Database Management Degrees: Bachelor, Associate & Online Course Info

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

Database management professionals keep information meticulously organized using modern technologies. They put their understanding of information security, software programming, and business reporting requirements to work to design, implement, and maintain information management solutions. Pursuing a career in database management requires a commitment to learning about emerging technologies over the lifetime of your career. Employers want employees who understand business requirements and can translate them into efficient data storage solutions.

Colleges and universities offer degree programs through schools of information systems or computer science. The associate's degree program provides a basic education in database languages and administration techniques. The bachelor's degree program offers a mix of technology, science, and mathematics. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reveals that database administrators could expect a 31% increase in job growth over the 2010-2020 decade (www.bls.gov).

Associate's Bachelor's
Who is this degree for? People seeking entry-level technical support jobs Individuals seeking a career track that leads to database administrator opportunities
Common Career Paths (with approximate median annual salary) - Computer programmer ($73,000)*
Web developer ($80,000)*
- Database administrator ($75,000)*
- Applications software developer ($89,000)*
- Computer and information systems manager ($118,000 - people with more than 5 years' experience earned this salary)*
Time to Completion 2 years full-time 4 years full-time
Common Graduation Requirements - Approximately 60 credits - Roughly 120 credits
Prerequisites High school diploma or equivalent High school diploma or equivalent
Online Availability Yes Yes

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

Associate's Degree in Database Management

Entry-level occupations in the industry require employees capable of designing databases that meet business objectives and information requirements. The associate's degree program offers a basic education in the theories and technologies that drive business information management. Programs usually emphasize mathematics and the sciences. You'll learn to think critically and apply computer and information logic to the development of database applications. In addition, database professionals benefit from the knowledge of programming languages; programs offer a hands-on approach to programming skills, usually in a laboratory environment.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Computer programmers and Web developers earned relatively competitive salaries
  • Information security analysts, web developers, and computer network architects could expect 22% job growth over the 2010-2020 decade*
  • Programs offer a focused curriculum that might facilitate transfer to a bachelor's degree program

Cons

  • Competition against bachelor's degree holders for computer programming positions will present a challenge
  • Database administrator opportunities generally require bachelor's degrees, at minimum
  • Additional experience needed to be eligible for certification, when compared to bachelor's degree holders

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2010-2020 projections).

Courses and Requirements

The associate's degree program delivers the basic education required to perform support tasks in an information technology (IT) department. You'll learn to program web pages using several modern languages, as well as gaining an understanding of information security. You might take the following common courses:

  • HTML Web development
  • Microsoft SQL Server
  • Computer and information security
  • Database modeling
  • Oracle database administration
  • Database recovery
  • Computer networking

Online Degree Info

Some schools offer a completely online associate's degree in database management. Colleges structure online programs to offer core, support, and elective coursework in the field of study and a complete general education curriculum. Online programs offer courses comparable to campus-based programs, but you may find accelerated degree options. Some schools offer additional flexibility in specializations, including open-source database programming or database development.

Stand Out with This Degree

Experience and skills validation might increase your job prospects. Employers prefer database management professionals with knowledge of modern data modeling, Web development, and technical expertise. Following are some steps you can take to stand out:

  • Pursue internships that allow you to apply your knowledge of databases to Web solutions. Internship opportunities can build your portfolio and provide valuable practical experience.
  • Consider pursuing an appropriate certification. The Certified Internet Web Professional certification, conferred by CIW, validates skills in several programming languages and offers the CIW Database Design Specialist credential.

Bachelor's in Database Management

The bachelor's degree program emphasizes software development and database management concepts. Programs offer the education required to understand information management in support of business objectives, decision-making at the executive level, and operational efficiency. Schools design programs to deliver knowledge of networks, software engineering, and information security. Some universities offer their programs under a school of mathematics with a minor in information science; you can expect a substantial amount of courses focused on finite mathematics and algorithms.

Pros and Cons

Pros

  • Computer information systems management occupations paid competitive salaries with the appropriate experience
  • Software applications developers could expect a 30% increase in job growth over the 2010-2020 decade*
  • Programs provide a solid mix of business and technical coursework; many employers seek these skills for multiple occupations

Cons

  • Competition against master's degree holders will present a challenge for computer and information systems management positions
  • Few schools offer online programs that address the advances in cloud computing technologies, which require data management expertise
  • Maintaining the appropriate knowledge of emerging technologies requires a lifetime commitment of time and finances

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2010-2020 projections).

