What Can You Do with a Master’s of IT? 

A Master’s of IT leads to some of the more specialized careers in the industry such as advanced database architecture, software engineering, and data science. IT is a highly technical field to begin with so many top-tier jobs are gaited behind stringent requirements–such as a well established work history, an advanced graduate degree, or demonstrated excellence in research. 

By building qualifications in these three areas, a Master’s of IT can open doors into countless industries and specialized career paths, while allowing professionals the flexibility to establish professional concentrations in areas of personal interest and passion whereas IT professionals with an undergraduate degree will most likely need to capitalize on opportunities of mid-to-entry level employment. 

Why Pursue a Master’s of IT? 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, IT jobs rank among the fastest growing job markets in the world. Increased opportunity has led to increased competition for the best jobs, and increased need for specialists to fill professionals roles of greater expertise. This in turn has led to many of the top IT degree programs establishing program concentration and specialization options to prepare students to take on specialist roles upon graduation. 

These specialist roles in IT are among the most lucrative positions in the job market, and often provide professionals with the flexibility to find employment in the city they want to live in. Moreover, many of the best Master’s of IT programs can be completed online amidst full-time employment anywhere in the country. 

Ranking Methodology 

Earning a Master’s of IT degree is for many students a method of achieving professional advancement. For this reason, many students pursue a Master’s of IT amidst full-time employment which requires students to either enroll at part-time pace or to enroll in an online degree program designed for working adults. Given that many of the country’s best IT graduate programs are offered online, we have structured this ranking to focus on online Master’s of IT, so that the programs we have ranked are most accessible to the highest number of students. 

  • Reputation 

The overall clout of a University and the reputational value conferred to graduates of its IT graduate programs. 

  • Number of Specializations

Being able to pursue your desired area of specialization in the field of IT is one of if not the most crucial element of evaluating Master’s of IT programs. 

  • Graduation Rate 

Given the time and financial investment involved in earning a Master’s of IT degree, we have weighted programs where students see this investment more regularly come to fruition at graduation. 

25 Best Master’s of IT

  1. Boston University
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Before online education became mainstream, many higher ed pundits would suggest that in-person learning is superior to online learning. Boston University (BU) began challenging this notion almost 20 years ago when its first online degree was offered. Since then BU has continually evolved and improved its online program offerings, so that students who enroll in them today experience some of the industry’s best technology and support. 

BU offers an online Master of Science in Computer Information Systems (MSCIS) where enrollees have access to 24/7 technical and academic support, digital media, as well as virtual group projects. The program was designed to offer online students all of the academic enrichment offered in a traditional classroom. 

Students will cover the advanced topics in computer information systems, which focus specifically on the areas of highest industry demand, so that graduates of the program will have a competitive edge in seeking employment. Students will be able to develop further specialization through choosing from a diverse selection of over 36 advanced electives. 

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  1. Pennsylvania State University–World Campus
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Penn State University World Campus is the largest institution of higher education in the Pennsylvania State School System, and currently services over 20,000 online students and adult learners. Penn State World Campus offers a Master of Professional Studies in Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations that can be completed entirely online. 

Courses are taught by Penn State’s world class faculty who are experienced researchers and practitioners from the cybersecurity industry. These faculty have designed coursework to reflect the real world demands of the industry as well as the expectation of future employers of the following jobs:

  • Cybersecurity Analyst
  • Cyber Threat Adviser
  • Information Security Director
  • Security Engineer
  • Vulnerability Assessor

Another distinguishing element of this program’s design is its focus on collaborative learning. Students will progress through coursework by engaging in projects and electives with multidisciplinary faculty and students in order to build strong ties with adjacent disciplines and fields of study.  

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  1. Virginia Tech
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Virginia Tech is a university consisting of nine colleges and graduate schools that employs a focus on advanced education, evidenced by its offering of 170 graduate and postgraduate degrees as compared to 110 undergraduate degrees. This is meaningful for prospective students of the graduate IT program because students will benefit from a more intimate class size where each student owns a larger share of instructor’s attention and guidance–which can be immensely important when navigating the advanced curriculum of a Master’s of IT. 

Specifically Virginia Tech offers an online Master of Information Technology which has received numerous accolades ranking it among the best graduate IT programs for working professionals. Students of the program will benefit from two decades of program refinement where faculty have improved upon and evolved the program, whereas many competitor’s IT degree programs were developed only recently in response to popularity. 

