Individuals interested in becoming Certified Internet Webmasters can find a variety of programs at the associate's degree level that provide postsecondary training and prepare them to sit for one of the many CIW exams. These degree programs generally award an Associate in Applied Science and are offered in varying areas, such as web development technology, Internet services technology, web technologies or web page development and design, depending on the educational institution awarding the degree. A high school diploma or an equivalent is required for entrance into the program, and some programs may be available online.
After earning the 2-year degree, students can elect to pursue CIW certification at three levels, including associate, specialist and professional. Although the CIW Professional designation has been retired, students looking for a professional-level certification can earn the CIW's Web Design Professional, Web Development Professional or Web Security Professional credential.
Associate's Degree Programs for Students Interested in Certified Internet Webmaster Certification
Webmasters are web developers who specialize in updating and maintaining websites. The industry-standard certification for these professionals is the CIW designation. CIW certifications fall into four specialized groups: web security, web development, web foundations and web design.
Although not required for associate's degree admission, high school courses in mathematics and computer technology can be especially beneficial to aspiring webmasters due to the technical nature of the curriculum. While enrolled students take a combination of general studies and computing courses. Courses specifically for certification purposes may be offered as major requirements or as part of a specialized track within a degree program. These might include:
- Website development and design
- Programming languages
- Scripting languages
- Management for websites
- Servers and networks
- Software for database management
Employment Outlook and Salary Information
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated that web developers earned a median annual salary of $64,970 as of May 2015. The bureau predicted that jobs for these professionals would increase at a much faster-than-average rate of 27% from 2014 to 2024. Individuals who are knowledgeable about multiple web development tools and programming languages should have the best job prospects.
Continuing Education Information
Students who are interested in obtaining webmaster positions that involve a significant amount of programming often need a bachelor's degree in computer science or a related area, while individuals who are interested in designing websites may need additional graphic design training, according to the BLS.
Courses in a computer science degree program could include data structures and algorithms, managing database systems, programming languages, operating systems and computer networks. Courses in graphic design that students might take include typography, visual design, Flash, Photoshop, Illustrator and graphics production.
Becoming a Certified Internet Web (CIW) Professional is accomplished by completing a 2-year associate's degree and passing an exam. Earning this credential can be a stepping stone to a career as a webmaster or prepare individuals for bachelor's degree programs to learn about web programming or graphic design.