Nearly every organization works with information, technology, and people, making management information systems (MIS) a critical factor in the global economy. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for MIS jobs is projected to grow by 15% between 2014 and 2024, which is much faster than the average job growth rate. Whether you are interested in working with nonprofit organizations, large corporations, or other ventures, earning a management information systems bachelor's degree online will help you succeed in the world of business and technology. Below you can find more information about MS bachelor's degrees, as well as salary expectations and career opportunities for graduates with this degree.
What are the best management information systems programs of 2020? Here are our top 10:
|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|
Choosing a Program
MIS programs integrate skills in business, problem-solving, decision-making, data and systems analysis, information technology, and more. The degree prepares you to succeed as a multidisciplinary professional who is able to manage organizations through technology. Most bachelor's in MIS programs require enrolled students to complete general education, core business, and MIS specific coursework. Common courses include database management, behavior in organizations, information technology infrastructure, software design and development, and decision support systems.
Many MIS programs will allow you to choose a specialization, allowing you to follow career or personal interests. Common specializations include international business, healthcare management, and communications, but some programs allow students to choose specializations in criminal forensics or cyber security. Most bachelor's in MIS programs are designed to teach students the same basic set of skills, but programs will vary widely in terms of structure and graduation requirements. It's important to ask yourself what you need from a program. The answer to this question will make choosing the right school much easier.
2020 Best Accredited Online Bachelor's in Management Information Systems Programs
Colorado State University Global Campus
|Greenwood Village, CO||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 54%||
The first independent, fully online institution in the U.S., Colorado State University Global Campus oversees dozens of online graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs in 10 different fields. Each of CSU-Global's programs offers monthly start dates and accelerated, asynchronous course delivery.
CSU-Global's online bachelor's in management information systems and business analytics program includes core courses like basic programming, information systems design and management, and web analytics. The program culminates in a capstone course. Students can choose from specializations in cybersecurity, computer programming, and digital marketing.
Approximately 93% of the university's graduates find employment in their degree field. CSU-Global offers fixed per-credit tuition rates, regardless of residency.
Western Governors University
|Salt Lake City, UT||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 29%||
Styling itself as a student-centric university, WGU oversees more than 60 undergraduate and graduate programs in fields like healthcare, business, teacher education, and information technology.
WGU offers an information technology management degree as a specialization within its online business administration program. The curriculum consists of 40 courses that cover topics like networks and security, business, and management and leadership. The curriculum includes required business core, general education, and IT coursework, culminating in an IT management capstone.
The program delivers all coursework asynchronously. WGU offers monthly start dates, accelerated course options, and flat tuition rates that do not consider residency. WGU's business programs are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.
Minot State University
|Minot, ND||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 46%||
A member of the North Dakota University System, MSU enrolls nearly 3,000 students on campus and online. Learners choose from dozens of graduate and undergraduate programs in areas like business, education and health sciences, and the arts and sciences. The school also offers more than 20 online degrees and certificates.
Students who earn MSU's online bachelor's degree in management information systems complete general education, business core, and major coursework. Students explore topics like IT infrastructure, technology management, and e-commerce. The program culminates in a final project.
Incoming students may begin the program in the fall, spring, or summer. This management information systems program is accredited by the International Accreditation Council for Business Education.
|Bellevue, NE||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 0%||
BU serves nearly 9,000 students each year at its main campus eastern Nebraska, at satellite campuses in four states, and online. Students may choose from more than 80 programs, most of which are available online.
Bellevue's online bachelor's in management information systems program operates as a degree completion pathway. Major courses include negotiating in business, future trends in management information systems, and project management. Additionally, students must complete BU's Kirkpatrick Signature Series, which includes courses in tradition and change, American vision and values, and freedom and responsibility.
Admission requirements include an associate degree or at least 60 credits of college coursework and at least three years of relevant work experience. BU charges all learners the same tuition rate.
University of Minnesota Crookston
|Crookston, MN||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 48%||
With five campuses across the state and an online division, UMC serves approximately 1,800 students. UMC's students can choose from dozens of graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across four major schools, including more than 25 online programs.
UMC's 120-credit bachelor's in information technology management includes core courses like introduction to information management systems, information assurance and systems security, and legal environment in business. This online program culminates in a supervised internship at an IT or networking agency.
Students must complete a one-credit orientation course in online learning prior to beginning the program. More than 93% of graduates find employment in their chosen field within six months of earning their degree.
|Denver, CO||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 69%||
Regis serves more than 10,000 students online and at its campus in Denver, Colorado. The university helped pioneer the distance learning movement by launching one of the first online MBA programs in 1997. Today, students at Regis can choose from more than 130 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs.