Faculty have designed this program to reflect industry trends and employer needs. They accomplish this by offering students a tremendous amount of choice to pursue areas of interest in order to start building towards expertise and specialization. Specifically, students can earn any of the 10 following graduate certificates: 

  • Big Data
  • Business Data Analytics
  • Cybersecurity Management
  • Cybersecurity Policy
  • Cybersecurity Technologies
  • Health Information Technology
  • Information Systems Design
  • Information Technology Management
  • Internet and Network Technologies
  • Software Development

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  1. Johns Hopkins University
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Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering is one of the largest continuing education programs in the country. Among its degree programs are 22 different fields of study designed to accommodate working professionals in offering multiple pathways to professional advancement. These programs consistently rank among the best in their field of study.

Specifically, IT students can earn a Masters of Informations Systems Engineering that is consistently recognized in the ‘top 5’ of all online programs. Students will choose from one of three focus areas to begin building towards specialization: software engineering, human-computer interaction, and information management. 

One distinguishing element of this program is that it allows a proficiency exam for prospective students who wish to enroll but may not have the other prerequisites. If applicants can demonstrate advanced knowledge in the exam, they can earn exemption from certain prerequisites. This is a huge opportunity for working professionals who may not have an undergraduate education in IT.

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  1. University of Cincinnati
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The University of Cincinnati (UC) online has spearheaded its expansion into online education by encouraging its world class faculty to develop their curriculums into online degree programs. These programs have been met with critical success and are consistently recognized as top programs in their respective fields. 

Specifically, students can earn a Master of Science in Information Technology where they can benefit from the extensive network and resources of UC’s public research infrastructure while enjoying the flexibility of online education. Students of the program will progress through a comprehensive curriculum design to set students up for success in a variety of pursuits. 

One distinction to note is that the program earned the National Security Agency’s designation as a ‘National Center of Academic Excellence’ in both cyber defense and cyber operations. Students can further establish a focus of study in coursework by choosing projects and electives that coincide with career goals and interests.

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  1. University of Southern California
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The University of Southern California (USC) is a nationally renowned private research institution with a tremendous network of interdisciplinary centers, researchers, and professional partners. For any prospective student interested in developing expertise through a concentration in research, USC is an excellent option. Specifically, USC students can earn a unique IT degree that is, a Master of Management in Library and Information Science (MMLIS).

Students of the program will learn from industry leaders who have led successful careers in the industry and who leverage this success to give students a leg up on the competition. While a core focus of the program is certainly on that of library sciences, graduates of the program will be prepared to take on various positions of specialized employment such as the following positions: 

  • Information Analyst
  • Researcher
  • Digital Assets Manager
  • Information Professional
  • Policy Analyst
  • Information Access
  • Retrieval Specialist

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  1. West Texas A&M University
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West Texas A&M University Paul and Virginia Engler College of Business offers a host of career-focused degree programs through the Department of Computer Information and Decision Management. These programs position students for strategic advancement in their profession. Specifically, students can earn a Master of Science in Computer Information Systems & Business Analytics (MS CISBA) that can be completed entirely online. 

Students of the program will progress through a comprehensive curriculum designed to propel students to success in various areas of the job market. Students can build toward expertise in certain areas by pursuing coursework in optional areas of concentration: Computer Information Systems & Decision Management, Accounting, Economics, or Finance. 

One distinguishing element of this program is that students are provided choice at every stage of the curriculum. That is, coursework covers 6 core areas, where students choose 2 courses for each of these 6 areas: 

  • Quantitative Analysis in Business
  • Data Analytics 
  • Data Mining and Management
  • Systems Development 
  • Networking and Cybersecurity
  • Business Integration 

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  1. Florida State University
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Florida State University (FSU) is one the largest institutions of higher education in the south, and has recently exploded in growth due to its expansion into the online education market. The FSU Office of Distance Learning (ODL) acts as a steward for online students, so that they are provided with the necessary resources to effectively navigate online learning technology, as well as resources to develop professional opportunities outside of the program such as internships, community service, and research projects. 

