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What can you do with a master’s in information technology?

August 30, 2021
Cybersecurity analyst working on computer in office surrounded by coworkers

If you’re seeking a way to progress in your career or are considering a new career path overall, getting an information technology (IT) master’s degree can be a rewarding path. Indeed, the worldwide employment website, ranks IT master’s degrees1 and in the top five for highest-paying master’s degrees and in the top ten for best master’s programs for career-changers.2 Plus, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects computer and IT occupations generating 531,200 new jobs in the next ten years, labeling the growth as “much faster than average” in comparison to all occupations.3

If you’re interested in a challenging career on the edge of innovation, a Master of Science in Computer and Information Science could be the perfect next step for you.

What can you do with a master’s in information technology?

A career in IT doesn’t mean you’re limited to working at a help desk. The BLS explains that the massive growth predicted for the field includes jobs like software developers, systems engineers, systems analysts and programmers. An M.S. in Computer and Information Science can lead to all sorts of rewarding career opportunities and access to higher salaries. Plus, working in a field like IT gives you the opportunity to flex all sorts of strengths including creativity and strategic thinking.

Read on for some of the fulfilling opportunities available for you with a master’s in IT.

Careers for a master’s in IT

Cybersecurity Analyst

It’s estimated that by the end of 2020, nearly 3.5 million cybersecurity jobs globally would be unfilled.4 Why not step up to that opportunity? An M.S. in Computer and Information Science with a specialization in cybersecurity can help you step up to fill one of those openings. Encouragingly, information security analyst roles have a projected growth of 31% from 2019 to 2029 and in 2020 earned an average salary of $103,590 per year.5

Cybersecurity analysts, or information security analysts, typically have responsibilities like installing firewalls and encryption programs to protect an organization’s information and networks, monitoring networks for security breaches and investigating violations. They also might prepare for technological disasters and conduct penetration testing to simulate attacks to look for vulnerabilities in their systems before they can be exploited.5 Cybersecurity analysts are needed in every field from tech to infrastructure, healthcare and retail.

Software Developer

Software developers design computer applications or programs. Software quality assurance analysts and testers identify problems with applications or programs and report defects. With a projected growth of 22% and an average salary of $110,140 per year,6 software development is another promising role for someone with a master’s in computer and information science.

Software development can be a great career for someone who enjoys collaborating with others on new ideas. Developers are often involved in the whole process of application development from identifying a problem to building a solution and testing a product throughout development.

Mobile Application Developer

At this point, it’s hard to imagine life without smartphones. From games to to-do lists, messaging to exercise, so much of our lives are entangled with our phones. It’s no wonder that mobile app development has become so appealing. Similar to software development, mobile application development involves creating installable software bundles (code, binaries, assets, etc.) , implementing backend services such as data access with an API, and testing the application on devices.7 The average national salary for mobile developers is $117,682 per year.8

Chief information officer (CIO)

If you’re interested in high-level strategy and management of an organization, you might set CIO as your top career goal. Often executives have a solid background in the field and experience working in the more hands-on roles that they are managing. While it’s not a role you can jump right into, building up your expertise in all aspects of IT with a Master’s in Computer and Information Science could be a great way to move toward your goal. Executive roles are projected to increase at the same rate as most occupations with 4% growth expected from 2019 to 2029. Additionally, the median salary reflects the great amount of responsibility required of and experience necessary for the role coming in at $107,680 per year.9

Computer Systems Analyst

Computer Systems Analysts work in all types of organizations to help make computing processes run more efficiently. Sometimes called systems architects, systems analysts bring business and information technology (IT) together by understanding the needs and limitations of both. Computer systems analysts earn a median salary of $93,730 per year and have a faster than average projected growth.10

Open up new doors of possibility with an M.S. in Computer and Information Science

Whether you’re preparing for a role in the C-suite or are looking for a challenging new career in an in-demand field, an online M.S. in Computer and Information Science from Marquette University can give you a leg up in achieving your goal. Choose the pathway that suits your needs and consider a specialization in cybersecurity to really hone your skills for a career in digital defense. Talk to an Admissions Advisor today to find out where an online M.S. in Computer and Information Science can take you.