What is Information Technology?

In today’s up-and-down job market and shaky economy, there are few career fields that are as consistent as the field of Information Technology. As a branch of engineering, Information Technology, specializes specifically in using computer technology and telecommunications technology to transmit, translate and store various types of information- although there are a ton of other types of jobs that do fall under the Information Technology umbrella.

What exactly does Information Technology entail?

Essentially information technology is all about using information as a commodity or resource, just like any other job. The information that is being translated, disseminated, stored, transmitted, etc. is usually in the forms of audio, video, textual and numerical information and is processed through the use of microelectronics and computers.

The field of Information Technology is usually used to describe a whole series of jobs, but in reality, there are tons of jobs that are called Information Technology jobs, but are actual part of a subcategory like Management Information Services and Information Services.

Once upon a time, the Information Technology center of a business would have been composed of just one guy sitting at a computer all day. But, as computer technology has advanced, and information has become more valuable, the Information Technology center grew with it. Now, a company will either have a gigantic IT center, or they may need so many specialists that they actually contract out the Info-tech needs to an entirely separate company. Now, in order to successfully run an Information Technology center, a company would need at least a database management system, a cryptographer, some system administrators, some database administrators, at least one information manager and a Chief Information Office (CIO,) who is the head honcho of the whole shabang.

The Top 10 Technical Skills Needed for a Career in Information Technology

The following is a list of the most common skills, knowledge and experience that is needed for a job in the Information Technology career field. Because Information Technology relies so much on information and keeping it secure, it is imperative to have a good grasp on things like programming languages, operating systems and management expertise.

1. Unix Operating System knowledge
2. Linux Operating System knowledge
3. Java Language Programming experience
4. C++ Language Programming experience
5. Perl Language Programming experience
6. MySQL Database Management expertise
7. Microsoft C# Language Programming experience
8. XML- Extensible Markup Language skills
9. HTML skills (advanced)
10. Project Management abilities

Information Technology Knowledge Requirements

Depending on what type of job you are looking for, you will probably need either a degree or at least some kind of technical certificate in order to land a job in the Information Technology sector. Here is a list of some of the most common degrees and technical certificates that are required in order to have a job in the field of Information Technology:

● CISSP certificate (Information Security)
● ISSAP certificate (Information Security)
● ISSEP certificate (Information Security)
● Oracle Database Administration certificate
● Microsoft Information Specialist certificates
● Cisco Information Specialist certificates
● Doctoral or Professional degree in Computer and Information Research Science (for high-level jobs)
● Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Programming (for mid-level jobs)
● Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Systems (for mid-level jobs)
● Associate’s Degree (for low-level jobs)

The Jobs and The Salary

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the Information Technology field is growing faster than the average career, which means an Information Technology specialist would be in high-demand right out of school. Here are a few of the jobs, the growth of that job in the future and the average salaries you can expect for an entry-level position in that job:

Job Growth Salary
Computer and Information Research Scientist 19% /year $100,660
Computer Programmer 12% /year $71,380
Computer Support Specialist 18% /year $46,260
Computer Systems Analyst 22% /year $77,740
Database Administrator 31% /year $73,490
Information Security Analysts, Web Developers and Computer Network Architects 22% /year $75,660
Network and Computer Systems Administrators 28% /year $69,160
Software Developers 30% /year $90,530

Featured Schools

As the largest private university in North America, University of Phoenix has locations nationwide, and is available online in most countries around the world. Whether you're seeking a college degree at an associate's, bachelor's, master's, or doctoral level, we can help you reach your academic goal and sooner than you might think.

Programs:

  • A.A. in Information Technology
  • B.S. in Information Technology
  • Doctor of Mgmt/IS and Technology

For over 35 years, Keiser University has provided student-centered, quality career education. Keiser University Online offers degree programs online to prepare students for in-demand professions.

Programs:

  • Information Technology, AS (Online)
  • Information Technology Management, BS (Online)
  • Management Information Systems (MIS), BS (Online)

DeVry University provides quality education that employers respect, and is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association (ncahlc.org), the same organization that accredits many other well-known public and private schools.

Programs:

  • Bachelor's - Technical Management
  • Bachelor's - Computer Engineering Technology
  • Bachelor's - Computer Information Systems - Database Management

As a student at South University, you will have the opportunity to learn from accomplished faculty members who have real-world experience in the subjects that they teach. Our small class sizes allow you to receive personalized attention from instructors, and the encouragement to recognize your goals for the future and the means to achieve them.

Programs:

  • Information Technology (BS)
Locations: Virginia Beach
Tradition. Academic Excellence. Online Convenience.
Thanks to Florida Tech offering intensive degree programs 100% online, students located all over the world have the opportunity to access the same world-class education as those who attend classes on the main campus in Melbourne, Florida. As a Florida Tech online student, you'll experience dynamic individualized relationships with your instructors. Working online with Florida Tech professors and students in an interactive environment provides you with a unique educational experience.

Programs:

  • Master of Science in Information Technology
  • Mini MBA Certificate/Information Technology Management
  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems
  • And more...

Take your career to new heights with Colorado Tech ! Since 1965, Colorado Technical University has helped thousands of students achieve success in business, management and technology careers. Learn more today.

Programs:

  • Bachelor of Science in Technology Management
  • Master Of Science in Enterprise Information Systems
  • Bachelor's (BSIT) - Software Systems Engineering
  • And more...

You’re serious about success. With your busy schedule and the desire to move your career forward, you can earn an accredited associate, bachelors or master’s degree at a pace that works for you anywhere, anytime, 24/7.

At AIU, the Serious U, you can get started to get ahead.

Programs:

  • Master's Degree in Information Technology
  • Master of Information Technology in IT Project Management
  • Bachelor's (BIT) - Software Analysis and Development
  • And more...
Don't wait another day to take the next step forward in your career. Kaplan University can give you the real-world knowledge and skills you need to succeed in your chosen field.

Programs:

  • Associate of Applied Science: Information Technology
  • Master of Science: Information Technology
  • Associate of Applied Science: Health Information Technology
  • And more...
Locations: Hagerstown

Established in 1966, ECPI has been specializing in Technology, Business, and Health Sciences Education for 45 years.  With campuses in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Online, ECPI offers the flexibility to get the education and skills you want on your schedule.

Programs:

  • Healthcare IT - Bachelor’s
  • Information Technology Management - Bachelor
  • Information Science - Cloud Computing - Bachelor
Locations: Richmond

Kaplan University is focused on recognizing the achievements of military and veteran students and offers the flexibility of an online education. Eligible students can receive college credit for prior military experience and coursework—up to 75 percent of the credit needed for a Kaplan University undergraduate degree.*

Programs:

  • MS in Information Technology
  • AAS in Information Technology
  • MS in Management - Information Technology
  • And more...