Best Graduate Degrees for People Who Like Computers
Computer and information technology graduate degrees are among the most popular degrees pursued by individuals interested in working within the computer industry.Over the past 50 years, the world has slowly but steadily experienced a revolution in the way we communicate, access information and store vast amounts of data. What once took reels and reels of magnetic tape to record on now takes less then 0.2 centimeters of a piece of microchip.
Today, the need for individuals with computer graduate degrees continues to increase and expand, with thousands of new job openings created every year in the field of computers.
Because the process and progress of society now depends wholly on computers and digital technology, the demand for trained individuals holding graduate degrees in the computer industry will continue to rise dramatically. Currently, there is a deficiency in the number of people qualified to fill thousands of computer-related positions that require the type of advanced education delivered by computer graduate programs.
Master of Science in Governmental and Military Cybersecurity
Infrastructure security of government and military cyberspace is incredibly vital to the welfare of most developed countries possessing a formidable defense system. With this increasing reliance on a digitalized kind of national defense comes the threat of hackers and viruses capable of instantly devastating the security of that country.
People with a master’s of science in cybersecurity are trained to prevent, detect and implement countermeasures in the event government or military cyberspace is compromised. As a cybersecurity graduate student, you will already have passed a variety of computer science and programming courses exploring all aspects of cryptography, encryption, firewalls, chain of trust techniques and biometric authentication systems. Click here to read more about Military Cyberspace at the U.S. Army Cyber Command.
Studying DLP, or data loss prevention applications, is one primary field associated with this type of graduate program. Students will learn about standard security measures such:
- Intrusion detection systems
- Anti-virus programs targeting specific inter-governmental spyware
Advanced security measures deal with creating algorithms designed to discover evidence of abnormal data exchanges through keystroke recognition and unauthorized access activity directed towards securing encrypted information.
Doctor of Computer Science in Computer Programming
Computer programming languages such as C++ and Java allow us to operate computer software, such as games, applications and server programs. This software is comprised of lines of code involving letters, numbers and other variable symbols that tell the computer how to run the program. Variables are assigned definitions, such as how many points a video game character scores when capturing a certain item, which is integrated with other variables to eventually form the program.
Computer programmers learn four basic kinds of programming languages:
- Object oriented
- HTML, or hypertext markup language, the type of language used primarily is creating web pages.
People with Ph.Ds in computer science and programming will perform research in the field of software development (designing, experimenting and testing software programs) and predict future directions in computer programming. Additionally, they will also have deep knowledge concerning complexity and algorithms, artificial intelligence and semantics of programming languages.
People who have a graduate degree in computer science and programming generally find jobs as professors, researchers, consultants in multinational companies, managers in software development businesses and developers working for government agencies.
Masters or Doctorate in Computer Engineering
Computer engineers concentrate on the internal mechanisms of computers rather than computer software. This graduate degree involves several aspects of computer science and electrical engineering needed to actualize computer systems. Undergraduate classes necessary to pursue a graduate computer engineering degree include electronic engineering, software/hardware integrations and circuit design.
As a graduate student studying computer engineering, you will learn about creating VLSI chips, designing specific operating systems, developing firmware for embedded microcontrollers and robotics. Jobs for computer engineers are usually found in high-tech manufacturing organizations and research labs commissioned by computer-based developers.
A specialized field of computer engineering that is rapidly growing in demand by employers is bioelectric engineering. A bioelectric engineer develops, tests and implements digital devices involved in neural engineering and cardiac bioelectricity. Software programs necessary to operate machinery for implementation of deep brain stimulation and regulation of heart arrhythmias require in-depth knowledge of computer engineering as well as software development.
What to Expect from a Computer Graduate Program
Computer graduate programs entail extensive research, dissertation proposal and defense, a final comprehensive examination and working in an internship or as a teaching assistant. Length of a computer graduate program is usually two to five years, depending on how long it takes for the student to submit a dissertation proposal, write the dissertation, defend it and finally have it accepted by the department.
People with master’s or Ph.D degrees in the computer sciences can expect to make at least $100,000 annually and experience stable employment throughout their career. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the computer science industry is expected to experience around a 20 percent increase in job growth during the next decade. The BLS website further states that “computer and information research scientists are likely to enjoy excellent job prospects” due to businesses reporting a severe lack of individuals qualified to perform job duties encompassing computer science.