Top Ten IT Jobs! And How to Learn the Skills to do them!

  • No. 10: Software Architect (Senior Software Engineer) – Median Base Salary: $130,000
    • Skills
      • Communication
        • Interpersonal
        • Writing
          • Write Design Specifications and Technical Requirements
        • Team
          • Provide Code Reviews to the Team and Management
        • Presentation
      • Telecommunication
        • Network
      • Design and Programming Skills
        • Java and Java EE EJB 3/Spring, JSPs, Servlets, HTML, CSS, JQUERY, JavaScript, JDBC, C++ in a UNIX, XML, SQL
        • Agile Processes
        • Develop test cases, test plans, and expected results.
      • Marketing
      • Economics
      • Physics
      • Project Management
  • No. 9: UX Designer (User Interface) – Median Base Salary: $91,800
    • Skills
      • CommunicationWorking with business teams (across multiple partners) to determine UX needs and creating designs that meet them. As a UX Design Manager, you’ll be assessing the programs, business needs and market landscape, and owning the creative oversight required to distill these into design requirements
        Translating concepts and ideas into wireframes, workflow diagrams, customer journey maps and visual designs
        Effectively communicating, championing and defending user experience and design directions to business teams & executives using prototypes, visual communications, and narrative vision
        Leading user research, testing, and focus groups for strategic programs
        Championing user experience and design best practices to stakeholders throughout the Verizon Wireless organization. Bring design thinking to projects and act as a voice of UX innovation throughout the product development process.
        Being passionate about digital & mobile products and technology. The right person for this job lives and breathes digital & mobile experiences and has an amazing grasp on market trends and a vision for how these new products and technology designs will transform Big Data solutions 2-5 years into the future.
        Bachelor’s degree or eqivalent in Human-Computer Interaction, Interaction Design, Information Design, Visual Design or related field; accelerated degree preferred
        Experience as a UI Designer, Interaction Designer, Creative Director, Lead UX Strategist or similar
        A portfolio that demonstrates superior creative thinking and problem solving skills
        Understanding of the agency process, design process, and project management for design engagements
        Experience working across cross-functional teams (including UX and technical development/engineering, product management, marketing, executive management), with working knowledge of software development, product design, usability engineering, and quality assurance
        Attention to detail and craftsmanship
        Proven success driving programs in a matrixed environment
        Exceptional communication & presentation skills, including involvement with executive-level communications
        Excellent organization skills with proven ability to manage multiple concurrent projects and to adjust to frequent changes and project priorities.
        Ability to make a strong first impression, active listening skills, the ability to win respect and influence others, politically savvy
        Desired Skills/Experience:
        Experience in a product design or creative/strategy role within a large corporate environment
        Experience designing next-generation software/hardware platforms (TV, tablets, touch-screen, wearables and other consumer electronics.)
        Experience managing and/or collaborating with creative talent and creative agencies
        Experience with rapid prototyping in an Agile/Scrum environment.
        Prior Big Data Platform or Advertising Platform interaction or design experience preferred.
  • No. 8: QA Manager
    • Median Base Salary: $85,000
    • monitor the overall software testing process and make sure new products work before being released to the public.
  • No. 7: Software Development Manager
    • Median Base Salary: $135,000
    • This is a managerial position, which garners a higher pay grade.
    • the job requires a high degree of education, deep technical skills and several years of software experience.
  • No. 6: Analytics Manager
    • Median Base Salary: $105,000
    • Similar to the demand for data scientists, analytic managers are crucial to companies that require someone to analyze and make conclusions (about the) data.
  • No. 5: Software Engineer
    • Median Base Salary: $95,000
    • Write Code
  • No. 4: Project Manager
    • Median Base Salary: $106,680
    • this job title has cracked the top 10 both years demonstrates it continues to be one of the hottest jobs on the market.
  • No. 3: Mobile Developer
    • Median Base Salary: $90,000
    • Companies across all industries all have mobile apps — or plans to create one — and they are hiring plenty of mobile developers to create and support them, Dobroski said. Despite this trend, he added it is not surprising that the number of job openings for mobile developers is not higher. Mobile developer ranked in the top three for tech jobs on Glassdoor’s list, but overall it was No. 5 for best jobs.
  • No. 2: Solutions Architect
    • Median Base Salary: $119,500
    • The job title may be a mystery to some job seekers, but a solutions architect is an integral position in a company that handles business decisions related to software creation and performance, Dobroski said, adding, a solutions architect is a problem solver, and has a mix of both business and technical skills. Solutions architects often work closely with clients to hear feedback on their company’s product, and then provide any solutions needed based on the feedback.
    • Solutions architects also ranked No. 3 among the best jobs in all categories, as well, on the overall Glassdoor list. “It’s a top job because of the high number of job openings, the hefty average salary and plenty of career opportunities,” said Dobroski.
  • No. 1: Data Scientist
    • Median Base Salary: $116,840
    • Data scientist has ruled as one of the hottest jobs for years, coming in at No. 9 on Glassdoor’s 25 Best Jobs in America list last year, Dobroski said. He pointed to the high demand for these types of jobs, as well as high salaries and great career opportunities, as contributing to the top rating on Glassdoor’s list.
    • Not only did data scientists capture the No. 1 slot among tech jobs, but it also held the same rank for all jobs. “It isn’t a big surprise to see data scientist at No. 1 this year because it’s one of the hottest and fastest growing jobs we’re seeing right now,” said Andrew Chamberlain, Glassdoor chief economist. “Since all companies have an online presence these days, they all need people who know how to manage and store data that helps them make better business decisions, compared to years ago when businesses didn’t have data management at their fingertips to review and analyze to help them drive business forward. I expect this to continue to be a hot job for several years to come, too.”

