Computer science graduates earn more than other graduates

But new data shows fall in new entrants to ICT courses

Almost one in ten  of ICT graduates were earning more than €45,000 within nine months of leaving college, compared to a much smaller proportion  of overall graduates. Photograph: iStock

Almost one in ten of ICT graduates were earning more than €45,000 within nine months of leaving college, compared to a much smaller proportion of overall graduates. Photograph: iStock

 

Computer science graduates are the best paid after leaving college, yet the number of new entrants to these courses has fallen, news figures show.

A report by the Higher Education Authority shows three-quarters (75 per cent) of computer science, or information and communications technology (ICT), graduates earned between €25,000 and €45,000 nine months after leaving college.

By contrast, just over half (56 per cent) of other college graduates were earning a similar sum.

Almost one in ten (9 per cent) of ICT graduates were earning more than €45,000 within nine months of leaving college, compared to a much smaller proportion (3 per cent) of overall graduates.

ICT graduates also have very strong employment prospects with 80 per cent of graduates in employment within months of leaving college.

The remainder were either involved in further study, seeking employment or unavailable for work.

Yet, the number of entrants to ICT courses has fallen by 8 per cent since 2014 even though overall numbers in higher education are on the rise.

There were a total of 2,855 new entrants to ICT courses in 2017/18, down from 3,103 in 2014.

ICT is also still very much a man’s world with males accounting for 85 per cent of all new entrant ICT students.

The figures chime with other data compiled over the past 12 months which indicates that, over a much longer time-frame, computer science graduates are the best paid.

A study by the Central Statistics Office which tracked graduates five years after they left colleges also found they also earned most.

Similarly, a recent surveys by the Higher Education Authority which tracked all graduates nine months after finishing college found computer science graduates earned most.

The recent report, What Do Graduates Do?, on the class of 2016, found arts and humanities graduates were the least well paid, while ICT graduates were the highest earners.

The same survey also found arts graduates were among the least likely to be in employment, though they were among the most likely to be studying for a postgraduate qualification.