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The Differences Between Computer Science vs Information Technology

Did you know that only 10% of Americans do not use the internet?

If you are currently deciding between tech careers but are confused about the difference between computer science vs information technology, you are in the right place. We have put together this guide to share more about the main differences between both.

The Differences Between Computer Science vs Information Technology

Keep reading to learn the ins and outs of computer science and of information technology and the definition of each one.

Computer Science

Computer Science is when you are learning about mathematics and the algorithms that you need in order to build and solve problems with the use of computers. If you opt for computer science as a career you will need to understand the theories that computing is based on.

You will also need to have practical programming skills in order to develop complex systems and also build code. As a student, you will learn the different practices and tools that go into the technology development process.

In summary, computer science will focus on the skills that you need to build complex systems from the ground up.

Information Technology 

With information technology, the goal is to configure the systems that are made in computer science to solve business problems.

Anyone in an IT position or role will have to take ownership of the system they are working with to make sure that they are integrated properly when introduced to the market and also that it is running correctly and that it will continue to run correctly over time.

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The most common IT specialists work with servers, networks, software, databases, and hardware. You can find out more about getting a grip on IT service management as well.


There are a few differences between the skills needed between a computer scientist and an information technologist. The traits and skills that a computer scientist needs include strong attention to detail, advanced programming abilities, an innovative mindset, and the ability to focus for long periods of time.

A computer scientist also has to be able to understand and solve complex math problems, and they have the knowledge of programming languages. The most common programming languages you will need to know about include C++, Java, XML, Python, SQL, etc.

An information technologist will need to have more basic programming abilities and basic coding, they also need to have leadership skills. Also, an IT specialist will need to have excellent interpersonal skills, a desire to learn and stay on top of changing technology trends, great presentational abilities, and project management skills.

Career Outlook

Whether you choose computer science or information technology as your career, both of these have jobs on the rise in the next few years due to such dramatic advancements in technology. Employment in both fields is projected to grow 11% between 2019 and 2029.

Out of both career choices, computer science shows to be higher in terms of career outlook and salary. A computer scientist’s average base salary is $81,291 as of the writing of this post. An information technologist’s average salary as of the writing of this post is $57,875.00.

Job Titles

Another difference between a computer scientist and an information technologist is the job title you can go after once you graduate.

If you go after a computer science degree you can have a title of a software developer who is sometimes referred to as software engineers. A software developer’s responsibility is to use code to build programs with different functions.

Another job title that a computer scientist can pursue is as a computer network architect. These employees are able to create communication networks in the form of a complex infrastructure or on a one-to-one scale.

You also have the option of becoming a computer scientist where you will code, program, explore high-level mathematical theories, and design complex systems.

If you choose the information technologist route one of the job titles you can hold is as a computer support specialist. The main responsibility of a computer support specialist is to provide technical assistance to individual customers or to organizations that need help with their devices.

An information technologist can also hold the job title as an enterprise architect. Enterprise architects have to maintain the function of certain IR products and services. They also have to inform business teams about new technology, new updates, and they provide feedback for potential areas where things can be improved.

You can also become a test engineer as an information technologist. As a test engineer, you work closely with user interfaces. You will manually test products and test programs to make sure that they are working correctly.

Test engineers also make sure that the quality is up to the standards of the brand and ensure that they are working correctly.


As far as the classes they are very similar for both career choices. The electives differentiate depending on what type of job you are trying to land after graduating. Some elective options for a computer science degree include robotic control, digital signal processing, modeling, and simulation.

The most common electives for a degree in information technology are business information systems, analysis of information systems, inter-networking, and design of information systems.

Feeling Like a Computer Science vs Information Technology Pro?

We hope that now that you are aware of computer science vs information technology you can make an informed decision on which career choice is best for you.

Did you find this article helpful? Keep browsing around the rest of this section for some of our latest tech articles and reads.


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