Micro-Credentials! The 21st Century Educational Goal!

Prior to the domestication of the electron, we had to go to “bricks and mortar” buildings and campuses to learn.

But, today, you don’t have to leave your desk to have virtually unlimited learning options available to you.

Unfortunately, our existing industrialized education monoliths continues to brainwash the business and professional communities that a traditional approach to credentialing is the only way.   Under this, Henry Ford Assembly line model, all similar learners ride an educational conveyer belt in which they all take the same series of classes and when a number of courses or units are accumulated, they get a stamp of endorsement called a certificate or diploma.  The amount of actually useful learning acquired on this 20 year assembly line varies greatly between learners.

There is no question a certificate or diploma is still relevant to today’s workforce.  Employers and customers want to know you have the skills to do the job.

However, the problem is that the certificates or diplomas are not personally detailed enough for any outside observer to optimally value that certificate or diploma.

Fortunately we have 21st Century tools to fix this very real problem  It is called “Micro-credentialing.”  Micro-credentialing means that a learner gets a series of “personalized” micro-credentials acknowledging an individual’s completion of work, whether it is a noncredit course, a seminar, or other professional learning and skill building.

UC San Diego workforce research analyst Dr. Josh Shapiro notes, “Degrees and certificates often do a poor job of communicating detailed information about graduates. Micro-credentials and badges, however, indicate specific knowledge and skills—impacting skill sets that industry is seeking in new hires.”

The tools available to us today can usher in a welcomed new learning era, in which the competency verification industry needs, can be more optimally met.  The tools available to us today, can easily and cheaply provide information to the community beyond what a transcript or diploma is able to convey.

We are living in a time when people need to possess a list of competencies that can be added to over time with a verifiable rubric to measure skill mastery, recognized and endorsed by industry and connected to our emerging online social media outlets like LinkedIn.

“Badges without taxonomies, without some shared understanding, without rubrics, are meaningless,” notes Matthew Pittinsky, an assistant research professor in the school of social and family dynamics at Arizona State University and founder of Parchment, a credentials-management company.

The notion of a student obtaining one large qualification rather than offer an array of micro-credentials (badges) is a relic of the past. From an employer’s point of view, the value of hiring a person with numerous mini-qualifications and a diploma provides a higher confidence in their investment as opposed to the risk involved in hiring a “blue chip” student from a brand name university.

UCSD Extension K-16 Programs have begun to implement a micro-credentialing program targeting students enrolled in our pre-collegiate programs. Their strategy seeks to refine the operational process involved in offering badges but also elevate these credentials from an informal acknowledgement to a professionally recognized measure of skills.

Of Course many people, particularly those entranced in the existing educational industrial monoliths, will dump all over this approach.  I understand that.  Confirmation bias, selective perception, and motivated reasoning combine with these educational agents of the past to resist any other model.  But, that resistance will eventually wain as more and more 21st Century tools are deployed.

So, what are Micro-credentials:

  1. One skill at a time: Each micro-credential will focus on one competency and skill tied to a single rubric.
  2. Evidence to demonstrate skills: Students must demonstrate their competence by demonstrating and providing multiple examples of their work and to multiple assessors.
  3. Assessment and review: Each micro-credential will be reviewed, evaluated and endorsed by an advisory panel to ensure it is a reliable articulation of a specific skill.
  4. Connected to needed Community skills: Each micro-credential must be linked to needed community skills.


3 Learning Steps

  • Step one: gain a complete understanding of the natural laws that govern the thing you are trying to learn.
  • Step two: gain a complete understanding of our own capabilities, aptitudes, skills, and talents for the thing you are trying to learn.
  • Step three: implement actions that improve your capabilities, aptitudes, skills, and talents.


