never hurts to pad your resume with specialized skills gained from completed courses.