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The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) ranks software development positions among the fastest-growing careers in the country. The BLS projects software engineer employment to increase at a rate of more than three times the national, all-occupations average by 2026. Earning an online mobile app development degree prepares graduates for careers in this growing, exciting industry.

Professionals with a mobile development degree earn high salaries and enjoy job market stability. According to the BLS, the median pay for all careers is $37,690. Computer programmers earn an average of $84,580 per year and software developers earn an average of $101,790 per year.

The Best Online Bachelor’s in Mobile Development Programs

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Online Bachelor’s in Mobile Development Degree Program Ranking Guidelines:
We selected the degree programs based on the quality of program and range of courses provided, as well as school awards, rankings, and reputation.

The motto of TheBestSchools.org is Finding the best school for you. Here is how we do it:

The value of any ranking list of schools and/or degree programs depends on having a methodologically sound assessment of each school’s/program’s characteristics, especially insofar as these can be objectively measured. A college or university is a complex entity, with numerous factors to consider, and distilling these down to the place where meaningful comparisons can be made to form a defensible ranking list becomes part science and part art.

To meet this challenge—and thereby provide you with the most useful and insightful educational rankings on the Internet — TheBestSchools.org formulates our rankings based on five informational categories (six, when considering online schools). The major metrics and qualities for which we rank are these (with expanded, detailed considerations and weights listed):

1. Academic excellence based on a school’s curriculum generally or within the selected discipline [weight = 25%]

  • Weighs school against known leading schools in that discipline
  • Weighs number of core curricula listed as advanced courses within that discipline and compares against introductory courses
  • Weighs school’s curriculum against known knowledge needs of major employers in that discipline
  • Considers number and types of specializations offered within that discipline
  • Considers faculty expertise in that discipline
  • Considers range of electives within that discipline
  • Considers quality of online environment offered to students (if applicable), particularly within that discipline

2. Strength of faculty scholarship [weight = 25%]

  • Considers education background of the faculty
  • Considers years of faculty experience both inside and outside of academia.
  • Considers faculty membership and leadership within relevant, prominent associations
  • Considers academic papers published by faculty in relevant, prominent periodicals
  • Considers awards and recognitions given to faculty members from prominent organizations and from other sources

3. Reputation [weight = 20%]

  • Considers a school’s reputation among academic peers and employers regarding the following:
    • Faculty
    • Curriculum
    • “Freshness” of academic knowledge
    • Adaptability to changes in employment sectors
    • Suitability of graduates for the workplace

4. Financial aid [weight = 10%]

  • Mandatory: Requires full accreditation from an agency endorsed by the U.S. Department of Education and listed on the federal register to accept student federal financial aid
  • Considers range of school-sponsored financial aid such as scholarships and grants

5. Range of degree programs [weight = 20%]

  • Considers range of degree levels: associate’s, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral and professional
  • Considers range of degree subjects offered, such as art & design, computers & technology, education & teaching, criminal justice, and business

6. Strength of online instruction methodology (if applicable) [weight = 25%; subtract 5% from each of the above for online schools/programs]

  • Considers the following of the online classes:
    • Types of online technology used to deliver content
    • Pedagogy style: asynchronous, synchronous, or both (depending on the degree)
    • Extent and quality of the online, community learning environment, including options for communication, interactivity, and collaboration between students and also between students and instructors
    • Variety, breadth, and depth of coursework, and its support, including project options and online tutoring
  • Considers the following of instructors:
    • Extent of training for teaching within an online learning environment
    • Amount of timely, consistent feedback to students
    • Extent of collaboration with prospective employers to ensure suitability of instructional materials for achieving desired skills
    • Ratio to number of students in a class
  • Number and quality of internships in a student’s geographical area for applicable degrees

Because students tend to review a variety of information when choosing a school, the weight a student gives any one criterion will vary. For instance, it’s not enough to offer a carefully constructed ranking of great schools if many are too expensive or too difficult to get into.

To better serve the needs of prospective students, we are therefore increasingly offering filters that help you better use our rankings to find the schools that match your specific needs. These supplement our ranking criteria and include:

  • Accreditation
  • Public or private status
  • Acceptance rate
  • Retention rate
  • Graduation rate
  • ACT/SAT requirements
  • Cost in-state / out of state
  • Undergrad, grad, or both offered
  • Region
  • State
  • City

Get the best rankings here AND get them to suit your personal needs. That’s TheBestSchools.org advantage!

If you have any questions about our ranking methodology, please contact us.

Citations: For a broader account of our ranking methodology, especially as it relates to TheBestSchools.org's underlying educational philosophy and, in other ranking articles, looks beyond academic excellence (as here) to such factors as return on investment or incidental benefit, see our article "Ranking Methodology: How We Rank Schools at TBS." Reputation of schools and degree programs can at least in part be gauged through the school or department's publishing activity, citations, and desirability. At TheBestSchools.org, we keep track of such social and peer validation: "Making Sense of College Rankings." For nuts-and-bolts information about colleges and universities, we look to the National Center for Education Statistics and especially its College Navigator. Insofar as salary and inflation data are relevant to a ranking, we look to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Finally, nothing beats contacting schools and degree programs directly, which our researchers often do, with the result that all the entries in this article should be considered as belonging to this citation!

