Information Technology is one of the most in-demand careers in the world, and a master’s degree can qualify you for a variety of higher-level positions.
In 2021, at least 3.85 million IT positions will be filled in the US. Over the next decade, the computer and information technology occupations are estimated to guarantee actual job growth of 13%, as reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook. That’s more than half a million new opportunities in the field.
Evidently, there is an ongoing demand for IT Infrastructure, and Systems workers as industries utilize cloud technology, data analysis, artificial intelligence, and computing systems as they transition to digital operations.
Information Technology is a hot field gaining traction at corporate and federal levels. Now’s the time to build your credentials and qualifications with a Master’s in Information Technology, so you can compete for internal promotions in your current company or confidently jump off to the next fantastic job opportunity.
Typically, an MSIT sharpens research skills in niche areas of computer science, cybersecurity, project management, and business intelligence.
Check out the Schools Using These Quick Links:
- Purdue Global University
- Carnegie Mellon University
- Arizona State University
- University of Cincinnati
- Liberty University
- Western Governors University
- University of West Florida
- Florida Tech University
- Southern New Hampshire University
- Virginia Tech
Get promoted to that corporate-level IT position and implement solutions in predominantly research-based settings with an online Master of Science in Information Technology! Our list of the best MSIT programs characterized by outstanding features provides you with excellent choices:
- Offered in a 100% web-based or blended format, adult learners can pursue the degree while keeping their work schedules,
- Features comprehensive research-focused curricula to promote competence in the field, with courses that include Information Technology Management, IT Administration, Network Security, Data Analytics, Database Management Systems, Computer Systems, and more,
- Develops in every graduate student the soft skills qualities required in professional IT settings, including problem-solving, communication, and critical thinking,
- Online classes are held through a Learning Management System that features easily accessible coursework and resources for graduate students,
- Provides opportunities for financial aid for IT master’s degree students,
- Taught by professors that have earned terminal degrees in IT or a closely related field,
- Earned accreditation from academic agencies pushing for the advancement of IT education and the IT industry.
For more information on how we came up with our shortlist of the best online MSIT programs, visit our Methodology page.
The 10 Best Online MSIT Programs
Purdue Global University
Working professionals can gain marketable technical, creative, and managerial skills through an online master of science in information technology. You can focus your degree on one of six concentrations:
- Data Analytics
- Business Intelligence
- Amazon Web Services
- Cloud Technologies
- Secure Software Development and Quality Assurance
- Project Management.
This 20-hour-per-week, six-week program can be completed in two years. There are 60 credits required for completion.
Standout Features of Purdue Global University – Online MSIT Program:
Online students become skilled in determining the appropriate scope, schedule, resources, and stakeholders for IT initiatives. The program will train you to create effective and efficient solutions to protect digital assets. You’ll have the opportunity to apply best practices and recent theories to support your plan’s implementation, modification, and review.
Did You Know:
Purdue Global University is renowned for being one of the Most Innovative Schools in the US.
Carnegie Mellon University
The online MSIT at CMU includes core courses and concentration electives. Object-oriented programming in Java is offered along with database management, telecommunications management, and e-business technology and management.
Early career professionals and seasoned executives make up the MSIT student mix. For instance, it is common for software engineers from tech companies and executives from pharmaceutical companies to collaborate on a study team.
- With a part-time delivery model, CMU online MSIT students have access to the same world-class faculty as students on campus.
- Courses are offered part-time, asynchronously.
- GRE or GMAT scores are optional.
Standout Features of Carnegie Mellon University – Online MSIT Program:
The online MSIT program equips students with innovative management and strategic tools, enabling them to successfully deploy technology to meet business objectives. Designed for working students, the MSIT program offers flexibility in curriculum and structure.
Did You Know:
Carnegie Mellon is an IT programs powerhouse known in the industry as one of the best producers of top-performing professionals.
Arizona State University
The Online MSIT requires 30 credit hours across ten classes ranging from 7.5 to 15 weeks. Students learn about conceptualizing, organizing, and implementing IT projects. The specializations include:
- Computer Architecture
- Information Security
- Information Systems Management
- Systems Development
Standout Features of Arizona State University – Online MSIT Program:
With an MSIT degree at ASU, students become qualified to compete in the tough market for technology jobs, particularly in management and leadership positions with an emphasis on research.
Did You Know?
