Build a future in computer science
- $330/credit (120 total credits)
- Transfer up to 90 credits
- Median annual salary of $120,730 for software developers1
- Accredited by NECHE
- Learn Python, Java and C++
- Use industry-standard software development and testing tools
Computer Science Degree Overview
Gain the skills you need to enter one of the nation's fastest-growing fields with your online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Computer Science from SNHU.
Armed with these skills, along with fluency in today's most widely used programming languages, you'll be proficient with software employers use – giving you a critical advantage that can help advance your career.
Aligned with industry standards: SNHU's online CS degree program employs industry-standard software development and testing tools like Eclipse, OpenGL, Cucumber with Maven and Junit testing.
Technology resources: SNHU provides cloud-based virtual environments in some courses to give you access to the technology you need for your degree – and your career. Learn more about our virtual environments.
What You'll Learn
- Software project planning
- Portfolio creation and management
- Agile software methodologies
- Full-stack development
- Security mindset
How You'll Learn
At SNHU, you'll get support from day 1 to graduation and beyond. And with no set class times, 24/7 access to the online classroom, and helpful learning resources along the way, you'll have everything you need to reach your goals.
Build structured databases, explore big data and learn how to clean data in SNHU’s online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Computer Science with a concentration in Data Analysis.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job prospects for software developers are set to grow 26% through 2031 – well above the national average.1 Armed with a specialized CS degree in data analysis, candidates can gain additional skills to help them stand out in an exciting and competitive field.
The concentration in data analysis introduces various functions of a data analyst, including creating database environments, learning regression analysis and using tools and technologies for analysis. You’ll have the option to explore topics of interest including big data and data validation.
If you're interested in a career in data science, you may also want to explore our full data analytics degree online program.
Courses may include:
- Structured Database Environments
- Emerging Technologies and Big Data
- Data Validation: Quality and Cleaning
Project Management for STEM
Become a project management expert while learning the ins and outs of computer science and software development with SNHU's online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Computer Science with a concentration in Project Management for STEM.
The Project Management Institute (PMI)® predicts that 25 million new project professionals are needed by 2030.2 Along with these numbers, and the projection that jobs in the IT and computer science fields will grow at record numbers in the coming years, there's a great need for qualified project managers who understand the complex world of computer science.
The project management for STEM concentration provides a focused study of the methodologies and tools necessary for managing projects effectively. Emphasizing business processes, goals and techniques, you’ll develop the skills of an experienced project manager by creating detailed project plans for real scenarios.
If you're seeking a more business-focused program, you may also be interested in our online project management degree concentration in business administration.
Courses may include:
- Project Management
- Resource Estimating and Scheduling
- Adaptive Project Management
Gain a fundamental overview of the basics of computer networking and security with SNHU's online Bachelor of Science (BS) in Computer Science degree with a concentration in Information Security.
In the information security concentration, you’ll learn about the interconnectivity of computer systems while exploring the fundamentals of computer networking. Gain familiarity with foundational cybersecurity policies, procedures, best practices and security planning within the IT field. Explore how legal and human factors influence the development of information security strategies.
If you're interested in a career in information security, you may also want to explore our full online cybersecurity degree program.
Courses may include:
- Computer Systems Security
- Computer Networking
- Cybersecurity Foundations
Learn the fundamental concepts and principles of software engineering – a systematic approach used to develop software on time, on budget and within specifications – with a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Computer Science with a Software Engineering concentration from SNHU.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, job prospects for software developers are set to soar 26% through 2031 – well above the national average.1 Armed with a specialized computer science degree in software engineering, candidates can gain additional skills to help them stand out in an exciting and competitive field.
The online software engineering degree concentration introduces concepts, techniques and principles of software design and development. Exploring user interface (UI) and user experience (UX) concepts and techniques, this concentration emphasizes user-centricity and contemporary techniques. You’ll learn approaches to reverse engineer code, develop secure code and test code.
Courses may include:
- UI/UX Design and Development
- Secure Coding
- Software Reverse Engineering
Earn Your Computer Science Degree Online at SNHU
Whether you’re new to the field or looking to build your resume, Southern New Hampshire University’s online BS in Computer Science degree offers a perfect pathway to advance your career.
Computer Science Career Outlook
"No argument, the computer science field is growing," said Loay Alnaji, a web developer and adjunct instructor for SNHU.
Earning a bachelor's in computer science will also help prepare you for jobs across a number of different industries and organizations.
"A computer scientist can work in any organization in the world. He/she can be a programmer, bank analyst, data base administrator, instructor, [and] write his/her own applications (especially mobile apps)," Alnaji said. "You can start as a programmer and become a system analyst, be a manager, supervise others, [and] work throughout the software development life cycle of any project."
