Types of Degrees Information Technology Majors Are Getting
The following table lists how many information technology graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.
|Education Level||Number of Grads|
What Information Technology Majors Need to Know
In an O*NET survey, IT majors were asked to rate what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important in their occupations. These answers were weighted on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being the most important.
Knowledge Areas for IT Majors
According to O*NET survey takers, a major in IT should prepare you for careers in which you will need to be knowledgeable in the following areas:
- Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
- English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
- Engineering and Technology - Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Skills for IT Majors
When studying IT, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:
- Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
- Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Writing - Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
Abilities for IT Majors
As you progress with your IT degree, there are several abilities you should pick up that will help you in whatever related career you choose. These abilities include:
- Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
- Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
- Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
What Can You Do With a Information Technology Major?
People with a IT degree often go into the following careers:
Who Is Getting a Master’s Degree in Information Technology?
At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of IT majors is as follows:
|Race/Ethnicity||Number of Grads|
|Black or African American||896|
|Hispanic or Latino||452|
Americans aren’t the only ones with an interest in IT. About 43.1% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:
- Saudi Arabia
How Much Do Information Technology Majors Make?
Master’s Degree Starting Salary
According to 2017-2018 data from the U.S. Department of Education, students who graduated with a master’s degree in IT have a median salary of $89,300 during the early years of their career. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $78,700 (25th percentile) and $90,300 (75th percentile).
It is possible that some of these people may have taken positions that were not related to IT.
Salaries According to BLS
Average salaries range from $75,580 to $111,130 (25th to 75th percentile) for careers related to IT. This range includes all degree levels, so the salary for a person with just a bachelor’s degree may be a little less and the one for a person with an advanced degree may be a little more.
To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.
Amount of Education Required for Careers Related to Information Technology
Some careers associated with IT require an advanced degree while some may not even require a bachelor’s. In general, the more advanced your degree the more career options will open up to you. However, there is significant time and money that needs to be invested into your education so weigh the pros and cons.
Find out what the typical degree level is for IT careers below.
|Education Level||Percentage of Workers|
|Less than a High School Diploma||0.2%|
|High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED)||4.2%|
|Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production)||8.3%|
|Some College Courses||6.2%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||12.0%|
|Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master.||5.1%|
|Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level.||1.0%|
|First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession.||0.5%|
Online Information Technology Programs
In the 2018-2019 academic year, 1,107 schools offered some type of information technology program. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.
|Degree Level||Colleges Offering Programs||Colleges Offering Online Classes|
|Certificate (Less Than 1 Year)||636||101|
|Certificate (1-2 years)||420||44|
|Certificate (2-4 Years)||51||4|
|Doctor’s Degree (Research)||10||6|
|Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice)||0||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Other)||0||0|
Is a Degree in Information Technology Worth It?
The median salary for a IT grad is $92,030 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.
This is 131% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $1,042,600 after 20 years!
Explore Major by State
Majors Related to Information Technology
You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to IT.
|Major||Number of Grads|
|Computer Information Systems||17,155|
|Computer Software & Applications||2,830|
|Computer Systems Analysis||772|
|Computer Systems Networking||713|
|Other Computer & Information Sciences||486|
- College Factual
- College Scorecard
- National Center for Education Statistics
- O*NET Online
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers First Quarter 2020
- Image Credit: By Craig Dennis under License
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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