Computer Science Career Profiles

Computer and Information Research Scientist

A computer scientist is an applied mathematician who interprets problems arising from the physical sciences and engineering in mathematical form and develops mathematical solutions to these problems. Computation scientist use large and sophisticated computers intensively. Potential employers include government laboratories, the chemical industry, and the biotech industry.

Computer Programmer

Computer programmers write, test, and maintain programs or software that tells the computer what to do. They convert project specifications and statements of problems and procedures to detailed logical flow charts for coding into computer language. They develop and write computer programs to store, locate, and retrieve specific documents, data, and information.

Computer Systems Analyst

Computer systems analysts solve computer problems and apply computer technology to meet the individual needs of an organization. They help an organization to realize the maximum benefit from its investment in equipment, personnel, and business processes. Most systems analysts work with specific types of systems - for example, business, accounting, or financial systems, or scientific and engineering systems - that vary with the kind of organization.


Cryptanalysts analyze and decipher secret coding systems and decode messages for military, political, or law enforcement agencies or organizations. They help provide privacy for people and corporations, and keep hackers out of important data systems. Cryptanalysts seek to secure many of the following information systems including the Internet, e-mail, and home banking.

Database Administrator

Database managers work with database management systems software and determine ways to organize and store data. They identify user requirements, set up computer databases, and test and coordinate modifications to the computer database systems. A database manager ensures the performance of the system and may also design and implement system security.

Operations Research Analyst

Operations research analysts work with an organization's management team to define a performance or inventory problem. The analyst then breaks the problem down into its basic parts and analyzes each part to determine how best to increase efficiency and lower costs. Some of the larger employers of operations research analysts include telecommunications firms, air carriers, computer and data processing firms, financial institutions and the federal government.

Software Developer

Software developers analyze users' needs and design, construct, and maintain general computer applications software of specialized utility programs. Some develop both packaged systems and systems software or create customized applications.

Systems Analyst

Systems analysts interact with others in a variety of disciplines, depending on their particular industry, and strive to ensure that the individual parts can work together to perform a desired function. These analysts are the middleman between the end-user and the computer system. They assess the needs of the end-user and translate them into programming.