4 answers

Should I go to grad school for computer science if I'm not interested in doing research?

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Someone told me that grad school is mainly for research so now I am thinking whether grad school is necessary for me since I'm not planning to do research. #computer-science #graduate-school

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4 answers

Jamie’s Answer

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Grad school is not only for research, but research is one of your options in grad school. If you don't want to do years of research, perhaps a Master's is more up your alley. I know plenty of people who did a Masters in CS in order to work as engineers. A PhD will certainly help if you're interested in academia, but you can also work in industry with a PhD. Many companies look for people with research backgrounds to fill engineering, research, and design roles. That degree shows your deep, deep level of knowledge about a specific topic more than a BS or Master's does. For example, my husband has his PhD in computational linguistics (thesis was about toponym disambiguation using machine learning) and works as an engineer, not doing research. But his high level of education has helped him find the specific type of work he wants to do. To sum up: grad school is never necessary, but is also never a bad thing.

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Joanne’s Answer

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One of the benefits of grad school is that you can specialize a little more. Also, if you are already employed, your employer may assist with the costs and no one wants to give away 'free money'.


However, if you are looking for something to put on a resume, get some certifications - that seems to be the golden ticket nowadays.

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Glenn’s Answer

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Grad school can help you get a higher-paying job, even if you have no interest in research. It demonstrates a higher level of commitment and knowledge of more advanced techniques and makes you more attractive for higher level positions.

When I started at Bell Labs many years ago, they required that I get a Master's degree. Luckily for me, they also payed the tuition and fees, but having the degree has certainly been an asset to my career.

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Joe’s Answer

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Kemi...without knowing your current education level and status this is too open a question. From a general point of view, you should never establish limits on your education or career options before you have even started. How do you know you are not interested in research?


My suggestion...talk to people who are actually in the career field and ask them what did they do to prepare, what do they wish they had done to prepare, and what ongoing education have they needed to maintain proficiency?

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