Graduates like Michael Richards '23 appreciate all of the career opportunities SNHU's online bachelor's in computer science degree has to offer.
“Now I get to completely change my career. Instead of just making a living, I get to do something I’m passionate about," Richards said.
Our online computer science degree helps you position yourself for roles including:
Be the inspiration behind the next software programs and applications. A bachelor's in computer science can give you the skills you need to learn the programming languages essential for success in the job.
Develop the knowledge that lets you create more efficient systems, networks and protocols. Your BS in Computer Science prepares you to work with clients and get to the root of their technology issues.
Seek out bugs and defects in software before larger audiences use your product. An online bachelor's in computer science can position you to join a team that understands the importance of quality assurance.
Take on both front-end and back-end development when you earn your computer science bachelor's degree. Master techniques and the newest technologies with the skills you'll acquire.
"Computer science is enabling technologies that provide the foundation for advancement across all industries," said Dr. Francis J. Manning III, adjunct faculty and academic partner at SNHU. "These technologies support automation, information security, data analytics and all of the necessary capabilities that enable other industries to continue to advance."
Job Growth and Salary
Prospects for software developer occupations appear promising in the coming years. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, this increased demand is due to a growing need for new mobile-friendly applications, as well as innovative software in the health and medical insurance industries.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the need for software developers is expected to grow much faster than average – about 26% through 2031.1 For those looking to break into the field, the BLS also notes that most workers will need a bachelor's degree at the entry level.1
Although salaries can vary by region and responsibility, the Bureau of Labor Statistics found that software developers earned a median annual salary of $120,730 in 2021.1
Start Your Journey Toward an Online Computer Science Degree
Why SNHU For Your Computer Science Degree
With no set class meeting times, you can learn on your schedule and access online course materials 24/7.
As part of our mission to make higher education more accessible, we’re committed to keeping our tuition rates low. In fact, we offer some of the lowest online tuition rates in the nation.
Prior coursework could also help you save time and money. SNHU’s transfer policy allows you to transfer up to 90 credits toward your bachelor's degree and 45 credits for an associate degree from your previous institutions—that means you could save up to 75% off the cost of tuition. You could also save time and money by getting college credit for previous work experience, or by taking advantage of military discounts and employer tuition assistance if available to you.
Founded in 1932, Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution with over 160,000 graduates across the country. SNHU is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), a regional accreditor, which advocates for institutional improvement and public assurance of quality.
Recently, SNHU has been nationally recognized for leading the way toward more innovative, affordable and achievable education:
- U.S. News & World Report named SNHU the 2021 Most Innovative University in the North and one of the nation's "Best Regional Universities"
- Awarded the 21st Century Distance Learning Award for Excellence in Online Technology by The United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA)
- A $1 million grant from Google.org to explore soft skills assessments for high-need youth
At Southern New Hampshire University, you'll have access to a powerful network of more than 300,000 students, alumni and staff that can help support you long after graduation. Our instructors offer relevant, real-world expertise to help you understand and navigate the field. Plus, with our growing, nationwide alumni network, you'll have the potential to tap into a number of internship and career opportunities.
93.6% of online students would recommend SNHU (according to a 2022 survey with 17,000+ respondents). Discover why SNHU may be right for you.
Expanding access to quality higher education means removing the barriers that may stand between you and your degree. That’s why you can apply at any time and get a decision within days of submitting all required materials:
- Completed free undergraduate application
- Prior transcripts, which we can retrieve at no cost to you
- Test scores are not required as part of your application
Acceptance decisions are made on a rolling basis throughout the year for our 6 (8-week) undergraduate terms.
How to Apply
If you’re ready to apply, follow these simple steps to get the process going:
- Complete a free undergraduate application
- Submit any additional documents required
- Work with an admission counselor to explore financial options and walk through the application process
If you have questions or need help filling out your application, call 1.888.387.0861 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Courses to Prepare You for Your Career
Dr. Sharon Kibbe, Associate Dean of STEM programs at SNHU
"As a part of their coursework, students will develop a digital portfolio of artifacts to demonstrate their technical skills to prospective employers."
Computer Science Courses & Curriculum
SNHU's computer science program is designed to help you gain the skills you need to succeed in the modern workforce — with a career-focused curriculum, affordable tuition and the flexibility you need to fit your degree into your busy life.
No Set Class Times
Students enrolled in the online computer science degree program at Southern New Hampshire University will have the opportunity to develop critical technical and professional skills through work on authentic, collaborative, industry-specific projects, as well as through the exploration of emerging tools, technologies, and environments in the field of computer science.
