A computer scientist is a researcher and/or developer who specializes in computers. Their job involves finding ways to better utilize computers for a specific task, usually by inventing new applications for computer systems that haven’t been applied previously. It’s common for computer scientists to develop their own pieces of hardware and software to complement the systems they develop. Computer scientists can be found working on a variety of projects, from robotics and artificial intelligence, to applications of computers in everyday life.

Requirements for becoming a computer scientist are strict, as with any other position related to research and development. A Doctorate in computer science or computer engineering is required, and in the most extreme cases employers will be willing to hire scientists with just a Bachelor’s degree on condition that they attain a Doctorate in due time. Strong analytical skills are a must, as well as good knowledge of mathematics, basic physics, as well as electrical engineering.

After an unexpected sharp decline in the average salary for computer scientists around the end of 2009, things seem to have stabilized and the annual salary for the job has returned to its usual high rate. The current annual payment for computer scientists is between $80,000 – $94,000 and some organizations pay their researchers annual salaries of over $100,000 – though those are special cases that involve a specific set of skills or knowledge in a particular field of computer science that’s not widely popular. Compared to other jobs in the science sector though, the payment is rather low.