B.S. Information Technology Areas of Study

The WGU Bachelor of Science in Information Technology (IT) program provides a solid foundation in computer information systems and technologies. In addition to the IT content, the degree program includes a broad collegiate-level education. The program is primarily designed for those seeking a career or to advance their current career as information technology professionals by developing levels of expertise required for increased responsibility in the information technology field. The foundation of the Bachelor of Science program consists of five domains of study: systems and services, networking and security, scripting and programming, data management, and the business of IT. At the end of the program, students develop a comprehensive portfolio and complete a capstone project. Students who are seeking a specialization in software development, networks, database, or security can complete the basic IT degree program and pass additional assessments to earn one of these designated emphases.

Information Technology Fundamentals

Introduction to IT
This course introduces students to information technology as a discipline and the various roles and functions of the IT department as business support. Students are presented with various IT disciplines including systems and services, network and security, scripting and programming, data management, and business of IT, with a survey of technologies in every area and how they relate to each other and to the business.

IT Foundations
IT Foundations is the first course in a two-part series preparatory for the CompTIA A+ exam, Part I. Students will gain an understanding of personal computer components and their functions in a desktop system, as well as computer data storage and retrieval; classifying, installing, configuring, optimizing, upgrading, and troubleshooting printers, laptops, portable devices, operating systems, networks, and system security; recommending appropriate tools, diagnostic procedures, preventative maintenance and troubleshooting techniques for personal computer components in a desktop system; strategies for identifying, preventing, and reporting safety hazards and environmental/human accidents in a technological environments; and effective communication with colleagues and clients as well as job-related professional behavior.

IT Applications
IT Applications is a continuation of the IT Foundations course preparatory for the CompTIA A+ exam, Part II. Students will gain an understanding of personal computer components and their functions in a desktop system, as well as computer data storage and retrieval; classifying, installing, configuring, optimizing, upgrading, and troubleshooting printers, laptops, portable devices, operating systems, networks, and system security; recommending appropriate tools, diagnostic procedures, preventative maintenance and troubleshooting techniques for personal computer components in a desktop system; strategies for identifying, preventing, and reporting safety hazards and environmental/human accidents in a technological environments; and effective communication with colleagues and clients as well as job-related professional behavior.

General Education

Introduction to Communication
This introductory communication course allows students to become familiar with the fundamental communication theories and practices necessary to engage in healthy professional and personal relationships. Students will survey human communication on multiple levels and critically apply the theoretical grounding of the course to interpersonal, intercultural, small group, and public presentational contexts. The course also encourages students to consider the influence of language, perception, culture, and media on their daily communicative interactions. In addition to theory, students will engage in the application of effective communication skills through systematically preparing and delivering an oral presentation. By practicing these fundamental skills in human communication, students become more competent communicators as they develop more flexible, useful, and discriminatory communicative practices in a variety of contexts.

English Composition I
This course introduces learners to the types of writing and thinking that is valued in college and beyond. Students will practice writing in several genres and several media, with emphasis placed on writing and revising academic arguments. The course contains supporting media, articles, and excerpts to support a focus on one of five disciplinary threads (covering the topics of nursing, business, information technology, teaching, and literature, art, and culture) designed to engage students and welcome them into discussion about contemporary issues. The course supports peer review activities, though it may be completed asynchronously as well. Instruction and exercises in grammar, mechanics, research documentation, and style are paired with each module so that writers can practice these skills as necessary. This course includes full access to the MindEdge Writing Pad to support student writing and coaching sessions.

Critical Thinking and Logic
This course introduces students to the basic concepts of logic and critical thinking. Students are introduced to the use of logical principles to accurately express and establish the validity of various forms of reasoning. The main objective of the course is for students to understand the range of concepts and techniques employed by critical thinkers. Students learn how to correctly apply the principles of logic and cultivate the skills they need to be able to recognize, analyze, and critically evaluate arguments.

Introduction to Geography
This course will discuss geographic concepts, places and regions, physical and human systems and the environment.

Intermediate Algebra
This course provides an introduction of algebraic concepts and the development of the essential groundwork for College Algebra. Topics include: A review of basic mathematical skills, the real number system, algebraic expressions, linear equations, graphing, exponents and polynomials.

College Algebra
This course supports the assessment for College Algebra with Hawkes Learning. College Algebra provides a detailed exploration into basic algebraic concepts and functions and their use in describing, interpreting, and modeling real-world situations.

English Composition II
English Composition II introduces learners to research writing and thinking that are valued in college and beyond. The Composition II course at WGU should be seen as a foundational course designed to help undergraduate students build fundamental skills for ongoing development in writing and research. Students will complete an academic research paper.

Introduction to Probability and Statistics
In this course, students demonstrate competency in the basic concepts, logic, and issues involved in statistical reasoning. Topics include summarizing and analyzing data, sampling and study design, and probability.

Finite Mathematics
Included in this course are the following main topics: proofs, set theory, logic, number theory, mathematical systems, modular arithmetic, and graph theory.

Integrated Physical Sciences
This course provides students with an overview of the basic principles and unifying ideas of the physical sciences: physics, chemistry, and Earth sciences. Course materials focus on scientific reasoning and practical and everyday applications of physical science concepts to help students integrate conceptual knowledge with practical skills.

Introduction to Humanities
This introductory humanities course allows students to practice essential writing, communication, and critical thinking skills necessary to engage in civic and professional interactions as mature, informed adults. Whether through studying literature, visual and performing arts, or philosophy, all humanities courses stress the need to form reasoned, analytical, and articulate responses to cultural and creative works. Studying a wide variety of creative works allows students to more effectively enter the global community with a broad and enlightened perspective.

