Profile: Software engineer
Functions: The complexity of modern software (and hardware) systems makes the use of adequate technologies necessary to design and analyse them. The number and type of functions software is required to have is constantly growing. Security requirements of control software of systems such as cars, aircrafts and satellites can be met only through the use of adequate methodologies. Even in the case of pure software systems, such as Yahoo and Google, the necessary requirements of efficiency, reliability and security (computer science) can be met only by applying adequate planning and analysis methodologies. Masters Graduates of the Software Engineering curriculum will apply such methodologies in their professional career as computer science experts in companies producing information systems as well as companies with an IT sector allowing them to autonomously manage software processes. They will also probably work for consulting companies, assisting other organizations when determining their software needs, for instance when preparing tenders. In all the above-mentioned fields, graduates will be able to carry out analysis, design and implementation of complex systems’ management software.
Skills: Masters Graduates of the Software Engineering curriculum will acquire professional skills aimed to solve analysis and formalization of complex problems in a variety of contexts which satisfy functionality and security requirements, such as design and development of high quality IT systems, even in competing and wide-spread areas; application of modern technologies and use of new tools to analyse, assess and design critical software and hardware; development and research focusing on technologies related to programming languages, with distributed systems, methods to verify systems and computer security problems.
Professional opportunities: Masters Graduates of the Software Engineering curriculum can have access to a highly specialized intellectual and scientific career in computer science, categories 188.8.131.52 of the ISTAT professional classification, more precisely as analysts and designers of application and system software and as system analysts. They will also be capable of attending specialization programmes and PhD programmes with good results and have access to national exams to be included in the Register of Computer Science Engineers.
Profile: Designer of interactive systems
Functions: The current scientific and technological scenario is particularly marked by a rapid growth of Internet and social networks, and the ever-growing dissemination of online information, together with new opportunities to offer users more and more natural and wide spread interaction modalities. Such elements are going to create a unique combination of computing and communication. New devices (more and more powerful, portable, context sensitive, adaptable according to the user’s profile, etc.), new opportunities for multimodal interactions (vocal, gestural, and haptic) and to automatically process larger and larger information loads will require specialized knowledge in designing complex and “intelligent” systems. In general, applications in this field involve processing large quantities of non-structured data (documents, images), and shaping complex knowledge domains allowing users to dynamically interact with the designed models. Computer Science Masters Graduates who have attended the Multimedia Computing and Interaction curriculum will thus be able to operate within complex projects playing the following roles:
1. Integrating interaction and communication aspects, both in terms of support to user’s actions, particularly in relation to usability and accessibility, and in terms of production and interpretation of adequate representations of conditions and phenomena;
2. Planning of strategies and methods for the development of information systems in which diverse forms of knowledge (regarding domain, context and users) represent a key element.
Such functions will be carried out in companies producing interactive systems in specialized areas such as videogames, informational retrieval systems, mobile systems, as well as in companies producing complex software systems requiring advanced interfaces. Computer Science Masters Graduates who have attended the Multimedia Computing and Interaction curriculum can also act as consultants for projects aimed to develop innovative systems.
Skills: Masters Graduates of the Multimedia Computing and Interaction curriculum will acquire professional skills in data mining, search engines, opinions analysis, decision making support, analysis of social networks and users’ behaviours, necessary for information technology experts, as well as skills relating to interactive system design, usability, treatment of natural language, of computational graphics, computer vision, useful when working on development of interactive systems combining diverse modes of acquisition and representation.
Professional opportunities: Masters Graduates of the Multimedia Computing and Interaction curriculum can have access to a highly specialized intellectual and scientific career in computer science, categories 184.108.40.206 of the ISTAT professional classification, more precisely as analysts and designers of interactive, multimedia and multimodal software, also based on natural language techniques and analysis of social networks interactions and system sharing, and as system analysts. They will also be capable of attending specialization programmes and PhD programmes with good results and have access to national exams to be included in the Register of Computer Science Engineers.
Profile: Specialist of networks and security
Functions: Problems related to analysis, design and functional assessment of modern computer networks, both fixed and mobile, as well as specific in-depth analysis relating to computer science security, techniques of defence and attack to systems and networks and a theoretical basis of main security protocols, have all become paramount to ensure the normal functioning of production and financial systems and of those relating to facilities and assistance to people and communities, in other words the functioning of current complex societies. Computer Science Masters Graduates who have attended the Networks and Security curriculum will be able to face problems requiring design, assessment and recognition of complex computer networks and apply innovative skills related to their security. In particular they will be able to carry out professional tasks concerning design of networks and issues related to security and to research and develop new network and security solutions.
They will do so in companies operating in the field of network solutions or security, both in the case of those producing their own solutions, or those providing support to third parties, as well as within companies with their own complex facilities. They can also function as consultants, offering support to managers when making choices related to networks and security.
Skills: Masters Graduates of the Networks and Security curriculum will acquire a sound basic and a wide knowledge in the following fields:
- cabled and wireless networks, including heterogeneous one;
- technological tools to guarantee IT systems’ security;
- international standards;
all necessary skills to carry out specialised tasks in these fields.
