North Texas Daily

UNT adds 5 new degree programs

UNT adds 5 new degree programs

UNT adds 5 new degree programs
October 17
14:52 2018

UNT has added five new degree programs to five different college departments, including both bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Three of those majors are began being offered this fall and the remaining two will be offered in fall 2019.

The degree programs are in the College of Business, College of Health and Public Service, College of Information and College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences.

Business Administration, College of Business

The College of Business’ Department of Information Technology and Decision Sciences will begin to offer a MBA in business analytics starting in fall 2019. However, students can take the required coursework now said Leon Kappelman, Information Technology and Decision Sciences department chair.

“This degree is perfect for someone with an undergraduate degree, especially one in a non-business field such as math, chemistry, physics or psychology who wants to upgrade their skills and their salary,” Kappelman said. “It’s so great for someone with an undergraduate degree in analytics or business who wants to move their career in a more managerial direction.”

Kappelman said the reason why this master’s degree is so rare is due to most business colleges lacking the faculty capable of delivering such a degree. He also said the Information Technology and Decision Sciences Department is “forward thinking in identifying an underserved market and doing something about it.”

Kappelman added that graduates can expect an increase of about $7,000 to $10,000 in salary if they earn this degree.

Emergency Management and Disaster Science, College of Health and Public Services 

UNT’s Department of Emergency Management and Disaster Science is offering a Master of Science (M.S.) degree in Emergency Management and Disaster Science. Professor and chairman Gary Webb said this M.S. is designed to help students advance their careers within the growing field of emergency management.

“It provides them with a solid theoretical and practical foundation for understanding and managing the complex problems posed by all types of disasters, including natural, technological and human-induced,” Webb said. “As shown by recent events, including hurricanes Harvey, Irma, Maria, Florence and Michael, catastrophic disasters are on the rise, and the need for knowledgeable disaster professionals has never been greater.”

Students can expect to learn about human-environment interaction, the challenges of disaster recovery, the importance of enhancing community resilience and the importance of hazard mitigation — actions to reduce the long-term effects on life and property due to disasters and hazards.w

Urban Policy and Planning, College of Health and Public Services

The College of Health and Public Services will also offer a new B.A. in urban policy and planning through the Department of Public Administration starting fall 2019. This undergraduate degree is the first of its kind in the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan region, said Laura Keyes, lecturer and undergraduate program coordinator.

It will be based on the study of urban development, the history of cities and the impact of the urban space on communities, Keyes said, as well as prepare students to be competitive in the marketplace.

“The program will prepare students to be competitive in the marketplace,” Keyes said. “The program is structured to accommodate diverse students with a seamless transfer to UNT from a community college or for those that start as freshmen. Students will receive practical planning experience through a required urban planning studio.”

With this degree, students will be able to pursue careers in city, regional, state and federal government, private development, housing, transit, nonprofits and more, Keyes said. With the demographic changes and regional growth in the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area, there is an anticipated demand for city planners. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (2016) projects the employment of urban and regional planners will increase by 6 percent from 2014 to 2024.

Applied Science, College of Information

The Department of Learning Technologies is admitting students into the new Bachelor of Applied Science (B.A.S.) degree program, assistant professor John Turner said. The B.A.S. is designed to meet the increasing workforce demand for learning technologies to support schools, educational enterprises and organizations with a particular emphasis on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) courses.

Turner said students who declare this major have a variety of options after graduating, including instructional designers and instructional technologists, where students can develop new instructional materials or training programs in educational or organizational settings. Graduates of the program may also find jobs in the mobile technology sector developing mobile instructional platforms, mobile applications or new applications for using mobile technologies.

“Today’s landscape continues to change with employers requiring their workforce to be multidisciplinary as opposed to being educated and trained in only one area of study,” Turner said. “Today’s workforce encompasses a broader range of diversity, covering up to five different generational classes under one roof.”

College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences 
Since fall 2018, the Department of Technical Communication added a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Professional and Technical Communication degree. Students can complete this degree in two years after completing the basic university required courses— because the major only requires 36 credit hours — professor and chairperson Kim Campbell said.
UNT has had offered a B.A. in Professional and Technical Communication for nearly a decade but recently added a B.S. after alumni of the program took a survey and gave feedback on wanting to learn more technical skills, Campbell said. The new major deducted the foreign language requirements and instead, students take a couple technical courses. Students can choose from the following three courses: computer science, business of computer information and decision science.
“One of the advantages, I think, to the degree program we have created is you can complete it in two years if you have all your core credits taken care of,” Campbell said. “This is why were are going to community colleges to talk to students.
Technical communications junior Alexander Valderman said he recently switched to the B.S. program this semester. His favorite part of the new major is that he no longer has to take language courses.
“Overall with tech [communications], I’ve been really impressed with the staff,” Valderman said. “They all want to make sure they understand the content. It has been a great choice and also, the classes are really small so you get a lot of one-on-one attention with the professor.”
Featured Image: A student builds a robot in front of students and faculty. Jordan Collard

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Jacqueline Guerrero

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