Network and Security

Network and Security – Foundations
This course introduces students to the components of a computer network and the concept and role of communication protocols. The course will cover widely used categorical classifications of networks (i.e CAN, LAN, MAN, WAN) as well as network topologies, physical devices, and layered abstraction. The course will also introduce students to basic concepts of security, covering vulnerabilities of networks and mitigation techniques, security of physical media, and security policies and procedures.

Networks
Networks focuses on: network topologies including: protocols, ports, addressing schemes, routing, and wireless communication standards; physical and logical topologies, including wiring standards; differentiating, installing, and configuring network devices; and troubleshooting network connectivity. This course prepares you for the CompTIA Network + certification.

Network and Security – Applications
This course prepares you for the CompTIA Security + certification.

Data Management

Data Management - Foundations
This course introduces students to the concepts and terminology used in the field of data management. They will be introduced to Structured Query Language (SQL) and will learn how to use Data Definition Language (DDL) and Data Manipulation Language (DML) commands to define, retrieve, and manipulate data. This course covers differentiations of data—structured vs. unstructured and quasi-structured (relational, hierarchical, XML, textual, visual, etc); it also covers aspects of data management (quality, policy, storage methodologies). Foundational concepts of data security will be included.

Data Management - Applications
This course covers conceptual data modeling and provides an introduction to MySQL. Students will learn how to create simple to complex SELECT queries including subqueries and joins, and will also learn how to use SQL to update and delete data. Topics covered in this course include exposure to MySQL; developing physical schemas; creating and modifying databases, tables, views, foreign keys/primary keys (FKs/PKs), and indexes; populating tables; and developing simple Select-From-Where (SFW) queries to complex 3+ table join queries.

Business of IT

Information Systems Management
This course provides an overview of many facets of information systems applicable to business. The course explores the importance of viewing information technology (IT) as an organizational resource that must be managed, so that it supports or enables organizational strategy. Topics: The 7 competencies covered in the course include the primary processes involved in system development (i.e., analysis, design, and implementation), networks, database resource management, hardware and software, e-commerce and social media, IS security and ethics, and mobile vs. desktop computing. Students will learn how e-commerce, decision support, and communication are securely facilitated in a global marketplace. The course also explores current and continuously evolving technologies, strategic thinking, and big-picture issues at the intersection of management and technology.

Business of IT - Applications
This course introduces IT students to information systems (IS). The course includes important topics related to management of information systems (MIS), such as system development, and business continuity. The course also provides an overview of management tools and issue tracking systems.

Business of IT – Project Management
This course introduces the student to the project management & business analysis process within the context of an IT project. Fundamental concepts of project management will be covered including all phase of project management during a system life cycle including business analysis, requirements capturing, issue tracking, and release planning. Additional topics to include: development environments (dev, integration, QA, production), help desk and support, IT planning for business continuity. This course prepares students for the following certification exam: CompTIA Project+.

Operating Systems

Operating Systems I
This course prepares students for the following certification exam: CompTIA Linux+ Part I.

Operating Systems II
This course prepares students for the following certification exam: CompTIA Linux+ Part II.

Scripting and Programming

Scripting and Programming - Foundations
This course provides an introduction to programming covering data structures, algorithms, and programming paradigms. The course presents the student with the concept of an object as well as the object-oriented paradigm and its importance. A survey of languages is covered and the distinction between interpreted and compiled languages is introduced.

Technical Writing

Technical Communication
This course covers basic elements of technical communication, including professional written communication proficiency; the ability to strategize approaches for differing audiences; and technical style, grammar, and syntax proficiency.

Spreadsheets

The Spreadsheets course will help students become proficient in using spreadsheets to analyze business problems. Students will demonstrate competency in spreadsheet development and analysis for business/accounting applications (e.g., using essential spreadsheet functions, formulas, charts, etc.)

Business Law and Ethics

Ethical Situations in Business
Ethical Situations in Business explores various scenarios in business and helps students learn to develop ethical and socially responsible courses of action. Students will also learn to develop an appropriate and comprehensive ethics program for a business venture.

Web Development

Web Development Foundations
This course introduces students to web design and development by presenting them with HTML5 and CSS, the foundational languages of the web, re viewing media strategies, and tools and techniques commonly employed in web development.

Web Development Applications
This course prepares students for the CIW Advanced HTML5 and CSS3 Specialist certification exam. This course builds upon a student's manual coding skills by teaching how to develop web documents and pages using the Web Development Trifecta: HTML5 (Hypertext Markup Language version 5) and CSS3 (Cascading Style Sheets version 3) and JavaScript. Students will utilize the skills learned in this course to create web documents and pages that easily adapt to display on both traditional and mobile devices. In addition, students will learn techniques for code validation and testing, form creation, inline form field validation, and mobile design for browsers and apps, including Responsive Web Design (RWD).

User Interface Design
This course covers tools and techniques employed in user interface design including web and mobile applications. Concepts of clarity, usability and detectability are included in this course as well as other design elements such as color schemes, typography, and layout . Techniques like wireframing, usability testing, and SEO optimization are also covered. This course prepares students for the CIW User Interface Designer certification.

Leadership and Management

Organizational Behavior and Leadership
Organizational Behavior and Leadership explores how to lead and manage effectively in diverse business environments. Students are asked to demonstrate the ability to apply organizational leadership theories and management strategies in a series of scenario-based problems.

Principles of Management
This course addresses strategic planning, total quality, entrepreneurship, conflict and change, human resource management, diversity, and organizational structure.

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