Four-year Bachelor of Science in Information Technology programs combine classroom study with hands-on computer lab experience, training students to create programs, troubleshoot networks, design and implement databases, develop websites, secure systems, and manage technologies within a business. Some programs allow students to specialize in an area of interest, such as application development, Web design, and multimedia, network administration, or infrastructure security.
Applicants must be high school graduates or hold a GED certification. Some programs require that students have an associate degree or college credits.
Bachelor's Degree in Information Technology
Information technology courses often include hands-on training with computer systems and networking equipment, as well as projects. A bachelor's degree program might include courses in the following:
- Human-computer interaction
- Database analysis
- Desktop and server operating systems
- System analysis and design
- Computer and network security
- Programming languages
Popular Career Options
Graduates can choose from various IT careers with companies, universities, or government agencies, or they might choose to work as independent contractors. Possible job titles include:
- Software engineer
- Computer user support specialist
- Network administrator
- Database manager
- Web developer
- Information security analyst
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts average or above-average job growth for many jobs in the IT industry. Between the years of 2014 and 2024, the BLS expects positions in software development to increase by 17%, computer support specialists to see a job growth rate of 12%, and network and computer support administrator employment to rise 8%. The average projected growth rate for all occupations in the U.S. from 2014 to 2024 is 7%, the BLS states. In addition, the BLS lists the following median annual salaries for each of these positions as of May 2015:
- Computer user support specialist - $48,620
- Network and computer systems administrator - $77,810
- Software developer, systems software - $105,570
Continuing Education and Certification Information
Students who want to perform research or specialize in a particular area of information technology can go on to pursue a master's or doctoral degree in the field. Some available specializations include software engineering, security, and technology management. Individuals also can pursue industry certifications from vendors, such as CompTIA, Cisco, Oracle, and Microsoft. Some common certifications focus on computer maintenance, networking, security, server administration, and database development.
In conclusion, a BS in Information Technology can open the door to a wide range of opportunities in the IT field, including computer-related careers, industry certifications and advanced degrees.