The Best Computer Science Bachelor’s Programs of 2021

A Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science is one of the best degrees to get in 2021, especially if you intend to pursue a career in tech. It allows you to choose from a range of specializations involving some of the most in-demand professions today.

If you’ve already made up your mind about studying computer science, the first step forward is choosing the best computer science bachelor’s programs. In this guide, we’ll look at some of the best Bachelor’s Degrees in Computer Science to help you enter the field.

Why You Should Study Computer Science

You should study computer science because it is a growing industry. The demand for people in computer science fields is expected to grow by more than 15 percent by 2029, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). For a more perspective, keep in mind that the job outlook for all occupations is four percent.

The salary expectation for computer science professionals is also on the high side in the United States. The median annual wage is $91,250, according to the BLS. So, if you want to establish a solid career, getting a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science is a step in the right direction.

At a Glance: Top 10 Computer Science Undergraduate Programs of 2021

The table below contains a summary of the best university programs for a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science. It includes the school name, program name, location, and whether there’s an online option. It also includes tuition costs, which refer to the most recent available data.

The data was sourced from each school’s official website or direct representatives. However, the tuition numbers below may be subject to change and should only be used as a guide.

School and Program State In-State
Tuition
Out-of-State
Tuition
Online
Options
California Institute of Technology (Caltech)
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
(CA) $54,570 per year $54,570 per year No
Columbia University
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
(NY) $30,672 per semester $30,672 per semester No
Duke University
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
(NC) $60,594 per year $60,594 per year No
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
and Engineering
(MA) $55,510 per year $55,510 per year No
Stanford University
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
(CA) $18,491 per year $18,491 per year No
University of Pennsylvania
Bachelor of Applied Science in Computer Science
(PA) $60,042 per year $60,042 per year No
University of California Berkeley
Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
(CA) $5,721 per semester $5,721 per semester No
University of Southern Florida
Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering
(FL) $6,410 per year $17,324 per year No
University of Washington
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
(WA) $11,487 per year $38,166 per year No
University of Texas at Austin
Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
(TX) $1,428 per semester $4,839 per semester No

What Are the Requirements for a Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree?

To get a computer science bachelor’s degree, you will need a high school diploma with good grades in mathematics, chemistry, algebra, and physics. You will also need to pass mandatory subjects like English. The higher your GPA from high school, the more likely you are to get into the best computer science universities.

If you already have an Associate Degree in Computer Science, you can most likely skip the first two years of your bachelor’s degree. This is as long as you got your 60 associate degree credits from a school that allows you to transfer credits.

Should You Pursue a Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree Online?

Should You Pursue a Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree Online?

Yes, you should pursue a computer science bachelor’s degree online, as long as you enjoy independent learning. One of the most significant benefits of a computer science degree is that you can get it online without ever stepping into a physical classroom. Online degrees offer a level of flexibility that you cannot get from in-person degrees.

If you have an important prior commitment that you can’t abandon, such as work and family, an online degree might be the best option for you. Note that most online computer science degrees are typically more affordable than regular degrees.

You’re also more likely to find an accelerated computer science major online than you are to find one in an in-person program. These accelerated degrees compress four-year programs into two years, allowing students to graduate faster. You can also find computer science courses online to supplement your education.

Choosing the Right Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree Program

How do you know which school is best for you? What factors should you consider when filling out your college applications? Make a list of what you want from a program, learn as much as you can about the best schools, and compare your list to what you’ve discovered.

Below are the most important factors you should consider when choosing a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science.

Curriculum

The best schools have solid curriculums that teach beyond the fundamentals of computer science. Whether or not you intend to specialize further, you should opt for a school with a modern curriculum. Look out for artificial intelligence, data logic, algorithms, computer architecture, programming, and machine learning.

Accreditation

Accredited universities follow the highest standard of education in a country. In the United States, degrees from most accredited schools are recognized on a global scale. So, make sure that the university is regionally or at least nationally accredited by the relevant bodies.

Internship Opportunities

Whether you opt for an online or in-person computer science degree, you need to find out if students from the school get unique internship opportunities. Some schools have arrangements with major tech companies that take in their students for hands-on training through internships.

Top 10 Computer Science Bachelor’s Degrees in 2021

The list below goes into more detail about the 10 best computer science degrees in the United States. Hopefully, this will help you make an informed decision about where to get your education. These schools offer a comprehensive education and prepare students for the real world.

California Institute of Technology (Caltech) | Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

Popularly known as Caltech, this research institute has been one of the best schools for computer science for years. It is regionally accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC). The computer science program is also accredited.

The Caltech computer science bachelor’s degree curriculum includes programming languages, algorithms, data structures, artificial intelligence, etc. As well as the departmental courses, you’ll take other mandatory courses and general electives. This combined curriculum provides a well-rounded education.

Top Features

Strong sense of community on campus and within the computer science department

Critical research opportunities

Qualified lecturers and professors

Columbia University | Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

If you’re hoping to attend an Ivy League school, Columbia University should be one of your top choices for a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science. This research institute has been around since 1754, and it is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

The computer science bachelor’s degree curriculum covers some of the most groundbreaking technologies in the industry. These include artificial intelligence, natural language processing, algorithm, programming, mathematical modeling, and a host of others.

