Master's degree programs in software engineering train students in various computer languages, like Java and C++, in addition to teaching them how to design, test and analyze computer software. Students can also expect to gain basic business skills through studies of cost analysis and team management. Prior to graduation, students may be required to complete a capstone project.
In order to apply, students must hold a bachelor's degree, preferably in a related field. Some programs may require previous work experience, but this is uncommon. Students who do have previous experience may be able to complete the program within 16 months, while others typically take about two years to graduate. Programs are usually available in campus-based and online formats, providing flexible schedules to working professionals who are seeking advanced education in order to further their careers.
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- Computer Engineering Technologies, General
- Computer Hardware
- Computer Systems
- Software Engineering
Master's Degree in Software Testing
Master's degree programs in software engineering are interdisciplinary, combining advanced studies in computer science, information systems and management. Sample courses include:
- Software design theory and techniques
- Software project management
- Software testing
- User interface development
- Software design team management
Employment Outlook and Salary Info
There were about 1,114,000 software developer jobs in 2014, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and employment was expected to increase by 17% between 2014 and 2024, which is much faster than the average for all other occupations. As of May 2015, the BLS reported that software applications developers and systems software developers earned median annual salaries of $98,260 and $105,570 respectively.
Many organizations offer software testing certification, which can improve employment opportunities. Among the most common is the Certified Software Tester (CSTE) certification. Students are eligible to take an exam to earn this credential after earning a bachelor's or master's degree and gaining a certain amount of work experience.
In a master's degree in software engineering, students gain the technical software testing skills they need to pursue professional certification, as well as the general computer science skills required for high-level careers in the IT industry.