Should I get a minor in computer science?

Sam Fried

Table of Contents What is a minor in computer science?Why get a minor in computer science?What majors pair well with a computer science minor?BusinessEconomicsElectrical engineeringMathematicsPhysicsStatisticsIn conclusionThis article was reviewed by Monali Mirel Chuatico A minor in computer science can be a worthwhile addition to your studies, no matter your major.  […]

A minor in computer science can be a worthwhile addition to your studies, no matter your major. 

Modern companies and industries can’t function without technology. Even if you aren’t pursuing a technical career, programming and computing skills look great on your resume and can help you find more efficient ways to do your job.

Here, we explore the majors that benefit most from a minor in computer science and highlight several direct career paths for graduates in those fields. 

What is a minor in computer science?

A minor is a secondary field of study that complements a college major. Students usually complete 8-10 courses to satisfy the requirements for a minor.

A minor in computer science often includes specialized computer science courses such as cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, and database management. 

Is computer science hard as a minor? While minors require fewer courses than majors, the training still requires you to complete intensive assignments and apply technical knowledge and skills. 

A minor in computer science may have overlapping courses with majors in information technology, computer engineering, and mathematics, reducing the extra courses you’ll have to take. 

Common courses

  • Designing functional programs
  • Algorithm design
  • Software design
  • Computer organization
  • Programming paradigms
  • Data structures
  • Software development

Why get a minor in computer science?

A minor in computer science offers potential benefits including:

  • Complementing your major
  • Specialization opportunities
  • Expanding employment landscape
  • Satisfying major credit requirements
  • Exploring different fields and courses

Combining a minor in computer science with the skills you pick up during your major may help you qualify for lucrative computer science jobs.

The value of a computer science minor should continue to rise as technologies advance and industries add them to their repertoire.

While your course choices determine what you get from the minor, the skills you can acquire include: 

  • Coding
  • Troubleshooting
  • Software engineering
  • Computer architecture
  • Systems and data analysis

What majors pair well with a computer science minor?

A minor in computer science goes well with many majors, but the following represent some of the best major pairings available. 

Business

Combining a minor in computer science with a business administration degree can be a powerful blend. Graduates may use their computer expertise to improve business decision-making and integrate new technologies for greater effectiveness. 

Courses may overlap around data analysis, information management technology, and business decision-making. After graduation, you may access business careers like:

  • Business systems analyst
  • Market research analyst
  • Program/project manager

Economics

Computer science training can help economics degree students design and integrate data systems and analytical applications for their research and projects.

Courses in these programs may overlap around data analysis, data systems, and certain programming languages. With this major and minor combo, graduates may access careers including:

  • Market research analyst
  • Economic analyst
  • Data scientist
  • Financial analyst

Electrical engineering

Electrical engineers use computers to plan and assess electrical equipment. A minor in computer science gives electrical engineering degree students access to more advanced tools. They may learn coding, systems management, and hardware and software integration.

There is potential for overlap in courses between this major and minor, particularly among programming and design courses. Some possible careers for graduates on this path may include:

  • Computer engineer
  • Business technology analyst
  • Project engineer

Mathematics

A mathematics degree with a minor in computer science prepares students to power their statistics and analytical skills with technology. Students learn to use technological tools to apply and enhance their mathematical training. 

The course overlap between these two disciplines may be significant in some specializations, such as discrete mathematics and linear algebra. Possible careers for students with this type of training may include: 

  • Data scientist
  • Operations research analyst
  • Financial analyst 

Physics

A physics degree with a minor in computer science equips you with the skills to solve complex physics problems using technology and create useful applications. Students can also develop programming and design skills to support their physics expertise. 

These two disciplines overlap slightly, specifically in data and computation. Graduates with this major and minor pairing may pursue many careers, such as: 

  • Systems analyst
  • Programmer
  • Physics researcher

Statistics

Organizations want to squeeze insights from their data. With a degree in statistics and a minor in computer science, you can help. Students with training in these fields combine tech and stats to improve business operations, decision-making, and financial management. 

Course overlap may be possible in these fields, particularly in the area of mathematics, programming, and data structures. Graduates may pursue many possible careers, including: 

  • Data analyst
  • Data scientist
  • Market research analyst

In conclusion

Computer science benefits students in many fields. Adding technological expertise to your skillset can expand your capabilities and value to employers. 

Want to earn a computer science degree and minor in a complementary field? This guide can help you discover the best minors for computer science majors.

This article was reviewed by Monali Mirel Chuatico

Monali Mirel Chuatico, a woman with long dark hair, smiles in a headshot.

In 2019, Monali Mirel Chuatico graduated with her bachelor’s in computer science, giving her the foundation that she needed to excel in roles such as data engineer, front-end developer, UX designer, and computer science instructor.

Monali is currently a data engineer at Mission Lane. As a data analytics captain at a nonprofit called COOP Careers, Monali helps new grads and young professionals overcome underemployment by teaching them data analytics tools and mentoring them on their professional development journey.

Monali is passionate about implementing creative solutions, building community, advocating for mental health, empowering women, and educating youth. Monali’s goal is to gain more experience in her field, expand her skill set, and do meaningful work that will positively impact the world.

Monali Mirel Chuatico is a paid member of the Red Ventures Education freelance review network. 

Last reviewed March 24, 2022.

https://www.zdnet.com/education/computers-tech/should-i-minor-in-computer-science/

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