Students who earn a bachelor's degree in management information systems engage in a curriculum that helps learners hone their programming and problem-solving skills. A bachelor's degree may qualify you for a career as a computer systems analyst, software developer, database administrator, or systems engineer.
This guide explores possible career opportunities, salary potentials, and common program elements. Topics covered include tuition costs, admission requirements, typical courses, and concentration options. Read on to learn more about earning an on-campus or online degree in management information systems.
What Is Management Information Systems?
Management information systems (MIS) studies people, processes, and technology from an organizational perspective. This field focuses on the types of hardware and software that organizations use to track and compile data for analysis. MIS helps business leaders analyze their processes, finances, and customers to make strategic business decisions.
What Are the Best Online Bachelor's in Management Information Systems Programs of 2020?
|1||Colorado State University Global Campus||Greenwood Village, CO|
|2||Western Governors University||Salt Lake City, UT|
|3||Minot State University||Minot, ND|
|4||Bellevue University||Bellevue, NE|
|5||University of Minnesota Crookston||Crookston, MN|
|6||Regis University||Denver, CO|
|7||LeTourneau University||Longview, TX|
|8||University of Houston-Downtown||Houston, TX|
|9||University of Illinois Springfield||Springfield, IL|
|10||Ottawa University||Brookfield, WI|
Should I Get a Bachelor's Degree in Management Information Systems?
Businesses rely on technology to compile data and track processes, employees, and customers. As such, it is crucial that these businesses hire experienced professionals to manage their computer and network systems.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that jobs for computer and information systems managers will increase by 11% between 2018 and 2028. As such, pursuing a degree in management information systems may be a strong long-term investment.
Successful professionals in this field need creativity and strong programming, decision-making, project management, and critical thinking skills. The curriculum of an on-campus or online bachelor's degree in management information systems provides a comprehensive overview of essential topics and develops these skills through core courses. Students also learn how to use current techniques and models to develop solutions for a variety of scenarios.
A bachelor's degree in management information systems is a necessary qualification for most jobs in the field. However, before pursuing this degree, you should establish your career goals to help determine which option is the best for you.
What Will I Learn in a Management Information Systems Bachelor's Program?
A bachelor's degree in management information systems provides an introduction to network security, systems management, analytics, and project management. The curriculum helps learners develop strong programming, analytical, and communication skills.
Some programs offer concentration options, which allow you to take courses directly related to your interests and career goals. The sections below describe a few popular courses and concentrations.
- Basic Programming
This course introduces learners to the fundamentals of programming, including design, testing concepts, scripting, and looping. Students may also learn the basics of specific coding languages like Python.
- Web Analytics
In this course, students learn current tools and techniques for analyzing website data to make decisions about performance and suggest improvements. Coursework may also cover topics like clickstream analysis, website strategy testing, and keyword or social media analysis.
- Systems Analysis and Design
This course studies the systems development lifecycle using both traditional development and newer techniques. The curriculum may also include an overview of the systems analyst toolkit, economic analysis, and project management.
- Project Management
This course explores essential project management techniques. The curriculum typically breaks down key concepts like Gantt charts and time schedules.
- Information Assurance and Systems Security
This course examines hacking culture and how computer crimes or internet fraud can impact organizations. Students also learn how to design and implement preventative measures to maintain system security.
- Organizational Leadership
This concentration focuses on developing strong organizational and leadership skills to prepare students to lead teams and manage corporate strategies. Courses often discuss ethics and law, conflict resolution, communication strategies, and the principles and practices of effective leaders.
- Project Management
Learners pursuing this concentration cover common project management tools, models, and techniques. The curriculum typically includes coursework in effective scheduling and control, procurement and contract management, and risk management.
Classes in this concentration explore how decisions made by business leaders can impact society. The curriculum typically emphasizes how to collect economic data to create strategies and aims to develop strong critical thinking, analytical, and communication skills.
This concentration teaches students about financial models and strategies, international finance, and capital management techniques. The curriculum may explore banking, money, investment theory, and real estate and investment finance.
- Human Resources and Organizational Development
Students pursuing this concentration examine corporate structure, conflict resolution, training and staff development, and management strategies. Coursework commonly explores topics like labor relations and law, recruitment, and organizational development.
What Can I Do With a Bachelor's in Management Information Systems?
In our digital world, an increasing number of businesses rely on safe and secure data management. As such, MIS is crucial in several industries and offers a variety of lucrative job opportunities.
Read on to learn about five common career paths in MIS.
- Computer Systems Analyst
Computer systems analysts make sure that an organization's computer systems function efficiently. Primary tasks include researching new technologies, preparing cost analysis reports for fixing or installing new software, testing systems, and designing and implementing new systems.
Median Annual Salary: $90,920*
- Information Security Analyst
Information security analysts install and use software to protect an organization's data and network systems. Additional tasks include monitoring networks for breaches, testing systems for weaknesses, and researching technology trends.
Median Annual Salary: $99,730*
- Database Administrator
Database administrators oversee the process of storing, managing, and securing data for organizations. They also ensure systems run efficiently, create and test modifications, and manage system permissions for users.
Median Annual Salary: $93,750*
- Software Developer
Software developers design, test, and develop software to meet a user's needs. Additional tasks may include directing a team of programmers, recommending upgrades, and performing routine maintenance.
Median Annual Salary: $105,590*
- Systems Engineer
Systems engineers develop computer systems and work with vendors to customize software to meet a client's needs. Additional tasks include evaluating design changes, reviewing change control documents, and establishing standard operating procedures.
Average Annual Salary: $79,640*
Sources: Bureau of Labor Statistics and PayScale
How to Choose a Management Information Systems Bachelor's Program
Earning a degree in management information systems can help you reach your career goals. However, each program varies, so it is important to research factors like program length, format, and costs.
Some online programs use an asynchronous format, allowing you to learn entirely online at your own pace. Others may use a synchronous format, requiring some in-person or scheduled virtual classroom sessions.
Focusing on these features allows you to select a program that works with your schedule. You should also examine costs to ensure that a program fits your budget.
Explore our guide for more in-depth information about online bachelor's degrees in management information systems.
How to Get Into a Management Information Systems Bachelor's Program
Most programs require at least a high school or GED diploma. Applicants are typically asked to submit official school transcripts, ACT or SAT scores, and an essay or personal statement. Depending on the program, additional requirements may include work experience, previous college coursework, or an interview.
You should ensure you qualify for a program before paying application fees. If you do not meet all of the requirements, schools may still offer conditional acceptance or allow you to take a skills test to determine your eligibility.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Bachelor's in Management Information Systems?
A bachelor's degree in management information systems typically requires 120 credits and takes four years to complete. To finish on time, you should consider maintaining a full-time course load and work with an advisor to create a degree plan. Also, some schools offer accelerated programs that allow you to graduate more quickly.
In the MIS field, it is not a requirement to further your education beyond a bachelor's or pursue certification, but doing so may give you a competitive edge and increase your earning potential. A few credentials to consider include the certified associate in project management, certified information systems security professional, certified ScrumMaster, and Six Sigma certifications.
How Much Does It Cost to Get a Bachelor's in Management Information Systems?
In 2018, graduate students paid an average tuition of approximately $18,950 per year, according to the National Center for Education Statistics.
While tuition rates vary by school, online programs tend to be more affordable because they eliminate on-campus housing and transportation costs. It is important to pay attention to factors like location and whether a school is public or private.
Some schools may charge higher rates for out-of-state students, while others offer flat tuition rates, regardless of residency.