Top Five Accessible Master of Software Engineering Degrees

A graduate program that awards the Master of Software Engineering degree is not as easy to find as you might think. Many universities today make include software engineering as an area of concentration for the graduate degree in computer science or computer engineering. Software engineering remains an afterthought in many graduate level programs at the high profile schools, although many of those universities offer an undergraduate degree in the field. A degree devoted solely to software engineering is, at the graduate level, often made available only to working professionals. This list of resources for the degree is compiled from schools that have a respected school of computer science, have a manageable tuition structure and offer a terminal graduate degree in software engineering.

New Jersey Institute of Technology is the state’s principal academic institution for technology and management degrees. The NJIT offers masters degrees and doctoral programs in the principal engineering fields, architecture, and a wide range of IT programs. The Master of Science in Software Engineering is a comparatively new program offered by the Department of Computer Science designed to equip students with advanced knowledge of the concepts, techniques, skills and tools for developing modern large-scale software systems. This is clearly a business oriented degree.

University of Maryland offers the Master of Software Engineering as a collaboration between the College Park campus and the University’s professional education division, University College. The thirty six credit curriculum has several courses in project design and management, preparing students for supervisory roles in software and systems design. Electives include a course in Engineering Economics & Financial Analysis and an Introduction to Artificial Intelligence.

Arizona State University has one of the highest ranked computer and electrical engineering programs in the country. They are also proactive in the development of online degree options; the Master of Science in Software Engineering is available to Arizona students on campus and to students from across the country online. This program incorporates instruction for designing and developing software projects with the business and management skills needed to manage a team engaged in software systems development or redesign.

Santa Clara University turns out many of the computer science and computer engineering graduates that go to work in the Silicon Valley firms located throughout the region where the campus is located. The Master of Science in Software Engineering requires applicants to have an undergraduate degree in computer science or engineering; or to pass the computer science section of the GRE exam. This degree is oriented to the science and technology of software development with a minimum of the curriculum devoted to project management. The programming requirement in the program may be waived for professionals who have at least a year’s experience.

University of Minnesota offers a two year program for the Master of Science in Software Engineering that is designed for professionals who have work experience in software development or a related field. The course load is flexible enough to allow students to continue working, and classes are taught on alternating Fridays and Saturdays so that normal work hours are not significantly disrupted. There is an industrial seminar series incorporated into the curriculum that includes instruction in software re-engineering & maintenance, as well as a course on legal and intellectual property issues.


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