Specifically, students at FSU can earn a Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) that can be completed entirely online through 32 credit hours of coursework. Students of the program will engage with top tier faculty and peers through digital projects designed to facilitate collaboration. Through projects and coursework students will build graduate-level expertise in the following areas of study: 

  • Information Architecture & Data Management 
  • Information Quality Assurance
  • IT Governance
  • Information Systems Management
  • IT project Management, UX/UI Design
  • IT Documentation/Technical Writing and Communication
  • Distributed Information Systems
  • Mobile Information Systems

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  1. University of South Florida
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The University of South Florida (USF) is a premier research institution with the size and resources of a large public university. Currently USF services more than 50,000 students through an array of career-focused degree programs that are designed to offer students continued value even after graduation through USF’s extensive professional network of alumni and student-career services.

The USF Department of Computer Science and Engineering offers a fully online  Master of Science in Information Technology (M.S.I.T). The program uniquely positions students to understand the dynamic interplay of information technology with strategic business applications. With this in mind, students will cover curriculum designed by faculty to incorporate the interdisciplinary elements of advanced IT careers that intermingle with corporate development. 

Students can further build specializations in key areas by choosing coursework in six optional areas of study. These areas include studies in networking programming, robotics applications, data mining, cloud computing, and more. 

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  1. Stevens Institute of Technology
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Stevens Institute of Technology is an innovative institution of higher education that employs a career-focused philosophy that employers notice. Access to high-end internships, research projects, and entrepreneurial development develop students into professionals with creativity, critical thinking, and business know-how. This is particularly valuable in the field of IT where professional networks and business experience are valued highly by employers. 

The Stevens Institute of Technology Schaefer School of Engineering & Science offers students an online Master of Science (M.S.) in Network & Communication Management & Services. Students of the programs will learn how to apply mobile and network technology in order to drive innovation and improvement in the field of telecommunications. 

Some key features of the program are its professional development services as well as mental wellbeing programs. The former is a program designed to help students build specialized professional experience through landing ideal internships and research opportunities. The latter is a program designed to help students maintain mental health and wellbeing through facilitated meditation and therapeutic practices. 

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  1. University of Massachusetts–Lowell
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UMass Lowell offers one of the largest selections of online degree offerings in the northeast. Students can choose from a variety of online learning formats in order to choose a format that best accommodates a student’s individual learning aptitudes. Specifically, students can choose from fully online, virtual-classroom, or hybrid learning formats. 

UMass Lowell offers a Master of Science (MS) in Information Technology that employs the research network of its large public parent-university, so that students benefit from coursework that reflects the most current industry trends and employer expectations. 

Students of the program will progress through coursework in system design, network infrastructure, and software management. Students can further build towards expertise in targeted areas by enrolling in key interdisciplinary electives. 

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  1. Sam Houston State University
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Sam Houston State University (SHSU) prioritizes the success of adult learners and distance students by creating efficient, flexible, and affordable degree programs that can be completed amidst even the most demanding of schedules. SHSU’s elite faculty bring decades of research and professional success to each online degree program, so that students can begin building an extensive professional network even before graduation. 

SHSU offers students a fully online Master of Science (MS) Information Assurance and Cybersecurity. The program prepares students to excel in occupations within government and high level business by covering the most up-to-date concerns and challenges faced by the industry. 

Through 36 credit hours of coursework, students will learn how to harden network security, performance risk assessments, and mitigate damages of compromised networks–all within the context of high level business operations. 

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  1. Auburn University
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The Auburn University Harbert College of Business is one of the most prestigious and renowned business schools in the country. Graduates of the College benefit from this tremendous reputation, a benefit that is all the more valuable in IT careers where competition is stout. Specifically, Harbert College of Business offers a Master of Science in Information Systems (MSIS) online degree that emphasises roles of leadership and management. 

Students working full-time can complete the program in just two years, while full-time students can complete the program in just one–making this simultaneously one of the most prestigious and efficient programs of this ranking. Students of the program also benefit from world-class expert faculty who contribute their knowledge gained through decades of success in the real world. 

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  1. Marquette University
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Marquette University Graduate School employs a teaching philosophy that centers around a singular idea–that academic excellence is rewarded in professional success. Thus Marquette’s graduate degree programs are built around the idea of providing students with the strongest foundation possible in terms of academic excellence, intellectual freedom, and skill development. 

This is particularly beneficial in the area of graduate IT education where specialized skills are expected by students’ future employers. With this in mind, Marquette University offers a fully online Master of Science in computing that offers the academic rigor central to the philosophy of the University. 