Professional opportunities: Masters Graduates of the Networks and Security curriculum can have a highly specialized career both in companies producing and using computer systems, in the public and private sector. They can have access to a highly specialized intellectual and scientific career in computer science, categories 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168 of the ISTAT professional classification, more precisely as system analysts, specialists of computer science security, or specialists of networks and IT communication to design advanced solutions in terms of networks and IT security. They will also be capable of attending specialization programmes and PhD programmes with good results and have access to national exams to be included in the Register of Computer Science Engineers.
Profile: Computer Scientist
Functions: Masters Graduates of the Information Science and Applications can have a highly specialized professional career both in the public and private sector, playing any role at a senior level requiring to analyse and design innovative IT solutions for complex problems. In particular, they can have managing positions relating to all those activities concerning design and development of advance software systems, as well as technical and experimental research projects focusing on diverse computer science areas, in research centres, industries and training centres while promoting technological innovation processes based on experimental and research activities, including satisfying the needs to face complex scenarios by companies strategically aiming at the international market and the Public Administration.
Skills: Masters Graduates of the Information Science and Applications curriculum will acquire a wide knowledge with a solid methodological basis and thus skills adaptable to the rapid change of computer science and applicable to a range of different contexts.
Technological skills required to access the job market are balanced throughout the programme with the knowledge of computer science key principles. Although such principles are often related to access to research activities, they are nevertheless essential for the duration and quality of positions in computer science areas: specific technologies tend to become obsolete in a period of 5-10 years, whereas Computer Science Masters Graduates who have attended this curriculum will have a solid basis for careers which can last even 50 years. Acquired methodological knowledge, going from algorithm theories to logic, from information theory to calculation models, will be integrated with skills acquired through applicative and technological courses.
Professional opportunities: Masters Graduates of the Information Science and Applications curriculum can have access to a highly specialized intellectual and scientific career in computer science, categories 22.214.171.124 of the ISTAT professional classification, more precisely as design and development specialists of advanced high-performance IT solutions. They will also be capable of attending specialization programmes and PhD programmes with good results and have access to national exams to be included in the Register of Computer Science Engineers.
Consultations regarding the Faculty’s degree programmes for the academic year 2016/2017 took place as follows:
- N.1 meeting with organizations representing companies producing goods and services and professional associations on 10.03.2015 organized by the Dean Office for all the Faculty’s degree programmes. The Dean, the Vice Dean, the Teaching Manager, the Presidents of the Area Educational Board and Degree Programme Boards, and the following organizations took part in the meeting: 5 Emme informatica (Manager and Head of Production), BIC Lazio S.p.A. (Head of Operational Staff), Cineca - SCIA (Information and knowledge management services), Exaltech - Impresa Latina (Co-founder and Vice President), Ey (Human Resources), GSE – Energy Services Managing Company (Managing Engineer), IBM (Business Development Executive), INFO EDGE, Istituto Italiano degli Attuari (Secretary General), Istituto Nazionale della Previdenza Sociale (Coordinator of the Statistics-Actuarial Section), KYDEA – company from Latina (CTO & Co-founder), Lait Regione Lazio (sole director), NS12 (Head of Marketing & Communications), NttData (Head of HR), Ordine Nazionale degli Attuari (President), SAS (SAS Academic Program manager), Telecom Italia/TIM (Strategy & Innovation - Market & Service Scenario and Human Resources Senior Consultant).
- Cesop Communication’s survey on the knowledge and perception that Italian companies have of the training offered by the Faculty of Information Engineering, Computer Science and Statistics’ degree programmes.
Such survey was aimed to provide an initial and general feedback on two aspects of the Faculty’s degree programmes: their popularity and their quality as generally perceived.
The survey was carried out through on-line questionnaires with the CAWI ipostat-interview system (standard questions and batteries with a scale ranging from 1 to 10).
The questionnaires focused on the following areas:
- job market
- analysis of the Faculty’s courses and programmes
- hard skills and soft skills
Questionnaires were sent to members of staff with managing positions in Human Resources.
3800 companies were contacted, but only 100 questionnaires were considered valid.
Cases were not weighed by adhering to the values of reference statistics since only 73% of respondents filled in basic data (geographical area and company size).
The key resulting element is a lack of knowledge of the Faculty’s courses and programmes, which has strongly influenced the survey.
Out of the 73 interviewees who have indicated basic data, 16 of them work in small companies, 15 in medium size companies whereas 42 in large companies. 38 units were from the Northern Italy, 31 from Central Italy and only 4 from Southern Italy and the islands. Most of the respondents (25 out of 73 indicating basic data) work in an IT company.
These companies operate in the following fields: Information Technology (34,7%), Manufacturing - Transport (19,4%), Consulting and auditing (15,3%), Media and communication (9,7%), Chemistry - Pharmaceutics – Biomedicine (6,9%), Large distribution (5,6%), Public institutions (5,6%), Finance – Insurance (2,8%).
