Degrees to Study for the Digital Future

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When choosing a university degree, some key factors that students consider are how their degrees will increase their employability rates, and how relevant their degrees will be in the future. But, if the last year has taught us anything, it is that the future can be unprecedented, and unforeseen changes can dramatically affect the economic climate and the job market. 

Through all this, one thing remains constant and has become more prominent than ever- our reliance on technology and the internet. We have seen the process of digitalisation in just about every aspect of our lives last year, and moving forward, we should expect more breakthroughs that blur the lines between physical, digital and biological spheres.

So, if you are really looking for a degree that will future proof you and allow you to remain competitive in the job market without the fear of unemployment, getting a degree that revolves around technology and innovation is one way to go.

Some Career Choices to Consider for the Digital Future

1. Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial Intelligence (AI) is an emerging field of computer science that deals with creation of smart machines that work, react and think like humans. In other words, AI is the competence of a machine to imitate and stimulate human intelligence. AI can be programmed to carry out functions such as planning, learning, reasoning, problem solving and decision making. 

As machine learning capabilities continue to evolve, it is speculated that we might be on the verge of a revolution in Artificial Intelligence. Though, so far, we have only managed to master Narrow AI (created to perform a single or a limited number of tasks really well, such as the AI powered “personal assistants”- Siri, Alexa and Google Assistant). Many believe that the concept of machines with general intelligence that match and acts like humans, and even the hypothetical AI that surpasses the capacity of human intelligence and ability is not too far off.

We are already seeing AI becoming a common practice in consumer technology. Many universities now offer highly respected degrees in Artificial Intelligence, and allow students to specialise in particular industries: education, health care and transportation, defence & security, banking, etc. 

Studying AI can open up a multitude of possibilities. There will be high demand for graduates who can develop/ program and engineer AI, we will also need graduates to study them and find ways to offset any potential dangers of using AI (also very important in case intelligent killer robots take over the world and enslave/wipe out the entire human race.)

Career Opportunities in the Field of Artificial Intelligence

  • Machine Learning Engineer
  • Data Scientist
  • Business Intelligence Developer
  • AI Engineer
  • Data Mining & Analysis

2. Digital Media: Video Games

It is estimated that over 2.7 billion people in the world regularly engage in video games across a wide variety of genres and platforms, and with the growth of live streaming, AR and VR and mobile gaming, this number is only expected to grow bigger.

Video games have created new means of entertainment and immersive interaction, and have become a vital and personal medium of mass communication. What started out as a derivative medium that took inspiration from other media such as books, films and music has now evolved into a form of art that all other mediums draw ideas from. 

As the COVID-19 pandemic devastated the music industry and musicians’ ability to tour and do live shows, video games stepped in with a lifeline.Travis Scott and BTS performing virtual concerts through Fortnite grabbed several headlines, and perhaps even set a new standard for virtual concerts. 

But the music industry is not the only industry with collaborative potential for video games. Educators have started realising the potential of video games as avenues for problem-solving and experience based learning. Big companies are looking at more aggressive in-game marketing tactics to reach the gaming audience.

Keeping all this in mind, it is safe to say that video games are here to stay. It is an exciting, dynamic and emerging field with limitless opportunities- universities are now offering courses in video game design and development which you can gain the special skills and knowledge needed to work in this field.

Career Opportunities in the Field of Video Games

  • Game Designer
  • Audio Engineer
  • Game Developer
  • Professional Gamer
  • Software Developer and Game Programmer

Read More About Studying Video Games Here: 

Game Design VS Game Development – What are the Differences?

3. Digital Marketing

Our societies, cultures, institutions and cities continue to be revolutionised through data, analytics, media and digital processes. With how deeply social media is intertwined in our daily lives and the growing dependence on mobile devices, the importance of digital marketing only expands further. Digital media specialists with interdisciplinary skills and knowledge have become vital personnel for businesses in all industries to take on the increasingly networked 21st century.

Digital marketing uses digital technologies to market products and services, including but not limited to the internet, mobile phones, video games and various other digital channels. Through digital marketing, companies are able to create value for their target customers, engage with them in real time and gather data. 

Some key areas of study in digital marketing include Search Engine Optimisation, Social Media Marketing, Search Engine Marketing, Pay Per Click, Influencer Marketing and Email Marketing.  

