As with other online master's degree options, those interested in seeking an information technology online master's degree can expect to see a sizeable increase their salary, as well as greater responsibilities in their workplace. Interestingly, many online master's information technology students don't even seek out a job in their particular industry. Instead, information technology graduates tend to move towards other industries where computer specialists are especially valued for their unique array of skills. Still, as lucrative as an information technology job may be, it can be difficult to balance work, life, and school.
Thankfully, online master's degree programs are an excellent alternative to a traditional post-graduate experience. To help students make a decision as to which school's program is the right fit for them, we've compiled a list of some of the best online master's information technology programs currently available across the country.
For our ranking system, we used a number of different factors to determine our rankings, although we've primarily tried to focus on the return on investment as the greatest indicator of program success. Of course, in addition to the return of investment, we have also looked closely at the quality of the program's faculty. To accurately quantify this, we've used student testimonials, as well as the average rate of graduation for students from a program. With these two measures, we have been able to estimate the quality of a program's faculty, which can often be just as important to students as the value of the program itself.
Finally, an essential component of an online master's degree program is its flexibility. If a university does not allow for students to work at their own speed, then its value as an online program is lost. With this in mind, we have gone through each of the school's programs listed here to see how flexible they are. After combing through these various factors, we have compiled a list of 20 schools that we believe to be the best for students seeking an online master's information technology degree.
20. Trident University International
Trident University International is based in Cypress, CA and is distinguished among the entries on this list for having a particular focus on helping students worldwide earn their online master's degree. Trident University's information technology management program is designed to be wholly completed online and teaches students how to properly manage IT systems and develop emerging technologies. In addition to its base support for policy implementation, Trident University also allows students to choose from several focuses to complement their information technology management platform. These specific concentrations are Information Security/ Assurance and Digital Forensics, IT Project Management, and IT Systems Analysis and Design.
19. East Carolina University
East Carolina University's online master's degree program in information technologies allows students to attend classes both digitally and on-campus. While flexibility is one of our primary metrics for determining the value of a college's degree program, it should be noted that the graduation rate for East Carolina University is considerably lower than some of the other entries on this list. Still, East Carolina University is a solid choice for students that might need extra help and aren't as comfortable speaking with a professor over email than in person. It should also be noted that East Carolina University does have a standardized test as one of the components of admission into its online program.
18. Valdosta State University
Like the other entries at this point in the list, Valdosta State University does not have a particularly great return on investment. Also, it doesn't have a high graduation completion rate either. In fact, Valdosta State University's graduation rate is less than East Carolina University's. With all of that in mind, Valdosta State University still has the edge due to the sheer number of features that are incorporated into its online master's degree program. As a program designed for business education and information technology, Valdosta State University offers its online students support in the form of online chatrooms, mobile applications, online coursework management systems. Students that are comfortable working completely from home and have a solid work ethic should consider Valdosta State University.
17. Regis University
Based in Denver, Colorado, Regis University has a considerable improvement over the previous entries in this list regarding the return of investment. Also, Regis University offers two online master's degree programs involved with information technology: information assurance and information technology management. While both of its programs are more expensive than any other entry up until this point in the list, Regis University makes up for this by providing ample support to students that wish to be admitted. There are no standardized tests required for entry into the program, and it can be completed much quicker than others. For comparison, Regis University's master degree programs take roughly eight weeks to complete, whereas the average time for other universities is a year and a half. Students that are eager to complete their post-graduate work as quickly as possible should look into Regis University and its range of flexible online programs.
16. Sullivan University
Sullivan University is a private school in Louisville, Kentucky with an online master's degree program in managing information technology. Through this program, students will learn how to adapt to technology that is constantly evolving and incorporate it into their business plans. Of particular interest to students in this program are e-supply and intranet applications and how they can be integrated into a management plan. While Sullivan University has a lower than average return on investment, it makes up for this with the flexibility offered to students through its online program and the quality of education they deliver. Students that want to specifically focus on incorporating their skills into the business world will want to give Sullivan University a deeper look.
