The computer science industry in Idaho is growing. Computer science schools in Idaho prepare students for careers in an industry that is quickly becoming integral to Idaho’s economy. The state’s workforce includes 14,050 computer science employees, and the BLS projects a 13% increase in the number of computer science positions in the U.S. by 2026.
The increasing presence of cloud computing and the growing importance of information security drive the industry. After earning a computer science degree in Idaho, many graduates become information security analysts, an occupation the BLS projects to grow 28% by 2026.
Higher Education in Idaho
Students pursuing computer science programs in Idaho have a variety of options. All major universities in Idaho offer computer science programs, including the University of Idaho, Boise State University, and Idaho State University. The state offers a balance of rural areas and city life. Classroom sizes are generally moderate, offering more chances for one-on-one learning than institutions in states with larger student populations.
On-campus programs train students to succeed in the field through classroom instruction and hands-on experiences. However, many students prefer the flexibility of distance learning. Some of the best computer science schools in Idaho offer online programs, including the University of Idaho and Brigham Young University — Idaho. Online students provide the same skills and knowledge as campus-based programs, while allowing students to learn when and where is convenient for them.
Whether you choose to pursue an on-campus or an online computer science degree in Idaho, ensure your program is accredited. Accreditation indicates a school or program has been evaluated by an external agency and has been found to meet standards of academic quality.
Computer Science Careers in Idaho
The computer science industry is growing rapidly in Idaho and throughout the country. After earning a computer science degree, Idaho graduates pursue a variety of coveted, high-paying jobs; graduates become web developers, web designers, research specialists, and senior computer analysts. The BLS projects 13% national growth for web developers by 2026 and 24% growth for software developers. Typically, computer science professionals with higher levels of education secure positions with higher salaries.
Median Salary for Computer Science Careers by Degree
Computer Science Employers in Idaho
- DXC Technology: DXC Technology helps clients use technology to develop their businesses. The company employs more than 155,000 professionals worldwide and serves more than 6,000 clients. DXC Technology partners with more than 250 industry leaders, including Hitachi, HP, Microsoft, Oracle, Dell EMC, and AT&T.
- Micron Technology: Micron Technology offers innovative memory solutions to facilitate the effective use of information. The company manufactures major memory and storage technologies, such as DRAM, NAND, NOR, and 3D XPoint memory. Employees use math, engineering, technology, and science to create programs that transform how the world uses information.
- General Dynamics Information Technology: General Dynamics Information Technology works with clients in areas such as cybersecurity, mission support, and health solutions. The company provides information and security solutions to complex issues related to defense, homeland security, and health.
How Much do Computer Scientists Make in Idaho?
A professional’s salary depends on factors such as experience, education, and geographic location. Because of Idaho’s large number of rural areas, the computer science industry is not as prominent in the state as in other parts of the country. Although graduates of computer science colleges in Idaho earn lower salaries than the national average, the cost of living in Idaho is also lower than the national average.
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Computer Science Programs in Idaho
The variety of computer science programs in Idaho include both online and on-campus options. Online programs are ideal for busy students who need to balance education with professional or personal commitments. The University of Idaho offers an online bachelor’s in computer science program, which requires coursework in areas such as data communications systems, machine learning, and artificial intelligence. Brigham Young University – Idaho offers an online bachelor’s program in computer information technology, which prepares students for careers in areas including network architecture, network engineering, and database administration.
Other students prefer the structure and in-person interaction of an on-campus program. Along with its online program, the University of Idaho offers an on-campus computer science program that includes coursework in areas such as cybersecurity, fault tolerant systems, and bioinformatics. Idaho State University’s on-campus computer science bachelor’s program prepares students for careers in cybersecurity, databases, and graphics. The program combines computer science courses with math and science classes to produce well-rounded graduates who are qualified to work in a variety of industries.
When researching Idaho computer science schools, ensure any prospective institutions have been regionally accredited. Attending a regionally accredited school ensures your degree will be recognized by other institutions and by employers.
Types of Computer Science Degrees
There are many types of degrees students can choose when pursuing education in computer science: associate degree, bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, and doctorate degree. In general, further formal education within a field results in a higher salary. In addition, some positions require a certain level of degree. For instance, many research positions or teaching positions at the university level require at least a master’s or doctorate degree. The table below features descriptions and basic data about each degree type.
An associate in computer science provides students with foundational knowledge in computer languages and programming. In addition to learning about computer systems, students will emerge with general education courses usually required by four year colleges. Graduates with an associate degree qualify for entry-level computer science positions in the job market.
Average Program Length – 2 Years
Median Salary – $32,897
A bachelor’s in computer science provides students with knowledge of operating systems, a variety of programming languages, database management, and computer systems and architecture. These programs typically require 120 credit hours of coursework and a capstone project. Many employers in the industry are increasingly hiring individuals with a bachelor’s degree.
Average Program Length – 4 Years
Median Salary – $60,835
A master’s in computer science provides students with a deeper understanding of computer systems, design, and programming languages. Some master’s programs may provide specializations for those who wish to concentrate further in a specific area. Individuals with a master’s degree typically earn a higher salary upon graduation than those with a bachelor’s.
Average Program Length – 1-2 Years
Median Salary – $104,269
A doctorate degree in computer science is designed for individuals who wish to pursue research in the field. These intensive programs often require students to narrow their field of study and design and carry out a specific research project that culminates in a dissertation. Graduates with a Ph.D in computer science often go into academia as computer science professors.
Average Program Length – 4+ Years
Median Salary – $126,744
What Schools Offer a Computer Science Degree in Idaho?
Idaho computer science schools provide students with skills and knowledge necessary to thrive in the computer science industry. The following list includes computer science colleges in Idaho and the types of programs they offer. Every school on this list is regionally accredited.
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Professional Computer Science Organizations in Idaho
Learners studying computer science in Idaho benefit from the support and resources professional organizations offer. Members attend meetings and networking events to connect with professionals in the industry. Through professional organizations, students and graduates build networks that result in professional growth and job opportunities.
- North Idaho IT Professionals Association: This association connects professionals in the IT industry. Members network and share knowledge during meetings and events. The organization provides a platform for IT professionals to discuss current technology.
- Idaho National Laboratory: The nation’s top center for nuclear energy research and development, the laboratory’s research focuses on science, environment, national security, and energy. The lab responds to current nuclear challenges and works with security centers.
- Idaho Technology Council: This organization encourages the creation and growth of tech companies. The organization hosts events that allow members to build professional connections and personal friendships.
Additional Computer Science Resources in Idaho
- Boise State University Computer Science Club: This student group organizes events, conducts technical workshops, and manages student projects. Members connect with other students interested in computer science and share ideas and knowledge.
- North Idaho Computer Users Group: This group provides education regarding computers and software and connects computer science professionals who want to network and further their industry knowledge. The group hosts events and weekly meetings.
- Idaho STEM Action Center: This center supports individuals interested in STEM careers. The computer science sector hosts events to teach computer science fundamentals to people at all stages of their careers or educations.
- University of Idaho Cybersecurity Training and Operations Center: This center offers hands-on cybersecurity training and apprenticeships. Its laboratory hosts week-long training sessions, and the center provides classes to prepare students for the cybersecurity certification exam.