While there are currently no master's degree programs dedicated to software architecture, master's degree programs for software engineering may offer an alternative option for study where they offer courses in software architecture. Since that's the case, persons can still become software architects with a master's in software engineering.
General Courses in Software Engineering Master's Programs
Software engineering graduate programs will cover a broad range of subjects, however, students wishing to focus on software architecture may be able to with some of these common courses.
Courses Dedicated to Software Architecture
Software architecture courses provide a foundational step for students in learning about the design process and will cover topics around planning, methods of design and quality checking. These courses may be introductory or more in depth in nature depending on the program. Students may also learn how to assess and document different kinds of architectural designs.
Courses That Deal With Testing Software
When taking these kinds of courses, students are likely to cover not only software testing techniques but also certain quality assurance standards. Students will learn topics such as the strategies involved in software testing and the expected life cycle of software. Other topics that will be covered are the development of a software testing program and the use of automation in testing.
Courses Designed to Teach Assessment of Software Requirements
When students are designing or testing software, it's important to know the requirements that must be met. Courses like these will establish the basis for setting software requirements by exploring the relationship between these requirements and the tests that must be carried out. Students will also learn the difference between functional and non-functional software requirements.
Courses That Deal With the Design and Management of Projects
Courses of this nature will cover a wide range of topics relevant to planning and managing projects. When students take these courses, they can expect to learn about the important aspects that must be covered if projects must be handled successfully. These courses will also introduce students to the professional standards that govern project management in the software industry.
Courses That Cover the Security of Software
Software security courses cover the importance of maintaining software security on a network. These courses will teach students how to integrate software into a network as well as information about different types of security certificates. Students will also learn about controlling access to networks and software and software auditing.
General Admission Requirements for Master's Degree Programs Covering Software Architecture
Applicants who are interested in a master's degree program related to software architecture must have a bachelor's degree in a STEM-related field with a minimum GPA of 2.5 from an accredited college or university. Most programs will also require that the applicant have a background in a mathematical field such as calculus or statistics and computer science. When submitting school transcripts, applicants may also need to submit letters of recommendation and a resume. Some master's degree programs may also need passing scores in the GRE test and non-native English Language speakers may need to submit passing scores on an English proficiency exam.
There are no master's degree programs specific to software architecture but the topic is covered in a number of software engineering master's degree programs. In this way, students can still pursue careers as software architects with a master's degree in software engineering.