ASU is one of the country’s largest public universities. It has over 75,000 students enrolled across its four campuses and 493 classrooms.
University of Cincinnati
A core component of the University of Cincinnati’s MSIT program is its emphasis on hands-on technical skills, problem-solving, and communication skills. The school’s graduates are not only knowledgeable about technology but also about people and organizations that enable them to create solutions that enhance lives.
With UC Online’s MSIT program, you can completely switch career paths, whether you just graduated with a bachelor’s in IT or worked in the field for years.
- A tuition scholarship is now available to around 40% of new students to the online program at the University of Cincinnati.
- Participants can complete ten courses totaling 30 credit hours online in less than two years.
- Providing real-world experience and academic expertise, this program is taught by industry professionals at the forefront of the industry.
Standout Features of University of Cincinnati – Online MSIT Program:
To graduate from the online MSIT program, you must complete three core IT classes that prepare you for a future career. They also allow you to build your curriculum around topics of interest to you. Aside from joining their MSIT program, you’ll also network with students who have similar goals and are willing to share their expertise.
Did You Know?
NASA’s Neil Armstrong taught aerospace engineering from 1971 to 1980 at UC!
Liberty University online MSIT gains a deeper understanding of infrastructure systems while critically analyzing data. Furthermore, you will learn modeling and design by applying networking and database management theories in the real world.
- The program requires 36 credit hours and 1.5 years to complete.
- The program is 100% online, with 8-week courses.
- You can transfer up to 50% of the degree’s total credits.
Standout Features of Liberty University – Online MSIT Program:
Liberty University is recognized by the Southern Association of Colleges & Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). Their professors guarantee a world-class education, who all have years of experience and advanced degrees in their fields of study.
Did You Know?
Liberty University offers students and alumni one of the best college sports experiences in the country with its nationally renowned collegiate baseball program.
Western Governors University
WGU’s online MSIT uses an innovative learning model to tackle the discipline’s many facets. It takes 20 months to complete and consists of these courses:
- Financial Management for IT Professionals
- Project Management
- Technical Communication
- Technological Globalization
- Technology Operations and Innovation Management
- Power, Influence, and Leadership
Standout Features of Western Governors University – Online MSIT Management Program:
With input from the Information Technology Program Council, consisting of CIOs, CTOs, industry experts, and leading tech employers, WGU’s online MSIT is designed to meet the needs of today’s business leaders.
Did You Know?
WGU’s semesters are six months long, with students usually starting on the first day of the month.
University of West Florida
Online MSIT graduates at the University of West Florida explore careers in IT management, database administration, digital media analytics, system architecture, system administration, and network administration.
- The program, which takes two years, requires 30 credit hours to complete.
- Up to 6 transfer credits are accepted.
Standout Features of University of West Florida – Online MSIT Program:
With a mastery of programming languages, online MSIT students at UWF can make their IT systems secure and efficient. They contribute to the field by conducting in-depth research and proposing effective and efficient solutions to existing problems in information technology.
Did You Know?
UWF generates approximately $1 billion in sales yearly, making it a leading economic driver in Northwest Florida and beyond.
Florida Tech University
At Florida Tech, MSIT students learn strategic approaches to developing information systems for enterprise resource planning. They gain knowledge of the most innovative technologies that qualify them to lead complex projects.
Florida Tech prefers MSIT applicants who:
- Have earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from accredited institutions;
- Have an academic background in mathematics, science, or engineering.
GRE is not required for admission to this online master’s program.
Standout Features of Florida Tech University – Online MSIT Program:
Graduates of the online MSIT program at Florida Tech become eligible for research-focused and consultation positions, including IT directors, IT architects, IT systems managers, data processing managers, systems software managers, and chief information officers.
Did You Know?
Six of the 2,594 seasoned faculty and teaching staff at Florida Tech are Nobel Laureates.
Southern New Hampshire University
With an online MSIT at SNHU, students develop skills in researching, identifying, proposing, and even implementing strategies relevant to the IT field. Students are also taught to analyze business needs, current technologies, and information system requirements.
The concentration options are:
- Data Analytics
- Database Design
- Healthcare Informatics
- Information Security
- Enterprise Technology Management
- Software Application Development
- Web Design
The program requires 36 credits to be completed in 15 months. Up to 12 graduate transfer credits are accepted.
