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The WGU Bachelor of Science in Software Development program was developed in consultation with our IT Council, which is made up of industry experts representing all facets of the discipline from the high-tech business world to national research laboratories. The degree uses industry-endorsed certifications to validate a student’s skill competency.
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 helps students gain an understanding the personal computer components, and their function, 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. This course prepares a student for the CompTIA A+ part I certification exam.
IT Applications helps students gain an understanding the personal computer components, and their function, 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. This course prepares students for the following certification exam: CompTIA A+ Part I.
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.
Elements of Effective Communication
Elements of Effective Communication introduces learners to elements of communication that are valued in college and
beyond. Materials are based on five principles: being aware of your communication with yourself and others; using and
interpreting verbal messages effectively; using and interpreting nonverbal messages effectively; listening and responding
thoughtfully to others, and adapting messages to others appropriately.
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.
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 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.
Introduction to Geography
This course will discuss geographic concepts, places and regions, physical and human systems and the environment.
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
Introduction to Physics
This course provides students with a comprehensive overview of the basic principles and unifying concepts of physics.
Students will integrate conceptual knowledge with practical and laboratory skills. The primary audience of this course are IT
majors with focus on application.
The course contains interactives, reading materials, and laboratory application to help students develop a broad
understanding of the practical applications of scientific concepts. Instructional content is enhanced by e-interactives and
laboratory activities that will give students hands on knowledge and experience. Focus of materials are on why science is
important to everyday life, practical application, and conceptual understanding. The quantitative aspects of physics will be
explored as they relate to modern problems and challenges of the everyday world.
Asynchronous and cohort experiences may be part of the learning experience in which community will support the
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.
Web Development Fundamentals
These courses introduce the fundamentals of web development, which will enable the student to
design, develop, and deploy a website. Students will create web content using HTML 5 and gain
the knowledge to style and create layouts using Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). Students will
also learn how to host and upload a website to a free web server.
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.
Network and Security – Applications
This course prepares students for the following certification exam: CompTIA Security+.
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 students for the following
certification exam: CompTIA Network+.
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.
Scripting and Programming - Applications
This course provides an introduction to programming. It covers data structures, algorithms, and programming paradigms. It presents 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.
Principles of Management
This course addresses strategic planning, total quality, entrepreneurship, conflict and change, human resource management, diversity, and organizational structure.
Organizational Behavior and Management
This course 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.
Operating Systems for Programmers
This course covers operating systems from the perspective of a programmer including the placement of the operating
system in the layered application development model. Primarily OSs provide Memory Management, Task Scheduling, and
CPU allocation. Secondarily, OSs provide tools for file storage/access, permission control, event handling, network access,
and cross-process interaction. OSs also provide tools for debugging problems within a single process or within groups of
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
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.
Data Management for Programmers
This course introduces storage of various kinds and formats of data. Students will use standard SQL to demonstrate query capabilities provided by database management systems. The course will further cover data-related topics: data presentation, security (access and encryption), transaction management, and administration (backup, disaster recovery, and performance tuning). This course will address advanced topics such as data warehousing, data mining and distributed databases.
Students will learn the fundamentals of dynamic data structures, such as bags, lists, stacks, queues, trees, hash tables, and
their associated algorithms, using object-oriented design and abstract data types as a design paradigm. The course
emphasizes problem solving and techniques applied to the design of efficient, maintainable software applications.
Students will implement simple applications using the techniques learned.
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+.
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.
This course focuses on skills and concepts students need to know, to understand, and to apply
object-oriented concepts in the Java programming. This course prepares students for the following certification exam:
Oracle Certified Associate Java Programmer.
This course introduces the concepts of software engineering to IT core graduates. It is a standalone course that is critical to
the IT program. It emphasizes the need for a disciplined approach to software engineering by providing an overview of
software and software engineering processes and why they are challenging. A generic process framework is covered to
provide the groundwork for formal process models. Prescriptive process models (e.g., Waterfall Model) and Agile
Development is included. An introduction to the elements/phases of software engineering is introduced which includes
Requirements Engineering (including UML, Use Cases), Design Concepts, Software Quality and Software Testing, and
Software II – Advanced Java Concepts
This course prepares students for the following certification exam: Oracle Certified Professional Java Programmer.
Client-Server Application Development
This course introduces students to client/server application programming classes, structures, and concepts. The course
covers networking and client/server, streams, threads, URLs, URIs, HTTP, and socket programming concepts.
Mobile Application Development
This course introduces students to programming for mobile devices using a Software Development Kit (SDK). Students with
previous knowledge of programming will learn how to install and utilize a SDK, build a basic mobile application, build a
mobile applications using a graphical user interface(GUI), adapt applications to different mobile devices, save data,
execute and debug mobile applications using emulators, and deploy a mobile application.
The technical writing requirement draws from the evidence students have accumulated in improved proficiency in research and professional written communication; the ability to think about and write for different audiences; and improved style, grammar and syntax.
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