Graduating with a master’s degree in information technology offers great opportunities to get a good job. In fact, you can be hired by large companies, nonprofit organizations, and the government.
Graduates working in information technology design, create, implement and monitor systems. According to Payscale, graduates with a master’s degree in information technology earn an average of about $85,000 per year.
On the lower end, a systems administrator might make just above $60,000 per year; at the higher end, an information technology director might make almost $120,000 per year. Some other positions include senior software engineers, business analysts, and information technology project manager.
We’ve got you covered. This is the list of the best master’s programs in computer and information technology in the United States. Some of them specialize in computer science, some of them in information technology, and some of them you’ll earn only on the way to a doctorate, but they all have one thing in common: they will help get you to the next level in your career.
What are the Best Master’s in Information Technology Degrees?
The first thing we want to know, is the bottom line: how much is this going to set me back? So, we included the annual tuition for each school right up front for you. The final result is a list of schools that balance cost, reputation, and, ultimately, what they can do for you and your unique goals. You can’t go wrong with any of them, of course, but these schools are leading the way.
These rankings are based on a few important sources. The first source is a survey published by the Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA to nationwide college students. These students rated the overall cost of school, academic reputation, financial aid offerings, and graduate success rates on the post-college job market. These factors were weighed equally alongside data from other publicly available sources, including the National Center for Education Statistics, U.S. News & World Report, and PayScale.com.
Below you will find a list with the best master’s programs in information technology. These programs also offer more in the way of structured learning, helping students keep pace with the program requirements.
That’s the result of the growth of cloud computing, “big data,” and the spread of mobile computing. Median pay can start in the six figures, but there’s a trick to it: you’ll need a master’s degree or higher.
1 Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Master’s in information technology from MIT cover topics such as software and computation for simulation, computer modeling: from human mobility to transportation networks, computational methods for flow in porous media, and computational geometry.
Admission requires that incoming students fill out the application form and submit it online. They also need GRE scores and a minimum IELTS score of seven for individuals who speak English as a second language. Students must complete 36 units in the core subjects, 12 units in unrestricted electives, 24 units in the restricted electives, and a thesis (36 units).
2 University of Washington
To earn a master’s in information technology from the University of Washington, students must apply with their resume, a completed application, transcripts from previously attended schools, and an application fee. The admissions committee accepts students based on general intellectual talent, their academic achievements, and managerial ability, and their ability to clearly and persuasively communicate.
Students take courses such as information technology and organizational strategy, operations and business process management, and business data analysis. The program offers coursework in the summer, fall, winter, and spring. Students on campus can create their own networking with both professors and peers.
3 University of Illinois Urbana Champaign
Students who complete the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign campus’ professional master of computer science take classes in formal methods, programming languages, and software engineering and artificial intelligence. Classes that constitute the master’s in information technology aspects of the degree include work in architecture, compilers, and parallel computing and database information systems.
Students must complete a total of 32 credits in order to graduate, with 12-16 credits in the core, 12 credits in advanced courses, and the remaining credits in electives. Students must maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA to graduate and must complete at least 24 credit hours at the school; that is, only 12 total credits may transfer in from other institutions.
4 University of California Berkeley
Master’s in information technology from the University of California Berkeley emphasizes information management and systems. To complete this program students take two years and constitutes a total of 48 units. Students take courses that cover topics such as Python fundamentals for data science; information technology economics, strategy, and policy; software prototyping for data science and information management; and information law and policy.
Most students complete summer internships that allow them to apply what they learn in class to actual, real-world experiences. They also complete final projects to design a prototype system or perform substantial research.
5 University of Texas at Austin
The University of Texas at Austin offers master’s in information technology that requires the completion of coursework in advanced programming and app development. It also require IT and supply chain management, strategic IT and change management, and user-generated content analytics.
In order to graduate, students must complete a capstone project where they combine all they learned into a single experience. Applicants must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited school with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Though admissions do not require prior work experience in the field, those with leadership experience and qualities receive priority.
6 Carnegie Mellon University
Master’s in information technology offered by Carnegie Mellon University focuses on three tracks: Strategy, privacy engineering, and software engineering. To complete the program engineering in the privacy track students take between 12 and 16 months. While those in the software engineering track take approximately 12 months to complete the program.
Those in the strategy concentration graduate prepared to assess cybersecurity threats and develop management solutions for information systems; students in this track can select one of four concentrations: data analytics, software networked systems, information security, and politics and strategy. Meanwhile, the privacy engineering track caters to students hoping to become privacy engineers or managers. On the other hand, the software engineering track caters to students with less than two years of professional work experience in software engineering.