Standout Features of Southern New Hampshire University – Online MSIT Program:
SNHU’s online MSIT students gain the competency to work in various IT environments and collaborate effectively with other departments. They are expected to acquire a mastery of skills for research-based work, particularly in developing IT solutions for business and tackling emerging issues in IT.
Did You Know?
Since 2015, Southern New Hampshire University has been ranked as one of the “most innovative” regional universities.
Virginia Tech offers a 100% online Master of Information Technology degree program featuring interdisciplinary knowledge.
The areas of specialization are:
- Analytics and Business Intelligence
- Big Data
- Business Information Systems
- Cybersecurity Management
- Cybersecurity Policy
- Decision Support Systems
- Health Information Technology
- Innovation & Entrepreneurship in AI/ML
- Software Development
- Software Engineering
Online MIT Graduates can leverage Virginia Tech’s massive professional network of 100,000 alumni in the Mid-Atlantic Region alone.
Standout Features of the VT-MIT Online Program:
Students may add up to two graduate certificates to their MSIT degree without additional courses. They can update their skills in a narrower area through the VT-MIT program’s ten graduate certificates that can be earned along with their MIT degree or as a standalone credential.
Did You Know?
Virginia Polytechnic Institute is a top-ranking Master of Information Technology and Computer Information Technology provider to veterans.
General Skills Needed for MSIT and IT Specialists
To do your job well as an IT professional, you will need at least a basic understanding of code writing. Fundamental knowledge of languages like HTML and C++ will always prove helpful, even if you don’t write a lot of code. You need to be proficient in several languages to work as a developer, software engineer, or computer scientist.
As expected, a cybersecurity expert must know the latest cybersecurity issues, software, and best practices, so you need to have this skill if you’re going to work in the cybersecurity sector.
Promoting, demonstrating, and enforcing good IT security practices is essential. Cybersecurity concerns should be understood by all IT specialists and incorporated into daily work.
IT professionals often need to work across multiple teams and groups, so communication skills are imperative. IT professionals often need to provide tech solutions to people who aren’t as tech-savvy as they are. Their leadership skills must be demonstrated at all levels of a project and with many different groups. Their ideas and reports are often presented to large groups. Hence, having communication skills is a must.
Several on-the-horizon technologies are becoming more and more attractive to organizations, such as augmented reality, machine learning, cloud technology, and voice interfaces. Junior IT employees must adapt to new working methods and pick up new skills quickly as their careers evolve.
Frequently Asked Questions
How long does an Online Information Technology Master’s degree take?
It typically takes two years for a full-time student to earn an online MSIT or MIT degree. For most IT master’s programs, students need 30–36 credits of coursework in their concentration area to earn the degree.
Part-time students complete this program in three years. An accelerated format allows them to obtain the degree in 15-18 months. There is a cost difference between per-credit and flat-fee tuition arrangements in master’s programs.
Program requirements vary widely, potentially affecting the length of the degree, and often include an internship or a practicum to gain practical experience.
What exactly does a Computer Support Specialist or IT Specialist do?
IT specialists work for a company that manages web and software needs for others, or in organizations that maintain internet connectivity, back up information, troubleshoot operating systems glitches, or resolve gateway issues.
IT specialists work remotely or visit clients to inspect, repair, and replace hardware. They uphold security protocols by auditing system behavior and monitoring firewalls.
How much do IT specialists make?
The median salary for Computer and IT professionals in May 2021 was $97,430, says the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Many factors can affect your salaries, such as your level of experience, skill set, the cost of living in your area, and your education level.
What is the tuition range of an online MSIT?
MSIT and MIT degrees in the US cost an average of $19,314 per year. However, college profile, location, and other associated costs affect the program’s cost. Remember that a full-time program on campus includes boarding and other related expenses, which you do not pay with an online degree. An online MSIT or MIT program features a lower overall cost.
Is an online MSIT worth it?
Generally, a graduate program has the benefit of developing your knowledge base and expanding your network. With an online MSIT, you raise your chances of landing a better-paying job, particularly in the scientific and research aspect of the work. With a non-IT or business background, you can still transition to an Online Master’s in Information Technology or the IT field by enrolling in an MSIT or MIT program.
Online Master of Science in Information Technology graduates qualify for numerous opportunities in various settings, including healthcare, engineering, finance, government, and all other sectors in between! IT jobs in this field of work pay salaries that coincide with the field’s growth. Whether you’re looking to earn higher wages or want to level up your academics and qualifications, online programs like the MSIT are a sound investment.