Can You Earn a Six-Figure Salary Without a Computer Science Degree?

Wondering if you can earn a high salary without an expensive degree? The answer is yes! Many tech jobs do not require a bachelor’s degree in computer science if you have the right experience and skills. You can even earn a high five or six-figure salary without a degree if you know the right career path to take.

Here are some jobs that have six-figure earning potential without requiring a degree.

Systems Administrator

According to the job site Paysa, 56 percent of recent job postings for systems administrators did not require applicants to have a degree. While pay varies widely for these positions, which mainly require thorough knowledge of the system being used and troubleshooting/analytical skills, some listings were above six figures, particularly when counting signing bonuses. Certifications may be required or be an advantage for a systems administrator position.

Network Security Specialist

Paysa also reports that 65 percent of recent job postings for network security specialists did not require a degree, and salaries for this position were well into six figures for many jobs. Skills needed include knowledge about how to protect the security of computer networks, Cisco experience (since networks often use Cisco technology), and possibly some web development skills to be able to get into the online system and fix it when necessary. Short-term courses and certifications can give you this background.

Web Designer/Developer

IT certifications
A lucrative tech career may start with the right certifications rather than a four-year degree.
If you can design great websites, no one will care about whether you have a college degree or not. Quality web designers are in high demand, either working exclusively for a single company with one or more complex websites, or as a freelancer or entrepreneur designing and supporting sites for various smaller companies.

UI/UX Designer

These positions are focused on user experiences, so web design knowledge is a must along with the ability to test out how users will react to the designs.

WordPress/PHP Developer

Many companies use WordPress for their blogs or even for their entire site design—there are over 60 million WordPress sites to date. If you can navigate all the complexities of this platform and make it easy for companies to use WordPress to meet their needs, you can command a six-figure salary even without a degree.

Mobile App Developer

Even high school kids are developing apps these days, but it is a rapidly expanding field that can sometimes encompass other web technologies like CSS and JavaScript as mobile technology gets ever more complex. Mobile app developers that can provide quality applications that are easy to navigate and user-friendly will easily be able to make six figures whether they have a bachelor’s degree or not.

QA Engineer

Quality assurance engineers test out software and applications to make sure they adhere to quality standards—in other words, that final products work correctly, well, and as intended for consumers. Only slightly more than half of job postings screened by Paysa required a bachelor’s degree for QA engineers, and the mid-range salary for these jobs was in the six-figure range.

Note that many of these jobs do not start out as six-figure positions, but with some time and experience, there is definite six-figure potential in certain tech jobs even without a bachelor’s or advanced degree. PC AGE provides courses that will develop skills in these areas along with certification preparation courses that can show employers you have the necessary skills for a given position even without a degree. Take our computer aptitude test to see if a tech career might be within your reach.

Rameez Khizer, IT Marketing