Top 10 High-Paying Computer Science Jobs You Can Land Without a Degree
Computer science is a unique field because, in many cases, your skills and abilities are far more important than your education. With a strong enough portfolio or a coding bootcamp certificate, you can land computer science jobs without a degree and gain the real-world experience you need to progress your career.
As the demand for skilled tech workers grows, many top companies have stopped requiring degrees for entry-level computer science jobs, and even for select higher-level positions. In this article, we will discuss how to get into IT without a degree, including alternative educational options, what salary you can expect, and what jobs you can qualify for.
What Are the Highest-Paying Tech Jobs Without a Degree Requirement?
You can find tech jobs without a degree requirement in a range of fields, including cyber security, software development, and data science. Many of these positions are known to be high-paying, even at the entry level. Gaining a few years of relevant experience or industry certifications can help you negotiate a higher salary, especially if you don’t have a degree.
|Cyber security analyst||$78,963|
|Mobile app developer||$77,954|
|Tech sales representative||$64,049|
|Computer support specialist||$41,420|
10 Highest-Paying Tech Jobs Without a Degree Requirement: Explained
The best tech jobs for people without a degree tend to require specialized knowledge and technical skills. That is one of the reasons why short, skill-based training programs like coding bootcamps are so effective at preparing people for these positions. Read on for further information about the best computer science jobs without a degree requirement.
Software engineering is one of the highest-paying computer science jobs that you can land without a degree, and it requires particularly strong programming and development skills. Without a degree, you may need a few years of relevant experience or industry certifications to boost your resume.
Software engineers develop, test, and maintain all sorts of software programs. They often work on a larger scale than software developers and can be involved in each stage of the software development life cycle.
Cyber Security Analyst
Cyber security analysts are in charge of protecting an organization’s computer systems and databases from cyber criminals. This involves identifying and preventing potential security breaches, responding to active threats, and improving security protocols.
Cyber security skills are in very high demand across nearly every industry, which provides plenty of opportunities for those with impressive technical knowledge, regardless of their educational background. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that the job growth rate of information security analysts is 35 percent over the next decade, which is well above the average across all careers.
Mobile App Developer
Computer programmer is a perfect entry-level computer science job because these roles rarely require a degree and there are numerous resources online that can help you master the required skills. A computer programming job can also give you valuable work experience that will make it easier to progress into more advanced roles.
Another well-known tech job without a degree requirement is data analyst. While majoring in statistics, computer science, or information systems can be very useful in breaking into this field, you can be just as successful after graduating from a data analytics bootcamp.
Data analysts are in charge of organizing, cleaning, and interpreting large sets of data. They also need to be able to clearly communicate their findings and identify key insights that help drive business decisions.
Tech Sales Representative
Tech sales representative is the perfect role for tech enthusiasts with especially strong communication skills. You don’t need a degree or experience with programming, but you will need enough technical knowledge to clearly explain tech products and services to customers.
Sales experience is often enough to land this position, but you can also become a tech sales rep by attending a bootcamp like Flockjay or Springboard. Tech sales bootcamps provide hands-on experience and cover all the essential tools and soft skills students need to get hired in this field.
As a web developer, you will be in charge of creating and maintaining websites. Some web developers focus only on the user-facing side of the website, while others specialize in developing the server side. Full stack developers are capable of doing both.
To become a web developer without a degree, you can attend a coding bootcamp or teach yourself the required skills using online courses and tutorials. Many self-taught web developers start off as freelancers to gain real-world experience and improve their resumes before applying for full-time jobs.
Web designer is another good example of a tech job that doesn’t require a degree, because many people in this role got their start by attending a UX/UI design bootcamp or by practicing the right skills independently. Web designers are in charge of creating the layout for websites. They decide how major elements, like menus and media, should be displayed, as well as which colors, fonts, and graphics will be most effective.
If you are looking for a career in the computer science sector that combines technical and artistic skills, graphic designer might be one to consider. Graphic designers create visual concepts that can communicate important information in an easy-to-understand way. The graphics they design are often incorporated into websites, advertisements, and marketing materials.