Students of the program will be introduced to advanced concepts in computing technology, and will be able to build expertise in key areas related to students’ career goals. Specifically, students are afforded a tremendous amount of choice in the following specialization options: 

  • Business Intelligence and Analytics
  • Database Analysis/Administration/Architecture
  • Information Security
  • Mobile Computing
  • System/Enterprise Architecture
  • Software Development/Software Engineering
  • Healthcare Information Technology
  • Build Your Own Specialization 

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  1. University of Arizona
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The University of Arizona Eller College of Management is a top ranked school for developing innovative leaders in areas of business, technology, and strategic development. One distinguishing element to Eller College’s approach to education is its focus on interdisciplinary collaboration. 

For example, students will often work alongside students from other programs in order to complete comprehensive multidisciplinary projects. Students also benefit from career coaching throughout their time in the College, so that students construct an education that is most conducive to their career goals and aspirations. 

Eller College offers a fully online Master of Science (M.S.) in Management Information Systems. Notably this program can be completed in as little as ten months if students enroll full time, making it one of the most efficient programs of this ranking. 

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  1. Colorado State University
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The CSU Department of Computer Information Systems (CIS) in the College of Business specializes in preparing students for successful careers in uniting people and business with technology. College faculty represent a diverse group of industry leaders in various sectors, so that each brings a unique perspective informed by real world business. For this reason, graduates of the College rank among the most well-compensated of all CSU graduates. 

The Department of Computer Information Systems offers a fully online Master’s of Computer Information Systems. Students of the program will engage coursework that is designed to uniquely position students to excel in merging technology with business operations in order to drive optimization, reduce risk, and increase profitability. 

These valuable skill sets are validated in the near 100% placement of program graduates into the IT field with the highest starting salaries of any major at CSU. Students can also progress through the program at pace that best matches their current life situation–graduating in as little as three semesters or spreading it out over five years. 

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  1. Florida Institute of Technology
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Florida Tech is Florida’s premier STEM university and has distinguished itself in recent years for its commitment to providing a global education. With a student body from over 100 countries around the world, Florida Tech seeks to provide students with career-valuable programs that position students to succeed in highly competitive job markets around the world. 

Florida Tech offers a fully online Master Of Science In Information Technology that employs this global awareness. While not directly indicated in the name of the program, students will progress through coursework that focuses on IT within the context of strategic business operations. Specifically, students will learn how to leverage their command of advanced IT skill sets to take on roles of leadership and management in business settings. 

Specifically, the program prepares students to take on any of the following jobs after graduation: 

  • Chief information officer
  • Director of Information Technology
  • Data Processing Manager
  • IT Architect and Systems Manager
  • Systems Software Manager 

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  1. North Carolina State University
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NC State University services nearly 20,000 adult and distance learners every year through degree programs ranked among the most valuable in the region. NC State’s online programs consistently earn national recognition for academic rigor and success metrics among program graduates. Specifically, NC State offers a Master of Science in Computer Networking online degree program. 

The program is a non-thesis option designed to accommodate working professionals and other students who cannot attend the traditional on-campus program. Program curriculum is designed to catapult students into successful careers in areas of industrial research, design, and technology development. 

Students are afforded an excellent amount of choice in choosing a focus of study in coursework. Available areas of study include the following: 

  • Networking Design
  • Network Hardware
  • Network Software
  • Networking Services
  • Internet of Things
  • Business Integration 

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  1. University of Arkansas Little Rock
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Despite brandishing the size and infrastructure of a large public university, UA Little Rock preserves a student-first philosophy through maintaining a 15:1 student to faculty ratio. This ratio ensures that online students receive the same guidance and care as their on-campus counterparts. This focus is all the more important for IT graduate students who will need to make highly impactful decisions concerning coursework, research projects, and other avenues of professional development afforded by the program. 

UA Little Rock offers a fully online Master of Science (M.S.) in Information Science. The program is designed in accordance with structure set forth by ‘Model Curriculum and Guidelines for Graduate Degree Programs in Information Systems’ which is fully endorsed by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and Association for Information Systems (AIS)–two of the largest and most prestigious accrediting bodies in the industry. 

In other words, students of the program can enjoy the confidence that they are progressing through one of the most advanced, updated, and career-relevant curriculums available on the market of higher education. 

