Computer science graduates are reaping the benefits of the IT skills shortage, according to a survey by Barclays Bank.
The research showed that the 1996 batch of computer science graduates started work on salaries that were around #2,500 higher than graduates from other courses.
They also had high success rates in getting good jobs. Only 13% experienced difficulty finding the job they wanted and almost one in three were in jobs with graduate training schemes. Only 3% of those working were in temporary jobs.
The survey also showed that in December 1996, when the research was conducted, unemployment among computer science graduates was lower than average - 15% compared to 19% among all 1,500 graduates questioned.
Most computing graduates were happy with their salaries - they earned on average #15,175, with more than three out of four (77%) earning the same or more than they expected. Things were not so rosy for graduates in other subjects: 41% from other subjects had difficulties finding the job they wanted and 22% of those in jobs were in temporary employment.
The future for computing graduates also looks bright; the survey revealed they expected to earn more than average as their careers progressed. They predicted that their earnings would average #26,295 in five years time - only exceeded by the expectations of graduates of medicine-related subjects, law and mathematics.
Jenny Loynds, head of graduate banking at Barclays, said: "The research suggests that employers attach a high value to computer science graduates and consequently they are among the best paid."
One drawback to the higher than average salaries is that it seems to have given computing graduates the confidence to take on bigger debts.
Their average debt was #3,719, compared to an average debt of #3,203 for other graduates.
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