Top 100 Best Affordable Information Technology Programs

Top Affordable Information Technology Programs

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Are you considering earning a degree in information technology (IT)? These programs tend to be good fits for individuals who are interested in working with technology in the workplace and enjoy technology in general. Information technology professions also often deal closely with communication and data usage, as well as computer system design. This makes having interests in software design, data processing, and telecommunications beneficial, as well. If you are excited by these factors and like the prospect of helping others understand and solve technical problems, it’s time to find an affordable and accredited information technology degree program.

The information technology field is best described as the study, development, and implementation of computer-based technical systems. Degrees related to it can lead to a wide variety of career opportunities. Students learn how technology can be applied to solve a plethora of issues for individuals, private businesses, corporations, organizations, non-profits, and government agencies. Ultimately, professional’s aims are to utilize resources in ways that make it easier for other people to do their jobs well.

Those enrolled in information technology degrees should expect to explore a number of disciplines within the field, from technical support to complicated engineering work. Course selections with vary, but some common topics include cyber security, networking, programming languages, data analysis, and operating systems.

As the field is highly technical, some level of higher education is generally expected in order to qualify for employment. Whether you are interested in an associate degree or a doctorate, enrolling at a college or university can be expensive. While finances should never be the sole driving factor, it’s important to keep affordability in mind as you establish your academic and career goals.

Why a Degree from an Affordable Information Technology School?


Many students choose to pursue an information technology degree because they are interested in and proficient with computers. Overall, this career path is dynamic and rewarding, offering opportunities to work in a variety of industries.

Graduates often enjoy employment opportunities as software developers, information technology consultants, computer forensic analysts, computer network architects, and computer programmers, among others.

  • Web Developer
  • Digital Designer
  • Information Security Analyst
  • Information Technology Consultant
  • Information Technology Specialist
  • Computer and Information Research Scientist

Other benefits of pursuing a degree in information technology include a strong career outlook, good pay, and the development of skills that are highly valuable in a competitive job market.

While there are many reasons to consider this career, earning a degree of any kind can be expensive. Prospective students who lack the financial resources necessary to afford tuition may find it difficult to enroll and/or remain in college. As a result, finding an affordable academic program is often a top priority.

It’s important to keep in mind that financial aid is available to most students. There are countless scholarship and grant opportunities available, for both general studies and specific majors. These funds are particularly helpful, as they do not need to be paid back. Unfortunately, few scholarship and grants cover all the expenses related to earning a degree. Loans can offer assistance as well, although money attained through them must be paid back and interest rates can inflate debt quickly.

Financial aid can supplement expenses, but the best solution is finding an affordable information technology program. Affordability is particularly important for students who demonstrate significant financial need. Regardless of your academic goals, opting for a less expensive program is often optimal.

Choosing an Affordable Information Technology College


There are several factors you should consider when looking for an affordable information technology program. Every college and university is different, and by comparing and contrasting these important features, you will be able to better identify the institution that fits your unique needs best.

  • Cost
    As previously mentioned, the cost of earning an information technology degree can be significant. It does, however, vary between schools. Several key elements often impact how much colleges and universities choose to charge students including institution type, location, reputation, and available financial aid options. Taking time to familiarize yourself with these factors can make it easier to find an affordable program. Public schools, for example, tend to have lower tuition rates than private ones. Likewise, highly reputable schools are often more expensive than lesser-known community colleges.
  • Location
    You will find information technology programs throughout the world, making it possible to earn your degree almost anywhere in the world. Where you choose to study matters, however, and can impact the amount you are expected to pay in tuition and fees. Many public institutions have higher rates in place for out-of-states, which makes it even more expensive for non-residents to attend. Beyond the price tag, it’s generally recommended for students to attend an institution nearby to where they expect to work in the future. Local colleges and universities usually maintain programs that cover topics most important to employers in the area.
  • Accreditation

    You should also verify schools’ accreditation statuses prior to selecting and enrolling in an information technology program. Academic institutions are not required to be accredited, but it does show that their degrees meet certain educational standards as set by the U.S. Department of Education and the Council of Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA).

    CHEA recognizes the following regional accrediting agencies:

    • Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
    • New England Association of Schools and Colleges (NEASC)
    • North Central Association Commission on Accreditation and School Improvement (NCACS)
    • Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU)
    • Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS COC)
    • Western Association of Schools and Colleges Accrediting Commission for Schools (WASC ACS)
  • Graduation Requirements
    Graduation requirements can also vary from institution to institution. While they tend to be relatively similar, you should still plan to review expectations prior to enrolling. Most colleges and universities require students to complete a specified number of courses, pass certain keystone classes, adhere to various conduct regulations, and maintain a minimum grade point average in order to graduate. Generally, information regarding what is needed to graduate can be found on schools’ websites.
  • Instruction Methods
    Whereas graduation information is usually quite easy to find, the instructional methods utilized by colleges and universities may be less obvious. It is, nonetheless, imperative to ensure your learning needs and preferences can be met prior to enrolling in an information technology program, especially if your circumstances are unique. One way to assess whether or not an institution’s instructional methods will suffice is to consider average class sizes. Many departments also disclose their entire curriculums, as well as typical assignment types and available academic resources. If additional information is necessary, consider contacting program directors personally with questions and/or concerns.

