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An MBA in information systems management explores the intersection between business and technology. These programs appeal to professionals who wish to use information systems to solve business problems and improve organizational processes. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects strong job growth between 2019 and 2029 for both information technology and management occupations.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects strong job growth between 2019 and 2029 for both information technology and management occupations.
As a result of the promising career outlook, 29% of all 2018 master's degrees came from business and information sciences programs, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. Though the median tuition rate of $68,000 per year among top schools presents challenges for students, the 10-year return on investment (ROI) of $250,000 can help justify the price.
Prospective students also need to consider the typical two-year time investment and the impact their degree can have on employment. To help learners make the best decision regarding their education, we put together a comprehensive guide on the program, highlighting the format, curriculum, and career opportunities. We also rank the best online MBA in information systems management programs in the country.
What Are the Best Online MBA in Information Systems Management Programs of 2021? Here Are Our Top 10:
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|Rank||School||Cost per Credit|
|1||University of Maryland - College Park||$1,644|
|2||University of Utah||$1,250|
|3||Florida Atlantic University||$800|
|4||Central Michigan University||$662|
|5||West Texas A&M University||
|7||Wayne State University||n/a|
|8||Saint Francis University||$875|
|10||Concordia University - Wisconsin||$760|
Still unsure about your MBA college choice? Check out our overall Best Online MBA Programs.
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What Is an MBA in Information Systems Management?
An MBA in information systems management provides core business and management training. While the business portion of the degree covers the major subfields, including accounting, finance, economics, and marketing, the information systems management specialization delves into financial technologies, enterprise computing, and data analytics.
Most MBA programs attract working professionals, with many schools even setting a minimum work experience requirement for admission. The program typically runs for 1-2 years, with asynchronous online degrees often allowing students to take heavier course loads while they work.
Practical experiences and summer internships play large roles in these programs, so students need to consider if and how they can manage those requirements.
What Can I Expect From an Online MBA in Information Systems Management Program?
Online learning provides students with access to more flexible courses and a larger selection of programs, but it may not be worth it for every student. Picking from schools across the country can help students find lower tuition costs, more suitable curricula, and experienced faculties, but many online MBAs feature residency requirements that can prove difficult to meet for distance learners.
Furthermore, full-time on-campus MBA programs provide an immersive experience that even the most innovative online programs cannot match. However, an online MBA in information technology management may be one of the more online-friendly specializations available, as many of the courses use computer applications and innovative technologies.
Example MBA in Information Systems Management Courses
- Enterprise Systems
- Managing Innovation
- Risk Analysis and Forecasting
- Cloud Computing
What are Admission Requirements for an MBA in Information Systems Management Program?
- Test Scores
Standardized test scores give schools a helpful way to distinguish between applicants. While some business schools may accept GRE scores, most MBA programs require GMAT scores. The average score at the top schools is 696 out of 800, so prospective students should complete the necessary GMAT prep or GRE prep before testing.
- Letters of Recommendation
Letters of recommendation typically come from teachers, employers, or co-workers who can vouch for an applicant's quality and potential. For MBA in information systems management applicants, letters from a business or computer science teacher or an information systems manager, for example, may prove most effective. Students should choose letter writers carefully and provide them with enough time to craft their recommendation.
Many MBA programs require approximately two years of professional post-undergraduate experience for admission. An applicant's resume needs to identify what experience they have and how it specifically relates to the program, such as business and information systems management experience. In each resume, schools want to see relevant task management and information systems leadership potential.
An application essay for an MBA in information systems management needs to cover a few areas, including an applicant description, a demonstration of how and why they fit the program, and a direct answer to the essay questions. Essay responses need to be clear, well-written, and free of errors, while explaining what makes the applicant unique.
- Official Transcripts
All MBA programs require official transcripts. Applicants need transcripts from every postsecondary course they have taken. Relevant graduate coursework may qualify for transfer credits. Schools may process transcript requests automatically through the application process. However, some students may need to request them independently.
What Can I Do With an MBA in Information Systems Management Degree?
Graduating with an online MBA in information systems management can lead to many promising careers in business and information technology. As organizations continue incorporating technology, the need for professionals to implement, secure, and manage these systems grows. The BLS projects the addition of nearly 50,000 new information systems managers between 2019 and 2029.
