IT Management Degree and Certificate Program Overviews

Oct 24, 2019

Essential Information

Those interested in IT management can complete a certificate program to gain the fundamental knowledge needed for the profession. The bachelor's degree program in IT management prepares students to develop and manage databases, set up and administer wireless networks, create security plans and more. The program typically culminates in a capstone or integrative project.

Master's programs expand upon these topics and often include cooperative student-team projects. Graduates of any program can pursue professional certification through the Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals. Most programs conclude with a capstone project or independent study.

Applicants to an undergraduate certificate or bachelor's program must have a high school diploma or equivalent. A bachelor's degree is necessary for a graduate certificate or master's program. Certificates take one year to complete. Bachelor's degrees require four years, while a master's necessitates two years of study.

Certificate Programs in IT Management

IT management certificates are offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels. The programs teach information, security and project management, as well as leadership. Students learn to adopt ethical procedures for IT decision-making and apply IT management skills towards issues in eCommerce, technical support and security. Coursework covers a variety of areas, including studies in global management, systems design and information security. Topics in the program include:

  • Modeling techniques
  • IT operations
  • Java language
  • HTML
  • Portfolios

Bachelor of Science in Information Technology Management

The curriculum in this program includes traditional courses and practical experiences working with computer information systems. Students learn to use numerous operating systems and software programs, as well as examine the architecture of computer hardware. Students take courses in ethics, management and business law in addition to IT management courses. Coursework includes topics such as:

  • Computer engineering
  • Hardware configuration
  • Web technologies
  • Firewalls
  • LAN/WAN networks

Master of Science in IT Management

This program has a management focus and requires students to work together to develop business solutions with IT tools and concepts. Students learn to lead a team of employees and collaborate with team members in the implementation of security programs, development of database systems and analysis of current IT systems. Coursework includes studies in management theory, strategic planning, IT finance and more. Other focus areas in IT management courses are:

  • Data security
  • Network protocols
  • Wireless communications
  • UNIX operating system
  • Database modeling

Popular Career Options

Career opportunities exist in departments of technology in business, government and more. Job titles of recent graduates include:

  • Computer programmer
  • Systems analyst
  • Network administrator
  • Web developer
  • Database administrator
  • Systems support specialist

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported in 2018 that jobs for computer and information systems managers were expected to grow 11% during the 2018-2028 decade ( In addition, the BLS reported that computer and information systems managers made a median annual salary of $142,530 in May 2018 and held an estimated 391,430 jobs. The computer systems design and related services industry employed the highest number of these IT professionals, according to the BLS.

Continuing Education Information

Careers in research and teaching at the college level require an advanced degree. Graduates can consider a doctorate degree, such as the Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in IT Management, Ph.D. in Technology or Ph.D. in Computer Science.

The Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals (ICCP) offers professional certification in eight areas, including the Certified Data Management Professional (CDMP) and Information Systems Analyst (ISA) designations. Applicants to ICCPs certification programs are required to pass three examinations for certification.

Certificate programs in information technology (IT) management provide a foundational education in the field, while bachelor's programs focus on databases and networks. In graduate certificate and master's programs, advanced study of essential topics including data security and database administration will be studied.

Expert Contributor: Allesha Fogle Allesha has graduate degrees in software engineering and computer science. She has over 15 years' experience in software and application development.

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