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Master's in Software Engineering

Why choose our Master's in Software Engineering?

Saint Leo University’s Master's in Software Engineering curriculum addresses industry needs by teaching fundamental and theoretical concepts that includes an intensive, comprehensive coverage of modern software development techniques. This approach prepares graduates to be versatile so they can work within a number of different fields.

The MS in Software Engineering degree program is designed to help students with a technical background become leaders in the industry. This degree is relevant to software engineers looking to stay competitive by developing new technical skills, as well as for students who want to foster innovation by keeping up with emerging software trends and technologies.

Instructors in this program come from a wide range of backgrounds and have many years’ worth of practical experience within the varied field of software engineering, allowing them to communicate this valuable practice to students. Small class sizes offer personal attention from instructors, enabling students to flourish in an online environment for this cutting-edge graduate program.

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The Master of Science in Software Engineering program is offered online and at the university campus.


Saint Leo University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).

In addition, Saint Leo is proud to have earned designation as an NSA/DHS National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE-CDE).

The goal of the CAE-CDE program is to reduce vulnerability in our national information infrastructure by promoting higher education and research in CD and graduating a growing number of professionals with CD expertise. Universities that are awarded this designation have undergone an in-depth assessment and have met rigorous requirements.

Learning Outcomes

The MS Software Engineering degree is designed to give students a disciplined, systematic approach to the field of modern software engineering so they can implement and manage the development, maintenance and evolution of software products. The degree will prepare students in the theory and methods of systematic and rigorous construction of software for industrial, scientific and commercial applications.

After completion of the Master of Science in Software Engineering, graduates will be able to:

  • Demonstrate an understanding of software engineering concepts, techniques, practices and tools, and apply them to real problems in a variety of contexts.
  • Apply software processes to large-scale real-world problems, including requirements analysis and specification, software design and implementation, verification, validation and quality assurance, maintenance of software.
  • Analyze and estimate software process costs and manage software development from concept to delivery.
  • Analyze, assess and interpret professional codes of ethics and regulatory documents pertaining to software engineering, and understand societal issues.
  • Integrate Saint Leo University's Core Values in the curriculum.

Degree Requirements

The M.S. in Software Engineering is a 30-credit program.

For a complete listing of required courses, including individual course descriptions, please consult the 2019-2020 Graduate Catalog.

A summary listing of the program's course requirements follows:

Course Number Title
COM 506 Database Security
COM 508 Secure Software Design
COM 510 Principles of Cybersecurity Management
COM 512 Cybersecurity Risk Management
COM 560 Fundamentals of Software Engineering
COM 563 Analysis of Algorithms
COM 565 Principles of software Design
COM 567 Current Trends in Software Engineering
COM 570 Software Reliability & Testing
COM 592 Software Engineering Capstone


Professional Development Opportunities

Professional development opportunities include:

  • Research: Students conduct advanced research in information security and assurance.
  • Co-curricular activities: All students may join the Computing Club, the Cyber Defense Club, and the Computer Security Club.
  • Memberships: Outstanding students may be selected for induction into Saint Leo’s chapter of Upsilon Pi Epsilon, the international honor society for distinguished scholars in the computing and information systems disciplines. Further information on Saint Leo clubs and associations can be found here.

Career Focus

Software plays a central and underpinning role in almost all aspects of daily life: communications, government, manufacturing, banking and finance, education, transportation, entertainment, medicine, agriculture, and law. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook (2016 Edition), it was estimated that there would be a demand for 302,500 new Software Developer positions over the 2016 to 2026 time-frame.

Software Engineers work in a variety of industries, including aerospace, education, telecommunications, intelligence, manufacturing, medical, non-profit sector, transportation, research and development in multiple industries. Some typical career options for graduates earning an M.S. Software Engineering degree include:

  • Software Architect: Software architects usually work for large organizations and create programs for clients customized to their needs. They focus on cost efficiency and are expected to maintain familiarity with the latest technology.
  • Software Engineer: Software engineers help integrate the functions developed by design teams into software applications. This process involves identifying bugs and required changes, and determining how program modifications can be implemented to improve the final product.
  • Software Developer: Software developers create and modify computer applications that allow users to perform desired tasks. They write, test and debug software programs for client needs. They must be familiar with various computer languages and be capable of working in a team.
  • Software Assurance Analyst: Software Assurance Analyst develop and document quality. assurance standards for software testing, aligned with industry best practices. This includes models for building software test plans and test scripts.

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