Computer Programming Degrees & Classes

Computer programming degree programs train students to execute software designs, transforming logical flowcharts into computer code. Using programming languages such as C++, programmers develop detailed lists of instructions that computing devices--PCs, networking systems, smartphones, industrial robots and more--rely on to perform tasks.

Computer programming degree: Overview

Advanced programming technology makes formal training a requirement for computer programmers. Computer programming degree programs offer a foundation in computer science, networking and systems technology, as well as applied training in the current programming languages. Programmers also learn to use automated CASE (computer-assisted software engineering) tools and programmer environments, applications that increase productivity by combining discrete programming functions (compiling, code walk-through, test data generation and debugging).

Computer programming courses & degree types

The standard qualification for a career in computer programming is the four-year Bachelor of Science in computer programming or computer science degree. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, over half of programmers hold a bachelor's degree or higher. The undergraduate curriculum combines core courses in math, science and liberal arts with courses in computer programming training.

Computing or IT professionals in need of targeted computer programming training will find a more targeted curriculum at the associate degree and certificate level. The Associate of Applied Science degree may be completed in 18 to 24 months, and offers an overview of computer technology and programming skills. Certificates may be as short as several weeks and generally focus on developing skills in a specific vendor technology.

Both associate and bachelor's degrees adopt a comprehensive computer programming curriculum that covers:

Computer systems technology: Courses introduce computer hardware and systems design, exploring personal computers, LAN and wireless networks, databases and mainframes. Programming students learn how these systems work as well as the skills for implementing and maintaining them. Sample course titles: Systems Analysis and Design, Database Management, Operating System Development Platforms.

Programming languages: Courses in programming languages focus on the most popular coding conventions for different purposes. Python and C++ are versatile languages in heavy use today. Web programmers use Java, HTML, PHP and Perl. Database programmers will find Structured Query Language (SQL) training indispensable. Sample course titles: Data Structures in C++, XML Programming, J2EE Application Development.

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Vendor-specific technologies. Certification courses enhance programmers' ability to develop solutions using specific technologies or languages. For example, programmers who intend to work in enterprise (e.g., business intelligence) or scientific (e.g., pharmaceutical test data) contexts may benefit from courses in SAS (Statistical Analysis Software) technology. Web programmers can hone Java programming skills through Oracle Certified Professional courses.

Computer programming specialties. Some programs offer elective courses or entire degrees in programming specialty areas such as Web, game, or information security programming. Sample course titles: Decision Support Systems, Advanced Database Programming, Website Development.

Campus and online computer programming classes

Computer programming degrees are available from both online and campus-based programs. The traditional campus format offers access to college computing facilities, giving students access to industry-standard technology. Online computer programming degrees feature flexibility and accessibility. Working professionals who already have access to advanced programming technologies on the job can take advantage of the convenience of online education.

Computer programmers in the making

Who is best suited to a computer programming degree? Computer programmers are problem-solvers talented in deductive reasoning and logical analysis. They are detail-oriented and patient, able to break down tasks into minute steps and articulate each step with precision. Their math skills are as strong as their writing skills.

A computer programming degree opens doors to a range of programming jobs. According to the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM), the majority of computer science graduates pursue a career in implementing and developing software. Popular jobs include Web programming, interface design, security programming, and mobile computing.

A bachelor's degree qualifies graduates to work as a:

  • Programmer analyst
  • Software programmer
  • Systems programmer
  • Web programmer
  • Database programmer
  • Network programmer
  • Business programmer
  • Scientific programmer

With experience and/or additional training, computer programmers can take on software development and design roles. These jobs are in high demand and pay more than programming jobs. The Bureau of Labor Statistics anticipates a 3 percent decline in programming jobs in the 2008-to-2018 decade. Software developers and engineers, on the other hand, rank as one of the fastest growing occupations in the nation, with 32 percent projected growth. Computer programmers earned mean annual wages of $69,620 in 2008, while computer systems software engineers commanded $92,430 and applications software engineers brought home $85,430.

Computer programming is ubiquitous in today's digital information economy. Programmers can find opportunities creating software for mobile phones, developing business intelligence applications, troubleshooting security issues and many other areas. A computer programming degree empowers programmers to communicate with electronic devices, developing a skill that is indispensable in software development.

