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Hot Sectors for Computer Science

The Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected 30% growth in jobs for software developers in the 2010 to 2020 decade. Among the reasons cited are mobile technologies, increasing use of software in healthcare, concerns about computer security, and the growing usage of embedded technologies. (Computers are in a lot of things besides computers.)

The BLS also notes that there are some advantages to living in a world where software is distributed over the internet: cost, customization options. The availability can ultimately drive demand up.

30% growth in jobs for software developers in the 2010 to 2020. ~ BLS

Here’s a look at some of the popular sectors and job roles.

Mobile Technologies

There is strong demand for software developers who are versed in mobile technology. Among the things that mobile developers need to know: how to make websites and applications look good and function well on different devices. Cross compatibility is important; so is security.

Computer Science in Healthcare

Healthcare is a growing sector. One thing that makes it exciting, besides sheer demand, is the chance to contribute. Computer scientists create the applications used in the health industry.

Mapping of the human genome owes a fair amount to the computer scientists who created the algorithms.

Healthcare relies on huge databases. Some computer-related jobs in healthcare are IT, and they don't all require a bachelor's degree in computer science or software engineering. But some are for highly trained computer scientists. The UMass Computer Science Department shares some of what's up and coming in the marriage of healthcare and computer science: assistive devices that depend on computer technology, telemedicine, treatment plans based on a person's own DNA.

Computer scientists also contribute knowledge that is crucial for data mining. One field to consider is bioinformatics. The geneticists who were responsible for mapping the human genome owed a fair amount to the computer scientists who created the algorithms.

Communications

People are attracted to communications because it is the technology they grew up using.

There are practical reasons to consider communications companies, too. There are some very successful companies offering some very nice perks. In fact, you’ll find some communications companies occupying top spots in CNN Money’s Best Companies to Work for. Google has won top honors two years running. Qualcomm isn’t too far behind. Qualcomm is of course a different area of communications: telecommunications.

Computer Security

Another hot field is computer security. Computer security specialists configure systems. They encrypt and otherwise hide data. Some write programs to authenticate users and authorize activity, and some oversee others' work in these areas. Security professionals may analyze code for vulnerabilities and conduct trainings. They are hired by companies that sell security software: McAfee, Norton. Yet this is only a part of the job potential. It is possible to study ethical hacking - and even be certified in the specialty. It is also important to remember that computer crime effects far more than just computers. Computer security specialists have a role in forensics as well.

In the security field, too, one of the big pluses is demand. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that demand for security analysts should continue to be high during the 2010 to 2020 decade. The federal government is expected to be a big employer of security professionals; the increasing utilization of electronic health records should also create jobs in the healthcare sector.

Security analyst is also part of this occupational group that is projected to grow 22%.

Business

The business sector isn’t to be forgotten. Computer scientists are systems analysts and IT managers. They also create business applications, and not just the generic mass market ones. Businesses hire software professionals to analyze their needs and create customer software. The BLS notes that consultant opportunities should be good in the business arena.

SAS, known for business software, is #2 on the CNN Money list.

 

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