The Best Online Bachelor’s in Mobile Development Degree Programs

Florida International University View School Profile Miami, FL Florida International University Online is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Florida International University, a public research university founded in 1965, enrolls more than 50,000 students. Florida International University is a member of the State University System of Florida, and offers more than 191 programs of study leading to undergraduate, graduate, doctoral and professional degrees in its 23 schools and colleges.

Florida International University’s offerings include more than 20 online bachelor’s degree programs in areas such as early childhood education, finance, hospitality management and information technology.

Online students have access to an online orientation, success coaches and the Academy of Leaders.

Liberty University View School Profile Lynchburg, VA Liberty University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) Commission on Colleges.

Liberty currently enrolls more than 100,000 students; this includes about 85,000 distance learners and 30,000 military students. The university offers 349 online programs and maintains a 17-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio in their online courses.

Liberty students can earn a mobile development bachelor’s degree online which prepares them to take advantage of the global technology boom. The flexible program requires 120 credit hours, which most students complete in about 42 months. Liberty asynchronously delivers online coursework and requires no campus visits.

Transfer students can apply up to 90 previous credits toward the degree. Students must have a minimum 2.0 GPA to be admitted in good standing; those who do not meet this requirement may apply for probationary admission.

Fort Hays State University View School Profile Hays, KS Fort Hays State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Fort Hays State University is a public, coeducational university that was founded in 1902. It enrolls about 11,200 students across five colleges. Fort Hays State University is governed by the Kansas Board of Regents, and it offers over 200 online programs.

Fort Hays State University offers over 50 online programs through its Virtual College. The same faculty often teach both the online and on-campus courses.

Virtual College students can complete two online associate degrees in general studies and applied technology as well as 14 online bachelor’s degrees in areas such as business education, information networking, medical diagnostic imaging and informatics.

Students can earn most degrees completely online, but some degrees require on-campus courses.

Southern New Hampshire University View School Profile Manchester, NH Southern New Hampshire University is regionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education.

Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU) is a nonprofit, private university that has has five regional centers located in New Hampshire and Maine. The university provides more than 180 undergraduate, graduate, and certificate programs, as well as 40 specialized MBA degree programs. SNHU provides a online bachelor’s in computer science as well as various online undergraduate and graduate programs in fields such as education, business and liberal arts.

SNHU provides a discount to all active-duty service members. They also provide credits for military training and experience. Southern New Hampshire University has numerous agreements with overseas universities.

Kennesaw State University View School Profile Kennesaw, GA Kennesaw State University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Kennesaw State University is a public, coeducational university founded in 1963 and enrolls just over 35,800 students. Part of the University System of Georgia, Kennesaw State University offers a variety of bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degree programs.

Kennesaw State University offers 15 bachelor’s degree programs that include an online Bachelor of Science in Information Technology degree.

Students can also complete more than 20 online master’s degree programs, in areas such as engineering, education, and nursing. They can also complete a doctorate in teacher leadership or instructional technology. Kennesaw State also offers a host of online minors, certification programs, and endorsements.

Kennesaw State University faculty design and teach the online courses, which allows students to learn at their own pace. Online students have access to tutoring, academic advisors, a bookstore, library resources, and tech support.

Northwestern State University of Louisiana View School Profile Natchitoches, LA Northwestern State University of Illinois is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Founded in 1884, Northwestern State University of Louisiana was the first university in the state to offer nursing and business degrees. It was also one of the first universities to join NASA’s JOVE program, where students analyzed data and performed research for the space shuttle Colombia’s 1996 mission. The university offers more than 40 degree programs for its estimated 9,000 students.

Northwestern State University of Louisiana offers a number of online associate, bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees. They also offer entirely online specialist and certificate programs. Bachelor’s degrees include allied health, addiction studies and computer information systems.

Online students have access to an array of resources, such as technical support, academic advising and an online library.

Davenport University View School Profile Grand Rapids, MI Davenport University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

After the Civil War, Union Army veteran Conrad Swensburg established Davenport University in 1866. Davenport’s first class had only 16 students who studied mathematics, bookkeeping, business law and penmanship. When financial troubles threatened the university in 1910, Michael Davenport, one of the school’s teachers, stepped in and revived the school. Today, this private, nonprofit university has more than 12,000 students and offers over 50 degree programs spanning four academic colleges.

Through DU Online, Davenport University offers several associate, bachelor’s, master’s and certificate programs. Online bachelor’s degrees include subjects such as marketing, sports management and computer information systems.

Davenport also offers an array of online master’s degree programs and online certificates programs. The university additionally offers combination BA/MBA degrees including professional accountancy and strategic management.

Southern Illinois University – Carbondale View School Profile Carbondale, IL Southern Illinois University – Carbondale is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Southern Illinois University – Carbondale, a public university founded in 1869, enrolls nearly 16,000 students from around the world. The flagship of the Southern Illinois University System, the university offers more than 300 programs of study that lead to a variety of undergraduate degrees, graduate degrees and professional degrees in medicine and law.