Computer Programming Degrees & Classes

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2 Program(s) Found
American InterContinental University Online, Online
  • Recognized in the first Best for Vets: Business Schools list in Military Times Edge magazine’s 2013 “Best for Vets” edition.
  • Offers MUSE (My Unique Student Experience), a content delivery system that gives students the option to watch, view, read or listen to required course materials.
  • Allows students to complete courses at whatever pace they want.
  • A DANTES-affiliated university and member of the Service Members Opportunity Colleges.
  • Offers IntelliPath, a proprietary learning technology that lets students learn at their own pace.
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  • Online Courses
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ABCO Technology , Los Angeles
ABCO Technology is engaged in the business of providing job training for all types of applications and software used in the real-world job environment. We offer small classes, hands-on training, individualized instruction, and job placement for students in all areas of information technology.
2 Program(s) Found
ITT Technical Institute, Rancho Cordova
  • Through an agreement with the Dept. of Veterans Affairs, its Yellow Ribbon Program provides tuition contributions to eligible students at a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Offers career-focused, degree programs to over 70,000 students at over 140 ITT Technical Institutes in 38 states.
  • Classes are offered year-round, typically in the daytime and evening. Online courses can be accessed anywhere, 24 hours a day. 
  • Nationally accredited by the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools. 
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1 Program(s) Found
Capella University, Online
  • Features 43 degree programs and more than 142 specializations.
  • Offers several ways to save on tuition, including multiple grant and scholarship opportunities, low-cost credits, accelerated programs, and more.
  • Reduced tuition, transfer credits, and other benefits are available for all military service members and veterans.
  • Allows students to preview a free, one-week mini course to give an accurate impression of the student experience.
  • Accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
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  • Online Courses
3 Program(s) Found
Grantham University, Online
Looking to advance your career or enhance your professional skills? Earn your degree online at Grantham University. Programs include Business Administration, Criminal Justice, Computer Science and more.
  • Online Courses
1 Program(s) Found
Sanford-Brown Online, Online
  • Now part of the Sanford-Brown network of schools.
  • Degree programs are developed to address current and expected needs of the design, fashion, and media arts and technology industries.
  • Many programs let students combine classes on campus with online courses.
  • Has a Career Services department that offers career development strategy, résumé and cover letter assistance, and more.
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2 Program(s) Found
Kaplan University, Online
  • Lets undergrad students try classes before paying any tuition.
  • In a 2013 survey, 83% of students said they would recommend the university to others.
  • Most degree-seeking online and campus-based students are adult learners with families and students who work while pursuing higher education.
  • Average class sizes is 18 for undergraduate and 13 for graduate-level courses.
  • Founded in 1937 in Davenport, Iowa as the American Institute of Commerce (AIC).
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  • Online Courses
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Baker College Online, Online
  • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
  • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
  • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
  • Michigan's largest independent college.
  • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
  • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
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  • Online Courses
2 Program(s) Found
California College San Diego, San Marcos
  • Has offered career-oriented degree programs in San Diego County, CA since 1978.
  • Students get a new laptop and get to keep it as a gift upon graduation.
  • Part of their stated mission is "educating people for rewarding careers".
  • A private, non-profit school
  • Monthly start dates let students choose when their program begins.
  • Programs offered at 3 locations as well as online.
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2 Program(s) Found
Western International University, Online

Try your first two online courses for only $200 each with our Start Smart offer.

  • Online Courses
2 Program(s) Found
Florida Tech University Online, Online
  • Students can enroll at any time and begin studies in the fall, spring, or summer.
  • 9 out of 10 Florida Tech Students who apply, qualify for some type of aid, based on a Fall 2012 internal survey.
  • The average freshman retention rate is 77.3 percent.
  • Ranked #39 in Best Colleges for Veterans by U.S. News and World Reports
  • Among the more than 50,000 alumni include several astronauts, CEOs, and 32 generals.
  • Special tuition rate available for active duty, selected reserves, National Guard service members and their spouses.
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  • Online Courses
1 Program(s) Found
Charter College, Oxnard

You can prepare for a new career with help from Charter College. Our accelerated Bachelors Degree, Associates Degree, and Certificate programs are designed to help you complete your education as quickly as possible. We offer year-round classes and flexible scheduling - study anytime from anywhere. We provide students not only with the technical skills necessary for success, but also job search and placement assistance so you can find new opportunities after graduation.

1 Program(s) Found
New Jersey Institute of Technology, Online
One of the nation's leading public technological universities, New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) prepares students to be leaders in the technology dependent economy of the 21st century. Founded in 1881 as the Newark Technical School, NJIT is now home to nearly 50 laboratories, centers and business incubators, resulting in hundreds of research breakthroughs. NJIT's vision stresses innovation, entrepreneurship, and engagement in order to address the issues facing our society. The university's educational tradition emphasizes the pursuit of excellence, real-world learning, and applied research.
  • Online Courses
1 Program(s) Found
Post University, Online

• Founded in 1890, it has a campus in Waterbury, CT and offers online degree program in eight-week modules, six times a year.
• About 800 students are enrolled at the main campus, and about half of them commute.
• Accepts transfer credits for other accredited colleges and universities.
• Online courses make it possible for students to earn a bachelor’s degree in as little as 18 months and a master’s degree in 14-24 months.

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  • Online Courses
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Trident University International, Online

Trident University International provides an exceptional online educational experience for its students – diverse adult learners including current and former members of the military family. Adhering to the highest standards of academic excellence, faculty and staff foster a learning community where students develop critical thinking and problem solving skills to enhance their lives and advance their careers.

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