Top Features

Comprehensive curriculum to help you start your career

Both practical and theoretical aspects of computer science

Ivy League degree

Duke University | Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

Another big name in the higher education industry is Duke. This school was founded in 1838, and it has maintained its exceptional standard of excellence since then. It is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

When you enroll in the computer science bachelor’s program, you should expect courses like computer architecture, data structures, algorithms, mathematics, artificial intelligence, programming, machine learning, and more.

Top Features

Specialization options

Research pathways on the undergraduate level

Beautiful and architecturally impressive campus

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) | Bachelor of Science in Computer Science and Engineering

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is probably already on your list. You should consider MIT because it has a global reputation as one of the best universities for sciences and engineering. It is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education. The school was founded in 1861 and has nurtured many scholars since then.

The computer science curriculum involves robotics, artificial intelligence, game development, cryptography, fintech, computational biology, and software programming. You can learn everything you need to know about computer science in this program.

Top Features

Significant professional recognition opportunities

Extensive computer science curriculum

Internship opportunities for hands-on work experience

Stanford University | Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

This is another excellent option, especially for people who want to start getting involved in research from an undergraduate level. The school is one of the best private research universities in the United States, and it has been around since 1885. The school is accredited by the WSCUC.

Like other renowned institutes on this list, the program at Stanford covers a wide range of subjects including programming, algorithms, computer architecture, and automata.

Top Features

Extensive and fast-paced curriculum

Many financial aid and scholarship options

Interdisciplinary education throughout the program

University of Pennsylvania | Bachelor of Applied Science in Computer Science

As one of the best private Ivy League institutes in the United States, getting a degree from the University of Pennsylvania will give you a major career boost. The school was founded in 1740 and is one of the oldest higher institutions for education in the United States. It is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education.

The computer science curriculum in this school isn’t just about computer science. It is interdisciplinary and integrates both liberal arts and technology. However, students can opt for a purely technical degree.

Top Features

Specialization options

Research opportunities in robotics, natural language processing, machine learning, and more

Graduation rate of 95.2 percent, above the national average

University of California Berkeley | Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

If you want to go to school in the central tech hub in the United States, consider applying for a computer science bachelor’s degree at UC Berkeley. It is one of the best universities in the California school system, and it has been around since 1868. It is accredited by the WSCUC.

The computer science bachelor’s program follows a rigorous curriculum, and it can be taken as a combined degree with electrical engineering. Note that the course options don’t leave much room for other topics.

Top Features

More accessible honors degree with a 3.70 required CGPA

Combined bachelor’s and master’s degree program, which can be completed in five years

More job opportunities upon graduation

University of Southern Florida | Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering

This is another excellent option for a computer science degree. The school has been around since 1956, and it has a relatively high acceptance rate of 48 percent. It might not be among the oldest schools in the United States, but it is regionally accredited by the SACSCOC.

The computer engineering program covers information technology, cyber security, algorithms, computer logic design, discrete structures, programming, and computer systems. If you want to get your degree in Florida, this is your best option.

Top Features

Much more affordable than other schools

Flexible multi-campus system

Many extracurricular activities and school spirit opportunities

University of Washington | Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

One of the best Bachelor’s Degrees in Computer Science is at the University of Washington. This public institute is located in the heart of Seattle, and it has been around since 1861. The school is accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.

Like the University of Pennsylvania, this school allows people to get a computer science bachelor’s degree from the department of liberal arts. Courses include software and hardware programming, artificial intelligence, and more.

Top Features

Affordable tuition compared to other schools

Computer science engineering degree option

Extensive extracurricular activities, including fraternities and sororities

University of Texas at Austin | Bachelor of Science in Computer Science

The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin) has a versatile computer science curriculum. It allows students to choose from six different educational paths. UT Austin has been around since 1883, and it is accredited by the SACSCOC.

Aside from the unique specialization options available, students can also choose the integrated program for more versatility. Some of the courses include computer science, programming, and algorithms.

Top Features

Fair acceptance rate compared to other universities at 32 percent

Globally recognized athletic programs

Strong technology and mathematics reputation

Career Options With Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree

Career Options With Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree

With a computer science bachelor’s degree, you can work as an IT analyst, computer scientist, network architect, software developer, data scientist, or product manager.

A graduate with a computer science bachelor’s degree isn’t limited to working in the tech industry. The digital age makes companies more reliant on computer-based systems. So, you can work in any company that needs a system administrator irrespective of the field.

Top Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree Careers

Profession Average Salary
Network Architect $121,224
Machine Learning Engineer $112,595
Product Manager $97,865
Data Scientist $96,491
Software Engineer $87,293

How Much Can I Expect to Earn With a Computer Science Bachelor’s Degree?

With a bachelor’s degree in computer science, you can earn an average salary of about $80,236, according to ZipRecruiter. ZipRecruiter reports that the salary could be as high as $176,500 or as low as $22,500, depending on the location and job description.

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Should You Get a Bachelor's Degree in Computer Science?

Yes, a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science is an ideal choice in today’s world. If you are technologically inclined, you can convert your natural interests to a rewarding career. All the available evidence shows that the demand for computer science and related fields will keep increasing as long as technological advancements continue.

After completing your Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science, you don’t have to end there. Many graduates go on to a graduate degree like a Master’s Degree or PhD in Computer Science. So, yes, this degree is worth the investment in 2021.

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