The following data emerged from consultations:
- During the meeting on 10.03.2016 participating organizations were given a handbook indicating the aims, study plan and job opportunities for all Faculty’s degree and Masters degree programmes, including their websites. Such documentation was sent on 17.02.2016. During the meeting the following issues regarding the educational needs and job opportunities offered by the Faculty’s degree programmes were addressed:
• Suitability of educational aims and objectives and course titles
• Suitability of the professional figures in relation to job market requirements
• Expected job opportunities
• Advice regarding degree programmes’ aims, objectives and contents
• Opinions on bachelor’s programmes and on the average duration of degree programmes
• Collaborations on Internships/Thesis/Research
All organizations considered valid the topics addressed in the Faculty’s degree programmes as well as the expected job opportunities while suggesting to improve the current partial interrelation among degree programmes (for instance in interfaculty and interdepartmental courses). Participating organizations also emphasised the relevance of topics such as information technology and data science, big data, internet of things (IoT) and internet of everything (IoE), smart cities, robotics, domotics, cyber security, cognitive computing, social networking, cloud analytics, mobile networking, privacy, open source, open data, open agent, while encouraging further training in such areas given the introduction of the digital citizenship in the Public Administration. The need to increase training regarding norms and regulations particularly in statistics and actuarial programmes was similarly stressed.
As far as soft skills are concerned, big organizations and medium/small organizations had diverging opinions. According to the first, such skills should be encouraged through collaboration with companies available to offer seminars with credits to be included in the degree programmes. Small and medium organizations believe instead that providing students with a more solid basic education in bachelor’s degrees is more relevant.
All organizations emphasised the need for students to graduate in time to have good opportunities in accessing the job market and that during their academic career they start collaborating with the world of work thanks to companies’ presence within courses, through internships, research projects and collaborations while preparing their thesis. All organizations confirmed their support to put such proposals into practice.
- Cesop Communication Survey
The three areas of the questionnaire revealed that:
- 88% of the respondents foresaw to employ in 2016 graduates of the Faculty of Information Engineering, Computer Science and Statistics. Information engineer, in particular, is the most required professional figure (19.8% out of 88).
- Knowledge of courses and programmes is very limited and thus communication with companies should be encouraged (collaboration and meetings between the Faculty and companies). An interesting benchmark is the Polytechnic University of Milan, considered as a high quality university with a good communication.
- As far as courses and programmes’ contents, soft skills are considered as being more relevant than hard skills, albeit not significantly (an average of 5.58 out of 10). «The ability to collaborate with others in a constructive manner» and the «ability to adapt to organizations’ needs» are the soft skills on which the Faculty should and can have a more significant impact.
Degree Programmes’ Boards agree to welcome the following suggestions:
- continue to enhance areas such as information technology and data science, big data, internet of things(IoT) and internet of everything (IoE), smart cities, robotics, domotics, cyber security, cognitive computing, social networking, cloud analytics, mobile networking, privacy, open source, open data, and open agent in bachelor’s and Masters degree programmes;
- encourage interrelation and contamination among different degree programmes, particularly Masters degrees
- further encourage acquisition of soft skills through seminars with or without credits;
- reinforce basic education, particularly in bachelor’s degrees;
- improve knowledge of courses and programmes and contact with the world of work thanks to through companies’ presence within courses, internships, meetings with companies, thesis’ preparation within companies, research projects with the participation of students, particularly those of Masters degrees.
The meeting has revealed that the Faculty’s courses and programmes are adequately structured. Functions and skills regarding the professional roles for which students are educated in the Faculty’s different programmes seem to be adequately described and are thus a clear basis to define expected learning outcomes. Moreover general and specific learning outcomes are coherent with current professional needs and in this sense graduates’ education and training satisfy society at large and job market’s needs (education demand).
Consultations with organizations – at national and international level - representative of goods production and services, and professions (Establishment of the degree programme)
In the final meeting of the consultations at University level on 22 January 2010, after considering the results of former online consultations, participating organizations positively assessed the new Sapienza’s courses and programmes on the whole. After assessing in detail Faculties’ new courses and programmes as well as modified ones as provided by D.M. 509/1999, while taking into account consultations formerly carried out by each Faculty, organizations gave a positive feedback on each new programme by judging specific educational aims and objectives of proposed programmes coherent with local educational needs.
The survey results also apply to this degree programme. Moreover, companies’ positive assessment of the course catalogue was confirmed in the following years through companies’ participation to meetings with students taking place every semester, with presentations on job and internship opportunities. From 2010 to the present day, and by maintaining a tradition started in 1999, 16 meetings have taken place with the participation of an average of 20 companies per meeting, for a total of 132 different companies, with an average of 2.32 participants per company and five companies having participated at least 10 times. Students were also briefly interviewed by participating companies during these meetings for a total of over 4,000 interviews. A round table was also organized for each of these events addressing throughout the years themes relating to emerging technologies, job market trends and transformation of professional figures in ICT.