Computer Support Specialist
Computer support specialist is a common entry-level computer science job that doesn’t require a degree. In this position, you will help customers with their IT problems by identifying the problem and brainstorming effective solutions. Besides being an expert on computer networks and servers, you’ll need great customer service skills.
How Do I Get Into Computer Science Without a Degree?
To get into computer science without a degree, the first thing you need to do is choose what career you are striving for. This will allow you to identify what skills and technologies you need to master. Below, we lay out a step-by-step process to get you started down your dream career path.
Step 1: Make a Plan
Before you can begin studying, you need to identify your target job. Research the possibilities and find a career that interests you and fits your strengths. It might be a good idea to use free online courses and tutorials to try out different fields if you are struggling to decide which path is the best fit.
Step 2: Choose a Learning Method
Once you have a career in mind, research the field more heavily until you have a good idea of what skills you’ll need to learn and how much experience you will need to get hired. This will be essential in helping you identify your learning method. Online courses and free tutorials can be great resources if you only need to pick up a few technologies.
If you don’t have a background in tech, a coding bootcamp is often a better option because they provide structure, ensuring that you don’t miss out on essential topics, and offer career services. There are coding bootcamp programs designed to train you for any one of the best tech jobs without a degree requirement on our list.
Step 3: Practice Your Skills
Building projects to improve your skills is an important way of preparing for a real-world work environment while simultaneously helping you develop a portfolio. Depending on your chosen career, a portfolio will be essential in representing your abilities to potential customers or employees.
Step 4: Look for Entry-Level Work Opportunities
Once you have a strong handle on all the technical skills you need for your line of work, the next step is to begin gaining real-world experience. One option is to apply for internships, apprenticeships, or part-time computer science jobs. Any of these options will help you improve your resume and build relationships with others in your field.
Freelancing is another way to improve your abilities and widen your network. Many web developers, graphic designers, and web designers begin by freelancing, and some even prefer it to traditional full-time employment.
Step 5: Begin Applying for Jobs
Now that you have an impressive portfolio and work experience on your resume, you’ll be in the perfect position to begin applying for your dream position. Depending on your background, level of experience, and chosen field, you can improve your application by gaining industry certifications.
Computer Science Entry-Level Salary
While you can land mid-level tech positions without a degree at many major companies, without the right experience, you may need to start with entry-level positions. The average computer science salary for entry-level jobs tends to be somewhere between $40,000 and $60,000, depending on the position.
For example, Glassdoor reports that the average entry-level salary for a web developer is $62,079. Data analysts have an average entry-level salary of $48,365, and entry-level web designers earn a similar wage of $47,508.
What Companies Offer Computer Science Jobs Without a Degree Requirement?
Major tech companies, like Amazon, Microsoft, and HP hire tech workers for a range of roles even if they don’t have a degree. A study from the Burning Glass Institute found that Accenture and IBM in particular have significantly reduced the number of roles that require a degree in recent years. Only 40 percent of software developer roles at Accenture require a degree.
Companies that offer tech jobs without a degree requirement include:
Coding Bootcamp vs Computer Science Degree: Which Should I Choose?
Coding bootcamps and university degrees can both be viable paths toward a successful tech career. The best option for you will depend on your career goals, professional history, and available resources. Many people choose to enter the tech industry without a degree to avoid the cost and time associated with attending a traditional university for four years.
Coding bootcamps provide a fast and more affordable method of gaining the skills and support you need to land computer science jobs without a degree. Just because you haven’t attended university doesn’t mean you can’t succeed in the tech field. There are numerous opportunities out there in web development, data analytics, web design, and more.
Computer Science Jobs Without a Degree FAQ
Yes, you can work in IT without a degree or work experience if you have strong enough skills. However, you will need to start with entry-level work and may have the most success applying for internship and apprenticeship roles.
Examples of entry-level IT jobs include IT technician, systems administrator, and systems analyst. These are all positions that you can apply for even if you don’t have a computer science or IT degree.
Common jobs for coding bootcamp graduates include data analyst, web developer, software engineer, and UX/UI designer. Companies that regularly hire bootcamp graduates include Amazon, Accenture, and JP Morgan Chase & Co.