Computer Science

Want to Work at Facebook? Here Are the Degrees You’ll Need.

Want to Work at Facebook? Here Are the Degrees You’ll Need.
A closer look at the Facebook Careers site uncovers hundreds of job listings in different areas—from finance and legal to data, engineering, and research. Image from Unsplash
Rina Diane Caballar profile
Rina Diane Caballar October 25, 2019

When applying for a job at Facebook, be prepared to answer this question: What were you doing on your very best day at work?

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Wouldn’t it be cool to have an office address of 1 Hacker Way, eat lunch at the Epic cafeteria, and get your laundry done at Purple Tie?

These are just some of the perks of working at Facebook, the world’s largest social media platform. The company is known for its generous benefits package, offering paid parental leave, fertility coverage, paid caregiving and bereavement leave, mental health assistance, and a sabbatical program that allows employees to take 30 days of paid time off every five years.

That’s why Facebook is at the top of the ranks in Comparably’s 2018 list of best companies for perks and benefits, and took the second spot on LinkedIn’s 2019 list of top 50 companies in the U.S.

Are you considering a career at the social media giant? We’ve got you covered with the degrees you’ll need to help you land a job at Facebook, as well as tips to get that all-important “like” to get you hired at the company.

A quick look at Facebook’s profile

Facebook launched in 2004 as “The facebook,” a social networking website for Harvard University. In 2005, the company dropped “The” from its name and officially became known as Facebook. Its popularity skyrocketed, and the platform became available to the public in 2006. Since then, the social media site has grown to include Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp.

There are currently 2.4 billion monthly active users on Facebook, and the company reported $16.89 billion in revenue for the second quarter of 2019. Facebook has more than 39,000 employees around the world, including in its headquarters in Menlo Park, California, and offices in Australia, Canada, India, New Zealand, and across Europe and Latin America, among other locations.


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“Typically the additional income from a master’s degree over a lifetime is worth the sticker price you pay for it.” (source)

A master’s in computer science can open countless doors from coast to coast. It will expand your knowledge and can help you advance your career, opening doors to management and leadership roles and increasing your earning potential. Jobs are plentiful around the country in a wide variety of industries, from healthcare to finance, entertainment to manufacturing.

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Inside the Facebook network

Facebook employees are part of small teams—a deliberate decision by the company to keep up with the fast pace of growth and to allow for agility. Teams at Facebook tackle different fields, including communications and public policy, data and analytics, design and user experience, online operations, product management, research, security, and software engineering.

According to data from Glassdoor, Facebook pays its employees—especially those in tech and senior positions—above-average salaries, similar to Apple or Netflix.

__Here are some of the highest-paid roles at Facebook, listed by average base pay:__

  • Software engineering manager: $210,783
  • Senior software engineer: $175,990
  • Business operations manager: $160,857
  • Security engineer: $153,643
  • Research scientist: $147,530
  • Software engineer: $147,143
  • Product designer: $146,034
  • Data scientist: $145,130
  • User experience researcher: $139,669
  • Data engineer: $136,042

Facebook’s culture revolves around five core values: be bold enough to take risks, focus on impact—the truly big challenges instead of minor issues—move fast and make mistakes rather than miss opportunities, be open, and build social value. Yet others have pointed out issues with Facebook’s culture, which means working for the social media giant may not be for everyone.

Want to work at Facebook? Here are the degrees you’ll need.

A closer look at the Facebook Careers site uncovers hundreds of job listings in different areas—from finance and legal to data, engineering, and research.

Data and analytics.

In the data and analytics arena, Facebook offers opportunities for data analysts, data scientists, data engineers, data science managers, and decision scientists. You’ll be tasked with analyzing data to understand the company’s products and how to make them better, and use data to identify opportunities for growth and inform product decisions.

Job seekers interested in these roles will need a degree in computer science, math, physics, engineering, statistics, or a related technical field. Those aiming to be a decision scientist must have a degree in economics, operations research, or a similar quantitative discipline.


In the field of finance, Facebook has roles available for accountants, accounting managers, finance analysts, and finance managers. These positions entail financial analysis across planning, budgeting, and forecasting, as well as monitoring financial performance and advising on financial strategies.

A degree in math, economics, finance, or accounting will equip you with the necessary skills for the job.


Positions requiring legal expertise include associate general counsel, lead counsel, and patent counsel. You’ll be providing legal advice, overseeing contracts, developing regulatory compliance strategies, and analyzing and communicating legal risks.

Earning a J.D. degree is essential for success in the role.


In terms of research, Facebook is looking for user experience (UX) researchers, research engineers, and research scientists in the areas of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, computer vision, and robotics. These roles entail researching novel algorithms and technologies, developing proof-of-concept prototypes, designing innovative solutions, and solving challenging technology research problems.

These positions require applicants to have advanced degrees, usually a master’s degree or a Ph.D. in computer science, machine learning, AI, or a similar technical or quantitative field. Candidates in the process of obtaining a doctoral degree or completing a postdoctoral assignment are also preferred.


When it comes to security, Facebook has positions for application security engineers, e-crime investigators, integrity scientists, risk and compliance analysts, and security analysts. You’ll be responsible for securing systems, services, and infrastructure across all products; solving complex security challenges; and catching threats and removing them.

To do the job, you’ll need a degree in computer science, computer engineering, information systems, or cybersecurity.

Software engineering.

Given that software is at the heart of Facebook, the company has various listings for Android and iOS software engineers, front-end engineers, solutions engineers, and full-stack engineers. Here, you’ll have the opportunity to prototype new features and redesign existing ones, as well as build and maintain systems and applications using modern technologies and platforms.

Earning a degree in computer science, information systems, or information technology will help you land the job.

Note that all engineers—be it new grads or VPs—go through a six-week engineering boot camp. The training program acquaints new hires with the company’s engineering culture, providing them with the opportunity to identify their passions and strengths and determine which team they’ll best fit in.

A fair share of Facebook hiring tips

Applying for a job at Facebook might be daunting, so the company outlines how the hiring process works and answers commonly asked questions about it. In terms of what to focus on when applying, Facebook says to emphasize your strengths and be prepared to answer this question: What were you doing on your very best day at work?

Janelle Gale, vice president of human resources at Facebook, shared a few tips for landing a job at the social media site, including being your honest and authentic self during interviews and demonstrating your ability to solve problems. You can do that by showing something you’ve built and describing the entire process—not just the successes, but also when you failed, what you learned, and what you think can be improved.

Gale also encouraged candidates to apply even if they don’t have the required experience. “Apply if you have the relevant skills even if you don’t have the right experience, because we’re looking underneath the surface for what’s really going to matter here, and that’s what skills you can bring to the table.”

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About the Editor

Tom Meltzer spent over 20 years writing and teaching for The Princeton Review, where he was lead author of the company's popular guide to colleges, before joining Noodle.

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