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Information Assurance Master's Degree: Salary & Jobs

Graduates of a master's degree in information assurance have a variety of career options available. These might involve working with computer networks, ensuring cybersecurity, analyzing risk, or handling other computer security issues.

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A master's degree program in information assurance can prepare you for a number of careers in the information and computer security field, including jobs like an information security analyst, computer systems engineer, or computer network architect. Learn more about some of these careers below.

Career Options for Graduates of Information Assurance Master's Degree Programs

Job Title Median Salary (2016)* Job Outlook (2014-2024)*
Risk Management Specialist $69,470 (for financial specialists, all other) 5% (for financial specialists, all other)
Information Security Analyst $92,600 18%
Information Systems Manager $135,800 (for all computer and information systems managers) 15% (for all computer and information systems managers)
Computer Network Architect $101,210 9%
Computer Systems Administrator $79,700 8%

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

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Career Descriptions for Graduates of Information Assurance Master's Degree Programs

Risk Management Specialist

A risk management specialist is in charge of maintaining risk management systems and identifying any potential risks. They may be tasked with developing risk models, assessing liabilities or environmental impacts associated with products, analyzing statistics to quantify risk, and presenting findings to colleagues or the public. Risk management specialists may also create new ways to control risk through security systems. Information assurance experience can help you apply these risk management principles to information technology and business in the digital world.

Information Security Analyst

An information security analyst ensures that an organization's computer systems, internet connections, and computer networks are secured from internal and external threats. This means they maintain current security systems, continuously watch for security breaches or other threats, and stay up-to-date with the latest IT security trends and products. They may also be asked to help other employees and computer users with information security systems and to give them a basic understanding of security systems. A master's degree can provide a greater familiarity with relevant technologies and troubleshooting security issues.

Information Systems Manager

A master's degree is a common requirement to become an information systems manager at many organizations, along with prior work experience. The primary responsibility in this career field includes the overseeing of all or most of the information technology related activities in an organization, which might include the installation and maintenance of hardware or software devices, performing cost-benefit analyses and managing the hiring of personnel, researching necessary upgrades, and maintaining security systems. They might also investigate any security threats and educate other employees about proper cybersecurity practices.

Computer Network Architect

Computer network architects construct communication networks, which may take the form of wide area networks, intranets, or local area networks, and may be on the scale of a few offices to multiple buildings. Many of these architects spend time planning new networks for companies or organizations, researching the newest technologies and finding appropriate fits for client needs, and presenting their plans to clients. Information security hardware is a key component of these plans. Possessing a master's degree can give you a head's up when applying for jobs, as many require prior experience in the field, though your undergraduate degree must usually be in a computer-related field, such as computer science or information systems.

Computer Systems Administrator

A computer systems administrator is responsible for managing the computer network system for an organization. Their job duties encompass all aspects of their organization's computer systems, including analyzing the computer systems needs, determining what systems to utilize, installing said systems, and managing them on a routine basis. Computer systems administrators regularly collect and analyze data regarding their organization's use of the systems to ensure the system is serving its purpose well. If any aspects of the computer systems need to be tweaked, it is the computer systems administrator's responsibility to do so. A master's degree is a requirement for the computer systems administrators within some organizations, and the courses you would take in a graduate program in information assurance can give you the computer security and systems knowledge necessary to ensure you are well-prepared for this career.

Graduates of information assurance master's degree programs can work in multiple computer-related positions, including information security analysis positions to managerial computer systems positions. Although some of these careers only require a bachelor's degree and work experience, a master's degree can prove beneficial in them all.

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