7 University of Michigan
Admission to the University of Michigan’s master’s in information technology requires that students already be in possession of a bachelor’s degree approved by a higher education authority in the U.S. They must boast a 3.0 GPA. Students must complete all 48 credits in the program, required to graduate.
This usually takes about two years of full-time study or between three and four years of part-time study. Graduates must complete either the ‘mastery course’ or a thesis project in their final year of study. Courses include intensive Python programming for information students, information and control, managing organizational information assets, and crisis informatics.
8 Georgia Institute of Technology
The master’s information technology degree offered by Georgia Institute of Technology is a business administration degree that deals with the intersection of business and tech. Hopeful graduates must maintain a minimum 2.7 GPA to remain in good standing. Students take classes on select weekends, with a total of four residencies and two trips abroad.
Learners may apply and earn admission into the program any time of the year; students whose portfolio and application fail to convince the admissions office may be assessed using their GMAT scores. The program requires a total of 50 credit hours to complete.
9 Princeton University
Master’s in information technology from Princeton University has a curriculum through its master of science in computer science. Students take classes like Introduction to programming systems; networks: friends, money, and bytes; information technology and public policy; and advanced programming techniques.
Those hoping to gain admission to the program should note that they can only apply for fall admission. GRE test scores, a completed application, and a processing fee are required for admission. Those who do not speak English as a first language also need to submit their TOEFL or IELTS scores in order to be considered.
10 University of California San Diego
The master’s in information technology coursework at the University of California San Diego comes through classes in the program’s computer science track. International students must supply their TOEFL scores for admission, and all students must supply their GRE scores and boast a bachelor’s degree from an accredited school. Incoming students must also have earned a minimum of 3.0 GPA.
Graduates must complete either a thesis or a comprehensive exam. Students in the program enjoy all of the advantages associated with on-campus learning, including networking with other students and faculty and the school’s student support services.
11 Stanford University
Master’s in information technology from Stanford University comes as a concentration option in the computer science master’s degree. The information management and analytics concentration deals with the applications side of social media, applying data mining algorithms and techniques, networking, bioinformatics, and many other areas. Example classes include transaction processing and distributed databases, database systems principles, and advanced topics in database systems.
The admissions office requires students to submit three letters of recommendation from former professors or employers, transcripts from previously attended post-secondary institutions and GRE scores. International students who speak English as a second language also need to provide their TOEFL scores.
12 University of California Los Angeles
The University of California Los Angeles’ master’s in information technology curriculum derives from the master’s in computer science. The school is renown for its studies in the computer sciences. The most competitive applicants possess a minimum 3.5-grade point average for their undergraduate studies, though the school boasts an average 3.6-grade point average of applicants it accepts. At a minimum, students must hold a 3.0-grade point average.
Other requirements include the submission of GRE scores and either TOEFL or IELTS scores for international students. To apply, prospective students should submit three letters of reference, preferably from professors who can attest to the student’s ability during their final two years of undergrad.
13 Purdue University
The master’s in information technology from Purdue University offers a focus area called “Foundations of Information Security”. Totalling 30 credits, students can complete the degree in one year of full-time study that includes two summer courses. Students take foundational courses, core courses, and elective courses.
They study topics such as social, economic, and legal aspects of security; data security and privacy; software security; and security analytics. To apply, students should submit transcripts from previously attended colleges and universities and write a statement of purpose outlining their intentions for joining the program. International students also submit their English proficiency scores.
14 Cornell University
The master’s in information technology curriculum offered by Cornell University can be accessed through the school’s interdisciplinary professional information science program. Students can learn a course of study expected from someone with a degree in information technology. Coursework includes studies on topics such as the structure of information networks; information, technology, and society; interactive information visualizations; and language and information.
Prior to graduating, students must complete a capstone project designed to apply all of what they have learned into one experience. Common jobs that graduates find upon completing the program include software engineers, systems administrators, business technical analysts, and usability analysts.
15 Columbia University
Master’s in information technology from Columbia University offers a curriculum through its master of science in technology management program. Students should complete a total of 36 credit hours to graduate, and they may finish the program on either a part-time or a full-time basis.
Full-time students typically complete the program in three terms and part-time students typically complete the program in two years. The school only admits students in the fall, so applicants should keep that in mind while gathering materials. Students take core courses and electives in studies such as technology in the business environment, accounting, and finance for technology, operations management, and analytics for technology management.
16 University of Maryland College Park
The master’s in information technology from the University of Maryland College Park requires that students complete 30 total credits. Students working full-time through the program can complete the degree in as little as 9 months, though most students take about a year and a half to finish their coursework. Students take courses in business, tech, and analytics.
