Master of Science (MS): Information Technology Degree Overview

Master of Science (M.S.) in Information Technology degree programs can provide students with an advanced understanding of computer applications, systems operations, and data management.

Essential Information

M.S. programs in information technology (IT) programs may explore managerial concepts as they relate to areas of computer programming, systems engineering, data management and software development. Specialization options include electrical engineering and computer science. Many of these two-year programs require students to complete a capstone project, which allows them to take charge of realistic managerial scenarios in technology.

In order to apply, prospective students must have a bachelor's degree, preferably in electrical engineering or a computer science-related field. They must also submit GRE or GMAT scores, recommendation letters and a personal statement. In addition, because these programs are often geared toward working IT professionals who desire to advance into management positions, applicants must demonstrate relevant work experience.

Master of Science in Information Technology

In total, students are required to complete 30-48 semester hours of coursework. Possible course topics include:

  • Programming
  • Information management
  • Systems design
  • Telecommunications
  • Software development
  • Data management

Popular Career Options

Graduates are generally qualified for opportunities in data communications, electronic commerce, and systems design. Job titles could include:

  • Computer programmer
  • Systems developer
  • Software engineer
  • Information systems manager

Career Outlook and Salary Information

Computer programmers could see their employment decrease by 8% from 2014 through 2024, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted. It found their median annual income was $79,530 in May 2015.

In comparison, the BLS expected software developers would see employment grow by 17% during that same period. Those working on systems software earned a median annual salary of $105,570, while applications software developers earned a median annual wage of $98,260.

Continuing Education

Graduates can enhance their knowledge to include the latest advances in the field by enrolling in information technology certificate programs throughout their careers. Certificate programs allow students to study topics such as Web applications, database design, and application development. Those interested in academia or research can pursue a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Information Technology.

Overall, M.S. programs in information technology offer comprehensive computer-related training for experienced IT workers who want to advance to upper-level positions in the field.

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