The integration of business and information systems also enables these graduates to access various other management professions, a sector in which the BLS projects the addition of more than 500,000 new jobs between 2019 and 2029. Degree-seekers who further focus their training through course and internship selection may improve their employment chances in specific subfields, such as cybersecurity, data analytics, and risk assessment.
- Computer and Information Systems Manager
Information systems managers oversee an organization's computer systems and needs. They may manage other information systems professionals, take charge of IT projects, and make system and security upgrades. According to the BLS, these professionals manage their own companies and work in finance, information, and manufacturing.
Median Annual Salary: $151,150
- Computer Systems Analyst
Computer systems analysts assist organizations in getting the most out of their technology. They may evaluate the current setup to identify weaknesses or inefficiencies or look for opportunities to use IT to improve business processes and decision making. According to the BLS, analysts usually work for the government and organizations in finance and information.
Median Annual Salary: $93,730
- Information Security Analyst
Information security analysts manage an organization's cybersecurity needs, policies, and procedures. They set up the system's protections and backup plans and monitor activity. They also test for vulnerabilities and investigate any attacks. According to the BLS, these analysts often work in finance, information, and administrative support.
Median Annual Salary: $103,590
- Top Executive
Top executives supervise the activities of an organization and business management professionals. They develop organizational goals and create plans to meet them. According to the BLS, executives typically work in professional services, the government, healthcare, and manufacturing.
Median Annual Salary: $107,680
- Computer Scientist
Computer scientists use and design technologies to improve upon processes and experiences in various settings, including business. They may develop new and improved computer software and hardware for organizations or solve complex computer problems that help businesses in direct or indirect ways. According to the BLS, these scientists usually work for the government, research and development agencies, and software publishers.
Median Annual Salary: $126,830
Information Systems Management Not for You? Check Out These Related Careers.
Is an MBA in Information Systems Management Worth It?
The cost of an MBA can appear daunting to many students, but they need to consider the career impact of the degree to determine its worth. According to U.S. News & World Report, MBA graduates from the top schools earned an average salary of $101,030 in 2020, but an MBA in information systems management could result in even bigger earnings.
Consulting, financial services, and technology are the three highest-paying industries for MBA graduates. Information systems managers can access all three fields. Nevertheless, while professionals with the appropriate experience and leadership drive should strongly consider this pathway, not every student fits the profile.
Before enrolling, learners should think about the time, cost, and if the degree is necessary for meeting their career goals. For some learners, pursuing a mini MBA, a technology certificate, or an information technology certification might make more sense and require less risk.
Why Get an MBA in Information Systems Management Instead of a Master's in Information Systems Management?
While an MBA in information systems management and an online master's in information systems and technology can lead to similar careers, students can choose between these programs by considering their educational and professional interests. Specialized MBAs, for example, focus more on management processes and incorporating IT into an overall organizational plan, whereas IT master's programs emphasize technological proficiency.
An MBA specialization provides students with advanced IT skills and competencies, but not at the same level as a focused master's degree. For learners who want both the management capabilities of an MBA and the technological prowess of a master's in information systems management, a dual degree in these fields may work best.
Still Looking for the Right Fit? Discover Similar Programs.
How Do I Choose an MBA in Information Systems Management Program?
The median tuition cost among the top 50 MBA programs falls just under $70,000 per year. While learners can find many more affordable programs, the price of an MBA requires more consideration than the standard master's degree.
Students need to calculate the true program cost by thinking about room and board, textbooks, and lost wages, along with positives, such as scholarships and paid internships. They should also check if schools offer in-state tuition rates to distance learners and weigh the long-term program ROI.
- Program Format
The right program format depends on each student, their goals, and their unique situation. Degree-seekers need to consider when and how much time they can dedicate to their studies to help them decide between a part-time and full-time MBA and asynchronous and synchronous delivery. Accelerated programs can shorten completion times, but they require a more intensive study period.
Students still need to think about location even when choosing an online MBA in information systems management. While many programs offer entirely online study options with no on-campus visits, some online programs feature mandatory residency requirements that distance learners could struggle to complete.
- Career Opportunities
Though most MBA degrees improve job prospects, some schools and programs provide more career support and resources than others. Students can look into a program's employment rates and ROI numbers to see how past graduates have performed. They can also identify what type of recruitment efforts take place and what the school's professional network looks like.
- Programmatic Accreditation
For an online MBA in information systems management, students should look for accreditation from one of the three major organizations: the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs, the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, or the International Accreditation Council for Business Education.
