Figures released by the Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics showed an increase of 54,000 jobs in computer science and systems analysis, a jump of 7.7 percent over the 2004 average.
IEEE-USA President Gerard Alphonse said the group, based here, was encouraged by the unexpected jump in computer science hiring, but he also highlighted continuing declines during the quarter in engineering jobs.
The biggest drop, according to the U.S. statistics, was 18,000 computer hardware engineering jobs. Other declining categories were software engineers (13,000), electrical and electronics engineers (8,000), computer programmers (8,000) and computer and information systems managers (5,000).
Neither IEEE-USA nor the government said what accounted for the large increase in computer science hiring.