Virginia Tech Review

Virginia Tech, a large public research university, is home to a top-ranked information technology program distinguished by its terrific course delivery platform.

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The Good

Nationally ranked faculty

According to a recent survey of online graduate information technology degree programs by U.S. News & World Report, Virginia Tech is home to the seventh-ranked online faculty in the country. This ranking is designed to reflect the educational credentials and teaching experience of online instructors in information technology programs. The Virginia Tech faculty performs exceptionally well on both counts. Overall, Virginia Tech instructors average more than six years of online teaching experience, besting most of the top programs in the country. What’s more, many Virginia Tech information technology instructors have substantial experience working in industrial or business settings outside the university, giving them a lot of valuable insight to deliver to students. If you’re worried about the quality of instruction available in an online information technology program, a quick look at Virginia Tech will help set you at ease.

Big focus on student engagement

U.S. News & World Report also highlights Virginia Tech’s very successful efforts in the area of student engagement, placing the university in the top three performers in the country. As a Virginia Tech student, you participate in regular real-time discussion seminars with your instructors and classmates. Using a powerful software communications platform, all participants have access to shared applications and whiteboards and audio and text chat functions. This platform can also be used to meet with your instructors or classmates privately, and to get technical support, academic advising, and other university services. The program also encourages the use of dedicated discussion boards, email, instant messaging, and other technologies, helping you feel more connected to the program and to your instructors and classmates. As a result of this focus on engagement, Virginia Tech’s student retention and graduation rates have risen nicely in recent years and now compare favorably with many other top programs.

Good variety of specialty areas

As an information technology graduate student at Virginia Tech, you are required to choose courses in at least two specialty areas, called course modules. These modules allow you to focus your efforts and build professional skills that match your career goals. There are currently eight modules to choose from, including subjects such as information security, software development, business information systems, and health information systems. The courses in each module are regularly updated and enhanced to match changing technologies and professional practices in private industry.

No standardized admissions test required

If you shudder at the thought of preparing to take the GRE or GMAT graduate admissions test, you’ll be very happy to learn that Virginia Tech is one of the few top information technology graduate programs that doesn’t require any standardized tests for admissions purposes. Instead, Virginia Tech relies on your application, resume, letters of recommendation, and other similar materials. If you have taken the GRE to submit to other schools, you can always include it along with your Virginia Tech application if you choose.

The Bad

Prior computer programming course required

To gain acceptance into the Virginia Tech information technology program, you must be proficient in the use of the Java computer programming language. Although your bachelor’s education does not need to include any other information technology or computer science training, you must show that you have completed a foundational Java course from an accredited college or university. If you have never taken a Java course, you can take the online Java programming course from Virginia Western Community College, which is designed specifically to meet Virginia Tech prerequisite requirements.

Math and statistics courses required for networking specialty

If you are interested in networking as a special area of study, you must complete courses in mathematics and electrical engineering before enrolling at Virginia Tech. Prerequisites include one year of calculus courses, a foundational course in general probability theory, and at least one course in probability and statistics designed specifically for electrical engineers. Virginia Tech does not offer these prerequisite courses online, so you will have to look elsewhere for these courses.

The Details

General Information

  • Academic Year Founded: 1998 - 1999
  • Application Deadline: Rolling
  • Application Fee: $75
  • Location: VA
  • Number of Graduate Info Tech Programs: 1
  • Region: Southeast
  • School Type: Public
  • Term Schedule: Semester

Tuition Rates (Per Credit)

  • In-State: $900
  • Out-of-State: $900

Degrees

  • Information Technology

Certificates

  • Business Information Systems
  • Networking
  • Software Development

Class Profile

  • Acceptance Rate: 89%
  • Average Student Age: 29
  • Average Undergraduate GPA: 3.28
  • Avg. GRE Analytical Writing: N/A
  • Avg. GRE Quantitative: N/A
  • Avg. GRE Verbal: N/A
  • Gender Ratio: 27.5% female, 72.5% male
  • Maximum Class Size: 50
  • Total Enrollment: 415

Faculty

  • Average Online Teaching Experience: 7 years
  • Full-Time Instructional Faculty: 13
  • Part-Time Instructional Faculty: 5

Graduation and Retention Rates

  • 1 Year New Student Retention Rate (2009): 83%
  • 1 Year New Student Retention Rate (2010): 87%
  • 1 Year New Student Retention Rate (2011): 92%
  • 1 Year New Student Retention Rate (2013): 89%
  • Graduation Rate Within 3 Years (2009-2010): N/A
  • Graduation Rate Within 3 Years (2010-2011): N/A
  • Graduation Rate Within 3 Years (2011-2012): 84%
  • Graduation Rate Within 3 Years (2012-2013): 78%

U.S. News Rankings

  • Admissions Selectivity Rank: 12
  • Admissions Selectivity Score: 50/100
  • Faculty Credentials and Training Rank: 7
  • Faculty Credentials and Training Score: 83/100
  • Student Engagement Rank: 3
  • Student Engagement Score: 95/100
  • Student Services and Technology Rank: 9
  • Student Services and Technology Score: 60/100

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