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Salary and Career Information for Information Technology Majors

Information technology is generally offered as a four-year undergraduate degree program. Continue reading for an overview of the programs, as well as career and salary info for some career options for graduates.

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Information technology (IT) has developed in leaps and bounds over the past couple of decades. For this reason, employment for professionals trained in computer and information technology has also grown dramatically. This article lays out details for three possible careers in IT: computers and information systems managers, computer systems analysts, and database administrators.

Essential Information

An information technology major is qualified for a range of jobs. From large corporations to educational institutions, most organizations employ the use of technology and computer systems to help them meet their goals. IT majors learn to work with their colleagues to create, sustain and maximize the efficiency of these computer systems. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) expects future growth and good prospects for IT-related careers, including information systems management and computer systems analysis. Annual salaries fluctuate, depending upon specific area of concentration. IT majors should identify which area of IT they would like to work in upon graduation and gear themselves toward sufficient education to complete these specific job tasks.

Career Titles Computers and Information Systems Managers Computer Systems Analysts Database Administrators
Required Education Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree Bachelor's degree
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 15% 21% 11%
Median Salary (2015)* $131,600 $85,800 $81,710

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Options

The list of job titles for an IT professional is quite long and includes computers and information systems managers, computer systems analysts and database administrators. Many components and tasks go into the creation and maintenance of an optimally efficient computer system, and information technology majors can specialize in any one of them. Pay rates and job outlook vary depending upon which specific activity is chosen.

Computer and Information Systems Managers

Computer and information systems managers often find themselves in leadership roles as they manage other IT professionals and direct the flow of a company or organization's IT department. These individuals are in charge of deciding the equipment and staff needed by the IT department as well as maintaining the software and hardware required to make the system work. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) database, the job outlook is favorable, with faster-than-average growth expectations for 2014-2024. The median annual salary was $131,600 as of May 2015.

Computer Systems Analysts

Computer systems analysts report either to a computer and information systems manager or directly to the head of an organization. The needs and desires different groups have for their computer systems vary widely, and computer systems analysts make the discovery and implementation of viable technology easier.

Analysts begin by working with both managerial staff and actual users to determine their needs for the system. They then put together a plan for a system and run a series of tests and checks on it to be sure that it is both all-encompassing and as cost- and time-efficient as possible. If their plan is approved, they oversee its implementation and error correction.

The median salary for computer systems analysts as of May 2015 was $85,800. BLS also states that there will be much faster-than-average employment growth for computer systems analysts from 2014-2024.

Database Administrators

Database administrators use specialized software to store and organize company data. Responsibilities include administering, testing and implementing computer databases, as well as any necessary changes. They may also plan, coordinate and implement security measures to safeguard computer databases. According to the BLS, job opportunities for database administrators are expected to grow 11 percent from 2014-2024. The Bureau also reported that, in 2015, database administrators made an median annual salary of $81,710.

Computer and information systems managers, computer systems analysts, and database administrators all have faster-than-average job growth, due to the increasing reliance of businesses on digital platforms.

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