Skip to main content

Career Guide: Explore the Computer Scientist Salary and Job Outlook in 2024

June 26, 2024

Technology permeates almost every aspect of our lives, as reflected in the burgeoning computing job market. McKinsey reports that tech-related job postings increased by 15% between 2021 and 2022; the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects 377,500 job postings per year in the sector over the next decade, significantly faster than the average employment growth rate across all occupations. 

Computer scientists work in varied fields, including research, programming, network architecture, systems management, software engineering and web development. As technology advances, entirely new job functions will likely emerge. 

Respected credentials can help tech job seekers stand out in today’s competitive employment market. The Master of Science in Computer Science (MSCS) helps students establish and bolster computing knowledge and skills, which is why many employers favor candidates with this graduate degree. 

Stevens Institute of Technology offers a rigorous online M.S. in Computer Science program that teaches broad foundational computing skills to prepare students for multiple career opportunities and the lifelong learning they need to remain current in this fast-changing profession. Read on to learn about some top jobs for MSCS graduates.

Computer Scientist Salary and Other Top-Paying Jobs in the Field

An MSCS can broaden your job options in fields and organizations. These roles pay well; according to PayScale, the 2024 average salary for a computer scientist with a master’s was $111,000. We’ve listed three high-paying computer science career paths below.

Computer and Information Research Scientist

Computer and information research scientists create innovative ways to utilize old and new computer technologies. They develop new computing languages and software systems, conduct experiments to test their work, and publish their research in peer-reviewed journals. These professionals earned $145,000 annually in 2022, with employment projected to grow by 23% over the next decade. 

Software Developer

Software developers create and improve the applications that enable computers to complete specific tasks. They research user needs and incorporate their findings into their designs, test and troubleshoot their new programs, and continue to improve their creations after they are published. Software developers earned a median income of $130,000 in 2023, with employment projected to grow by 25% between 2022 and 2032.

Information Security Analyst

Information security analysts plan and execute security operations for their organizations’ systems and networks. They police computer networks to detect and prevent security breaches, test systems for potential vulnerabilities, establish security standards and best practices, and research and recommend the latest developments in the field. This field should grow by 32% between 2022 and 2032; information security analysts earn a median income of $120,000 annually.

The Most In-Demand Computer Science Jobs

Computer science interacts with almost every aspect of our lives. Demand for computer scientists is accelerating; software development and information security both landed on the BLS’ list of fastest-growing occupations, U.S. News & World Report’s 100 best jobs and CIO’s 15 most in-demand tech jobs lists. 

Advancements in artificial intelligence (AI) and other emerging technologies may create entirely new career paths. The McKinsey Technology Trends Outlook 2023 lists applied AI, next-generation software development, cloud and edge computing, and trust architectures and digital identity among the hottest trending tech job postings.

Higher Degree, Higher Salary: How a Master’s Degree Boosts Earning Potential

Whether you’re an aspiring or experienced computer scientist, earning an advanced degree can improve your employment prospects and boost your income. According to the BLS, STEM professionals — including systems administrators, web developers and information security analysts — with master’s degrees typically earn higher annual incomes than their counterparts holding only bachelor’s degrees, with pay differentials ranging from 18 to 26%, depending on the field. 

Adding an MSCS to your resume could potentially make you a stand-out for specific roles (e.g. applications architect, IT director, big data engineer and data scientist). Some supervisory or managerial roles may even require a master’s degree. MSCS students can choose coursework that influences their career trajectory, including:

  • Specific programming languages
  • Advanced mobile systems and applications courses
  • Specialized areas, e.g. machine learning

Earning a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from Stevens

Stevens Institute of Technology offers an Online Master of Science in Computer Science degree program suitable to tech professionals and newcomers to the field. Dual tracks — an advanced option for experienced computing pros and a traditional option for those requiring foundational skills and principles — provide options for students at various career stages.

The program fits well into working professionals’ calendars, enabling them to earn a degree part-time while continuing to work full-time. They can complete the degree in two years or less, typically with satisfying results: 97% of Stevens MSCS graduates accept job offers within three months of graduation.

If you’re ready to advance your career path in computer science, apply to the Stevens Online MSCS program today, attend an admissions webinar or connect with an enrollment advisor (EA) to learn more.