The program curriculum will help you gain a solid understanding of fundamental programming techniques, algorithms and data structures, as well as the mathematical computation and quantitative reasoning skills that underpin the work done in the field of computer science.
Instructors with real-world experience in their field will help you build skills you can use immediately in your career. Plus, you'll create a portfolio that showcases your work.
SNHU's BS in Computer Science program includes:
The courses in this program prepare the learner for a career in software with relevant and emerging topics in the software industry, such as industry-standard programming languages and tools, operating systems, systems architecture and design, algorithms and data structures, software security concepts, agile team development, mobile and full-stack development. You'll gain the experience required to develop professional programs using the full software team development process with career-focused experience that employers expect.
All undergraduate students are required to take general education courses, which are part of SNHU's newly redesigned program, The Commons. The goal of The Commons' curriculum is to empower you with some of the most in-demand skills, so you can succeed not only in your academic career, but in your personal and professional life too.
Earn IT Credits
If you've earned IT certifications through organizations like Cisco, CompTIA, (ISC)2 or Oracle, you may be eligible to receive credit toward your degree program. If you’re seeking certification, some IT and computer science courses can help you prepare for specific exams.
Earn Math Credits
Save time and tuition with our Pathways to Math Success assessments. Depending on your scores, you could earn up to 12 math credits – the equivalent of 4 courses – toward your degree for less than $50 per assessment. For additional information, or to register for a Pathways to Math Success assessment, contact your admission counselor or academic advisor today.
|View Full Curriculum in the Catalog|
|BS in Computer Science|
|Courses May Include|
|BS in Computer Science Online|
|CS 210||Programming Languages||Students will develop functional programs that comply with industry regulations and best practices using various programming languages. Special attention will be paid to the importance of developing code that is not only functional, but also secure, efficient, and professional.|
|CS 230||Operating Platforms||Students will develop a deeper understanding of operating platforms and architectures through the analysis and evaluation of the characteristics, advantages, and weaknesses of each. Students will learn the value of utilizing software design templates as well as how to utilize them to solve problems.|
|CS 250||Software Development Lifecycle||Students will explore the stages of the Software Development Lifecycle (SDLC) through the lens of developers and testers to examine the characteristics, documentation, and purpose of each stage. Through applying SDLC stages within an agile development environment, students will learn the principles and best practices used to develop high quality software while also assessing the impact of communication, documentation, and ethics on the SDLC.|
|CS 255||System Analysis and Design||Students will explore the principles, methods, and techniques used in systems development so that they can create system models using appropriate industry tools. As a part of creating system models, students will also learn to effectively communicate technical concepts and design decisions to various audiences in a professional manner.|
|CS 305||Software Security||Through the analysis of advanced security concepts, students will learn how to develop secure code that complies with security testing protocols. In addition to exploring and implementing security concepts through code, students will also learn why and how to apply encryption technologies and techniques to communicate securely.|
|CS 320||Software Testing, Automation, and Quality Assurance||Students will apply software engineering testing strategies and practices as part of the software development lifecycle, including requirements analysis, verification and validation, and quality management. The creation of unit tests and analysis of various testing approaches will also be covered.|
|CS 330||Computational Graphics and Visualization||Students will create realistic, interactive three-dimensional objects through the use of application programming interface (API) libraries and best practices. Students will also develop fully formed graphic applications that meet project requirements.|
|CS 340||Client/Server Development||Students will learn how to apply database systems concepts and principles to develop client/server applications that interface client-side code with databases.|
|CS 360||Mobile Architecture and Programming||Students will apply mobile development principles and best practices to develop mobile applications using user-centered design principles and industry standards. Upon completion of a fully-functional mobile application, students will conduct security, product assuredness, and compatibility checks before launching the application.|
|CS 370||Current and Emerging Trends in Computer Science||Students will explore advanced topics in Computer Science through analysis of authentic scenarios. Students will analyze the role of ethics in current trends within the field as well as apply fundamental concepts of the field to solve complex problems in new ways.|
|CS 465||Full Stack Development I||Students will design and develop a full stack application through the utilization of programming language frameworks. In creating a full stack application, students will also be responsible for developing a database as well as the code that interfaces their application to the database. This course is the first course in a two-course sequence.|
|CS 499||Computer Science Capstone||Taken in the student's final term, the capstone course is the culminating experience for the Bachelor of Science in Computer Science. Integrate previous coursework and practical experience with a focus on authentic demonstration of competencies outlined by the program. Enhance previously submitted programming projects that demonstrates a level of mastery of the stated outcomes of their degree program in computer science.|
|Total Credits: 120|
Computer Science Technical Requirements
Windows 10, 64 Bit
Windows 10, 64 Bit
Intel 8th Gen i5 or i7
Intel 9th Gen i7
500+ GB Solid State Drive (SSD)
Discrete/dedicated (such as NVIDIA or AMD)
802.11 a/c dual band
802.11 a/c dual band
Office 2013 Professional or newer
Office 2013 Professional or newer
Required for campus students. Strongly recommended for online students.