  • Step one is to understand the natural laws that affect a thing. By understanding the dynamics of how a thing works, we can develop strategies for effective management of that thing. In everything we do, the more we know about the natural laws that affect it, the better chance we are to manage it. This is true for sports, childrearing, and/or communication.
  • Step two is gaining an honest self-understanding of our abilities. This is the hardest step because, for most people, it is very difficult to get honest feedback from others. People often see each other through perceptual lenses colored by their own misunderstandings of reality. Clearly some activities are easier to get honest feedback then other activities. Sports is easy because there are objective measures of performance. Things like batting averages, number of tackles, distance one can drive a golf ball, or eye hand coordination are available for all to see. In sports one can objectively measure, speed, strength, or size. Also in sports there are any number of coaches, sports writers, and/or fans that are constantly providing feedback on your abilities, skills, and talents (whether we want the feedback or not).  Unfortunately, assessing our communication abilities is not like assessing our sports ability. For communication, there are so many different forces affecting behavior, that it is nearly impossible to get accurate measures of ones abilities.  Never-the-less, however difficult as it maybe, it is essential that we strive to have, at all times, an honest self-appraisal.
  • Step Three is the easiest step. Once you know what you need to learn, then putting together an action plan to learn it is fairly straightforward.

Courses are divided into these 3 sections.

  • Section 1 courses are designed to explore the natural laws of communication, information, teamwork, a learning organization and the TIDAL approach to decision making.
  • Section 2 courses are designed to appraise our communication abilities and determine areas of personal improvement.
  • Section 3 courses focus on some actual things we can do to improve our communication capabilities

Atlantis Learning Community Flips the Traditional Educational Models

Traditional Adult Education has it backwards. Today, we start by paying for a class ($2,000+). Then we read the book or listen to the expert. Finally, we take the assessment. This process should be flipped. We should start with a “FREE” high level assessment. Then using whatever means available; reading the book, searching the Internet, or talking to an expert, we learn what we need learn. We should only pay for the book or face time with an expert if we cannot get it free somewhere else. If someone wants a more detailed or personalized assessment, Schools can charge extra for that.

This applies the iTunes model to education. You should only have to pay for what you need.

Also, this breaks the traditional education model of one size fits all. With the 21st Century tools available to use, we can allow for each student to follow their own unique path to learning. The educational institution would only need to provide A “Syllabus” describing what they consider to be the things someone should know and what is the bibliography listing the sources of for those things they think are important. The Student should follow their own path and discover their own sources. The Syllabus says what a student needs to know to be competent in a subject. The assessment measures that competence. But the path to that competence is unique to each individual.

Education for Life might be possible if it is Subscription based, say 2 Wharton Profs. I agree. And I add to that idea.

I agree with two Wharton Professors; education should be Subscription based.  That is the best way to stimulate “Education for Life.”

And I would add that the various levels of subscription should depend on the amount of effort on the part of the Faculty and Administration to prepare the information and grading process and the importance to the learner.

There should be a free subscription for getting basic information and taking basic automated tests.  More specific information and more specific grading should be paid for on a variable price depending on a number of factors.

Would Graduate School Work Better if You Never Graduated From It?
 by Steve Kolowich

Learning continues long after college ends. What if being enrolled in college was also a lifelong condition?

That is how Christian Terwiesch, a professor at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, thinks graduate business programs might work in the future.

He and a colleague, Karl T. Ulrich, vice dean of innovation at Wharton, have published apaper on how the ascent of short video lectures—the kind popularized by massive open online courses and Khan Academy—might change the cost and structure of top business programs like Wharton’s. The short answer is that they probably won’t, at least not anytime soon.

But in an interview with The Chronicle, Mr. Terwiesch ventured a guess as to how Wharton might change further down the line. The business school eventually might have to provide chunks of its curriculum on demand over a student’s whole career, he said, rather than during a two-year stretch at the beginning.

The idea makes at least some sense. Students come to Wharton to learn skills, but they also come to meet people and become part of an exclusive club of future power brokers. A two-year immersion makes sense for making friends, but when it comes to learning skills, it does not always make sense to serve the whole meal upfront.

“A long time can elapse between learning a chunk of knowledge and applying it,” write the two professors. They compare a Wharton degree to a Swiss Army knife: “You buy it today to use one day, but you know neither when you will use it nor which part of the knife you will use first.” More often than not, they say, students experience graduate school and its benefits in this order: “learn-learn-learn-certify-wait-wait-wait-deploy.”

Buying the whole knife upfront made sense when taking courses required students to move to Philadelphia. But the professors, who are among those at Wharton who have been experimenting with MOOCs, are increasingly convinced that online courses can be sufficient to teach specific skills to capable, invested students.

