Which Degree Is Best for Artificial Intelligence?

Explore which degrees provide the most applicable or in-demand skill sets for working in artificial intelligence.

Updated January 8, 2024 · 2 Min Read

check mark Edited by

TheBestSchools.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Are you ready to discover your college program?

As the revolution in artificial intelligence (AI) continues to explode, many people are looking into studying AI. But degrees in AI specifically are rare. For now, at least.

But don't worry. AI is an interdisciplinary field. It combines many subjects, such as computer science, mathematics, and philosophy. Each of these disciplines has subdisciplines that branch off. Having a background in many of them could still lead to an entry-level role in AI.

So, which degree is best for AI? It's difficult to say. A computer science degree is a common choice since AI is a subdiscipline of computer science. But a data science degree, which also comes with AI skills, may be equally useful because it's one of the most in-demand.

We've created a list to narrow the options down. Our list considers "best" AI degrees to be degrees that fit somewhere into one of three categories:

Note: Many degrees can lead to stable and well-paying careers in AI or other fields. This is a non-exhaustive list to give you an idea of some available options. It doesn't distinguish between types of bachelor's degrees, including arts, science, and applied science.

Most Fundamental

Some schools offer programs or concentrations specifically for AI. But they're not always available. It's more common to find degrees covering the major principles of AI, which provide skill sets needed for many AI roles:

Popular Online Programs

Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.

Most Demand

Some of the fastest-growing jobs today are related to AI. The World Economic Forum predicts a 30% growth for roles such as data analysts, machine learning specialists, and business intelligence analysts by 2027. Demand for degrees in these fields could also be on the rise:

Most Relevant

The same degree requirements appear often when you look through AI job postings. Besides popular degrees like computer science and data science, numerous others provide the skills to work in AI. The most relevant AI-related degrees include:

Frequently Asked Questions About Artificial Intelligence Degrees

Are AI degrees worth it?

Studying AI comes with two big advantages: demand and experience. The demand for AI workers is rapidly growing across industries. As industries widely invest in AI, it creates numerous job opportunities. The specialized knowledge AI degrees can deliver could give you an edge in the job market.

A typical AI degree also includes hands-on experience, such as practical projects, internships, and training with real-world AI applications. These experiences can be useful for building your portfolio and demonstrating your capabilities to employers after graduation.

Is majoring in AI hard?

Majoring in AI can be challenging. But, the difficulty sways up or down depending on your background and abilities. AI is an interdisciplinary field combining elements such as computer science, math, and statistics. Being comfortable in these areas will make the concepts and techniques easier to learn and understand.

What are the highest-paying AI careers?

The highest-paying careers in AI-related fields include computer scientists, information research scientists, and computer network architects. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), computer and information research scientists earned a median salary of $155,880 as of May 2022.

Computer network architects earned $129,490. Other high-paying AI roles include machine learning engineers ($114,967), database architects ($136,540), software developers ($132,930), and data scientists ($115,240).

Popular with our students.

Highly informative resources to keep your education journey on track.

Take the next step toward your future with online learning.

Discover schools with the programs and courses you’re interested in, and start learning today.

woman in an office