Business Information Technology Degrees: Bachelor, Associate & Online Info

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Associate and bachelor's degrees in business information technology can lead to careers in administrative and management roles. Get the truth about the requirements, courses and online options, and find out what you can do with your degree.
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Study Business Information Technology: Degrees at a Glance

Earning a degree in business information technology, or a related area, can prepare you for a career that involves the information technology aspects of business. This may include managing company intranets, providing security and making system upgrades when needed. If you earn an associate degree, you may work in an administrative position or as a computer support specialist. A bachelor's degree program may prepare you for a career as a database administrator or information systems manager. Some of these careers may prefer individuals with industry-specific certifications.

The growth of technology use and its increasing complexity is expected to create job growth. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), job opportunities for computer support specialists are expected to increase 18% from 2010-2020. Over that same time period, the BLS indicated that the employment of database administrators will increase 31%, while computer systems analysts would see a 22% growth.

Associate Bachelor's
Who is this degree for? Individuals looking for careers in administrative roles or in information technology support Individuals looking for careers in the management of information systems
Common Career Paths (with approximate median annual salary) - Medical records and health information technicians ($33,000)*
- Computer support specialist ($48,000)*
- Database administrator ($75,000)*
- Computer systems analyst ($79,000)*
- Computer and information system managers (position typically requires experience - $118,000)*
Time to Completion Two years full-time Four years full-time
Common Graduation Requirements Approximately 60 credits Roughly 120 credits
Capstone project
Prerequisites High school diploma or equivalent - High school diploma or equivalent
- SAT or ACT scores
Online Availability Yes Yes

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (May 2011 figures).

Associate Degree Programs

Associate degree programs may be offered in related areas like business technology and information systems. Often, these programs prepare you for a career as an administrative worker by covering introductory courses in business and technology. Some schools may offer you a concentration in a specific form of business information technology, such as legal or medical.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Program credits may transfer to a 4-year school
  • Programs specific to certain careers may be available
  • Some schools accept courses from certificate programs

Cons

  • May not be sufficient for management positions
  • May not teach you about advanced computer programs or technology
  • You may be competing against applicants with a bachelor's degree
  • Some employers may require professional certification

Coursework and Requirements

These 2-year programs include basic coursework in math, science and English composition. They may include studies in several areas of business like marketing and accounting. Some of the courses you may take include:

  • Integrated communications
  • Business law
  • Business spreadsheet analysis
  • Organizational behavior

Online Programs

Online associate programs are available in areas like information sciences and technology, business management and information technology. These programs offer similar coursework and can prepare you for the same entry-level careers. Individualized options and the opportunity to transfer your credits may also be available.

How to Get Ahead with This Degree

You may want to consider taking additional coursework related to computer programming or information technology. You may also consider a concentration in a software-related area if one is available. These concentrations may focus on the use of business software or the operation of business databases. Some careers, like medical records technicians, may have professional certification options that can also be beneficial.

Bachelor's Degree Programs

At the bachelor's level, business information technology is typically offered as a Bachelor of Science program. These programs may include more general education requirements than associate programs but they typically offer more advanced coursework in business and information technology. Some concentrations may be available, although they may be offered in a subject area rather than a specific career field.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • May prepare you for management positions
  • Offer more advanced coursework than associate degrees
  • Concentrations are available

Cons

  • Many management jobs still require experience
  • May have to take additional math courses like statistics
  • May not be sufficient when competing against individuals with master's degrees

Coursework and Requirements

In addition to the required coursework, you may need to complete a capstone project. This may be a written project or a portfolio. Some of the courses you may be required to take include:

  • Information technology fundamentals
  • Information technology management
  • Project management
  • Network fundamentals
  • Business ethics

Online Programs

Online programs are available through traditional universities and professional schools. You should check to ensure that these programs are properly accredited. Some online programs may offer a degree in information technology with a business minor or elective courses in business. Similar to campus-based programs, you will be able to combine your business coursework with technical studies in computer-related areas.

How to Get Ahead with This Degree

You may consider becoming certified in a software program or an information technology product that is common in the business world. According to the BLS, some companies require that database administrators be certified in the products they use on the job. While in school, you may want to take elective courses in programming and database languages to gain familiarity.

Popular Schools

Featured Schools

Kaplan University

  • BSBA in Information Systems Management
  • BBA: Project Management
  • BS in Health Information Management

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Colorado State University Global

  • BS - Management Information Systems and Business Analytics
  • BS - Information Technology
  • BS - Business Management

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