Undergraduate Programs

Majors, Minors and Certificates

A Practical Major

The marketplace today is awash in data. However, huge data sets are useless without a trained professional who has the ability to shape raw data into something useful…something powerful.

No matter what industry or field you enter, companies rely on data and data analysis to provide tips to individuals and engage with clients. As all of these industries are transformed by technology, there’s a growing need for the data to be collected, monitored, analyzed, and managed.  Therefore, a professional’s ability to understand and apply qualitative techniques and tools is becoming increasingly valuable in addition to traditional business areas such as accounting, finance, information systems, management, and marketing. As a result, the data analytics path is an opportunity for students across all business disciplines to complement their major with skills in this fast-growing and important field.

  • You are a part of the decision-making process: in a world where organizations globalize and flatten their hierarchies, companies must make more complex decisions and turn to more and better information aid in this process. Because information technology is critical to every aspect of every business in every field, you are a part of this process.
  • You provide leadership: using information technology and data science to develop solutions to society’s most pressing challenges.
  • You are well-connected: you are equipped for roles in environments with widespread integrated systems, impacted by mobile and web-based technologies.

Management Information Systems vs. Computer Science: What's the Difference?

Many learners want to know what is the difference between computer science and management information systems. In the world of technology, there are three broad areas: computer science, information technology, and information systems. 

Computer science, also called software engineering, is the area most concerned with the creation of programs that tell a computer what to do. Computer scientists may write code to create an operating system, build a database management system, or program a mobile device. They work to make software applications perform better while maintaining quality control. Computer science majors devise new ways to use computers or develop effective ways to solve computing problems. To acquire necessary skills, learners required to take several math and science courses as theoretical backgrounds for their degree. Most computer science graduates take jobs as software developers, but there are many other options. Information technology, on the other hand, is concerned with the areas of support and networking. The people who work in information technology know how to maintain and upgrade computers. They understand how computer networks work.  how to interpret data collected using technology, how “to tell” a compelling story.

Management information systems is also called computer information systems, business information systems, or just information systems. Learners use information as efficiently and effectively as possible for a competitive advantage. If you choose Management Information Systems as your major, you will still learn to program, design a database system to be used by a business rather than creating the software to create a database system. MIS majors take business courses in order to learn how a business works and how to interpret data – how to tell a compelling story. They apply this knowledge to help businesses to get the most from their information. Information Systems majors take jobs as System Analysts, Data Analysts, Business Analysts, Systems Administrators, Database Administrators, and up to Chief Information Officer (CIO) or Chief Technology Officer (CTO).

What to Expect:

During your freshman year as an Information Systems student, the courses you will take will be predominantly devoted to the University Core Curriculum. Completing these courses initially is important because it provides a great foundation to develop your critical thinking skills, teamwork, understanding of cultural demographics, societal differences, and political perceptions. 

You will also start the Student Professional Development Program (SPDP), which will provide you with the tools necessary to be successful in the job market. 

In your sophomore year, you will be prepared for the rigorous training in your major. You will be exposed to macro and microeconomics and introduced to the principles of accounting. By the end of this year, you should be prepared to begin courses directly in your major, complete the College of Business Administration Student Professional Development Program, and begin thinking about which Immersion Experience opportunity you will explore.

As a sophomore, you want to start exploring more about the various certifications available for your major and start looking for possible internships. Speak with your Academic Advisor about your career options and register and explore the Handshake website for internship opportunities.

In your junior year, you will apply for admission into the College of Business Administration program, complete your BUSCORE requirement courses and start courses in your major. Keep in mind many of your courses will be offered in fall or spring only. It is important you take these courses seriously to avoid any delay in graduation, as each of these courses may be a prerequisite for the next. The core major courses to complete during your junior year are: ISYS 3351 and ISYS 3356.

In the first semester of your senior year, you will apply for graduation with your Academic Advisor. Fall graduates will meet with their advisor in October. Spring and Summer graduates will meet with their advisor in April. 

During your senior year, you will take a capstone course, MGMT 4390 Strategic Management Global Business Environment. In the capstone, all CBA majors will work together on a final senior project. You will also be required to prepare and take the Major Field Test (MFT). 

The Major Field Test (MFT) is an innovative undergraduate outcome assessment designed to measure the basic knowledge and understanding achieved by students in a major field of study (business). Test results enable the College of Business Administration to better assess and refine curricula, and gauge the progress of students compared to others in the program and those in similar programs at schools throughout the country. All MFTs are proctored, multiple-choice exams designed to assess mastery of concepts and principles as well as knowledge expected of you at the conclusion of a business major in specific subject areas. There is a $25 fee for this exam.

Learn about our other majors:  Accounting •  Finance •  General Business •  Management •  Marketing