How to Become a Database Administrator

Written by

Ray Grant Walden


August 14, 2014


Database administration is an essential function for any business with the need to store, manipulate or disseminate data. The modern world runs on digital data. The storage of data involves the management of sophisticated software programs called databases.  Highly qualified professionals called database administrators fulfill this need. Learn how to become a database administrator and browse database administration degree programs and salary data.

What does a database administrator do?

A database administrator (also known as a DBA) is an information technology (IT) professional who works with database management systems and establishes effective ways to organize and store data. In many situations, database administrators must migrate data from out-dated systems into new systems.

DBAs are also responsible for testing and organizing the needed modifications to the systems and troubleshooting problems. DBAs understand the database running platform, ensure that systems function properly and add and remove users as needed. They must also work with network administrators to plan and organize security measures for databases that are connected to the Internet.

What kind of training does a database administrator need?

To become a database administrator, you must be able to keep up with the rapidly changing world of technology. Since technology is rapidly changing, database administrators must keep up with knowledge and skills in the latest technology. Employers generally look for professionals with solid backgrounds and can demonstrate a wide range of technical skills. Most employers desire a formal college education of at least an associate degree, but more commonly, a bachelor degree in computer science, management information systems (MIS), and information science is preferred. Some employers will consider degrees in related areas. Graduate degrees (Masters and above), along with experience, are preferred for higher level positions.

Job seekers can also improve their career opportunities by obtaining certifications in specific areas. Strong analytical, logical thinking, problem solving, communication and interpersonal skills are also necessary.

What are the prospects for a career in database administration?

Database administrator jobs are expected to be one of the fastest growing occupations as organizations expand their use of data storage and management, driven by the very rapid increase in computer systems design and related services. Openings for this career are projected to increase 37% from through 2016, which is much faster than average for all occupations. 

DBAs will continue to have excellent job prospects, especially individuals who have advanced degrees in computer engineering or computer science or information systems. Candidates with bachelor degrees will also have great opportunities when coupled with practical work experience. Database administrators with sound technical backgrounds and excellent business skills are highly sought after.

Database Administrator Salary: How much do database administrators make?

As of 2015 the middle 50% of database administrators earn between $72,927 and $95,788 a year, with the highest 10% earning more than $105,000 a year. 

A career in database administration is an excellent choice for people who have a talent for logic, and enjoy spending time analyzing and manipulating data. Database administrators must be able to multitask and work well under pressure and stress. Those interested in database administration may also be interested in learning how to become a network administrator or computer systems analyst.

Becoming a Database Administrator Requires Skills & Training, Start Today

Are you serious about becoming a Database Administrator? Then you need to get the required skills and training to do it! To start your new career, first you must decide what school you want to enroll in, so you need to gather info about potential schools. Use the  College Mouse Degree Search tool  to find the right course and college for you, and get started towards your new dream job today! If you want more personalized assistance, call (888) 389-7996 TOLL FREE to speak with a college advisor, who will help you find the best college for you. After you sign up for your course, make sure you fill out and submit the FAFSA so you can take advantage of any financial aid currently available to you!

Written by:  Ray Grant Walden

Ray Grant Walden attended American University College and now lives in Houston. He has enjoyed a very exciting career and has experience in a wide variety of professions, including college counseling.

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