School and Ranking Information
There are about eight public and private non-profit schools within a 50-mile radius of Pittsburgh, PA, that have computer information technology programs. Three schools in the Pittsburgh area stand out based on their graduation rates, rankings and program offerings.
- Winner: Carnegie Mellon University's information technology and management programs were ranked the best in the country by U.S. News & World Report in 2012. It's also the only school of the three that's actually located in Pittsburgh. It offers a master's degree program.
- Runner-Up #1: Washington & Jefferson College has been ranked among the top liberal arts colleges in the country. It offers bachelor's degrees related to computer information technology.
- Runner-Up #2: Slippery Rock University has been ranked among the top universities in the northern region. It offers a bachelor's program in the field. It's the furthest away from Pittsburgh, though, at 43 miles out.
School Comparison Chart
|Category||Carnegie Mellon University||Washington & Jefferson College||Slippery Rock University|
|Ranking(s)||#1 among graduate information technology and management programs in 2012*
#1 among the best graduate computer science schools in 2010*
#23 among the best national universities in 2014*
|#97 among the best national liberal arts colleges in 2014*||#93 among the best regional universities in the North in 2014*|
|Location||Pittsburgh, PA||Washington, PA (25 miles from Pittsburgh)||Slippery Rock, PA (43 miles from Pittsburgh)|
|School Type||4-year private, not-for-profit||4-year private, not-for-profit||4-year public|
|Tuition & Fees (2012-2013)||$38,614 (graduate)**||$38,310 (undergraduate)**|| $8,748 (undergraduate, in-state),
$12,146 (undergraduate, out-of-state)**
|Computer Information Technology Degree Levels Offered||Master's degrees||Bachelor's degrees||Bachelor's degrees|
|Computer Information Technology Degrees Awarded (All Levels) in 2011-2012||388**||8**||18**|
|Most Popular Computer Information Technology Program (2011-2012)||Master's in Information Technology (378 awarded)**||Bachelor's in Information Technology (8 awarded)**||Bachelor's in Information Technology (18 awarded)**|
|Graduation Rate for 2006 Entering Class (in 150% of normal degree time)||87%**||74%**||62%**|
|Noteworthy||Carnegie Mellon University has partnerships and programs in Europe, Asia and Australia, in addition to the U.S. campuses||Student body volunteers more than 15,000 hours each year in the community||The Office of Career Education & Development helps students create resumes, prepare for interviews and search for jobs|
Sources: *U.S. News & World Report, **NCES College Navigator.
Winner: Carnegie Mellon University
- Scholarships are available for MSIT students
- One master's degree program is designed to keep students in their current jobs while attending school
- Information Network Institute, a department focused on research and education, offers on-campus and travel master's degree programs
Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) offers a Master of Science in Information Technology program in three tracks: software design and management, information security and assurance, and information technology management. Part-time classes take place in the evening or online, allowing students to maintain their employment while earning the degree. Courses are designed for professionals in the IT industry, and they cover topics such as global information technology management, IT project management, tech startups, advanced database management and information security risk analysis.
Additional degrees are offered through CMU's Information Network Institute (INI). These include a Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) with concentrations in mobility, software management and information security. Additionally, a M.S. in Information Security Technology and Management is available. The MSIT programs can be pursued in Pittsburgh or through a bicoastal Pittsburgh-Silicon Valley option. In the Silicon Valley option, students travel to California for the last two semesters of the program, where they focus on project-based learning. Yet another travel option through the INI is the MSIT in Information Security offered in conjunction with the University of Hyogo in Japan. Students in this program split their studies between Kobe, Japan, and Pittsburgh, and they also take some courses via teleconferencing.
Runner-Up #1: Washington & Jefferson College
- Student-faculty ratio of 11:1 in 2012, according to the NCES
- Capstone project provides experience working with local nonprofits
- 96% of undergraduate students received some form of financial aid in 2011-2012, according to the NCES
- The college's Magellan Project supports students on self-directed summer research pursuits
Washington & Jefferson College offers a bachelor's degree program in information technology leadership. The program is interdisciplinary and flexible, allowing students to study IT in a way that complements another discipline of their choice. Emphasis areas in the degree program include data discovery, a program that combines IT with sciences and social sciences study; computer science, which combines IT with computational fields like software engineering; and new media technologies, which combines IT with communication, graphic design, educational technology and similar fields. Core course topics examine the ways information technology has changed society, database concepts, programming and human-computer interaction. Though not required, an internship is strongly encouraged. This field of study can also be pursued through a six-course minor.
Runner-Up #2: Slippery Rock University
- The information technology degree program is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET
- Students can join the Computer Technology Club
- 20:1 student-faculty ratio as of 2012, according to the NCES
- Ranked #27 among the best regional public schools in the North for 2014, according to U.S. News & World Report
Slippery Rock University offers a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology through its Computer Science Department. Students must take 58 credit-hours of courses, including 6 credit-hours of electives. The program includes core courses in information systems, programming, databases, scripting, computer technology troubleshooting and computer networks. Electives may come from the areas of art (focusing on digital media), management or marketing. Students may also choose to participate in an internship.