Computer science programs offer a broad foundation for many technology career paths. They may cover everything from programming to cloud computing. And, you could choose a concentration like data science or computer engineering. Other programs have a more specific focus. For instance,
. These programs blend both business and computer classes. Another area of study to consider is data science or data analytics. Big Data and other trends may
in coming years.
could lead to career paths in the growing field of computer and information technology. Roles in this industry are projected to
. The most growth should be in areas like information security, cloud computing, and big data. One high-growth role that requires a Master’s degree is
. 19% more jobs may be added to this occupation by 2026. This growth is due to demand for new technology, plus an emphasis on data collection by businesses. The increased need for cybersecurity should also lead to new jobs.
may also need to earn a Master’s, depending on the employer. This role should see growth as high as 28% by 2026. An increase in cyberattacks is to thank for this. Sectors like finance and healthcare will need new solutions to protect sensitive data. If you’re interested in beating hackers at their own game, this career path could be for you! Finally, some managers and executives in the technology field may need to earn a Master’s. These professionals may include
. Growth in this career area may come from business innovations, like expanding to digital platforms. A projected 44,200 Computer and Information Systems Manager roles should be added by 2026. (Sources: bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/computer-and-information-research-scientists.htm, bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/information-security-analysts.htm#tab-4)
Do I Need a Graduate Degree in Technology?
A Bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related field is the common entry-level requirement
. But, some technology career paths call for a graduate degree in technology. For instance, Computer and Information Research Scientists need to earn a Master’s in Computer Science or a related area. And, you may need to earn a graduate degree to pursue next-level roles. For instance, many businesses want Computer and Information Systems Managers
to earn an MBA or related degree. What about earning a doctorate? Most technology career paths don’t require a PhD. An exception is Postsecondary Teachers
. If you want to teach Computer Science or a related subject at the college level, you may need to earn a doctoral degree.
What Jobs Can You Get with a Master’s Degree in Technology?
The following career paths may need a Master’s degree in technology or a related field, depending on the employer:
- Computer and Information Systems Manager
- Chief Technology Officer (CTO)
- Computer and Information Research Scientist
- Information Security Analyst
- Database Administrator
- Computer Systems Analyst
- Network and Computer Systems Administrator
- Computer Network Architect
Technology Degree Average Salary
|Computer and Information Systems Managers||$139,220||367,600|
|Computer and Information Research Scientists||$114,520||27,900|
|Computer Network Architects||$104,650||162,700|
|Information Security Analysts||$95,510||100,000|
Top Salary Metro Areas in the United States: Computer Systems Analysts
|Metro Area||Annual Mean Salary||Employment|
|San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA||$116,790||13,600|
|San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA||$111,350||16,930|
|New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA||$103,490||41,600|
|Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA||$102,950||800|
Bureau of Labor Statistics
Popular Technology Graduate Degrees in Buffalo
Technology degrees are reported by the National Center for Education Statistics as Computer and Information Sciences and Support Services programs. Per the most recent data (2013), there were 22,615 degrees awarded to graduate students. The majority (92%) of these programs were at the Master’s level.
Top States for Employment: Computer System Analysts
|State||Employment||Annual Mean Wage|
|District of Columbia||3,630||$106,790|
What is the Difference Between a Master in Technology and a Doctorate in Technology?
A Master’s degree in technology covers both theory and applications within the field. Let’s consider the Master of Science in Information Technology
. In this program, you could study the technical concepts behind computer systems and networks. You could also learn how to use these concepts to achieve business goals. At the doctoral level, expect to dive into more advanced knowledge and leadership skill areas. For example, an IT Ph.D. program covers concepts like global IT management and cybersecurity. PhD programs may also involve more research than a Master’s program. Usually, you’ll have to research and write an original dissertation. This project may span anywhere from one to five courses. Your choice of education path depends on your career goals. If you are seeking a role in research or academia, earning a PhD may be ideal. For other kinds of roles, earning a Master’s may be the perfect next step.
Master’s in Information Technology
Doctor of Information Technology
|Master of Science in Information Technology||Doctor of Information Technology (D.I.T.)|
|Length of Program: 36 credits||Length of Program: 64 credits, 56 months (for post-Master’s students)|
|The MSIT program includes in-depth coverage of the information technology field. You’ll study database management, cloud computing, ecommerce, enterprise architecture, and more. And, you’ll prepare to tackle technology challenges in many industries.||This program covers advanced knowledge and leadership in the IT field. You’ll engage in problem-based learning simulations, research, and more. And, you’ll synthesize your knowledge in an applied IT project. Candidates can enter with a Bachelor’s degree or choose a post-Master’s track.|
- Information Technology Project Management
- Systems Analysis and Design
- Application Programming
- Database Management
- Computer Forensics
- Operating System and Network Architecture
- Enterprise Database Design
- Applied Research Methods—Qualitative and Quantitative
- IT Leadership Simulator: Developing Proactive and Reactive Security Plans
|No specific program accreditation. But, the institution holds accreditation from the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).||No specific program accreditation|
What Courses Are Needed for a Master’s in Technology?
In a technology Master’s program, your coursework will depend on your field of study. That said, you might see a bit of overlap among majors. Most technology programs touch on some key areas – like information security. In an Information Technology program, expect to study computer systems, databases and networks. You’ll take courses like:
- Operating Systems
- Database Modeling and Administration
- Networking Technology
Plus, you may take courses in how organizations use technology to conduct business. For example, you could learn how to optimize business telecommunications. A Master’s in Cybersecurity program takes a much closer look at online threats and how to stop them. Expect to build on your previous knowledge of math and computer science. And, get ready to explore different kinds of cybercrime while discovering how to keep hackers away. You’ll take courses like:
- Digital Forensics
- Application Security
- Computer Networking
A Master’s in Data Science or Data Analytics program blend math, statistics, and computer science. For example, you could study how to use programming for goals like data mining or visualization. Your courses may include:
- SQL for Data Analysis
- Data Mining & Analytics
- Algorithms for Data Science
- Introduction to Machine Learning
- Computational Statistics
What Should I Know About Accreditation for Technology Graduate Degrees?
Accreditation can help ensure your technology program meets industry standards. The leading accreditation organization for STEM programs is ABET
. But, they mainly accredit undergraduate technology programs. At the graduate level, look for schools that hold regional accreditation. You can also keep an eye out for organizations like AACSB International
, which accredits business schools. Often, business schools offer programs with a technology focus. For example, you might find MBA in Information Systems programs from an AACSB-accredited school.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Graduate Degree in Technology?
The length of a graduate technology program depends on the degree type. For example, a Master’s in Information Technology may take about two years to earn. Most programs call for at least 30 to 36 credits. A PhD in Information Technology usually takes three to five years to earn. These programs may range from 55 to 64 credits.
Technology Programs That Could Be Completed in 24 Months or Less
How Much Does It Cost to Get A Masters’ Degree in Technology?
The average cost of earning a graduate degree from a public institution is $11,617 per year. This means you could find programs both more affordable and more expensive than the average. The visualization below shows graduate tuition costs of 4 institutions with Technology Graduate Programs, as reported by NCES. We compared those costs to the typically most affordable and most expensive college options, also reported by NCES.
| Instate/Out Of State Tuition||School|
$11,617 Average Public Institution University
$14,784 Average Private For Profit Institution Tuition
$26,551 Average Private Nonprofit Institution Tuition
What Are the Costs per Credit for a Master’s in Technology?
Cost per credit is different at every institution. State universities are also likely to have in-state costs vs. out-of-state costs. Below are a few examples of the cost per credit, reported by schools offering technology graduate degree programs.
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