Mobile Application Development Associate in Applied Science Degree

Due to explosive growth in the use of mobile computing devices, there has been an employment boom in the field of mobile application development, and the demand for new and innovative mobile apps is growing at an incredible speed.

Overview for Mobile Application Development AAS

The associate in applied science (AAS) degree in mobile application development prepares you for work in the software development industry with a focus on application design and development for mobile platforms. Mobile app development is a field that brings concepts in programming, web development, and interface design together. Using current and emerging technologies, you develop skills in app design, learn relevant programming languages for application development on a variety of smart-devices, and learn the policies and procedures for submitting apps for distribution. This program is available for qualified deaf and hard of hearing students.

Courses you will take cover multiple aspects of internet, mobile-related technologies, including programming languages and web markup, server side technologies and tools, mobile web development, responsive design, and application optimization for mobile devices.

Graduates of this program may work independently or with a team of programmers writing and developing software programs for mobile applications for contemporary devices. This requires skills in information gathering, user-centered design, effective deployment practices on a range of devices, and strong communication skills.

Mobile application development is available as AAS or as an Associate+Bachelor’s Degree Program.

The AAS degree in mobile application development, offered by RIT's National Technical Institute for the Deaf, is a career-focused degree program that leads to immediate entry into the workforce.

The Associate+Bachelor’s Degree Program in mobile application development prepares you to complete an RIT bachelor’s degree. You start with an AAS in mobile application development, which provides you with the foundational courses and credits you need to enroll in and successfully complete a bachelor's degree program in RIT's Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences. Upon completion of your AAS program, you will enroll in the Golisano College where you will complete a bachelor's degree in web and mobile computing.

Learn more about the benefits of pursuing an Associate+Bachelor’s Degree Program.


Careers and Cooperative Education

Typical Job Titles

Application Developer Web/Mobile Designer
Web/Mobile Developer Computer Programmer


  • Internet and Software
  • Design

Cooperative Education

Cooperative education, or co-op for short, is full-time, paid work experience in your field of study. And it sets RIT graduates apart from their competitors. It’s exposure–early and often–to a variety of professional work environments, career paths, and industries. RIT co-op is designed for your success.

Students in the mobile application development program are required to complete a cooperative education work experience prior to graduation. You may schedule your co-op after completing your second-year academic requirements.