Required for campus students. Strongly recommended for online students.
CD/DVD drive, external hard drive, extra power cord and headphones/earbuds
CD/DVD drive, external hard drive, extra power cord and headphones/earbuds
SNHU Purchase Programs
Help desk support: Microsoft Windows 10, limited support for MacOS (Campus only). Support for other OS is not currently available.
What to Expect as an Online Student
No set class times: Asynchronous classes let you do your coursework when and where you want
Pick your pace: Choose between full time (2 courses) or part time (1 course) each term
Student support: 24/7 access to online student services like the library, tech and academic support
Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) as well as several other accrediting bodies.
Tuition & Fees
As a private, nonprofit university, we’re committed to making college more accessible by making it more affordable. That’s why we offer some of the lowest online tuition rates in the nation.
We also offer financial aid packages to those who qualify, plus a 30% tuition discount for U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty.
|Online Undergraduate Programs||Per Course||Per Credit Hour||Annual Cost for 30 credits|
|Degree/Certificates (U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty)*||$693||$231||$6,930|
Tuition Rates are subject to change and are reviewed annually. *Note: students receiving this rate are not eligible for additional discounts.
Additional Costs No Application Fee, Course Materials ($ varies by course)
Frequently Asked Questions
Can you get a degree in computer science online?
Of course. Earning a computer science degree online isn't all that different than pursuing the same program on a campus. At SNHU, there are weekly assignments, as well as regular interactions with your classmates and instructor.
But participating in an online program can have some benefits over a campus program. When you earn your online computer science degree at SNHU, you can do your classwork when you want. That's because there are no set class times – only weekly deadlines that are set at the beginning of the term. You get to do your assignments when it's most convenient for you, whether that's in the morning before work, on your lunch break or after you put the kids to bed.
It makes sense to earn your bachelor's in computer science online, because your desktop or laptop device is exactly what you'd be doing your assignments on no matter where your classes are. Plus, SNHU gives you access to our virtual environment, which gets you into the software applications, simulations and virtual desktops you need for classes – the same applications you'll use in the workforce.
What is the best online college for computer science?
The best place for you to earn your computer science degree online may not be the right place for others to get their degree. You'll need to consider the factors that are the most important to you so that you can reach the finish line.
When you speak with a member of our admission team, you can get the answers you need to decide if SNHU is the school with the online computer science degree for you.
Some of your questions may revolve around:
- Curriculum. Review course requirements and electives to make sure the material you'll cover throughout the program are what you need to get you to your goals. Between your general education courses and your degree-specific classes, SNHU helps you position yourself for success beyond the computer science skills you learn in the classroom.
- Concentrations. SNHU offers 4 concentrations for its bachelor of computer science program: data analysis, information security, project management and software engineering. A specialized bachelor's degree can give you an edge in the workforce.
- Experiential learning opportunities. Hands-on experience can not only help prepare you and give you confidence for your career, but it can also help add depth to your resume, helping you move to the top of the pile. You'll get opportunities in many of our cloud-based virtual environments, which give you access to the technology you need for your degree – and your career. You'll also want to consider speaking with one of our career advisors, who can help put you in touch with an employer for a project or an internship.
So why do our students choose SNHU? Other reasons include low online tuition rates, flexibility of online programs, career-focused degree programs and a support system that's dedicated to your success.
Are computer scientists in demand?
Yes. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that jobs in software development are projected to grow 26% through 2031 – much faster than the average of all occupations.1
Most of the jobs in the field—like software developers or quality assurance analysts—normally require at least a bachelor's degree to break into the field.
However, it's not just about your tech skills. “Employers like to see if you bring experience they can use," said Curtis George, technical program facilitator at SNHU. "The biggest soft skills in demand ... are collaboration and communication.” Your ability to work well with a team makes this career more than just code.
Another attractive part of jobs in computer and information technology? The salary. The median annual wage in 2021 for these occupations was $97,430 – more than $50,000 higher than the median annual wage for all occupations.1
Learn more about what you can do with a computer science degree.
What is the difference between computer science and information technology (IT)?
These two career paths may sound like they are similar, but in reality, they only have a slight overlap in skill sets and responsibilities.