Degrees in Marketing often go over marketing strategies on digital avenues, but many universities are now offering more specialized courses for students looking to gain more precise and advanced skills that equips them to respond to the ever-evolving digital challenges and innovations. Students specialising in digital media courses are trained to create effective cross-channel campaigns and take on opportunities in globally competitive markets. 

Career Opportunities in the Field of Digital Marketing

  • Social Media Manager
  • Digital Marketing Executive
  • Marketing Communications & Advertising
  • Visual Communication Design
  • Content Marketing Manager

Recommended Universities to Study Digital Marketing in Malaysia

1. Asia Pacific University

Program

Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Marketing Management with a Specialism in Digital Marketing

Intake

May, September

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Fees (2021)

Local Students: RM 87,000


International Students: RM 88,200

 

2. Taylors University

Image Credit: Taylors University

Program

Bachelor of Business (Hons) in Digital Marketing and Analytics

Intake

March, August

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Fees (2021)

Local Students: RM 102,518


International Students: USD 29,872

4. Financial Technology

Financial technology (FinTech) uses technology and innovation to help automate and improve the delivery and use of financial services. By design, FinTech is made to challenge, threaten and ultimately topple the traditional financial service providers, by providing quicker, better and more agile services in general. 

As the world emerged into the internet and smartphone revolution, FinTech emerged with it to become an extremely customer-oriented form of technological intervention into personal and commercial finance, and has made its way into various sectors and industries such as education, retail, banking and investment management, to name a few. 

FinTech takes apart offerings by traditional financial methods, combines them with the newest technological developments and creates new markets for them.  We experience several forms of FinTech on a daily basis- when we use internet banking, or transfer money to a friend for our share of food, make a payment to 7-11 using a digital wallet, withdrawing money from an ATM, and so much more.

FinTech was one of the few industries that thrived during the Covid-19 pandemic. Both consumers and businesses started opting for contactless/ cashless payment methods, and has become the new normal method of transactions- it’s hard to imagine going back to how things were before. 

2021 and beyond sees the FinTech revolution gaining even more traction. With new emerging trends such as digital-only banking systems, increasing popularity of cryptocurrencies, the implementation of artificial intelligence and machine learning in banks, to name a few, we expect to see better, faster and improved financial services. 

Career Opportunities in the Field of FinTech

  • FinTech Specialist
  • Business Development Associate
  • Banking Specialist
  • Financial Analyst
  • Payment System Analys

Recommended Universities to Study Financial Technology in Malaysia

1. Asia Pacific University

Program

Bachelor of Science (Hons) in Information Technology with a Specialism in Financial Technology (FinTech)

Intake

May, September

Duration

3 years (full time)

Indicative Fees (2021)

Local Students: RM 87,000


International Students: RM 88,200

5. BioTechnology

Biotechnology uses biological systems or living organisms (such as microorganisms, plants, genetics) to further technological advancements that solve problems in our day-to-day life. It is often used in the medical sector, agriculture, environment and pharmaceuticals, as well as in industrial sectors such as food and beverages and the textile industry.

Biotechnology is regarded as one of the most important professions, mainly due to its implications in health and medicine. One of the most prominent examples of biotechnology in use today is towards the development of several Covid-19 vaccines around the world. Biotechnology has created several innovative techniques for diagnosing, treating and preventing diseases, such as cures and medicines through genetic engineering for cancer and diabetic patients, for example.

As biotechnology focuses on bettering human lives, it will always be an in-demand career path both in the private and public sector, because human life is constantly evolving and is always presented with opportunities to be made better. 

It is a fast-growing industry that is spread across several interdisciplinary branches, and pushes the boundaries of science. Students can choose to specialize in specific industries and develop intricate skills such as research ability, production skills and problem-solving skills to help improve the lives of the people and the health of the planet.

Career Opportunities in the Field of BioTechnology

  • Biotechnologist
  • Microbiologist
  • Food Scientist and Technologist
  • BioMedical Engineers
  • Genetic Engineers

Read More About Studying BioTechnology here:

Top 5 Universities to Study Biotechnology in Malaysia 2021

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About the Author

Rifqa Abdulla

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