Featured Work

Curriculum for 2023-2024 for Mobile Application Development AAS

Current Students: See Curriculum Requirements

Mobile Application Development, AAS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
Website Development‡
This course introduces students to web page and small-scale website development. Through hands-on laboratory experiences, students will learn the fundamental concepts needed to construct web pages that follow appropriate coding standards as well as basic design principles to present content in an attractive and organized manner. Topics include HTML, CSS, graphical elements, website publishing, and transfer protocols. (NTID Supported Students.) Lec/Lab 4 (Fall, Spring).
Freshman Seminar
The course provides incoming deaf and hard-of-hearing students admitted to NTID undergraduate programs with opportunities to develop/enhance academic skills, personal awareness, and community involvement in order to maximize their college experience. Students will have opportunities to explore and navigate the college environment, develop/reinforce academic skills, and participate in experiential learning opportunities while establishing meaningful connections with faculty, staff and peers. The course promotes the development of plans for ongoing growth and involvement in class and in the RIT/NTID and/or broader community. (NTID Supported Students.) Lec/Lab 2 (Fall, Spring).
Survey of Emerging Visual Design
This course focuses on the industry-standard tools used to create the visual elements of user interfaces for varying screen sizes and devices. Students in this course will identify common design elements and the techniques used to create these elements. Applying the design concepts, principles, theories and techniques learned in this course will increase students’ ability and preparation to design future interfaces that are intuitive and user-friendly. Students are expected to deliver projects with good application of responsive design layouts, typography, color, and other graphics. (NTID Supported Students.) Lec/Lab 4 (Fall).
Programming Fundamentals I: Mobile Domain
This course will provide students with a study of the fundamental concepts, logical structures, and algorithms inherent to computer programming. Students will learn how to write basic object-oriented programs in a contemporary programming language with a focus on mobile application development. (NTID Supported Students.) Lec/Lab 6 (Fall).
Programming Fundamentals II: Mobile Domain
This course builds upon the programming skills developed in Programming Fundamentals I Mobile Domain and will cover more advanced object-oriented programming concepts, logical structures, and algorithms. Visual information system modeling, graphical user interfaces and software testing topics will also be covered. Students will be working individually on mobile-related projects as well as working with other students in team-based projects. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NMAD-180 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 6 (Spring).
Software Analysis and Design
Building on the fundamentals of programming, students will learn important topics related to object-oriented design. Topics such as class design, unified modeling language, inheritance, composition, logic building, implementation, design strategies, and testing are emphasized. Upon completion, students will be able to demonstrate an understanding of the software development life cycle including a thorough analysis and design of a real-world software problem. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NMAD-180 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 5 (Spring).
Mobile User Experience
This course will help students develop a better understanding of the user experience and interaction in the mobile domain. Students will plan and execute various mobile design strategies with usability as the forefront of design. Students will apply best practices in gathering data from usability testing and conduct analysis to make changes that will lead to effective user interfaces. This course will also discuss universal design experiences to provide full accessibility for all users. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NMAD-155 or equivalent courses.) Lec/Lab 4 (Spring).
Advanced Mathematics (General Education)
Topics from precalculus mathematics are studied with an emphasis on functions and graphs. Topics include the algebra of functions and the study of inverse functions. Rational, exponential, logarithmic and piecewise-defined functions are among those studied. Students, who earn credit for NMTH-275, cannot take NMTH-260 or NMTH-272. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NMTH-212 or equivalent course with a grade of C- or better or have a math placement score greater than or equal to 40.) Lecture 4 (Fall, Spring).
FYW: Writing Seminar (WI) (General Education – First-Year Writing)
Writing Seminar is a three-credit course limited to 19 students per section. The course is designed to develop first-year students’ proficiency in analytical and rhetorical reading and writing, and critical thinking. Students will read, understand, and interpret a variety of non-fiction texts representing different cultural perspectives and/or academic disciplines. These texts are designed to challenge students intellectually and to stimulate their writing for a variety of contexts and purposes. Through inquiry-based assignment sequences, students will develop academic research and literacy practices that will be further strengthened throughout their academic careers. Particular attention will be given to the writing process, including an emphasis on teacher-student conferencing, critical self-assessment, class discussion, peer review, formal and informal writing, research, and revision. Small class size promotes frequent student-instructor and student-student interaction. The course also emphasizes the principles of intellectual property and academic integrity for both current academic and future professional writing. Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring, Summer).
General Education – Elective*
Second Year
Introduction to Database and Data Modeling
A presentation of the fundamental concepts and theories used in organizing and structuring data. Coverage includes the data modeling process, basic relational model, normalization theory, relational algebra, and mapping a data model into a database schema. Structured Query Language is used to illustrate the translation of a data model to physical data organization. Modeling and programming assignments will be required. Note: students should have one course in object-oriented programming. (Prerequisites: ISTE-120 or ISTE-200 or IGME-101 or IGME-105 or CSCI-140 or CSCI-142 or NACA-161 or NMAD-180 or BIOL-135 or GCIS-123 or GCIS-127 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 3 (Fall, Spring).
Web & Mobile II
This course builds on the basics of web page development that are presented in Web and Mobile I and extends that knowledge to focus on theories, issues, and technologies related to the design and development of web sites. An overview of web design concepts, including usability, accessibility, information architecture, and graphic design in the context of the web will be covered. Introduction to web site technologies, including HTTP, web client and server programming, and dynamic page generation from a database also will be explored. Development exercises are required. (Prerequisites: (ISTE-120 or CSCI-140 or CSCI-141 or GCIS-127 or NACA-161 or IGME-105 or IGME-101 or NMAD-180 or GCIS-123) and (ISTE-140 or NACA-172 or IGME-230 or IGME-235) or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 3 (Fall, Spring).
The World of Work
The goal of the course is to provide students with the business-related skills to acquire a cooperative or permanent job, and the personal and social skills to succeed on the job. Topics related to workplace communication and relationships, as well as financial management, employer expectations, and personal goal setting will also be covered. The course will also include the development of job search skills, resume writing and interviewing, along with skills in word processing, spreadsheets and presentation software as needed in the workplace. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students who have completed NACT-155 and NACT-161 or equivalent courses with a grade of C or better.) Lecture 3 (Fall).
Mobile User Interfaces
User-centered, interactive design is critical to the development of successful consumer, commercial, industrial or defense-level devices and software, particularly for mobile devices. This course provides students with a solid foundation in developing and understanding a comprehensive range of experiences in user-centered interactive design. The course will cover effective communication principles, user interface design techniques, design tools, workflow, design process, and user interaction. This course will include discussion of universal design principles to provide full accessibility for all users. (Prerequisite: NMAD-250 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 4 (Fall).
Mobile App Development I
This course introduces mobile application development utilizing modern development tools to build apps on popular mobile platforms using a contemporary programming language. Students will learn and apply code-sharing techniques to create mobile applications in an efficient manner. This course will also examine mobile development tools, native UIs, navigation, and design patterns to build and publish mobile apps. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students who have completed NACA-121 or NMAD-181 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 6 (Fall).
Mobile App Development II
This course builds upon the cross-platform development skills developed in Mobile App Development I and will cover more advanced topics such as geolocation, web services, data acquisition, portable class libraries, shared projects, notifications, and other advanced APIs. Students will be expected to create and publish fully functional apps across multiple platforms. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NMAD-260 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 6 (Spring).
Web Services and Data Storage Technologies
Students learn how to consume server-side web services that can deliver data in different formats to a variety of applications by building on their previous experience with websites and applications. They use a hands-on approach to build and modify different types of databases for use with their web services while exploring how data can and why it should be shared by multiple devices and applications. Students also gain an understanding of how to detect different devices over the Internet and generate specific targeted content. Use of pre-existing components, APIs and frameworks to improve efficiency is also explored. Methods for efficient data-transfer, to increase battery life, are a key topic in this course. Students work individually, as well as with other students, to complete tasks. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NMAD-260 or equivalent course.) Lec/Lab 5 (Spring).
Mobile Application Development Co-op
This course provides students with a 350-hour work experience in the computer field. Students have an opportunity to gain experience on the job, to apply what they have learned in their course work, and to evaluate their own technical, communication, and interpersonal skills. Placement assistance is provided to help students find a relevant work experience. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NACT-240 and NMAD-261 and NMAD-262 or equivalent courses.) CO OP (Fall, Spring, Summer).
General Education – Ethical Perspective*
General Education – Social Perspective*
General Education – Scientific Principles Perspective
Third Year
Introduction to Entrepreneurship
This course introduces the role of the entrepreneur in identifying opportunities, seeking funding and other resources, and managing the formation and sustainability of the new venture. Emphasis will be placed on understanding the development process from idea generation to realization of a product or service by creating a business plan. (NTID Supported Students.) Lecture 3 (Fall, Spring).
Mobile Applications Development Capstone Projects
Working in teams, students experience the analysis, design, implementation, testing and deployment of a mobile solution for a real-world client. Important topics from throughout their program of study are applied in this course. Faculty advisors facilitate student teams to demonstrate their skills in the applied project. Student teams make a technical presentation to their faculty advisors and participate in a public showcase of projects. (Prerequisites: This class is restricted to NTID supported students that have completed NMAD-261 and NMAD-262 or equivalent courses.) Lec/Lab 5 (Fall).
Open Elective*
General Education – Artistic Perspective*
General Education – Global Perspective*
Total Semester Credit Hours