What might Wharton look like in 2035? Mr. Terwiesch agreed to speculate: Students accepted to Wharton would still take part in an immersive program right away. But instead of two years, it would last 10 months—long enough to make friends, participate in experiential parts of the program, and become members of the club. They would pay a fee for the immersion, but not the balance of their tuition.

After that, students would graduate into the work force, but they would stay enrolled at Wharton on a subscription basis. One day, a Wharton subscriber working in investment banking might get put on a team that oversees mergers and acquisitions. Instead of aching to recall the lessons she learned back in business school (and later forgot), she takes an online “minicourse” from Wharton. “The new pattern becomes learn-certify-deploy, learn-certify-deploy,” the professors write in their paper.

Flexible, online business programs aimed at working professionals already exist, but they tend to be oriented to a fairly prompt, definitive graduation date. Mr. Terwiesch’s idea of an exclusive graduate school that enrolls students over the course of their whole careers is a spitball, to be sure, but it may prove to be a sticky one.

An Introduction to the School of Open

Every generation since the beginning of human existence has passed its value system, principles, methodologies, and skillsets on to the next generation. This passing on of information within cultures has been followed by the development of a systematic approach to learning techniques. Formal structures were created throughout the world to learn and apply these skillsets.

During the middle ages, the monasteries of the church became the nucleus of education and literacy. Ireland, during those times, was known as a country of saints and scholars. During the Islamic Golden age in Baghdad, the House of Wisdom was established and became the intellectual hub. Similar institutions of great nature and vision were established in other parts of the globe as well.

In India, the establishment of universities like Nalanda, Ujjain, and Vikramshila have played a significant role in development of higher education. One type of school that has laid the backbone of Indian education structure and still rules the psych of Indian students is “Gurukula,” which is a word formed from the Sanskrit words “Guru” meaning master and “Kula” meaning extended family. In this case, education was imparted for free and students paid the teacher back in some form after their studies were completed.

Though these great institutions added immense value to the evolution of modern societies, education was still restricted to the elite class in most cases. Universal access to knowledge is a historical problem, and inclusion has enormous relevance in today’s world. An old adage says that a developed society is the one where the highest level of technology touches the lowest level of society. An organization who is putting this vital imperative into action is the School of Open, an initiative by P2PU and Creative Commons that is making the world more creative, open, and educated.

The benefits of open

The School of Open is a learning environment that focuses on increasing our understanding of openness and how it fosters creativity and education in the digital age. The School of Open leverages the strengths of communities and open source software to increase awareness about an “open” world.

The School of Open is a volunteer-run, global community that develops and provides online courses, offline workshops, and training programs in topics such as Creative Commons, open research, sharing creative works, and more. The school offers a wide range of courses created by experts and users that cover everything from foundations to advanced topics in open models. The courses can be taken on your own or facilitated by an instructor, and they run for a set length of time (weeks). Some of the courses in the facilitated category include Copyright for Educators, Creative Commons for K-12 Educators, An Introductory Course on Open Science, and (my favorite) Writing Wikipedia Articles: The Basics and Beyond. I signed up for it and was glad the materials were comprehensive. The course covers the values of Wikipedia, wiki markup code, how to evaluate the quality of Wikipedia articles, and the art of creating an article on the site.

I strongly believe that in today’s world, creativity gets a boost through participation. The School of Open gives us an opportunity to learn about a topic with other users who share similar interests. A case in context is the course titled, “Teach someone something with open content”. The course teaches:

how to find and recognize open content—like Creative Commons licensed video’s, images, articles, and more—in a certain area of interest how to start discussions revolving around these topics People with an expertise in a certain area can collect resources and assist participants who have questions in that same area. People who are interested in a field can also choose topics in the field and trigger discussions around it. The topics can be be anything ranging from the history of tanks to the intricacies of the Linux kernel. At the end of the day, it is education made more open, interesting, and participatory.

In his provocative book, Free Culture: The Nature and Future of Creativity, Lawrence Lessig, one of the most influential thinkers in the Internet era, provides a strong argument as to how free culture supports and protects innovators. He states that free culture is not a culture without property, just as the free market is not a market in which everything is free. Free culture, like the one exemplified by the School of Open, ensures that innovators and their creative community remains free from what is called as a “permission culture” and maintains a process of creating more innovators, helping people to be more creative, producing better research and inclucates a culture of giving back.

Inclusion is a key focus of universal access to education, and I strongly believe that creativity and learning are the fundamental rights of every human being. Every human, irrespective of her/his economical status or level of intellect should be given an opportunity to grow. The School of Open is one such organization that helps promote that ideal.

Posted 23 Apr 2014 by Aseem Sharma