Masters in Project Management Programs
Masters Programs in Project Management: Overview
Project management is a broad field that seeks to prepare students to pursue potential career opportunities in a number of industries. These industries may include information technology, business or construction. In all of these positions, he or she sees must be capable of balancing a number of factors as he or she sees oversees the day-to-day operations of one or more projects.
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As such, a masters in project management program is designed to prepare students to initiate, plan, execute, monitor, control and close out a project within a specific budget and time frame.
Qualities of a Student in a Masters in Project Management Program
To effectively manage a project in any industry, an individual must be able to see how each element contributes to the success of the whole, and balance competing constituents. Some qualities that may help students succeed in the field might include:
- Excellent communication skills
- Outstanding time management skills
- Excellent organization skills
- Ability to multitask
- Ability to prioritize
- Good business sense
Ideally, a project manager should also demonstrate proficiency in following arenas:
- Problem Solving
- Team building
In addition to the general skills needed to succeed in project management, a project manager may also need training in utilizing specific tools, techniques or software programs specific to his or her industry. Many masters in project management degree programs offer just such instruction.
MBA in Project Management & Other Degree Types
Depending on the undergraduate degree you have obtained, there are different paths to choose from in graduate school. Students who are interested in earning master’s degrees in project management might find a number of different degree options. Some programs seek to provide advanced training in the principles of project management as they apply to any field, while others include project management as a part of an advanced degree that focuses on a specific career field.
- Master of Science in Project Management (MSPM) – This type of program typically focuses on the advanced practices and methodologies of project management itself, and may offer students the opportunity to take courses specific to their chosen industry.
- Master of Business Administration (MBA) – An MBA provides comprehensive business training, including courses on everything from human resources to economics. A project management MBA is one that includes courses or a concentration in project management alongside more general business classes.
- Master of Science in Management (MSM) – This field of study approaches management principles from an academic standpoint. It may take a broad perspective on business management issues such as policy and general operations, and may emphasize research into project management and other management fields.
- Master of Science (MS) with a project management concentration – Some programs offer the opportunity to undertake advanced study of a particular field with an emphasis on project management within that field. For example, a student may work toward an master’s in information technology with an emphasis on project management.
Project Manager Certification
In addition to the accreditation conferred by the university, many students seek to obtain accreditation by the Project Management Institute (PMI). This prestigious organization sets global standards for the industry and offers a number of educational opportunities and credentials for professionals in the field. Some universities offer degrees approved by PMI’s Global Accreditation Center (GAC). Others help students to gain PMI professional development units or credentials to bolster their career.
Common Coursework in a Masters in Project Management Degree Program
Coursework will vary depending on the institution and program chosen. However, classes typically cover topics such as:
- Project organization
- Planning and strategies
- Financial accounting
- Human resources
- Stakeholder management
- Risk management
- Budgeting and Scheduling
- Communication techniques
- Tools and technology
- Legal and ethical issues
At the master’s degree level, some programs culminate in a research project that gives participants the opportunity to contribute new knowledge to the field. Students may also have the opportunity to gain additional credentials, such as PMI or LEED certification, as part of their course of study.
Potential Career Paths for Project Managers
Project managers are needed in many industries, and may find potential employment opportunities in industries including:
- Architecture and engineering
- Global business
- Government agencies
- Green technology
- Information technology
- Infrastructure development
- Nonprofit organizations
- Software development
Within these fields, a project manager may oversee a project in its entirety, or focus on a single phase of the project. Potential job titles for project managers include:
- Administrative service manager
- Computer and information systems manager
- Environmental restoration planner
- Event manager
- Financial analyst
- Human resource manager
- Industrial production management
- Procurement specialist
- Project/program manager
- Quality management
- Sales manager
- Supply chain management
|State||Employment||Annual Mean Wage|
|Metro Area||Annual Mean Salary||Employment|
|San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA||$188,190||11,950|
|San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA||$178,740||13,280|
|New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA||$175,670||32,100|
Schools with Masters in Project Management Programs
GradSchools.com offers 76 Masters in Project Management
The University of Arizona Global Campus
Purdue University Global
Colorado State University Global
Grand Canyon University
Southern New Hampshire University
Concordia University Chicago
Saint Leo University
Northwestern University School of Continuing Studies
Saint Mary's University of Minnesota
Florida Institute of Technology