Each of these organizations recognizes business schools and programs that meet a high industry standard. Schools also need regional accreditation, which helps ensure students can access financial aid, transfer credits, and employment after graduation.
2021 Best Accredited Online MBA in Information Systems Management Programs
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University of Maryland - College Park
|College Park, MD||
UMD's MBA students can choose from five concentrations, including information systems and business analytics. In this 54-credit MBA in information systems management, learners take courses, such as social media and web analytics. While the program takes place mostly online, learners attend on-campus residencies near the beginning and end of their studies.
UMD's online classes blend asynchronous and synchronous delivery, with live class sessions every week. Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA and at least two years of work experience.
University of Maryland - College Park is accredited by Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
University of Utah
|Salt Lake City, UT||
The U offers a 48-credit MBA with two specialization options. To earn the MBA in information systems management, students complete an 18-credit certificate in information systems, typically graduating in 24-36 months. They can also earn an MBA and MS in information systems dual degree.
Students usually take two classes at a time. The U delivers online coursework asynchronously throughout five-week and 10-week sessions. Degree-seekers can begin the program in the spring, summer, and fall semesters. Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA and one year of professional experience.
University of Utah is accredited by Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities.
Florida Atlantic University
|Boca Raton, FL||
FAU's online MBA in information systems management is one of 10 concentrations available in the program. Most learners graduate in 16-23 months. Coursework covers specialized topics like web-based business development and information assurance and security.
Requiring 40-46 credits spread throughout eight-week terms, the program offers asynchronous online courses; no residency requirements; and summer, spring, and fall starts. Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA and a minimum of four years of work experience.
Florida Atlantic University is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Central Michigan University
|Mount Pleasant, MI||
CMU's 36-credit online MBA in information systems management curriculum includes courses in SAP software and programming for enterprise systems. One of 11 available MBA specializations, this program also offers an integrated business processes certification through a two-week residency.
At CMU, all online learners pay the same tuition rate no matter where they live. Students begin in the fall, spring, or summer semesters, take classes in eight-week sessions, and graduate within 18 months. Applicants need a bachelor's degree and a minimum 2.7 GPA.
Central Michigan University is accredited by Higher Learning Commission.
West Texas A&M University
WTAMU offers an MBA with four specializations, including computer information systems. Students complete 37-46 credits, taking classes in software engineering, electronic commerce, and data mining. The program delivers all coursework asynchronously and eliminates all in-person requirements.
Students usually graduate in two years, though they can take up to six years to finish. Applicants with a bachelor's degree and a minimum 3.0 GPA may receive a GMAT waiver. Out-of-state students who maintain a 3.0 GPA pay reduced tuition rates.
West Texas A&M University is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
|Center Valley, PA||
DeSales's MBA in information systems management, one of 13 available specializations, requires four concentration courses chosen from options, such as data analytics and healthcare information management. Learners can also complete an accelerated 36-credit MBA with no specialization.
Online degree-seekers take a combination of asynchronous and synchronous classes in six-week and 12-week sessions. The program concludes with a capstone course. Applicants need a bachelor's degree and prerequisite business coursework. Prospective students with a minimum 3.0 GPA may receive a GMAT waiver.
DeSales University is accredited by Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
Wayne State University
WSU's MBA students can choose from 13 concentrations, including an MBA in information systems management. To earn the 36-credit degree, learners take concentration courses like ethical issues, corporate computer networks, and project management. They can also pursue a second specialization instead of electives.
WSU delivers online coursework asynchronously and synchronously throughout 11-week sessions. Some courses may also offer accelerated four-week timelines. Applicants with a minimum 2.75 GPA and three years of professional experience can receive a GMAT waiver.
Wayne State University is accredited by Higher Learning Commission.
Saint Francis University
Saint Francis offers seven MBA concentrations, including an option in information systems and project management. Learners can complete the 36-credit program in less than two years, although students without previous business training may need to take additional courses.
Courses start and run in the spring, summer, and fall, and the university delivers all online coursework asynchronously. Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 3.0 GPA. Prospective students with more than four years of professional experience may qualify for a GMAT waiver.
Saint Francis University is accredited by Middle States Commission on Higher Education.
In Troy's MBA program, students can choose from three specializations, including international information systems and data analytics. The MBA in information systems management requires 40 credits. Relevant courses include business decision support and data analytic strategies.
