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Information on Master’s Degree Programs in Programming

Majors Overview July 14, 2015

This article talks about master’s degree programs in programming and their educational requirements, coursework, and job and wage outlook.

Master’s Programs in Programming

Few schools, if any, offer master’s degrees specifically in computer programming; individuals keen on studying computer programming can seek admission to computer science programs with an emphasis on computer programming. Coursework in this type of program is devised to give students a background in fundamental areas such as data structures, algorithms, high-level programming, and machine architecture. Students are taught about ways of applying programming knowledge to real-world computer systems and about applying network and database development skills in software application programming.

Students also learn about analyzing the engineering requirements of a project and deciding the most appropriate methods to use in accordance with a client’s needs. Students can choose from numerous concentrations other than programming, including software architecture, computer networking, or information systems security.

Educational Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold a bachelor’s degree. While a bachelor’s degree in computer science is a requirement by many schools, degrees in other areas may be considered by others. Students are also required to be competent in basic computer science. In a competitive admission process, schools prefer candidates with high test scores, research experience, and recommendation letters. Schools may also consider individuals without a bachelor’s degree in computer science provided they are competent in basic areas of computer science, such as computer organization, computer theory, algorithms, and basic programming. Those participating in or have participated in undergraduate research are likely to have the strongest chance of getting admitted.


Theoretical learning and hands-on learning are both in program coursework that may cover topic areas such as:

•Penetration testing
•Concepts of artificial intelligence
•Distributed systems
•Network protocols
•Networking architecture
•Web applications security

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a job growth of eight percent has been predicted for computer programmers (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In 2012, these professionals brought in an average annual wage of $74,280, within a range of $42,850 – $117,890 (BLS).

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