An information technology management degree, or IT management degree, is a type of postsecondary degree awarded to students who have completed a college, university, or business school program that focuses on teaching students how to use computer software and systems to manage information. After completing the program, students should be able to find technology-based solutions to important business and management problems.
Types of Degrees
There are three basic options for students who are interested in an information technology management degree. A bachelor's degree is typically the minimum for most jobs in the information technology management field. Advanced jobs almost always require a master's or MBA degree.
- Bachelor's Degree in IT Management: A bachelor's degree in IT management is ideal for students seeking entry-level positions in this field. However, many information technology managers choose to earn a bachelor's degree in information science, computer science, or information systems management instead. Regardless of the degree name, most bachelor's programs take four years to complete and consist of general education courses combined with specialized courses in information technology and business management.
- Master's Degree in IT Management: A master's degree in information technology management or a related field is a requirement to work at some companies. It is especially recommended for advanced positions. A master's degree usually takes two years to complete once you have earned a bachelor's degree. While enrolled in a master's program, you will study advanced topics in information technology. You will also take business, management, and leadership courses.
- Doctorate Degree in IT Management: The highest degree that can be earned in this area is a doctorate degree. This degree is well-suited for students who want to teach or perform field research. It can take anywhere from four to six years to earn a doctorate degree.
Choosing a Program
When choosing an information technology management program, you should first look at schools that are accredited to ensure you find a quality program with degrees respected by employers. It is also important to choose a school that has an up-to-date curriculum that focuses on the skills and knowledge you want to attain. Finally, take time to compare tuition, career placement rates, class size, and other important factors. Read more about choosing a business school.
Information Technology Management Careers
Students who earn an information technology management degree typically go on to work as IT managers. IT managers are also known as computer and information systems managers. They may be responsible for developing tech strategies, upgrading technology, and securing systems in addition to overseeing and directing other IT professionals. The exact duties of an IT manager are dependent on the size of the employer as well as the manager's job title and level of experience. Some common job titles for IT managers include the following.
- IT Project Manager: Sometimes known as an IT Director, an IT project manager heads up a specific technology project. They may be responsible for managing upgrades and conversions. IT project managers typically have one or more IT professionals who report to them. They usually have at least a bachelor's degree along with several years of experience.
- IT Security Manager: An IT security manager is usually responsible for overseeing network and data security. They may help to develop, implement, and monitor security protocols. Entry-level positions may require only a few years of experience.
- Chief Technology Officer: A CTO designs and recommends new technology for a business or organization. They typically report to a CIO but may have more technical expertise. Many CTOs began as an IT director or project manager. Most have 10 or more years of experience in the IT field.
- Chief Information Officer: A Chief Information Officer (CIO) helps to develop and oversee technology strategy for a business or organization. They are the decision makers. CIO is an advanced position and typically requires at least an MBA along with 10 or more years of IT experience.
Professional or tech certifications are not absolutely required to work in the information technology management field. However, certifications can make you more attractive to potential employers. You may also earn a higher salary if you have taken the required steps to become certified in specific areas.