Computer Science vs. Information Technology (Part 2): Skills You Need to Succeed

As you continue to explore the field of technology, it might be time to start narrowing down the best area of study for you. But before you spend the time and money in a college degree, it’s important to have all of the information.

After all, you are about to embark on a difficult, yet rewarding, journey towards a new career.

A common debate many prospective technology students encounter is that of computer science versus information technology. The two seem quite similar on the surface, so it’s easy to confuse one for the other.

But when you’re considering earning a technology degree, being aware of the fundamental differences between these two areas of study will better prepare you to make your decision.

The second article in a series on “Computer Science vs. Information Technology,” this installment explores the day-to-day skills needed to survive and thrive in each industry.

After analyzing more than 87,000 job postings over the past three months*, we identified the top 15 skills employers are looking for in each field. You’ll notice some crossover in the required skills for each job sector but they are ranked in order of importance to each industry.

Skills needed for a career in computer science

A majority of the computer science skills in highest demand feature very technical skills dealing with specific programs and coding languages. This comes as no surprise, considering computer science is deeply rooted in mathematical algorithms and programming.


How many of these skills sound familiar? If your list is short—don’t worry! A degree in computer science is specifically designed to introduce students to new skills and help you polish the ones you already have.

Skills needed for a career in information technology

Information technology (IT) deals with resolving business processes through the use of computer programs. The technical skills required by IT professionals should be complimented by administrative and support skills, due to the problem-solving nature of the industry.



Now that you’re aware of what is required, which skills do you already possess? If you’re uneasy about some, that’s perfectly normal. A degree in information technology will help you acquire the unique combination of skills needed for a career in IT.

Hopefully this information provides a little more clarity about the skills necessary for a job in computer science versus information technology. An understanding of the necessary skills will allow you to align them with your existing abilities and interests.

This knowledge ought to bring you one step closer to deciding which degree is right for you.


The final two articles in the series will focus on the respective salary information, career outlook and job locations for computer science and IT. “Like” our Rasmussen College School of Technology Facebook page to be alerted when these articles are published.


*Source: (11/16/2012 – 02/11/2012)

External links provided on are for reference only. Rasmussen College does not guarantee, approve, control, or specifically endorse the information or products available on websites linked to, and is not endorsed by website owners, authors and/or organizations referenced.

Callie is the Associate Content Marketing Manager at Collegis Education. She oversees all blog content on behalf of Rasmussen College. She is passionate about providing quality content to empower others to improve their lives.

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