Online Master's Degree in Software Engineering

Check the prerequisites for enrolling in an online software engineering master's degree program, and review the typical curriculum. Get career info for software engineers, including the employment outlook and salary potential. Schools offering Software Development & Engineering degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Are the Admissions Requirements for Online Master's Degree Programs in Software Engineering?

The minimum requirement for consideration for admission into an online master's degree program in software engineering is a bachelor's degree. Additionally, because classes in this program typically require fundamental understanding of computer concepts, some schools prefer candidates with bachelor's degrees in a related field, such as computer science, computer programming or software development. You should also expect to submit college transcripts from all schools you've attended, Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores, letters of recommendation and a resume.

Course PrerequisitesBachelor's degree (usually in a related field), GRE, college transcripts, resume, letters of recommendation
Common CoursesSoftware systems architecture, database design, enterprise integration, program understanding
Job Outlook24% growth from 2016-2026 for software developers*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Will I Learn?

Coursework in online master's degree programs in software engineering provides you with a theoretical understanding of software architecture in addition to training you in applied software design principles. You could learn how to create software in many different programming languages, and some programs will teach you how to conduct advanced research in this area. Because a master's degree in this field may qualify you for management positions, you could also learn about project management or information technology (IT) management. The following are examples of classes you might find in the curriculum:

  • Pattern-oriented design
  • Database design
  • Software systems architecture
  • Enterprise integration
  • Human-computer interaction
  • Program understanding
  • Website security

Where Do Graduates Find Work?

As a graduate from an online master's degree program in software engineering, you could be eligible for work as a software engineer. Software engineers are needed in a variety of industries, such as aerospace, defense, biomedical technology, healthcare and insurance. You could also work in industries like intelligence, consumer products, pharmaceuticals or telecommunications. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), software developers are expected to experience an employment growth rate of 24% between 2016 and 2026 ( Additionally, professionals in this field earned a median annual salary of $103,620 for software developers, applications and $110,000 for software developers, systems software in May 2018 according to the BLS.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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