Regis's online bachelor's in computer information systems explores topics such as systems analysis and design, foundations of programming, and enterprise systems architecture. The 120-credit curriculum offers a business track and a healthcare track. The program culminates in a senior capstone. Each online course lasts eight weeks.
Regis offers six start dates per year. All students pay the same per-credit tuition rate, regardless of residency.
|Longview, TX||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 61%||
One of the nation's only Christian polytechnic institutions, LETU enrolls more than 3,000 students — including about 850 online learners. The university offers more than 140 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs across eight major academic schools.
LETU's online bachelor's in computer information systems explores topics like software engineering, database management, and programming for information systems. The 129-credit curriculum includes computer science and general education coursework, with additional requirements in business and theology. Each course in this accelerated program lasts five weeks.
All students pay the same per-credit tuition rate, regardless of residency. Applicants must hold a high school diploma or GED certificate. They must also submit ACT or SAT scores.
University of Houston-Downtown
|Houston, TX||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 20%||
One of four schools in the city's university system, UHD enrolls more than 14,000 students on campus and through UHD Online. The university's students can choose from more than 50 bachelor's and master's offerings, including more than 15 online programs.
UHD's online bachelor of business administration includes an emphasis in management information systems. The program requires 120 credits and includes core courses like foundations of information systems, web technologies, and systems analysis and design. Students may complete a field experience as an elective course. Most students graduate in four years.
Online learners may join business and IT organizations through UHD, including Beta Gamma Sigma, the Business Administration Council, and the CompTIA Association of IT Professionals. UHD's business programs are accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
University of Illinois Springfield
|Springfield, IL||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: 51%||
UIS serves roughly 4,000 students, including more than 1,400 online learners. The university oversees about 50 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs.
UIS offers a hybrid bachelor's in management information systems through its College of Business and Management. The curriculum combines general education and MIS core courses. Students complete core courses through blended learning. Select classes include computer programming concepts, project management and practice, and networks and telecommunications in organizations.
The program culminates in a strategic management and leadership course. UIS supports distance learners by offering career counseling and student advising services. The school's management information systems program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.
|Brookfield, WI||Cost: $$$$$||Graduation Rate: N/A||
OU is a Christian school with campuses in Wisconsin, Arizona, and Kansas. It also oversees an online division. Students may choose from more than 40 graduate, undergraduate, and certificate programs.
OU's online bachelor's degree in management information systems offers concentrations in entrepreneurship, communication, management, and leadership and management. The curriculum includes major courses that cover topics like systems analysis and design, foundations of information technology, and accounting for business operations.
Students can bring in up to 80 transfer credits, and the program accepts applications throughout the year. OU charges distance learners the same per-credit tuition rate, no matter where they live.
What Else Can I Expect From an Online Bachelor's in Management Information Systems Program?
Most online MIS programs offer a multidisciplinary education that will qualify you to work in a diverse range of entry-level positions. However, the specific professional opportunities available to you after graduation will vary depending on the program you choose. Below, you can find more information about common classes for an online bachelor's in management information systems program, as well as details about program lengths and accreditation.
CURRICULUM FOR AN ONLINE BACHELOR'S IN MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS
Coursework will vary depending on which school you choose for your online bachelor's in management information systems. For a general idea of what courses you can expect from this program, a sample curriculum is listed below.
Business Information Systems: This course discusses the information needs of managers. Students will learn how to fulfill these needs and how to develop the required information systems. The course prepares students to work as analysts for many types of businesses or for a business consulting firm.
Business Software Development: Students learn how to develop computer software for business information processing. They will work with flowcharts, pseudocode, business-oriented programming, online and batch processing, and other technology. Skills learned in this course will prepare students to work as software developers for many businesses and organizations.
HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GET AN ONLINE BACHELOR'S IN MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS?
A management information systems bachelor's degree online requires students to earn around 120 credits and takes about four years to complete. However, there are many different factors that can affect the length of this program, including whether or not the university offers an accelerated learning program and how many transfer credits the university accepts. Many universities also offer flexible online programs that allow students to start and stop the program as needed in order to work around professional and life events.
The length of your online bachelor's in MIS will also depend on whether the program offers individually paced or cohort learning. Programs that feature individually paced learning allow you to proceed through the courses at your own pace, regardless of the pace of other students in the class. Cohort learning has you start at the same time and work through the program at the same pace as a group of peers.
Accreditation for Online Bachelor's in Management Information Systems Programs
The regional and national accrediting process is voluntary and has institutions undergo a rigorous self evaluation and an objective evaluation from outside professionals. The goal of this process is to ensure that the institution offers a quality education that complies with academic standards and that it is committed to continuous growth and improvement.