Online Options


Information technology programs are extremely well-suited for distance learning, which is why many colleges and universities offer them online. New and returning students can complete coursework from literally anywhere in the world so long as they have an internet connection. This makes learning the necessary skills and entering the field easy for those who are unable to attend classes in person. Remote instruction is flexible enough to accommodate the needs of current professionals juggling work responsibilities, as well as people with personal obligations that make on-campus learning difficult.

Many colleges and universities also offer accelerated online programs. These are specially designed to take less time to complete. Some accelerated bachelor’s degrees, for example, condense learning into a two-year period instead of four. However, this option is generally quite intense and requires a full-time commitment.

While extremely convenient, there are some drawbacks to online information technology degree programs. Students must be exceptionally self-motivated and may have limited access to various resources often available in traditional learning settings. Additionally, remote learners often miss opportunities to network with peers and professionals in the field. To counteract these shortcomings, consider enrolling in a hybrid program; these attempt to bridge gaps by requiring short residencies on campus between extended periods of online coursework. You can also verify which services are available for distance learners with the institution.

Career development departments often provide the following support to current students and recent graduates:

  • Interview Preparation
  • Resume Development
  • Career Coaching Services
  • Internship Opportunities
  • Job Fairs

Are Information Technology Programs in High Demand?


Many colleges and universities offer information technology degree programs. Whether you want to study on campus or online, you should have little trouble finding an option that meets your needs.

Overall, the outlook for information technology professionals working in the United States is quite promising. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment in computer and information technology occupations is projected to grow by 11% from 2019 to 2029. This is much faster than the national average for all professions, making this a viable solution for individuals seeking stable employment. An increase of this size is expected to add about 531,200 new jobs to the market.

As more people, businesses, and organizations place greater emphasis on cloud computing, big data storage, and other facets of information technology, the demand for professionals with relevant expertise will continue to rise. Those with experience in information security will be particularly valued, as will master’s degree graduates.

Best Most Affordable Information Technology College Rankings


One way you can find an affordable information technology degree program is to review published school rankings, such as this page. Rankings provide great insight that can help you find the perfect solution to help you achieve your academic and career goals.

The data we collect for our school rankings focuses specifically on colleges and universities that specialize in affordable information technology programs. By identifying and organizing the most relevant data points into a simple, easy-to-understand, and useful format, we are able to provide prospective students with information that is pertinent and applicable.

While we consider a range of data types, some of the most prominent areas of interest include cost of tuition, online programs offered, and graduating salary.

Obviously, the cost of tuition will play heavily into your decision-making process when selecting an information technology program. Prices can vary significantly between schools, making it important to compare options carefully. Knowing the total cost will help you determine which colleges and universities offer the best value for the money.

As online learning becomes more and more popular, institutions are accommodating students by offering remote education opportunities. Schools that provide distance learning programs are making a good effort to address student needs and scheduling flexibility.

It’s often difficult to determine graduating salaries, but this data can be extremely helpful for prospective students. When available, it helps project a return on investment.

1

South Texas College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $4,530
    • Out-of-state: $7,920
  • Net Price: $1,630
  • Retention Rate: 64%
  • Total Enrollment: 33,054
  • Undergrad Students: 33,054
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 23%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 78
  • South Texas College
2
  • Tuition
    • In-State: $2,878
    • Out-of-state: $9,992
  • Net Price: $3,306
  • Retention Rate: N/A
  • Total Enrollment: 24,605
  • Undergrad Students: 24,605
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 37%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 28
  • Florida State College at Jacksonville
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
3

California State University-Los Angeles

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $6,781
    • Out-of-state: $18,661
  • Net Price: $3,859
  • Retention Rate: 81%
  • Total Enrollment: 26,671
  • Undergrad Students: 22,797
  • Graduate Students: 3,874
  • Graduation Rate: 52%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 134
  • California State University-Los Angeles
4
  • Tuition
    • In-State: $6,941
    • Out-of-state: $18,821
  • Net Price: $4,683
  • Retention Rate: 77%
  • Total Enrollment: 17,977
  • Undergrad Students: 15,365
  • Graduate Students: 2,612
  • Graduation Rate: 44%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 67
  • California State University-Dominguez Hills
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
5
  • Tuition
    • In-State: $2,838
    • Out-of-state: $9,661
  • Net Price: $4,998
  • Retention Rate: N/A
  • Total Enrollment: 51,679
  • Undergrad Students: 51,679
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 33%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 137
  • Miami Dade College
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
6
  • Tuition
    • In-State: $4,300
    • Out-of-state: $4,300
  • Net Price: $6,871
  • Retention Rate: 70%
  • Total Enrollment: 39,145
  • Undergrad Students: 39,145
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 60%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 179
  • Brigham Young University-Idaho
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
7

