The Information Technology (IT) department at AUIS held a town hall meeting for students and other members of the University community on September 25, 2019, as part of the launch of the Software Engineering (SE) degree. The meeting was organized to provide detailed information on the new program, explain differences in curriculum and applications between it and the IT major, outline study requirements according to the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research (MoHESR), and in general, explain the value of adding such a program to the degrees offered at AUIS. IT Assistant Professor Dr. Yad Tahir delivered a presentation during the meeting, which was moderated by IT Department Chair and Assistant Professor Dr. Hemin Latif.
IT at AUIS
The Bachelor of Science degree program in IT prepares students in the four core areas of the discipline, which are programming, database design, networking, and system integration. The program is also designed to help students gain problem-solving skills as well as significant information security knowledge. Students who are interested in areas such as software development environments, application support, network operations, network management, database management and administration, technical IT services and web development will graduate with the knowledge and skills set to enter the IT profession. IT students at AUIS graduate with a total of at least 120 credits, of which 48 credits are specific IT courses.
Software Engineering at AUIS
The Bachelor of Science degree in SE prepares students in current engineering disciplines, skills, and technology. The SE program teaches students how to apply engineering and best practices to software development. Graduates of the SE program will be able to develop and solve industrial and organizational problems with contemporary programming and designing tools and develop efficient and scalable applications. The SE program focuses on teaching engineering principles to prospective software engineers that can contribute to the local and regional sectors in the best possible engineering methods and practices.
The Difference Between the Two Degree Programs
The purpose of the town hall meeting was to explain to new students the difference between the IT and SE degree programs and help them make the right choice. The IT program is more general than SE and students gain a broader knowledge in multiple areas related to IT, Dr. Tahir explained. SE is more specific in its nature and it is geared toward students who find their skills and passion in the software development field more than general IT disciplines, he continued. The SE program by its nature requires students to have deeper knowledge in math and logic, and be more comfortable in those areas as it is required for the program.
In addition to personal interests and skills, students must fulfill the requirements of MoHESR for whichever program they desire to study, Dr. Latif clarified. He went on to explain that these requirements include a minimum Baccalaureate score and combined grades in math and physics, specific for each year, as stated by the Ministry. These requirements are not internal requirements specific to AUIS, but rather general admissions requirements for all university programs in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.