15. Arizona State University
Through its Tempe Campus, Arizona State University offers an online master's program that takes complete advantage of everything the Internet has to offer its students. This includes online office hours, a mobile app to keep track of assignments, and an online course management system that keeps students up to date on all of their assignments. This commitment to technological functionality should not come as a surprise, though, as Arizona State University has received awards for its innovation. Regarding program specifics, Arizona State University's graphic information technology program is designed primarily for those that are interested in producing and managing digital content. Students that want to focus more on the business aspects of information technology or other industries will want to consider a different online master's degree program. For any students that are specifically interested in graphic design, though, Arizona State University is a solid choice.
14. Southern Polytechnic State University
Southern Polytechnic State University has a comparatively large return of investment to many of the entries on this list, but it is offset by a much more competitive educational atmosphere. While Southern Polytechnic State University's admissions program is rigorous, it does succeed in preparing students for a broad range of information technology-related activities, primarily due to the strength of its elective system. Graduate students can enjoy the luxury of crafting their online information technology program to suit their specific needs in the workplace. It's for this reason that Southern Polytechnic State University's online program is routinely held to be one of the best distance learning providers in the country.
13. Brandeis University
Brandeis University's online master's information technology program takes slightly longer than many of the other programs in this list, but it makes up for this by providing a solid educational foundation that 's hard to find elsewhere. Brandeis University does not require its students to complete any standardized tests before admission and is incredibly flexible when it comes to transferring credits from other institutions. Also, Brandeis University has an above average return on investment, owing to the quality of its services. Students that are willing to invest more time into their master's degree program in exchange for greater security in the job market should consider Brandeis University.
12. Nova Southeastern University
Nova Southeastern University is a private school located in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Through its College of Engineering and Computing, Nova Southeastern University offers its students an affordably priced online master's degree program that succeeds in providing virtually everything a student could want from an online information technology program. Unfortunately, much of this value comes at the cost of flexibility. Nova Southeastern University's program is a hybrid mix of traditional and digital classrooms, requiring students to be on campus more often than they might otherwise be comfortable with.
Aside from its location requirements, Nova Southeastern University offers some features online to be more accommodating of students, including an online chatroom and forums for class discussions. Students that are interested in receiving a high-quality education and are willing to sacrifice a considerable part of their flexibility might be interested in Nova Southeastern University's distance learning offerings.
11. Colorado Technical University
Based in Colorado Springs, Colorado Technical University offers a much larger variety of online master's information technology programs than those found at other educational institutions. Specifically, Colorado Technical University offers online master's programs in data management, network management, security management, and information systems security. Through each of these concentrations, students become increasingly specialized in network and data management. While each concentration represents a considerable time commitment, Colorado Technical University does not require any admissions test for graduate students. Students that are interested in acquiring some specializations, or are more comfortable with an online degree program that forces them into a specific track, should contact Colorado Technical University for more information.
10. Syracuse University
Syracuse University has earned its spot on this list with its excellent return on investment and the prestige of its services. Just as with Colorado Technical University, Syracuse University offers several online master's information technology programs to its students. Specifically, Syracuse University offers students the opportunity to earn post-graduate degrees in both telecommunications and network management and information management. Through its communications and network management program, students become more familiar with network security and systems development, while students in the information management track spend more time learning how to implement new technologies into existing systems.
Regardless of which program a student chooses to enroll in, Syracuse University does not offer a fully online master's degree program for either. This lack of flexibility is perhaps the largest contributing factor to its ranking in this list and should be heavily considered by any students interested in attending Syracuse University.
9. Franklin Pierce University
Located in Rindge, New Hampshire, Franklin Pierce University offers students a master's degree in information technology management that can be completed entirely through the Internet. Students that are interested in an above average return on investment positively reviewed faculty, and an affordable tuition rate, should consider Franklin Pierce University. Students may not receive a lot of guidance through online features at Franklin Pierce University, but the institution makes up for this by being incredibly flexible. In fact, new students do not need to complete any standardized tests to enroll in the school's post-graduate programs.
8. Pennsylvania State University
At Pennsylvania State University, the school prides itself on offering students an online post-graduate program that is as flexible as its students need it to be. This includes courses that can be completed entirely online without even entering a classroom. Regarding specific features of its online program, Pennsylvania State University offers an online master's degree program in information sciences, cybersecurity, and information assurance.
