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How Do I Get a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology?

The study of information technology requires students to enroll in both computer science and business courses.
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  • Written By: Brandi L. Brown
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 16 July 2014
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Information technology is a frequently changing field that works well for students who plan to update their skills continuously. People who earn a bachelor of science in information technology study both the technical field of computer science and the business fields of management and communication. Working on a bachelor of science in information technology requires excelling in both the methodology and business sides of the computer science field.

The requirements for a bachelor of science in information technology typically include learning how to code software applications. Courses in computer science will teach either one language in depth or beginner information in multiple languages. Computer science requirements also typically include learning about artificial intelligence and the theory of programming. The purpose of learning the computer science field is that the information technologist works to evaluate the requirements of projects for applications developers. These course requirements tend to be lighter for information technology majors than for traditional computer science students.

On the business side, students need courses in operations management, introductory accounting and financial management. These classes prepare information technology graduates to work in the field as business analysts and project managers. Students will learn how to communicate with programmers, who often use technical jargon, as well as clients, who have more interest in the business side of development projects. By taking quality business courses, information technology students will be able to create proposals for projects, budget out the time and money needed and perform other basic business tasks.

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Students who are getting a bachelor’s degree in information technology also should consider working in an internship or a cooperative learning job, also called a co-op. A co-op is paid, though usually the pay is not significant, and an internship often is unpaid. Either an internship or a co-op can give the information technology student real-world experience working in the field. Students will get an idea for whether they like the field and where they might fit within the industry.

When a student decides to begin working toward an information technology degree, he or she should make sure to check all requirements for earning the degree. Information technology requires students to enroll in both computer science and business courses, so the student should be sure that he or she will be able to get all of the required courses in the proper order. Variety and perseverance are necessary for someone trying to get a bachelor’s degree in information technology.

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Discuss this Article

allenJo
Post 5

@hamje32 - I think that if you’re looking for hands on learning with the most current technologies, Information Technology schools are a better investment of your time and money.

These are basically vocational schools that work with current programming languages and systems. There are no general educational courses like you would have to muddle through in college. Instead, it’s all boot camp so to speak – less theory, more practice.

We have one of those schools where we live and they have a very good success rate in placing their graduates. Most of these schools are just two year institutions, but those are two years that are very well spent in my opinion.

hamje32
Post 4

@oasis11 - I think that the Microsoft certifications have indeed become the certifications of choice which differentiate the people who just want to be programmers from people who have the actual skill sets.

Of course, I am addressing people who are using Microsoft technologies. Obviously, if you’re using another language like Java, then go after the Sun Java certification.

Microsoft offers a variety of certifications; the MCSE (Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer) is a good one, but it’s more of a well rounded certification in my opinion. If you want to prove you’ve really got the goods as a programmer, go after the MCAD (Microsoft Certified Application Developer). I believe that this is the toughest certification to get.

Either way, any certification you get is likely to boost your salary potential and give you an edge against competing applicants for the same position.

miriam98
Post 3

@Charred - I personally believe that the Bachelors of Science in Computer Science is a stronger credential than Bachelors of Science Degrees in Information Technology or Information Systems.

Certainly there is some overlap between the two majors, but in the Computer Science degree they get deeper into programming languages. It’s also important to know what languages are current and try to take courses that prepare you for those languages, even if those courses are not part of the standard computer science curriculum. You could, for example, take those additional courses in community colleges during the summer months.

I agree that knowing current technology is more important than the degree in and of itself. Real world experience is what matters to most to employers.

Charred
Post 2

@oasis11 - I can second that motion, mainly because I work as a software developer and my bachelor’s was in English Literature of all things. I claim no bachelors of science degrees whatsoever.

How did I make the transition to Information Technology? Well, I’ve always had a technical bent, taught myself BASIC as a teenager and was able to work my way up into a programming position eventually.

I did this first by getting technical support jobs through the temp agencies and trying to do some basic scripting to improve my technical skill set further. Eventually I landed an entry level programming position, and from there I was able to get other programming jobs afterwards.

oasis11
Post 1

I wanted to add that I used to work for an information technology staffing firm as a recruiter and we had a lot of applicants that had a Bachelors of Science in information systems. While the degree was important I felt that practical experience in the field was even more important because the Bachelor of information technology was more of a generalist degree and our clients really wanted applicants that had more specialized experience.

I think that internships while in college are excellent because it proves that you have hands on experience. I also think that looking at getting some specific certifications like those that Microsoft offers would also be beneficial. Receiving an MCSE for example, can open a lot of doors because the certification process is rigorous and the Microsoft brand is well respected and widely used.

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