Master’s Degree in Computer Science

Many professionals in computer science have spent countless hours learning new technology skills and obtaining specific certifications. However, with the recent explosion of online coursework and the resulting shift in educational availability, many people are choosing to pursue a master’s degree in computer science. These degrees are often specialized, and allow students to demonstrate their preparedness to take on higher level tasks and responsibilities in their employment.

Coursework

Since all of the core requirements were accomplished in the student’s undergraduate degree program, master’s degree requirements are significantly less time intensive than a bachelor’s degree. Most master’s degrees require 30-36 credit hours of work, with some requiring remediation coursework to fill gaps in specialized knowledge. All of this coursework is in mathematics and computing, and often can lead to the Ph.D. degree if a student chooses to do so.

The specific coursework will be dependent on the degree being pursued. For example, a master’s in information security will likely require extensive study of database structure, vulnerabilities and other security related topics. Similarly, a master’s in application development might require coursework in development platforms and programming languages. This is what makes the master’s degree a viable alternative to industry specific certifications.

Employment Outlook

A master’s in computer science has a number of benefits with regards to employment. To begin with, the master’s degree is proof of advanced extensive study in a specific specialization. Obviously, these students would be ready to take any certification tests but there would also be proof of depth of knowledge held by the student.

Also, the master’s degree is a great tool for branching out. Since jobs are very specialized in computer science, a general bachelor’s degree can lead to any number of positions. If a student would like to change paths, a master’s degree can help.

Also, the master’s degree allows a student in computer science to work towards teaching the subject at a university. While many professionals are content to work in the field, some people prefer the academic life. A master’s degree is the first step towards that goal.

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