Top School in Pittsburgh for a Computer Software Development Degree

Few schools in the Pittsburgh, PA, area have top ranking computer software development programs. Read on to find out more about what one of these top schools has to offer for this field of study, as well as tuition and degree information.

School and Ranking Information

Students in Pittsburgh seeking an education in software development have limited options when choosing a college or university. Based on ranking, student population and student-to-faculty ratio, the following university is considered a top school in Pittsburgh for computer software development studies:

  • Winner: Carnegie Mellon University is the only postsecondary institution of any kind located directly in Pittsburgh or within 25 miles of the city that offers degree programs in computer software development. Students can pursue software engineering degrees at the master's and doctoral levels. Undergraduate students can pursue a software engineering minor as well.

School Info Chart

Category Carnegie Mellon University
Ranking #25 (tie) Best National Universities (2015)*
Location Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
School Type 4-year, private not-for-profit
Tuition (2013-2014) Graduate: $39,516**
Computer Software Development Degrees Offered Master's and doctoral
Computer Software Development Degrees Awarded (all levels) in 2012-2013 100**
Most Popular Computer Software Development Degree in 2012-2013 Master's (99 awarded)**
Undergraduate Graduation Rate (in 150% of normal degree time) for 2007 Entering Class 88%**
Noteworthy Graduate computer science programs ranked #1 among national universities (2014)*

Sources: *U.S. News and World Report; **NCES College Navigator

Carnegie Mellon University

  • 10:1 student-to-faculty ratio
  • Master's degree programs in software engineering and information technology - software engineering offered in distance learning formats
  • The university offers an on-campus Software Engineering Institute (SEI), a federally-funded research and development center

Carnegie Mellon University enrolls more than 12,000 students in seven schools and colleges. The School of Computer Science's Institute for Software Research offers a wide range of graduate programs in software development. Graduate students can choose standalone master's or doctoral degree programs in software engineering, or select from a few software engineering areas of concentration in the Master of Science in Information Technology program. Undergraduate students can pursue a 5-course minor in software engineering that includes a practicum.

Designed to provide students with both extensive research opportunities and applicable industry experience, the Master of Software Engineering program offers courses such as software development management, software system architecture and software analysis. A 16-month program, it includes a studio component in which students work on software projects in computer labs.

The Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) program has a Software Engineering Management concentration that is composed of 36 units of coursework covering subjects such as software metrics and analysis, organizational management structures and risk management. It culminates in two practicum courses in which students develop and present a software engineering project. The Embedded Software Engineering concentration in the MSIT program includes courses in open source software, software development for global markets and advanced systems architecture. Toward the end of the program, students complete a capstone project that builds practical industry experience. The 2-semester MSIT in Software Engineering is designed for professionals with up to two years' experience.

With an emphasis on research and experimentation, the Doctor of Philosophy in Software Engineering program addresses the demands of developing and implementing usable and effective software solutions, particularly large-scale software systems. The curriculum is composed of 96 units of graduate courses, including two practicum courses and a written and oral doctoral dissertation. Doctoral candidates are also required to complete a teaching assistantship in which they both teach in the classroom and provide mentorship services to master's degree students.

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