Best Computer Programming colleges in the U.S. 2023

Written by Matt Cates

Best Computer Programming colleges in the U.S. for 2023

UMD’s Brendan Iribe Center for Computer Science and Engineering is recognized as a hub for technology, collaboration, and discovery. Its computer science programs regularly rank among the best in the nation. Along with bachelor’s and master’s options, it also features a Combined BS/MS Program that allows students to complete both in less time. 

Harvard University
Cambridge, MA

Harvard University offers 2 Computer Programming/Programmer, General degree programs. It's a very large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a midsize city. In 2020, 21 Computer Programming/Programmer, General students graduated with students earning 21 Certificates.

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Clemson University
Clemson, SC

South Carolina’s Clemson University is ranked in the top 10 “supercomputing campuses.” Its acclaimed Computer Science department features nationally recognized faculty within its graduate and undergrad programs. The program’s alumni have gone on to lucrative jobs at:

  • Amazon
  • Google
  • IBM
  • Apple
  • Microsoft
  • Boeing
  • Deloitte
  • And more!
DePaul University
Chicago, IL

Located in Chicago, Illinois, DePaul is home to the esteemed College of Computing and Digital Media. The college offers undergraduate degrees in computer science and information technology, plus graduate degrees in computer science, information systems, software engineering, and many others. Most programs can be completed online or in person. 


University of Michigan-Dearborn offers 3 Computer Programming/Programmer, General degree programs. It's a medium sized, public, four-year university in a small city. In 2020, 61 Computer Programming/Programmer, General students graduated with students earning 48 Bachelor's degrees, and 13 Master's degrees.

Temple University
Philadelphia, PA

Founded in 1884, Philadelphia’s Temple University is a highly-ranked school with a fun and active Greek life. Its popular College of Science and Technology offers BA, BS, and MS degrees in Computer Science, as well as an “accelerated +1” option to complete two degrees in less time. There’s also an online MS in Information Science and Technology. 

Kansas State University
Manhattan, KS

With a focus on family values, K-State fosters a diverse and welcoming student community. Its world-class department of computer science has five undergraduate degree options and on-campus or online MS programs. The latest offering is a BA/BS in Integrated Computer Science allowing students to combine studies outside the computer science world to add cultural and ethical knowledge. 

Located 85 miles from Minneapolis and St. Paul, MSU Mankato sprawls across 303 scenic acres and hosts a wide variety of student organizations, activities, and athletics options. The College of Science, Engineering & Technology offers numerous degree options for students, including a cutting-edge BS in Computer Science and Master’s in Information Technology.

A thriving metropolitan research university, UA Little Rock has a small, tight-knit student population, allowing for a great faculty-to-student ratio. The Department of Computer Science makes its home inside a modern $40 million facility featuring high-performance computing clusters. The Department of Computer Science offers several exciting options, including a BS with a video game programming focus. 

Western Governors University
Salt Lake City, UT

Western Governors University offers 2 Computer Programming/Programmer, General degree programs. It's a very large, private not-for-profit, four-year university in a large suburb. In 2020, 377 Computer Programming/Programmer, General students graduated with students earning 377 Bachelor's degrees.

What is Computer Programming?

Computer programmer jobs can be lucrative! The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that the median annual wage for computer programmers is $89,190 (as of 2020). The highest-earning 10% of workers make in excess of $146,050. 

A computer programming salary is based on several variables. These salary variables include how much education and how many years of experience the worker has. BLS notes that programmers with at least a bachelor’s or familiarity with multiple languages should have the most prospects when it comes to finding good-paying jobs. 

Other key wage factors include what specialty the programmer works in. For example, Software-as-a-service (SaaS) is a hot trend, so average pay for experts in this area may be higher than in other areas. 

Geographic location is also a factor that influences computer programming salaries. These are the top-paying states for computer programmers:

  • Washington
  • District of Columbia
  • California
  • Virginia
  • Texas

BLS projects a 13% job growth for all computer occupations. Of course, that’s not a guarantee of future jobs, but it is a promising indicator! 


Computer Programming FAQ

  • What are some computer programming jobs I can get with a computer programming degree?

    • A computer programming degree opens opportunities for careers such as software or mobile app developer, web development for creative types, and systems analyst or Big Data engineering for analytical thinkers. 

  • Can I get a programming job with a certificate?

    • It depends. Employers view certificates as an institution-provided assessment of your aptitude and knowledge in specific areas of programming, so for some jobs, that is enough to qualify.

  • Is there a high demand for computer programmers?

    • There is a continuous demand for programmers in general. A bachelor’s degree or higher plus certifications can help you stay competitive. Learning multiple programming languages can increase your odds of landing jobs.

  • What are the disadvantages of being a computer programmer?

    • Programming is a demanding, sometimes stressful field. Those who want to succeed must constantly improve their programming language knowledge to stay relevant and compete against other coders locally and abroad.

  • What is the average computer programmer salary?
    • According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual salary for computer programmers is $89,190 as of May 2020. Software publishing is the industry that paid the highest for programmers, with a median annual wage of $103,710.

  • Can programming make you rich?

    • The word “rich” is relative. However, computer programmers may enjoy higher than average salaries, but programming jobs usually won’t make you an easy millionaire. Most rich programmers took entrepreneurial routes, building their own companies. 
  • Do coders work long hours?

    • Programmers usually work at least 40 hour weeks. Weekend and late-night sessions may be necessary to fix technical issues or update websites, but the nature of the job may allow them to work remotely.

  • Is programming a stressful job?

    • Computer programming can be stressful due to the importance of accuracy. Many work long hours to meet deadlines, which can cause unhealthy lifestyles such as sitting for too long, insufficient exercise, excessive caffeine consumption, or poor diet habits.

  • What are the requirements to be a computer programmer?

    • Computer programmers typically hold a bachelor’s degree in computer and information technology, computer science, or a related field. It’s sometimes possible to get hired without those as long as you have sufficient experience in program languages or a related certification. 

  • Does a computer programmer need a license or master’s degree?

    • No, you can get started with a bachelor’s or, in some cases, just an associate degree or certification. You don’t need a license or a master’s degree to be a computer programmer.

  • Does coding require math?

    • Yes, coding can require math to build an understanding of the foundations of programming. Math is also helpful for developing analytical thinking and attention to detail.

List of all Computer Programming colleges in the U.S.

School Average Tuition Student Teacher Ratio Enrolled Students
University of Maryland-College Park Logo University of Maryland-College Park College Park, MD
22 : 1 40,709
Harvard University Logo Harvard University Cambridge, MA
17 : 1 30,391
Clemson University Logo Clemson University Clemson, SC
19 : 1 26,406
DePaul University Logo DePaul University Chicago, IL
25 : 1 21,922
University of Michigan-Dearborn Logo University of Michigan-Dearborn Dearborn, MI
25 : 1 8,783