Computer Science or IT Degrees
In today’s world, every business, and practically every home, relies on computer programming for daily functioning. From a smartphone app, to banking, to security systems, to government intelligence, computer science and information technology is used predominantly. Therefore, degrees in computer science or information technology (IT) are in high demand. Since every sector needs computer science experts, you have a range of opportunities, be they entry-level customer support or QA, fast-paced, round-the-clock technology start up entrepreneurship, flexible consulting positions, and much, much more.
Read below to gain information about an Associate Degree, Bachelor’s Degree, or Master’s Degree in computer science or information technology.
Computer Science or Information Technology Degree Choices
Computer science or information technology degree graduates tend to work longer hours than average, but the salaries are usually commensurate, making this career track attractive because it can be both dynamic and lucrative. Career training for computer science or information technology degrees typically includes at least an associate degree course, and often a bachelor’s or master’s degree. Some programs even offer online degrees. Depending on your career goals, and the amount of time you wish to dedicate toward your studies, you will choose from either an Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Doctorate (PhD) degree in the computer science or information technology field. We recommend contacting a few colleges to arrange a time to meet with their admissions counselors, either by phone or in person. By speaking directly with an admissions counselor, you’ll be able to ascertain which computer science or information technology degree suits you best.
What subjects do you study for a computer science or information technology degree?
While specific coursework varies among colleges, generally speaking all computer science or information technology courses cover similar material. The following are subjects covered for any level of computer science or information technology degree:
- Computer Programming
- Database Systems
- Knowledge Base Systems
- Software Engineering & Testing
- Digital & Multimedia Production
- Artificial Intelligence
- Operating Systems
- Legal, Social, and Ethical Issues in Computing
Associate Degree in Computer Science or Information Technology
An Associate Degree (AA or AS) in Computer Science or Information Technology is typically two years of full-time study. In addition, the Associate Degree in Computer Science or Information Technology also provides students with a strong introduction to the entire world of computer science and information technology, possibly leading them to explore options they had not considered beforehand.
Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science or Information Technology
Generally speaking, a bachelor’s degree (BA or BS) will offer you more job opportunities than an associate degree. In fact, Rasmussen College conducted a study which showed that 20 times more job opportunities exist for bachelor’s degree graduates than for graduates with only an associate degree.
Master’s Degree in Computer Science or Information Technology
A Master’s in Computer Science or Information Technology is often considered a gold standard for computer science or information technology upper management professionals. With a Master’s Degree in Computer Science or Information Technology, you will more likely be considered for upper management positions than if you have only a Bachelor’s or Associate degree. Even though a Master’s Degree in Computer Science or Information Technology is rigorous academically, since it can be a ticket to higher-level opportunities, students usually find that their dedication pays off after graduation.
Choosing A Computer Science or Information Technology School: Online or Onsite?
In the past, getting a college degree, of any level, often meant putting your life on hold for years to attend onsite campus classes. While traditional Computer Science or Information Technology degree programs are still offered by colleges and universities across the country, online degrees are no longer a fringe option. In fact, there are many online programs from which to choose, some of which are considered high-caliber in accordance with college ranking systems. In addition, a plethora of lower-priced, yet high-quality options are available from a number of other online computer science or information technology programs. The advantages of an online computer science or information technology degree are as follows:
- Online degrees are typically considered to be on par with on-campus degrees.
- A graduation certificate does not indicate the place of study, therefore, an online degree would be indistinguishable from an onsite degree from the same institution.
- Some online degrees can be obtained at a different pace than taking classes on campus – either quicker, or slower, depending on your needs. This level of flexibility can be particularly beneficial to those already employed, and/or balancing a family with their studies.
To be sure, not all online degree programs offer the same options. If you are considering an online computer science or information technology degree in the near future, be sure to be in touch with the admissions counselor at each school you are considering. Here are some guideline questions to discuss with an online program admissions counselor:
- Are the classes held at specific times online, or can they be viewed at later time via recording?
- Is part-time study available?
- Is the time frame set, or can I spread out the classes for a shorter or longer time period?
- What are the methods of communication between instructors and students, and between classmates?
- Are there online student networking opportunities provided by the school?
- Does this school assist in arranging paid, or course-credit, internships?
- Do online students benefit from alumni services like those for on-campus students?
Improving Job Prospects After Graduation
Many postgraduates with computer science or information technology degreesgo on to pursue certification in specialized areas in order to further their credentials for job prospects. Additionally, online computer science or information technology degree graduates often join industry organizations, both local and national, in order to expand their networking opportunities. These postgraduate options are often offered online.