Through this program, students will study best practices for keeping data secure between information channels. Students that want to specifically focus on keeping outsiders from spying on valuable information, or simply want a change of pace from other computer engineering programs, should give Pennsylvania State University and its online degree program a closer look.
7. Drexel University
Through its Drexel University Online initiative, Drexel University offers students several different post-graduate opportunities in the information technology field. Specifically, Drexel University provides students with the ability to earn an online master's degree in information systems, software engineering for computer systems, and software engineering for information science and technologies. Through each of these varied programs, students will learn how to develop, operate, and integrate complex systems into new environments. Through the two software engineering tracks, students will become more familiar with the process involved in designing new programs and developing them to overcome existing problems. Students that want to attend a highly recommended school with an excellent return on investment should seriously consider Drexel University and its online programs.
6. The University of Texas
Through its Richardson campus, the University of Texas offers students the opportunity to earn an online master's degree in information technology management. As with many of the other universities listed here, students in the information technology management program can expect to work with information systems and learn how to incorporate new and existing technologies into the management of these systems. Given the return of investment with the University of Texas, students that are interested in improving their financial situation and are eager to join the workforce should contact the University of Texas for more information.
5. University of Maryland
Located in Adelphia, Maryland, the University of Maryland offers many different online master's information technology programs that focus on vastly different industries. Regarding specifics, the University of Maryland offers online master's degree programs in accounting and information systems, financial management and information systems, cyber security, and information technology. Students that are interested in coordinating business functionality with innovative technology systems will be interested in the accounting or financial information management programs. Of course, students that are more interested in developing new and innovative methods in combating hacking attempts will want to specialize in the cyber security field. Regardless of the decision, students that want to attend a school that takes online education seriously will want to look further into the University of Maryland.
4. Florida Institute of Technology
As its name implies, Florida Institute of Technology specializes in providing students with a high-quality education focused on new advances in technology. As such, students can earn a post-graduate degree in information technology, information technology management, enterprise resource planning, cybersecurity, database administration, and computer information systems. In regards to its return of investment, Florida Institute of Technology is one of the best on this list, although obviously not the best. Furthermore, Florida Institute of Technology has invested a sizable portion of its resources into ensuring that its online degree programs are as flexible as possible. Students that want to receive an excellent education at a comparatively affordable rate should contact Florida Institute of Technology for more information. Given the sheer number of available online degree programs, there is likely to be something for students of all preferences.
3. University of Massachusetts
Through its Lowell campus, the University of Massachusetts offers a remarkably cheap online master's degree program in information technology. This commitment to providing a fair and affordable education to students is even more remarkable given the high return on investment that its graduates have. It's clear that the secret to the University of Massachusetts' success lies in providing students with state of the art facilities without overcharging them. As such, students can expect to enroll into a balanced program that is willing to work with them to ensure that they have everything they could need to be successful. Students that are on a tight budget, but still want to receive an above average education, should look into the University of Massachusetts and its online information technology master's degree program.
2. New Jersey Institute of Technology
As with the Florida Institute of Technology, it should come as no surprise that the New Jersey Institute of Technology also provides students with an excellent resource for expanding their knowledge of information technology. Specifically, the New Jersey Institute of Technology focuses on integrating the knowledge gained from an information technology degree into the business world with its online master's degree program in business and information systems. Students that want to expand away from their undergraduate major and become a key player at their workplace will want to look into this degree program and the institution offering it.
1. Carnegie Mellon University
Carnegie Mellon University offers students two different online master's degree programs in information technology: information technology management and information security and assurance. As nice as this versatility is, it's not what puts Carnegie Mellon University at the top of this list, though. The primary factor for its number one spot is its return on investment, which is absurdly high compared to every other school on this list. In addition to its excellent financial output, Carnegie Mellon University is incredibly flexible in its online offerings to students, ensuring that people can properly balance their work and education schedules.
Students that want to expand their knowledge at the best school for information technology should seriously consider Carnegie Mellon University. They are simply the best in virtually every regard for a student that is okay with paying a larger tuition fee. It's rare for a school to be worth a high tuition, but Carnegie Mellon University is.
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