PhD in Computer Science — Making Ones and Zeroes Add Up
A PhD in computer science gives you a huge advantage when looking for work at industry research labs. Information research scientists design new technology and find new uses for existing technology. Earning a PhD in computer science proves your ability to operate on a theoretical level and think independently.
Why Should You Get a PhD in Computer Science?
Doctoral programs focus on creating new knowledge. A PhD is the highest degree that one can earn. Because this degree requires intense intellectual effort and extended study, less than one percent of the population holds a PhD. Getting a doctorate in computer science will help you become a competent and independent researcher who is prepared to pursue an academic or scientific career.
Here are some of the main benefits of earning a PhD in computer science:
- Develop presentation and writing skills.
- Gain expertise in your area of interest.
- Get a high paying job.
- Learn to solve complex problems.
- Gain critical thinking skills.
- Build networking skills.
- Develop planning and management skills.
- Gain an understanding of professional and ethical standards.
- Achieve academic and financial independence.
Students should be able to publish and present ideas in different formats by the end of their PhD. You should also prove your ability to conduct a research project on your own and work with others in different roles, including supervising, collaborating, or under supervision. Students must be familiar with conventions on plagiarism, adding co-authors, and attribution of ideas and text. Your success depends entirely on your ability to work independently and manage your time effectively.
The most popular paths to a PhD in computer science are the following:
- Doctor of Computer Science (DCS)
- Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) in Computer Science
- Doctor of Education (EdD) with a Computer Science Specialization
All these degrees are considered theoretically advanced. The path you take will depend on your career goals. Most scientists holding a PhD in computer science work for computer systems design companies, scientific research firms, or the federal government. The average income of a computer and information research scientist is $100,660. Those who work in computer science enjoy excellent job opportunities — employment of computer research scientists is predicted to grow 19 percent between now and 2020.
A PhD usually requires four to five years of study after earning a bachelor’s degree. The emphasis in doctoral programs is not on classes, but rather on research. During your PhD program you will need to choose a specialty, such as robotics. Students must have good analytical skills, advanced math skills, and communication skills. They should also be detail-oriented and come up with innovative ways to solve problems.
Upon completing a PhD, most students either go into academia or work in research labs. Earning a PhD in computer science is a high honor that will bring you closer to your career goals.