Please see the NTID General Education Curriculum (GE) for more information.

Please see Wellness Education Requirement for more information. Students completing associate degrees are required to complete one Wellness course.

* An ASL-Deaf Cultural Studies (AASASLDCS) course is required for graduation. It can be taken in any semester and can be taken at NTID or another college of RIT. In order to fulfill this requirement as part of the credit hours in the program, it can be a course approved for both AASASLDCS and a General Education – Perspective or General Education – Elective.

‡ NACA-172 and ISTE-140 are equivalents.

Admissions and Financial Aid

For the career-focused AAS Degree

  • 2 years of math required
  • 1 year of science required
  • English language skills as evidenced by application materials determine associate degree options.

For the AAS Degree Leading to Bachelor’s Degree (Associate+Bachelor’s Program)

  • 2 years of math required; students interested in engineering, math and science transfer programs should have three or more years of math.
  • 1 year of science required; students interested in engineering, math and science transfer programs should have two or more years of science.
  • Physics is recommended for students interested in engineering.
  • English language skills, as evidenced by application materials, determine associate degree options.

Specific English, Mathematics and Science Requirements and other Recommendations

  • English: Placement in a First Year Writing course such as FYW: Writing Seminar (UWRT-150). Students that place into Critical Reading and Writing (UWRT-100) would also be considered.
  • Mathematics: Placement into NTID Introduction to Discrete Mathematics (NMTH-255) or higher. Typically, students entering this major will have completed at least three years of high school mathematics.
  • Science: Typically, students entering this major will have completed at least two years of high school science.
  • ACT (optional): The ACT middle 50% composite score is 18-21 with minimum scores of 18 in Mathematics, 16 in English, and 19 in Reading.

Learn How to Apply

Financial Aid and Scholarships

100% of all incoming first-year and transfer students receive aid.

RIT’s personalized and comprehensive financial aid program includes scholarships, grants, loans, and campus employment programs. When all these are put to work, your actual cost may be much lower than the published estimated cost of attendance.
Learn more about financial aid and scholarships