Troy delivers online coursework asynchronously throughout nine-week sessions, and degree-seekers can graduate within 18 months. Applicants need a bachelor's degree and at least a 2.5 GPA, along with various business prerequisites.
Troy University is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Concordia University - Wisconsin
One of 15 specializations available at CUW, the online MBA in information systems management features courses in software testing and management science. As part of the 36-credit degree, learners can complete an Oracle business certification course as well.
This MBA program typically takes students two years to complete. The university delivers coursework both synchronously and asynchronously throughout eight-week sessions. All online degree-seekers pay the same tuition rate, and applicants need specific business prerequisites to earn admission to the program.
Concordia University - Wisconsin is accredited by Higher Learning Commission.
Fort Hays State University
FHSU's 34-credit MBA features 12 nine-credit concentrations for students to choose from. The online MBA in information systems management requires nine focused credits in courses, such as systems design and cyberspace law. Learners usually graduate within 18 months.
FHSU delivers most online coursework asynchronously, although students may need to attend some synchronous sessions. Applicants without previous business training may need to complete up to 12 additional credits. All online students pay a standard online tuition rate.
Fort Hays State University is accredited by Higher Learning Commission.
At Benedictine University, MBA students can pick from 19 concentrations, including an MBA in information systems management. Comprising 12 quarter credits, this specialization features courses in computer and network security. Students must complete 64 quarter credits to graduate.
The program delivers most coursework asynchronously. While students never need to visit campus, they can complete some courses on campus if they want. Students usually graduate within two years. Applicants with a minimum undergraduate 3.2 GPA may receive a GMAT waiver.
Benedictine University is accredited by Higher Learning Commission.
Baker's 36-credit MBA in information systems management offers courses in database and systems analysis and design. One of seven concentrations available, this program features no on-campus requirements and a standard online tuition rate for all learners no matter where they live.
Online classes at Baker run asynchronously throughout eight-week sessions. Students typically graduate in 1-2 years, although accelerated pathways may be available for students with prior credits. Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA.
Baker College is accredited by Higher Learning Commission.
The online MBA in information systems management is one of nine concentrations available at LU. The 30-credit curriculum features courses in cybersecurity management and healthcare information systems, and students can graduate in approximately 12 months. Degree-seekers can also pursue an MBA and management information systems dual degree.
Online learners at LU enjoy multiple start dates in each semester, and classes run primarily asynchronously throughout eight-week sessions. Applicants with a bachelor's degree and a 3.0 GPA or a 2.5 GPA and three years of management experience may receive a GMAT waiver.
Lamar University is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
University of West Alabama
Students in UWA's MBA program can choose from 13 nine-credit emphases. In the 33-credit online MBA in information systems management, learners complete courses like social and organizational issues and globalization and technology.
UWA's online courses run for eight weeks, blending asynchronous and synchronous elements. All students gain access to the same tuition rates, and the degree takes approximately one year to complete. Applicants need a bachelor's degree with a minimum 2.5 GPA. Once accepted, all students pay the same standard tuition rate.
University of West Alabama is accredited by Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
Frequently Asked Questions About MBA in Information Systems Management Programs
- Is an MBA in information systems management program hard to get into?
Many MBA in information systems management programs maintain tough admission requirements, which students can struggle to meet. For example, some schools only accept applicants with a minimum 3.0 GPA and at least two years of work experience. However, learners can expand their search to online programs to find a school that suits them.
- What can I do with an MBA in information systems management?
An online MBA in information systems management can lead to promising management careers in business and information technology. These degrees prepare students to apply IT solutions to business problems and vice versa. As business and technology become further intertwined, MBA graduates with computer specializations should enjoy better opportunities.
- Is information systems management a good career?
Information systems management careers provide great outlooks for aspiring professionals. The BLS projects 10% job growth for information systems managers between 2019 and 2029, more than twice the average rate for all occupations.
- How much money can I make with an MBA in information systems management?
According to the BLS, management professionals earn a median annual wage of $109,760, and computer and information technology professionals make a median annual salary of $91,250. Both employment groups make more than twice the median annual salary for all occupations.
- What are the highest-paying jobs I can get with an MBA in information systems management?
Computer and information systems manager is probably the most lucrative job available to graduates with an MBA in information systems management. According to the BLS, these managers earn a median annual wage of $151,150, which nearly quadruples the median annual salary for all occupations.