Classes include strategic and transformational IT, data networks and infrastructures, data models and decisions, and managing digital business markets. Students must also complete 12 credits in electives. Graduates go on to work in a variety of different settings, including as consultants for Fortune 500 companies.
17 Harvard University
The master’s in information technology from Harvard University expects graduates to garner an understanding of the most recent information management tech and to develop their understanding of the relationship between business and growing technologies. Students take a total of 12 courses and have the option of earning a certificate as part of the program.
Certificate in fields such as data science, software engineering, or cybersecurity. All students must complete a capstone project prior to graduating. Course examples include advanced scientific computing: Stochastic methods for data analysis, inference, and optimization; technologies and applications; fundamentals of website development, and dynamic web applications.
18 University of Virginia
The University of Virginia’s master’s in information technology requires the completion of 30 hours of coursework. Students complete the program in one year starting in September and moving through August of the following year. Learners take four different modules: enterprise architecture, enterprise IT and emerging technologies, project and product management, and strategic management.
Graduates of the program enjoy multiple advantages upon entering the workforce. These include a network of peers and faculty who can introduce them to jobs or serve as references, a portfolio that hiring companies can use to determine a graduate’s worth, and an intellectually mature mind capable of engaging today’s tech problems.
19 Yale University
Learners in the general computer science track at Yale University can design their program to match what one might find in a master’s in information technology degree. To earn the degree, students must complete at least eight courses at the 500 level.
Students unsure of whether they want to go onto Ph.D. work can begin the master’s program and later move into the Ph.D. upon graduation — should they decide to further their education. The on-campus environment also fosters a sense of comradery between faculty and students. As a result this enhancing the amount of networking that students can partake in. Prospective students should hold a BS/BA in computer science prior to applying.
20 University of California Irvine
Earning a master’s in information technology from the University of California Irvine means participating in a program dedicated to placement support, excellence, networking opportunities, and diversity. Students must opt for either the thesis or the comprehensive exam option; taking required courses such as distributed computer systems, high-performance architectures, and their compilers, introduction to embedded and ubiquitous systems, and computer and communication networks.
Applicants to the informatics program must make sure to select that specific track during the application process. Those who select computer science masters will likely be overlooked. Applications should include transcripts, TOEFL or IELTS scores, and GRE scores.
21 University of Massachusetts Amherst
Students earning a computer science degree at the University of Massachusetts Amherst can select master’s in information technology coursework to reflect their interests. Learners must complete a total of 30 credits, of which no more than 18 can derive from 500-level coursework. Grades of a “C” or lower will not count toward the degree, and students may only transfer in a maximum of 12 credits.
Students must maintain a 3.0 GPA average. Admission to the program requires a filled out application, GRE scores, and a background related to the field. Only 10% of students earn admission to the program, making it a highly selective degree option.
22 University of North Carolina
The University of North Carolina’s master’s in information technology offers specializations in data governance and user experience, user interface design, human-computer interaction. Students take courses that cover topics such as programming for information professionals; proposal, preparation, and presentation; the organization of information; and information retrieval.
In total, students will complete 48 hours of coursework, 28.5 in core coursework and 19.5 in elective coursework. To gain admission to the program, students must possess at least a 3.5 bachelor’s level GPA. Prospective students should provide an updated resume, transcripts from previous schools, and three letters of reference from individuals familiar with their academic ability.
23 University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania offers its master’s in information technology to students on either a part-time or full-time basis. Full-time students should finish their degree within two years; students may not, however, take longer than seven years to complete the degree.
Students must take a total of 10 classes, six in the core and four in electives. Examples of classes include an introduction to software development, data structures and software design, database information systems, and internet and web systems. Prospective transfer students should possess at least a 3.7 if they hope to enter the program.
24 University of Minnesota
The master’s in information technology from the University of Minnesota enables students to continue working full time while earning their degree. The program typically takes students 21 months to finish and class sizes are never more than 30. Students take courses such as managing organizations in a technological environment, technology foresight and forecasting, project and knowledge management, and pivotal technologies. This master requires applicants to possess at least 5 years of prior work experience in a related area. Some 34% of graduates go on to take executive positions at organizations worldwide.
25 Rice University
Students at Rice University’s computer science program can select a master’s in information technology classes through the available curriculum. Graduates go on to work at big companies such as Facebook, Microsoft, and Amazon. Students take three full-time terms to complete the degree, completing the 30-credit program in about a year and a half.
Those hoping to transfer in credit must ensure that the coursework they hope to bring in closely matches Rice’s course descriptions and requirements. Students should note that the school does not offer financial aid to computer science master’s students. To apply, students should fill out the online application form.