Through its Extended Campus, the university offers 25 bachelor’s degree completion programs in areas such as accounting, aviation technologies and information technology.

Online students can complete 13 master’s degrees in topics such as architecture, health informatics, public safety and homeland security management. The university also offers several online certificates, certifications and professional development programs.

Online students have access to financial aid, library resources and an online writing lab. Be aware that new students must attend an orientation session.

Franklin University View School Profile Columbus, OH Franklin University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.

Franklin University serves Midwestern adults who seek online or on-campus programs. Franklin offers flexible degree options for working adults that include a bachelor’s degree in Interactive Media Development.

From gaming to mobile apps to websites, Franklin’s IMD bachelor’s degree program can open up a variety of technical, artistic and management career paths. From needs analysis to deployment, from technical and non-technical, this degree-completion program equips you to deliver interactive solutions throughout the development lifecycle.

Independence University View School Profile Salt Lake City, UT Disclaimer: Independence University is nationally accredited, but not regionally accredited. Therefore, regionally accredited schools may not recognize degrees or accept transfer credits from Independence University. Check out our guide to national accreditation to see whether a nationally accredited school is right for you. Independence University is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges (ACCSC).

Formerly known as California College for Health Sciences, Salt Lake City’s Independence University is a for-profit university that focuses almost exclusively on preprofessional distance education programs. IU students who pursue a mobile development bachelor’s degree online can graduate and enter the workforce in three years. Transfer students with an associate degree can graduate in 20 months.

The flexible online program includes asynchronous coursework and requires no on-campus components. The curriculum comprises 180 quarter credits and uses a skills-based approach. Students explore topics such as web server programming, database programming, mobile applications development and entrepreneurship. The program does not require a thesis or capstone project.

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Featured Online Schools

Choosing an Online Mobile Development Degree Program

Students who want to pursue a mobile development bachelor’s degree online should research each prospective school. While the above programs have some similarities, learners should choose a program that fits their career goals. Prospective students should ensure the university in question offers the courses they need. For example, students who want to develop applications for iPhones should attend a school that offers classes in Apple programming.

Students planning to pursue specialized careers should find universities that offer relevant concentrations. When researching universities that do not offer concentrations, students should look for elective options that align with their interests. Students should also consider the cost and length of each program. While online learning tends to be less expensive than on-campus programs, students should compare tuition rates and consider additional fees and expenses. Learners who want to graduate quickly may prioritize programs that offer accelerated courses or accept transfer credits.

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What Else Can I Expect From an Online Bachelor’s in Mobile Development Program?

Each mobile development program offers a unique curriculum. However, some courses are common to most programs in the field. These classes teach students foundational knowledge that prepares them for more specialized coursework. Most mobile development programs cover topics including Apple programming, information security, and project management.

Curriculum for an Online Bachelor’s Degree in Mobile Development

  • Apple Programming Language:
    Because Apple dominates the mobile industry, application programmers must make their software compatible with Apple’s technology. This course teaches the necessary technical skills to write applications for Apple devices.
  • Game Theory:
    As the popularity of mobile gaming grows, learners need to understand gaming fundamentals. Students learn how to combine game theories with technical abilities and create games that users enjoy.
  • Information Security Fundamentals:
    Graduates with a basic understanding of information security ensure the trustworthiness of applications. This course provides the necessary knowledge to create safe programs.
  • Ethical and Legal Issues in IT:
    This class provides the ethical framework learners need to succeed in the evolving field. Students learn how to use critical-thinking skills to solve problems and how to conduct work legally.
  • Information Technology Project Management:
    Learners who want to pursue high-level corporate positions. Students learn to oversee application development from conception to launch.
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Careers with a Bachelor’s in Mobile Development

Graduates of mobile development programs often become mobile software developers. However, some graduaes work in management or web development positions. Professionals in these careers typically work in office environments and work regular office schedules.

  1. Software Developer:
    These professionals combine creativity with technical skills to create new software. Mobile development graduates research user needs and find ways to solve these problems with applications. Mobile software developers work with programmers and security experts. Most employers require these professionals to hold a bachelor’s degree.
    • Median Annual Salary: $103,560
    • Projected Growth Rate: 24%
  2. Computer and Information Systems Manager:
    After gaining about five years of work experience, graduates can manage information systems and teams. These professionals earn some of the highest salaries in the industry. They oversee projects, hire new talent and work with external vendors. They may work as chief technology officers or IT directors for in-house technology teams.
    • Median Annual Salary: $139,220
    • Projected Growth Rate: 12%
  3. Web Developer:
    Along with applications, users also access websites from mobile devices. Web developers with backgrounds in mobile computing ensure that websites look as good on smartphones and tablets as they do on desktop computers. Although some employers require web developers to have only an associate degree, a bachelor’s degree in mobile development can give applicants a competitive edge.
    • Median Annual Salary: $67,990
    • Projected Growth Rate: 15%

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

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