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Information Technology (IT) Architect

The information technology architect applies IT resources to meet specific business requirements. The role requires a high degree of technical expertise as well as business understanding, as IT architects determine which information technology investments will yield the best return, both in terms of hard costs and productivity benefits. IT architects strive to bring operational efficiency to an organization through information integration and management. Achieving this ideal requires technical skill in planning, implementing, and managing IT infrastructure and information software.

IT architects generally launch their careers with a bachelor's degree in management information systems (MIS) or computer science. Certifications such as the Microsoft Certified Architect (MCA) and IT Architect Certification programs offer specialized training for IT architects. Computer science degrees and IT certifications are widely available online.

Recommended Reading: Webopedia's list of Computer Certifications.

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