Degrees, Salaries, and Job Outlook for Information Technology Careers – Forbes Advisor


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Information technology (IT) careers are growing rapidly and offer above-average salaries. IT professionals play a critical role in their organization’s digital infrastructure. They manage data storage and make sure their organization’s technology is running efficiently.

Whether you’re interested in cybersecurity, software development and testing, or another IT career path, keep reading to learn more about careers in information technology.

Types of Information Technology Degrees

A degree in information technology is often the first step to landing a career in the field. Online bootcamps and certificate programs offer an alternative to traditional degrees. Many institutions offer computer science programs, conferring degrees ranging from associate to doctoral level. Computer science students can study online in self-paced degree programs or in person on college campuses.

Information Technology Bootcamps

Many bootcamps and online platforms offer courses on topics related to information technology. Offers and costs vary by program, which can be free or charge learners thousands of dollars in tuition.

Many bootcamps are online and self-paced. However, these programs are rarely accredited, so it’s important to do your research to make sure you’re investing in a reputable bootcamp.

Check out our articles on two online IT bootcamp providers, Galvanize and Udacity, to learn more about their offerings and pricing.

Information Technology Associate

Colleges and universities offer associate degrees in information technology, some of which are available entirely online. Most associate degrees are 60 credits and require two years of full-time study.

Although each program is different, students in information technology associate programs often learn about cybersecurity, programming fundamentals, network connectivity, and front-end user interface in a business context.

Bachelor of Information Technology

Many information technology careers require applicants to have at least a bachelor’s degree. This degree prepares aspiring IT professionals through challenging coursework in areas such as IT project management and enterprise data management. Some bachelor’s degree programs even require capstone projects to showcase learners’ knowledge and skills.

Master in Information Technology

A master’s degree in information technology is not required for many IT jobs. Even so, earning one can lead to higher earning potential and make you a more marketable job candidate. Information Technology graduate programs challenge and develop your skills through courses such as advanced cyberattack, cloud infrastructure, and database management.

Information Technology Career Path

After acquiring essential IT knowledge and skills, whether through a degree or an online bootcamp, finding a career path that matches your interests is the next step. Information technology career paths include network administrator, information security analyst, and security engineer.

Many careers in information technology are expected to see strong growth in the coming years, with some jobs expected to grow by up to 22% from 2020 to 2030, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Web developer

Median annual salary: $77,200
Employment growth: +13%
Education needed: Baccalaureate; Bachelor’s degree in computer science, programming, web design, digital design, or graphic arts often preferred
Career overview:
Web developers create and maintain websites that meet the needs of their clients. These professionals manage the technical aspects of websites, including performance and capacity. They also help design the look and function of websites. Depending on the role, a web developer may be responsible for the overall site as a full-stack developer, the outward appearance of the site as a front-end developer, or the internal build of the site as a back-end developer. -end.

Data Analyst

Average annual salary: Over $62,000
Education needed: Bachelor’s degree in information technology, computer science, statistics, mathematics or a related field
Career overview: Data analysts collect, organize, analyze and transform raw data into meaningful information. Data analysts often turn data into visually understandable reports or presentations for organizations. Data analysts typically hold junior positions and work within teams. This position can allow professionals to gain experience in the field before moving on to more senior roles.

Network administrator

Median annual salary: $80,600
Employment growth: +5%
Education needed: Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or Information Technology
Career overview: Network administrators are responsible for the day-to-day operations of their organization’s data communications networks. These professionals organize, install and support computer systems and data communication networks such as local area networks, wide area networks and intranets. Network administrators ensure that their organization’s servers and mobile equipment are up to date and running efficiently.

IT systems analyst

Median annual salary: $99,270
Employment growth: +7%
Education needed: Bachelor’s degree in information technology, computer science, mathematics or a related field
Career overview: Computer systems analysts study organizations’ computer systems to make necessary improvements. Their duties include researching technologies that can increase efficiency, performing cost-benefit analyzes of potential upgrades, and overseeing the installation and testing of new systems. Analysts can also use data modeling to design systems or focus on coding and debugging applications.

Information Security Engineer

Median annual salary: $102,600
Employment growth: +33%
Education needed: Bachelor’s degree in information technology, computer science, or a related field such as math or engineering
Career overview: Information security engineers protect their organization’s network and computer systems. Their responsibilities include planning, testing, implementing and evaluating security measures. These engineers manage firewalls and data encryption programs to protect data, check current system vulnerabilities, and support the development of a disaster recovery plan. They also prepare reports on cybersecurity measures, attempted attacks, and breaches that are shared with management or senior executives.

Software developers, analysts and quality assurance testers

Median annual salary: $110,140
Employment growth: +22%
Education needed: Bachelor’s degree in information technology, computer science, or a related field such as math or engineering
Career overview: Software developers, QA analysts, and testers are all involved in creating and reviewing effective software programs. Software developers create computer applications that perform specific tasks, run devices, and control networks. Analysts and testers implement software testing, document software defects and issues, and share feedback on usability and functionality with developers and stakeholders.

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Information Technology Frequently Asked Questions

What is the highest paying IT job?

The highest paying IT jobs include computer and information systems managers and scientific researchers. Computer and information systems managers earn a median salary of $159,010, and computer and information researchers earn $131,490.

Yes, many IT jobs are in demand and growing at above average rates. Some roles, including software developer, web developer, and information security engineer, are expected to grow at rates of up to 33% between 2020 and 2030.

What qualifications do I need to study information technology?

Qualifications vary by school and program. For example, taking a bootcamp through Udacity or Galvanize may require basic computer knowledge, while many information technology associate’s degree programs are open to beginners.


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