Regional accreditation is more widely recognized. Schools with this accreditation tend to be nonprofit, academic-based private or state schools. National accreditation is performed by a national organization, and schools with this accreditation tend to be for-profit, career-based, distance learning, or religiously-affiliated institutions. Most colleges in the U.S. are regionally accredited. When choosing an online school, it's best to look for regional accreditation, such as the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools or the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.
The U.S. Department of Education (ED) and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA) are great resources for finding out a school's accreditation status. The ED is a federal agency that promotes academic success in American schools by establishing financial aid, ensuring equal access to education, and collecting data. The ED does not directly accredit institutions, it oversees the accreditation system and individual agencies. Similarly, the CHEA oversees accreditation agencies and ensures that these agencies comply with certain standards.
For more information about which online bachelor's degrees in MIS are accredited, you can find a list of accredited schools on the DOE's website.
Employment Outlook for Bachelor's in Management Information Systems Graduates
According to a recent study from Temple University and the Association for Information Systems, the job placement rate for graduates with a bachelor's in MIS in 2013 was 80%, which was much higher than the national average of 40%. The job placement rate for recent graduates was slightly higher for students with bachelor's degrees in MIS than for those with master's degrees. The following table uses data from this study to show job placement rates for MIS graduates. Keep in mind that the job placement rate for individual students depends on their professional experience and level of success in their program.
|Job Placement Rate at Graduation||Job Placement Rate Six Months After Graduation|
|Bachelor's in Management Information Systems||80%||89%|
|Master's in Management Information Systems||65%||94%|
|National Average for Other Degrees||40%|
Source: IS Job Index
BACHELOR's IN MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS SALARY
The MIS field is dynamic and multidisciplinary, preparing graduates for a range of careers. Salaries for employees with a bachelor's in MIS tend to be higher than the average national salary. According to a report from the National Association of Colleges and Employers, MIS majors earned the highest average salaries of 2014 business graduates. The following table shows the median salaries for employees with bachelor's degrees in management information systems according to their specializations.
|IT Security and Infrastructure||$106,725|
The state where a graduate with a bachelor's in MIS works will also affect their salary. The following table shows data from PayScale regarding the five states with the highest median annual earnings for employees in the MIS field.
|State||Median Annual Salary for Employees With a Bachelor in Management Information Systems|
BACHELOR'S IN MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS CAREERS
Earning your online bachelor's in management information systems qualifies you to work in IT, business, web design, system analysis, management, and other fields. Individuals who are successful in these careers are often detail-oriented, organized, analytical, and skilled in interpersonal and management interactions. An online MIS bachelor's degree is also an excellent choice if you are able to multitask. The following list presents a few examples of common jobs for graduates with online MIS degrees.
- Software Developer
These professionals design and develop computer programs. Many individuals with bachelor's degrees in MIS become software application developers, creating applications that allow businesses and organizations to carry out specific tasks.
Median Annual Salary - $102,280
Projected Growth Rate - 17%
- Computer Systems Analyst
This type of analyst studies an organization's computer systems and processes, identifies problems and needs within these systems, and develops solutions to help them run more efficiently. Because MIS integrates business and information technology, individuals with a bachelor's in MIS are prepared for this position.
Median Annual Salary - $87,220
Projected Growth Rate - 21%
- Information Security Analyst
Security analysts are responsible for protecting an organization's information. They design and implement security measures for computer networks and systems and understand the IT and business environments. Due to the increased risk of cyberattacks and the business world's evolving technology needs, job growth for information security analysts is much faster than the national average.
Median Annual Salary - $92,600
Projected Growth Rate - 18%
- Database Administrator
Database administrators use specialized software to ensure that information is secure and available to authorized users. They work with businesses and organizations to store and organize financial records, shipping information, and other data. Most database administrators have bachelor's degrees in computer or information science and start in a position in a related field before becoming an administrator.
Median Annual Salary - $84,950
Projected Growth Rate - 11%
- Network and Computer Systems Administrator
These professionals oversee the daily operation of computer networks within a business. Most network and computer systems administrators have a bachelor's degree in computer or information science.
Median Annual Salary - $79,700
Projected Growth Rate - 8%
Management information systems professionals should have strong interpersonal skills and an understanding of networking and behavior within the business world. Professional MIS organizations help graduates find industry contacts and job opportunities, experience professional growth, and develop leadership skills. Some of the top MIS conferences include the Americas Conference on Information Systems and the International Conference on Information Systems. Below is a list of organization that will help students and graduates.
Financing Your Online Bachelor's in Management Information Systems Program
There are several scholarship and grant opportunities for students in the MIS field. Robert Half Technology, the Association of Information Technology, and Boeing offer scholarships for students working in related fields. The FAFSA is also a valuable resource. It will help you understand the scholarships, loans, grants, and work-studies that are available to you. Management information systems is an in-demand field, so there are many funding opportunities available.
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