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  1. California Baptist University
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California Baptist University (CBU) provides busy adult professionals with the opportunity to earn fully accredited degree programs online, so that students can earn degrees amidst even the most hectic of schedules. By focusing on degree programs with the most value to adult learners, CBU is uniquely positioned to provide IT students with an education designed to meet the demands of the job market. This position is made all the more viable by its location adjacency to California tech hotspots like Silicon Valley. 

CBU offers students a Master of Science in Information Technology Management, which is designed to propel students toward positions of leadership and executive management–some of the most lucrative areas of the IT job market. In order to successfully complete this preparation, students will complete coursework in the following key areas: 

  • Organizational Leadership
  • Law and Ethics in Information Technology
  • Conflict Resolution
  • Information Systems and Security Infrastructure
  • Emerging Technology
  • Project Management
  • Disaster Recovery and Planning

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  1. Syracuse University
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The Syracuse University School of Information Studies, or iSchool, is an internationally recognized name in information technology research and innovation. With a history in information studies stretching as far back as 1896, few institutions can claim as rich of a history or as broad of an impact as the iSchool at Syracuse. Students of the iSchool will participate in cutting-edge research and learn from industry-leading faculty. 

Specifically, Syracuse University offers a Master of Science in Information Management. A defining element of this program is its commitment to providing a strong foundation in business education to a level of completeness usually associated with a top-tier MBA program. 

Despite this solid foundation in business education, students will still build a tremendous level of expertise in areas unique to information technology. Areas include more than 15 concentrations in subjects such as database management, risk management, social media technology, human-computer-interaction (HCI), and much more. 

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  1. Old Dominion University
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Old Dominion University (ODU) provides adult and distance learners with a host of online degree programs that emphasise academic excellence, entrepreneurship, and civic engagement. Utilizing its robust research infrastructure, ODU is able to offer its students a level of professional development and opportunity typically only available at large public state universities. 

ODU offers a fully online Master of Science (M.S.) in Information and Communications Technology that emphasizes IT concepts in the context of business development. Through 3-4 semesters of coursework, students will become masters of driving business optimization through computer science and communications technology. 

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  1. University of West Florida 
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The UWF Hal Marcus College of Science and Engineering offers students a host of advanced online degree programs that emphasise a focus on the demands and challenges of real world industries. Online programs are enormously flexible and allow students to enroll at any time. Students are provided with an online academic advisor who ensures that students are able to make the most of their education. 

The UWF Hal Marcus College of Science and Engineering offers a Master of Science (M.S.) of Information Technology. Students of the program will learn from faculty who are industry-leaders in areas of network administration, database management, data mining and academic research. Program graduates will be able to evaluate large-scale IT projects in terms of cybersecurity, performance metrics, and projective calculations. 

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  1. University of Maryland–Baltimore County
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UMBC offers several advanced IT master’s and PhD programs through the Department of Information Systems as part of The College of Engineering and Information Technology (COEIT). Students of the College receive instruction from some of the industry’s top researchers and educators, who maintain active connections and professional networks which often culminate in research opportunities and even internships for students.

The UMBC Department of Information Systems offers a fully online Master of Science in Information Systems. The program is consistently ranked among the nation’s best IT programs–with accolades citing the program’s focus on research and career-relevant projects. 

Students of the program will be introduced to foundational concepts of advanced information technology. Anyone who wishes to build a more specialized focus can pursue a degree specialization in one of three directions: cybersecurity, data science, or human-centered computing. 

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  1. George Mason University 
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George Mason University (GMU) is Virginia’s largest public research university, serving more than 37,000 students from more than 130 countries around the world. IT Graduate students will enjoy access to one of the strongest research infrastructures in the country. This is evidenced by the fact that GMU is recognized as one of the most impactful research bodies in the country by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. 

Specifically the GMU Volgenau School of Engineering offers a fully online Master of Science (M.S.) of Applied Information Technology with a Cyber Security Concentration. Designing the program in the context of Applied IT means students will learn how to put technical theory into practical applications. 

Students of the program will master the foundational concepts of cybersecurity in the context of advanced information technology–how to evaluate business operations in the context of risk assessment, risk mitigation, and network optimization. Specifically program graduates will be prepared to take on employment in any of the following roles: 

  • Cyber-Human Interaction
  • Cyber Security
  • Big Data Analytics
  • Knowledge Mining
  • Data Analytics in Social Media

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