National Avg. Salary

$84,360 More Salary Data →

Job Growth Rate

-8% More Growth Data →

Recommended Degree

Bachelor's Programs & Degrees →


  • Creativity Focused
  • Dependable Daily Workload
  • Fast Paced Career
  • Good Entry Level Salary

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Computer programmers write code that computers read to work properly.  Software engineers develop and write the software which the programmers translate into instruction for the computer to understand.

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Job Description

The following responsibilities are common for Computer Programmers:

  • Writes programs in a variety of computer languages like Java and C++
  • Updates and expands the data on existing software programs
  • Debugs software programs by testing for and correcting any errors
  • Builds computer software engineering tools to automate the writing of specific code
  • Uses code libraries, or collections of independent code lines, to simplify coding procedures

A Day In The Life

Computer programmers write code through specific coding language like Java, C++ or MEL.  They create instructions for the computer to follow.  Their main responsibility is to write code and manipulate it into language that the computer can understand.

Programmers work closely with software engineers.  Some duties between programmers and engineers often overlap.  When this happen, it entails that a programmer can initially design and plan the software, while creating models and flow charts, detailing how the code is written, and debugging the code and designing applications for the systems interface.  Some programs are relatively simple and only take a week to write, while others can be very complex and take a year or more to complete.

Typical Work Schedule

This is a full-time positions, with the majority of their time spent in an office setting.  Some overtime may be required depending on projects and deadlines.

Projected Job Growth

With a consistently expanding world of technology that we live in, the need for computer programmers will be in high demand for many years to come.

Typical Employers

Software companies are the main employers of these individuals.  But government agencies and other private sector companies like banks and law firms have also been employing  a large amount of computer programmers as well.

Can I Become a Computer Programmer?

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Computer Programmer Salary Data

We've provided you the following to learn more about this career. The salary and growth data on this page comes from recently published Bureau of Labor Statistics data while the recommendations and editorial content are based on our research.

National Annual Salary

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National Hourly Wage

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How do Computer Programmer salaries stack up to other jobs across the country? Based on the latest jobs data nationwide, Computer Programmer's can make an average annual salary of $84,360, or $41 per hour. On the lower end, they can make $60,250 or $29 per hour, perhaps when just starting out or based on the state you live in.

Salary Rankings And Facts

  • #123 Nationally for All Careers

  • Above Average Salary Nationally

What Will Your State Pay?

State Hourly Annual
California $00.000 $00.000
Texas $00.000 $00.000
Florida $00.000 $00.000
Washington $00.000 $00.000
Tennessee $00.000 $00.000

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How To Become

An individual must first consider the best type of training for themselves.  There are several educational pathway options available.  Although a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field is recommended for this position.  Most programmers learn only a few different languages while in school.  The main and first computer languages a student should become familiar with is Python and JavaScript.  A computer science degree give the student the skills required to learn new computer language easily.  During their coursework students should receive hands-on experience in writing code, debugging programs and software development among many other classes.  While certification is not required, earning certifications in certain programming languages can be extremely helpful.  Experience is also helpful.  There are many opportunities for internships and job-shadowing programs to help a student gain experience.  They can also learn the programming language basics from home as well as play around in any software they may already have.  Also, to keep up with the constant changing technology, these individuals will also need to maintain continuing education courses in their field to learn new programming languages and and any software upgrades they may need to be aware of.

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Quick Summary

  • Recommended Min. Degree


Programs and Degrees

Here are the most common degrees for becoming a Computer Programmer. a Bachelor's is usually recommended and specifically a degree or coursework that prepares you for the particular field, see below.

Highest Education Among Computer Programmer

  • 2.5%   Doctorate
  • 19.6%   Masters
  • 49.7%   Bachelors
  • 9.7%   Associates
  • 13.1%   College
  • 4.7%   High School
  • 0.7%   Less than High School

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Job Growth Projections and Forecast

2014 Total Jobs


2024 Est. Jobs


Job Growth Rate


Est. New Jobs


How does Computer Programmer job growth stack up to other jobs across the country? By 2024, there will be a change of -26,400 jobs for a total of 302,200 people employed in the career nationwide. This is a -8% change in growth over the next ten years, giving the career a growth rate nationwide of Above Average.

Growth Rankings And Facts

  • #729 Nationally for All Careers

  • Above Avg. Growth Nationally

Is There Growth in My State?

State No. of Jobs Job Growth
California 00% 00%
Texas 00% 00%
Florida 00% 00%
Nevada 00% 00%
New York 00% 00%
Chicago 00% 00%

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What Companies Employ The Most Computer Programmers

Industry Current Jobs New Jobs Needed % Increase
Computer systems design and related services 126,100 -26,800 -27%
Software publishers 0000 0000 0000
Self-employed workers 0000 0000 0000

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