In a computer science degree program, you study and develop computers, networks, hardware, software and databases. It involves engineering, math and science – topics you'll rely on regularly in a computer science role – and a bachelor's degree in computer science is broad enough to give you plenty of career options.
Information technology (IT) is the use of technology to store, retrieve and send information, usually in a business setting. Professionals in IT careers are often the decision-makers regarding technology in an organization.
"Everything that you touch, everything that you wear, everything that you interact with, anything that you order online, it's all IT," said Ben Steinbach, a Career Advisor at SNHU.
At SNHU, majoring in computer science means your courses focus on subjects like computer programming, software development, security and data structures. The IT curriculum exposes you to scripting, operating systems, networks and systems requirements.
Both degree programs open doors to careers with projected growth. It's up to you to decide with technology path you're interested in taking.
Many students may choose to major in computer science as undergrads and then continue their education at the graduate level with an online master's in IT, which features 7 career-focused concentrations such as web design and software application development.
How long does it take to get a computer science degree?
The amount of time it takes to earn your online computer science degree can vary – on you, your educational background and your goals.
If you've previously attended other institutions, it can shorten your time at SNHU by transferring those credits into your program here. SNHU offers students a generous transfer policy, accepting up to 90 credits toward your degree.
Discuss your free transfer credit evaluation with your admission counselor. This allows you to see where all your previously earned credits can go toward your program – and it allows you to find out what classes you have left to take before you can graduate with your BS in Computer Science.
Our admission team can walk you through your evaluation to show you where your transfer credits are placed in your evaluation and how well they fit into your chosen program. For example, if you've already taken your general education courses – as well as a number of computer science credits – you could position yourself to finish your degree faster.
In addition, you'll want to decide if you want to take classes full time or part time. With SNHU's 8-week terms, enrolling in 1 class is considered part time and 2 classes is full time. If you work and have other obligations that can limit the amount of time you have available to work toward your bachelor's in computer science, you'll want to take that into consideration to determine what you can successfully accomplish each term.
Your academic advisor is always available to help you create a custom course plan so that you know exactly when you'll reach the finish line.
Danielle Hoopes, a 2018 computer science alumna, appreciated how her academic advisor helped her graduate.
"His check-ins kept me on track and having someone to go to with any questions was something I had never had before," Hoopes said. "I just kept telling myself that my dream of becoming a leader in technology was attainable and the staff at SNHU helped me accomplish it."
How much is a bachelor's degree in computer science?
At SNHU, it all comes down to where you're at in your educational journey.
If you begin at SNHU with no credits, and at the current rate of $330 a credit, you'd pay $39,600 in tuition – for your entire bachelor's degree. (That's oftentimes the same amount it can cost for a single year of tuition at many traditional brick-and-mortar colleges.)
However, most online students at SNHU enroll with transfer credits. So if you've already invested in your education at other institutions previously, and you are able to transfer in credits, the amount your program costs can drop significantly. SNHU accepts up to 90 transfer credits toward your bachelor's – meaning you could pay as little as $9,900 in tuition to complete your online computer science degree.
You can also keep your costs low at SNHU by working with our Student Financial Services team. They'll walk you through the process of filling out the FAFSA form, which can determine your eligibility for grants and repayable loans. Our SFS counselors will also help you customize a plan to maximize your awards and make your degree as affordable as possible.
What’s the difference between a software developer and a software engineer?
Both software developers and software engineers share many aspects in their career. A professional in either role may help develop or manage the software a business uses. However, a software developer may spend more time creating and troubleshooting new programs, while a software engineer may continue managing, maintaining and improving existing software.
Still, both terms have been used interchangeably and with a heavy overlap in skills, businesses may not even separate the roles.
"Software development focuses on the programming aspect of developing software, whereas software engineering also includes the engineering discipline that provides the structure for designing the applications," said Dr. Francis J. Manning III, adjunct faculty and academic partner at Southern New Hampshire University. "This is an important distinction because all software engineers may also be software developers, while the opposite is not always or even often the case."
Either title requires strong interpersonal skills because the jobs don't just involve the code – they involve working with the people who use the software. The field is multi-faceted.
Sources & Citations (1, 2)
1Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the internet, at:
- https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/software-developers.htm (viewed Oct. 19, 2022)
- https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/home.htm (viewed Oct. 19, 2022)
Cited projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth.
2Project Management Institute, Job Growth and Talent Gap 2017-2027, on the internet, at https://www.pmi.org/-/media/pmi/documents/public/pdf/learning/job-growth-report.pdf (viewed Oct. 28, 2022).