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Author Topic: Career Advice : Masters Degree  (Read 7348 times)

Carl00

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Career Advice : Masters Degree
« on: June 13, 2008, 11:37:04 AM »
Hi,

I've done my BE in Computer Science, now i look to pursue a masters degree.
I really want to specialize in pure programming, and not have the hassles of electronics and math subjects on my hand.

Im particularly interested in .Net (application) programming as well as PHP(web)
however most of the colleges i've checked concentrate on Java programming..
Im not realyl into Java, i know its important, but i'd prefer to specialize in .Net..


Anyone have any suggestion of courses/colleges?

Ps. I dont want a diploma course.. that would just be a waste

tinjaw

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2008, 12:36:35 PM »
Before I could provide any advice, I would need to know what you want to do career-wise. Do you want to be a code monkey? Do you want to sit in a cube all day and code? If not, then what do you want to do?

Carl00

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #2 on: June 13, 2008, 12:42:48 PM »
well to start off with, yes,
But eventually i'd want to have my own projects going on

mouser

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #3 on: June 13, 2008, 12:58:18 PM »
There are some jobs which will actually help you get your masters as you work there -- that might be another option to consider.

The best advice i can give you though is related to tinjaw's question - figure out what you think you want to do and then plan a master degree to help you get there, and then focus on FINISHING your masters degree as quickly as possible.  You can't really go wrong in my view in getting a masters, as long as you actually finish it quickly.

tinjaw

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2008, 12:59:10 PM »
Then I would say to forget about getting a masters degree. This is the only field I am familiar with enough to say that *if you want to be a pure code monkey* you don't need an advanced degree (right now). Hopefully you have some open source projects you can show. If not, hopefully you have some *completed* personal projects that you did with a team of coders. If not, hopefully you have a large personal project you completed yourself. If not, well, then you might as well go for a Masters degree because you are going to need the time to work on an open source project in a significant way or develop an intermediate application from start to finish on a team, or build a magnum opus on your own. Until then, you are basically going to be only desirable as an entry-level data entry person, where the data happens to be computer code at the level of a CS freshman.

Why? Anybody *can* be a programmer. Few people *are* programmers.

By that I mean that CS grads are a dime a dozen and a nickel if that dozen is outsourced. Coders with substantial documented/proven experience and/or woofie are a harder to find and thus get paid well. These are the coders that companies hire with plans of having them grow with the team and some day take a lead position of a team.

If you find yourself without that experience, you might want to think about taking the money you would spend on an advanced degree and live on it for 6-9 months while you do one of the things I suggest.

I will now get off my soapbox and allow somebody with an opposing view the floor.

Carl00

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2008, 02:36:57 PM »
tinjaw: I have some amount of experience, have personal work and done a few commercial projects as a freelancer.  Probably not very significant, (im not sure here).

Mouser: Hi, Mikey told me about you and donation coder i dunno what name he goes by here.
 What kind of jobs are these? Full time? And how and where.. im totally clueless about this.. can you tell me more?

tinjaw

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #6 on: June 13, 2008, 02:55:52 PM »
tinjaw: I have some amount of experience, have personal work and done a few commercial projects as a freelancer.  Probably not very significant, (im not sure here).

Put together a website that is essentially your extended resume. Include code that can be download and compiled and executed. Include your unit tests as well. Put it on a version control server so it can be checked out by a potential employer. Then show it to people you trust to rip it apart and make it better. These should be people with industry experience, preferably as hiring managers, or at least project managers. Depending on how long your college instructors have been out of the business world, they will be able to provide current relevant feedback as well.

Also, STAY ACTIVE! Don't stop coding. Try to do more in the open source world where you can do the specific type of coding you want to do or that you can do exceptionally well. Contribute code, well documented, to the project. Show them that this is something you enjoy so much you do it in your free time, and that the work you do is above par. This will also keep you sharp for any technical interviews you get while hunting for work.

Also, if you can find the time, continue the freelancing. If you can produce enough income from that, well, no need to work for anybody else.

Carl00

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #7 on: June 17, 2008, 12:08:33 AM »
Well, thing is i want to do my masters degree.

Isnt there a "masters in computer programming" or something like that?

zridling

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #8 on: June 17, 2008, 06:22:28 AM »
What mouser said. Even through both my Masters and PhD studies, I never took a course that didn't directly count toward my specific degree requirements, while I saw others take 2-3 years longer to finish because they followed a temporary interest. My advice would be to treat your schooling like a credit card — if you can't pay for it, then it's not worth it, and the credit hit will follow you for 20+ years. Barack Obama's a millionaire and had top legal jobs since the early 90s, but claims he only recently paid off his student loans. And he's 46! (I've yet to pay mine off at the same age, and I'm not even a hundred-aire.)
« Last Edit: June 17, 2008, 10:00:38 PM by zridling »

tamasd

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2008, 08:53:41 AM »
Not sure how this matches what you are looking for (it's in campus full-time, in UK), but it's .net specialization:
http://www.dcs.hull..../dotNetMSc/index.htm

Carl00

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Re: Career Advice : Masters Degree
« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2008, 09:31:46 AM »
wow thats perfect.. its almost too good to be true!

but.. im a bit doubtful.. is that degree going to be recognized across the world?