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Average Wages

Computer and Information Research Scientists


Industry Outlook

Career outlook is: good for the next 12-18 months

Job Description

Conduct research into fundamental computer and information science as theorists, designers, or inventors. Develop solutions to problems in the field of computer hardware and software.


Also known as:
Control System Computer Scientist, Computer Scientist, Scientific Programmer Analyst

Average Career Wages

Co-Op / Internship

Securing an internship for this position is a good way in which to understand the expectations required for full time employment.

Typical Job Tasks

  • Analyze data to identify or resolve operational problems.
  • Design integrated computer systems.
  • Assign duties or work schedules to employees.
  • Evaluate project designs to determine adequacy or feasibility.
  • Apply information technology to solve business or other applied problems.


  • Collaborate with others to determine design specifications or details.
  • Maintain computer hardware.
  • Monitor the performance of computer networks.
  • Collaborate with others to resolve information technology issues.
  • Analyze data to identify trends or relationships among variables.
  • Develop organizational goals or objectives.
  • Manage budgets for appropriate resource allocation.
  • Participate in staffing decisions.
  • Train others in computer interface or software use.
  • Develop performance metrics or standards related to information technology.
  • Coordinate project activities with other personnel or departments.
  • Manage information technology projects or system activities.


Required Skills

People in this career often have these skills:
  • Complex Problem Solving – Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
  • Systems Evaluation – Measuring how well a system is working and how to improve it.
  • Critical Thinking – Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
  • Systems Analysis – Figuring out how a system should work and how changes in the future will affect it.
  • Judgment and Decision Making – Thinking about the pros and cons of different options and picking the best one.


  • Time Management – Managing your time and the time of other people.
  • Reading Comprehension – Reading work-related information.
  • Programming – Writing computer programs.
  • Active Listening – Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
  • Speaking – Talking to others.
  • Writing – Writing things for co-workers or customers.
  • Active Learning – Figuring out how to use new ideas or things.


Projected Employment Numbers


2016 Employment

2026 Employment

Percent change

Annual projected job openings

What Experience and Education do you Require?

Individuals in this field typically have:

  •  Master’s degree
  •  No work experience
  •  No on-the-job training

Typical Education Level Required

Background Knowledge

People in this career often know a lot about:
  • Computers and Electronics – Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Mathematics – Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • English Language – Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Education and Training – Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Telecommunications – Knowledge of transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.

Successful people in this career have ...

  • Deductive Reasoning – Using rules to solve problems.
  • Inductive Reasoning – Making general rules or coming up with answers from lots of detailed information.
  • Problem Sensitivity – Noticing when problems happen.
  • Information Ordering – Ordering or arranging things.
  • Oral Comprehension – Listening and understanding what people say.
  • Near Vision – Seeing details up close.
  • Fluency of Ideas – Coming up with lots of ideas.
  • Oral Expression – Communicating by speaking.
  • Written Comprehension – Reading and understanding what is written.


  • Category Flexibility – Grouping things in different ways.
  • Speech Recognition – Recognizing spoken words.
  • Speech Clarity – Speaking clearly.
  • Written Expression – Communicating by writing.