Courses and Requirements

The bachelor's degree program explores professional ethics, Web applications, programming, and business concepts. You'll learn to work with subject matter experts to translate complex ideas into business applications that deliver tangible products, such as business reports extracted from databases. Programs offer courses in project management, database design, microcomputer database applications, and artificial intelligence to combine project-oriented and technical training. You may also take courses in operating systems, Java, and C++ programming. Many programs recommend an information systems internship and an IT capstone course.

Online Degree Info

Some schools offer bachelor's degree programs through a complete online learning experience. Programs develop skills in troubleshooting, data analysis, and information asset maximization in business environments. You might find programs that offer concentrations in the development of Web solutions, data organization, and data storage. Many universities structure online programs for those seeking career advancement; schools may deliver programs in an accelerated format.

Stand Out with This Degree

Database administrators usually gain experience in lower-level data management occupations. Taking positions in database analysis, database development, or software development can lead to a career in database administration. Employers may require employees to gain certification in the technologies used by the business. Consequently, taking advantage of lower-level database occupations through an internship can provide the experience employers seek. Furthermore, several software vendors offer certification programs that might boost your marketability. For example, a company that uses Microsoft's SQL Server software might prefer candidates with the Microsoft Certified Database Administrator credential.

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Kaplan University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • BSIT - Information Management
      • Bachelor of Science in Information Technology
      • BS in Cybersecurity
      • BS in Information Technology/Information Security and Assurance
  • Online Programs Available
    2. Colorado Technical University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • Bachelor: Information Technology
      • B.S. - Information Technology: Data Management
      • BS - Business Administration - IT
      • BS - IT - Security
      • B.S. - Information Technology: Software Application Programming
      • BS - Business Administration Data Analytics
  • Online Programs Available
    3. Baker College Online

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • Business Intelligence - MBA (Master's)
      • Information Technology and Security - Bachelor
      • Game Software Development - Bachelor
  • Online Programs Available
    4. Regent University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
      • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Information Technology
      • Bachelor of Science in Information Systems Technology
      • Bachelor of Science in Information Systems Technology - General
      • Bachelor of Science in Information Systems Technology - Information Security
      • Bachelor of Science in Professional Studies - Information Systems Technology
  • Online Programs Available
    5. City University of Seattle

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • B.S. Applied Computing
      • B.S. Information Systems
      • B.S. Information Technology
      • B.S. Cybersecurity and Information Assurance
  • Online Programs Available
    6. Colorado Christian University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • Computer Information Technology, B.S.
      • Computer Information Technology, B.S. - Emphasis in Database Management
      • Computer Information Technology, B.S. - Emphasis in Networking
      • Information Systems Mgmt., B.S.
  • Online Programs Available
    7. Utica College

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • BS in Cybersecurity - Cyber Operations
      • BS in Cybersecurity - Information Assurance
      • BS in Cybersecurity
  • Cambridge, MA

    Harvard University

  • Philadelphia, PA

    University of Pennsylvania

  • Durham, NC

    Duke University

Featured Schools

Kaplan University

  • BSIT - Information Management
  • Bachelor of Science in Information Technology
  • BS in Cybersecurity

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Colorado Technical University

  • Bachelor: Information Technology
  • B.S. - Information Technology: Data Management
  • BS - Business Administration - IT

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Baker College Online

  • Business Intelligence - MBA (Master's)
  • Information Technology and Security - Bachelor
  • Game Software Development - Bachelor

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Regent University

  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science
  • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Information Technology
  • Bachelor of Science in Information Systems Technology

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City University of Seattle

  • B.S. Applied Computing
  • B.S. Information Systems
  • B.S. Information Technology

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Colorado Christian University

  • Computer Information Technology, B.S.
  • Computer Information Technology, B.S. - Emphasis in Database Management
  • Computer Information Technology, B.S. - Emphasis in Networking

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Utica College

  • BS in Cybersecurity - Cyber Operations
  • BS in Cybersecurity - Information Assurance
  • BS in Cybersecurity

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