Web Development Degrees: Associate's & Bachelor's Degree Info

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What kind of job can you get with an associate's or bachelor's degree in web development? Find out degree program requirements, online options and info on courses and web development training programs.
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Studying Web Development: Degrees at a Glance

Web developers use their knowledge of information management, technology and business requirements to create and modify websites and online resources. Individuals in the field work independently or with private, nonprofit or government agencies to design, monitor and improve new websites or existing online properties.

Web development encompasses a range of positions, including web designer, web programmer and web administrator. Creativity and the ability to interpret design requirements play an important role in the web developer's job.

The associate's degree program can prepare you for entry-level technical support and development careers, while a 4-year degree delivers a broad education that might lead to positions in management. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicted that web development positions would have varied growth over the 2010-2020 decade. For example, information security analysts, computer network architects and web developers could see a 22% employment growth for that period. At the same time, network and computer systems could see a 28% growth.

Associate's Bachelor's
Who is this degree for? Individuals seeking entry-level positions in multiple sectors People interested in a career in management
Common Career Paths (with approximate median annual salary) Web application developer ($76,000)*- Network and computer systems administrator ($71,000)**
- Information security analysts, computer network architects, web developer ($78,000)*
Time to Completion Two years, full-time Four years, full-time
Common Graduation Requirements - Roughly 60 credits
- Internship or practical experience course
- Roughly 120 credits
- Capstone project
Prerequisites High school diploma or equivalent High school diploma or equivalent
Online Availability Yes Yes

Source: *Salary.com (December 2012), **U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2011 figures).

Associate's in Web Development

Associate's degree programs, such as the Associate of Applied Business in Web Development or Associate of Science in Web Design and Development, deliver the basic education required for the design and implementation of online content, graphic elements and software applications. Schools might offer the program through a business department, which helps develop basic business skills. Programs emphasize the development of Internet programming, communication and data management skills. You might find a range of elective courses that advance your understanding of current digital technologies. Your program may also emphasize mathematics and digital technologies.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • A variety of associate's degree programs are available in web development
  • Your coursework may be designed for transfer to a 4-year degree program in web development or a similar program
  • You will be able to develop a web design portfolio to use for your job search or when pursuing a bachelor's degree

Cons

  • Highly technical developer positions might require a bachelor's degree in a related discipline
  • You may need additional experience or professional certification to find entry-level positions in this field
  • Keeping updated on emerging and new technologies will require a commitment of time and finances throughout your career

Courses and Requirements

The associate's degree program delivers a foundation in Internet and programming technologies. Some programs emphasize graphics, animation and design skills. You will learn to create and implement effective website navigation and infrastructure components. Programs also include training in search engine optimization and analysis techniques. The following are some common courses offered by the program:

  • Web graphic design
  • Campaign management
  • E-commerce
  • Database design
  • Online database integration
  • Javascript
  • Online coding

Online Degree Info

The online associate's degree program delivers coursework similar to campus-based programs. Some programs integrate computer information systems and online marketing courses to broaden your education. You might find that schools require a work experience project or field experience. In addition, courses in Linux/Unix and multiple programming languages are common. Online programs are designed for working students or those seeking a deeper understanding of the field.

Stand Out with This Degree

Careers in web development might require experience with graphic design and multiple programming languages. Consider taking courses in a range of programming languages, including hypertext markup language (HTML), cascading style sheets (CSS) and structured query language (SQL). In addition, supplementing your coursework with digital design classes can improve your understanding of online graphics principles. Participating in campus-based projects that require the planning and implementation of a website offers hands-on training. Consider volunteering to develop websites for nonprofit or student organizations to gain practical experience.

Bachelor's in Web Development

The bachelor's degree program offers an advanced education through courses that emphasize a range of technologies. Schools design programs, such as the Bachelor of Applied Science in Internet and Web Development, Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Web Design and Development and B.S. in Web Development, offer a range of specialization coursework in emerging media, virtual worlds and mobile design, to name a few.

Programs emphasize the development of skills in the integration of animation, video and sound into website design plans. In addition, compared to the associate's degree program, you can take elective courses and complete a capstone project to gain hands-on experience in Web development and design.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Higher-than-average salary potential for related positions*
  • Programs offer a wide range of elective coursework, which will help you identify a specialization
  • Employers typically look for applicants for web development positions who have at least a bachelor's degree

Cons

  • Positions may require web development experience in addition to the degree
  • It can be necessary to obtain professional certification to stay current with changes in technology
  • Some employers contract positions overseas, which might influence the number of available jobs*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Courses and Requirements

The bachelor's degree program provides advanced coursework in areas that include information systems programming, technical communication and editing software, as well as business. Upper-division courses in computer science or marketing deliver advanced technical and business training. You will learn a range of skills, including database concepts, computer security, network management and web architecture. You might take classes in database management systems, human-computer interaction, programming, graphic design, web technologies, scripting and multimedia development.

Online Degree Info

The online bachelor's degree program offers courses similar to traditional programs. Some schools design programs to offer courses in online writing, usability and design. Programs emphasize the development of skills in online ethics and copyright infringement. You will learn to manage online images using various techniques. Many online programs are structured so that you complete the degree in an accelerated fashion.

Stand Out with This Degree

Knowledge of industry-standard programming languages and tools might improve your job prospects. Employers prefer candidates with experience and updated skills in the latest technologies. Consider taking elective courses that explore programs, such as Photoshop, Flash and Dreamweaver or other graphic design, image manipulation or HTML editing software. Certification can also validate a candidate's knowledge, experience and skill with a specific technology. The Certified Internet Web Professional organization offers the Web Development Professional certification. The program targets web architects, web application developers and people working in a client/server environment.

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Kaplan University

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • Associate: Information Technology
      • AASIT: Network Admin
  • Campus and Online Programs
    2. Everest

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • Associate's - Computer Information Science
  • Online Programs Available
    3. Herzing University

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • Associate of Science - Technology Studies
      • Associate of Science - Information Technology Admin and Management
  • Online Programs Available
    4. ECPI University

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • Associate's - Network Security
  • Online Programs Available
    5. Indiana Wesleyan University

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • A.S. Computer Information Technology
      • A.S. General Studies - Computer Information Technology
  • Walla Walla, WA

    Walla Walla Community College

  • Culver City, CA

    West Los Angeles College

  • Online Programs Available
    8. Excelsior College

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • AAS in Technical Studies (Computer Technologies)
      • AAS in Technical Studies (Electromechanical Technologies)
      • AAS in Technical Studies (Electronic / Instrumentation Technologies)
      • AS in Science in Technology (Computer Technologies)
      • AS in Science in Technology (Electromechanical Technologies)
      • AS in Science in Technology (Electronic / Instrumentation Technologies)

Featured Schools

Kaplan University

  • Associate: Information Technology
  • AASIT: Network Admin

Which subject are you interested in?

Everest

  • Associate's - Computer Information Science

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Herzing University

  • Associate of Science - Technology Studies
  • Associate of Science - Information Technology Admin and Management

What is your highest level of education?

ECPI University

  • Associate's - Network Security

What is your highest level of education?

Indiana Wesleyan University

  • A.S. Computer Information Technology
  • A.S. General Studies - Computer Information Technology

What is your highest level of education?

Walla Walla Community College

West Los Angeles College

Excelsior College

  • AAS in Technical Studies (Computer Technologies)
  • AAS in Technical Studies (Electromechanical Technologies)
  • AAS in Technical Studies (Electronic / Instrumentation Technologies)

What is your highest level of education completed?