A Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science is More Valuable Than Ever Before

As I mentioned in a previous post about software trends, I believe computer science and custom development is evolving rapidly. Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about my undergraduate degree, a Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science, and how that affects my relationship with the industry. When I started at Atomic, I noticed some of my colleagues held a bachelor’s in science, and they seemed to have more coding skills out of the gate. But, as time evolves I’m becoming more aware of the shifting landscape of technology and the importance of adapting to these changes. I know that I might be biased, but with this perspective in mind, let’s explore why a B.A. in Computer Science is particularly relevant in the evolving field of computing and how it’s helping me adapt.

1. Embracing Interdisciplinary Learning

I’ve written previously about the importance of being a strong collaborator, which applies to everything from design to domain experts to testers to researchers. As AI advances, basic coding and web development skills may become less in demand and commoditized. Instead, the ability to combine computer science with other disciplines, such as psychology, economics, or design, becomes increasingly valuable. A B.A. program creates professionals ready to explore these intersections, fostering creativity and innovation in the process.

2. Understanding the Human aspect of computing

Technology touches every aspect of our lives, and understanding the human element has never been more important. We have a lot of content on Spin that has highlighted the importance of human-centered design and user experience in creating successful tech products. A BA in Computer Science exposes students with insights into research, design patterns, and teamwork, enabling them to create software that not only functions well but also enhances the lives of its users.

3. Navigating Ethical and Societal Challenges when creating technology

Ethical considerations loom large in the development and deployment of technology. I think we can all look at social media and see that when a system is built that doesn’t consider safety from the start, adapting it to be safer for everyone is much more difficult. I’m not saying a B.A. is a silver bullet for creating ethical products, but equipping students to at least consider the ethical and safety challenges they create is a start. A B.A. program encourages students to grapple with these complex issues, fostering a sense of responsibility and empathy in the process.

4. Communicating Across Disciplines

Effective communication is essential for success in any field, but it’s particularly crucial in the interdisciplinary world of computer science. Software is rarely built alone, almost always with a team. My previous writings have underscored the importance of communication skills in bridging the gap between technical and non-technical stakeholders. A B.A. in Computer Science emphasizes these skills, enabling graduates to convey complex technical concepts to diverse audiences and collaborate effectively in interdisciplinary teams.

5. Adapting to Rapid Change

In my discussions about the future of coding, I’ve speculated that AI may eventually automate many basic coding and web development tasks. In this rapidly changing landscape, adaptability is key. A B.A. program instills a mindset of lifelong learning, preparing graduates to stay ahead of the curve as technology evolves.

While personal bias may be shifting my perspective, the value of a Bachelor of Arts in Computer Science seems strong to me long term. By emphasizing interdisciplinary learning, understanding the human element, navigating ethical challenges, communicating effectively, and fostering adaptability, this degree equips graduates to succeed in an ever-changing tech landscape.


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