Franklin University

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $9,577
    • Out-of-state: $9,577
  • Net Price: $7,658
  • Retention Rate: 47%
  • Total Enrollment: 6,031
  • Undergrad Students: 4,261
  • Graduate Students: 1,770
  • Graduation Rate: 28%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 23
  • Franklin University
8

Le Moyne-Owen College

  • Tuition
    • In-State: $12,076
    • Out-of-state: $12,076
  • Net Price: $7,721
  • Retention Rate: 57%
  • Total Enrollment: 835
  • Undergrad Students: 835
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 14%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 2
  • Le Moyne-Owen College
9
  • Tuition
    • In-State: $3,131
    • Out-of-state: $11,456
  • Net Price: $7,861
  • Retention Rate: N/A
  • Total Enrollment: 17,754
  • Undergrad Students: 17,754
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 41%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 136
  • Seminole State College of Florida
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
10
  • Tuition
    • In-State: $3,106
    • Out-of-state: $3,106
  • Net Price: $7,906
  • Retention Rate: N/A
  • Total Enrollment: 13,430
  • Undergrad Students: 13,430
  • Graduate Students: N/A
  • Graduation Rate: 42%
  • Diplomas Awarded: 45
  • Daytona State College
View All Their Popular Majors and Rankings
Full Ranking Report

What Can You Do with a Degree in Information Technology?


There are many career paths available after students earn a degree in information technology. Your prospects will depend greatly upon the level of education you achieve, with the most prominent positions available to those who successfully complete master’s and doctoral programs. Identifying preferred employment now will help determine which degree type is ultimately necessary. Some common career paths include computer science, information systems, computer programming, telecommunications, and web development.

  • Web Developers:
    Web developers design and maintain websites. They ensure the site functions appropriately and is easy for visitors to use. These professionals so track and improve performance.
  • Computer Support Specialists:
    Computer support specialists assist users when they experience computer and/or network problems. They solve issues quickly so workers can maintain productivity.
  • Network Administrators:
    Network administrators ensure business and organization networks are running efficiently. These professionals handle all day-to-day operations and address any issues that may arise.
  • Information Security Analysts:
    Information security analysts help maintain systems that keep sensitive information safe. They work to prevent cyber-attacks and provide additional security after data breaches.
  • Database Administrators:
    Database administrators organize and maintain efficient information storage databases. These professionals keep data secure so that it can be easily accessed by people who need it.

Information technology graduates often work for computer systems businesses, financial companies, management enterprises, administrative service providers, educational entities, insurance carriers, and data processing hosts. In 2019, the largest employer for information technology specialists was computer systems design and services companies.

Information Technology Graduates Earn More After College


The earning potential for professionals working in information technology trends above average, although it does vary depending on the type of position held. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median annual wage for computer and information technology occupations was $91,300 in 2020, which is well above the median annual wage of $42,000 as reported for all occupations. Even computer support specialists, who sit toward the bottom of the pay scale for this field, still made a median salary of $55,500 in 2020. Computer and information research scientists, who must usually possess a master’s degree, made a median salary of $126,800. Both examples demonstrate that this career field provides professionals with significant pay potential.

Education level often has an impact on pay. Individuals who graduate from an information technology degree program do tend to have higher earnings. According to PayScale, those with associate of science (AS) degrees earn an average salary of $60,000 and those with bachelor’s degrees earn an average salary of $73,300. The average pay for graduates with a master’s degree in information technology have an average salary of $115,000.

FAQs


  • What are the admission requirements for information technology students?

    Colleges and universities have varying admissions requirements, so it’s imperative that you research each school thoroughly before submitting applications. That said, some expectations are relatively standard.

    As an incoming freshman student, you should generally expect to provide the following:

    • Official High School Transcripts or College Transcripts
    • Minimum Grade Point Average (GPA)
    • Application and Fees
    • Letters of Recommendation
    • Personal Statement or Supplemental Essay
    • Academic Work Samples
    • Scores from College Entrance Exams (SAT, ACT, GRE, GMAT etc.)
  • How long will it take to complete an information technology degree?

    How long you will need to complete your information technology program will depend on the type of degree you select. An associate degree, for example, consists of about 60 credit hours and will take full-time students approximately two years to complete. Bachelor’s degree programs are made up of 120 credit hours and require about four years to complete. Those seeking master’s degrees should expect to take another 30 to 60 credit hours after graduating from a bachelor’s program.

    It’s worth noting that some colleges and universities do offer accelerated programs that can be completed in less time. Additionally, prior work experience that can be converted into course hours is sometimes accepted and can decrease the time it takes to graduate. Credit hours from advanced placement classes or previous degrees can also be applied.