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Computer Science vs. Software Engineering

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If you have an affinity for computers, you will find that your passion can easily be turned into a career in some growing fields. Pursuing your degree in a computer related field of study is the best way to turn your excitement for playing with computers into a profitable and fulfilling career path. Two of the more common degree paths for the computer savvy are Computer Science and Software Engineering, but how do you choose? Let’s take a look at some of the core differences and similarities between these courses of study.

 

1.What Will You Learn?

Computer Science and Software Engineering are two distinct courses of study, and although there is an overlap between the two, there are also important distinctions. Computer Science students will study how data is stored, processed and applied by computers and other computing devices. Heavy in applied mathematics, students of Computer Science will learn how to write software, deal with databases, secure and communicate data, develop websites and applications, as well as program computers.

 

Much of this will also be taught to students of Software Engineering, though there will be some differences in emphasis. For example, those who choose to study Software Engineering should also expect to learn programming languages and general computing principles, but with an emphasis on product design. The focus is more on the interplay of software and hardware as it relates to the execution of software design. A simplified way to understand this key difference is to look at the terms themselves. Computer Science is just that – science. Students will study a broad range of principles rather than a singular application of these principles -opening up a range of career options in the world of IT. Software Engineering is an engineering degree and will thus offer a more singular focus on the design and creation of software products.

 

2.What Can You Do with Your Degree?

Individuals with a degree in Computer Science will be desirable candidates for a wide array of fields such as web development, app design, network system, database design, IT support, software development, and game development.

Individuals with a degree in Software Engineering will be prepared for careers in large and small businesses developing software and applications.

 

3.Further Educational Prospects

Having a degree in Computer Sciences will open doors to further education, especially for students interested in pursuing a Master’s Degree with a focus on information security, database development, and administration, or artificial intelligence. Many will want to build a business with their new skills and will pursue an MBA as well.

 

Students who have majored in Software Engineering may go on to pursue a Master’s Degree focusing in a specific industry, such as games and entertainment systems, or in modeling and simulation. They may also choose to pursue a Master’s Degree in Computer Sciences or Computer Engineering to expand either their base of computational knowledge or their ability to work with computers on the level of hardware design. Others will want to go on to get their MBA as well

 

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