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Information Systems, MS

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Overview

The Master of Science in Information Systems (MSIS) degree from the CU Denver Business School empowers the next generation of IT leaders by layering managerial training with technical concepts to help you take the next step in your tech career. Our MSIS program is AACSB accredited and offered 100% online, giving you the flexibility to earn your graduate degree while balancing work and other commitments. Our fully online specializations allow you to focus your education in the high-demand areas of business and technology that are most relevant to your career goals. With hands-on software projects and practical learning opportunities, each course will help you discover how to harness the power of technology for business.


 

Master’s in Information Systems Program Details

Our MS in Information Systems degree program is designed to empower professionals in all industries to build a successful career in technology. This program focuses on blending business strategy and technology to prepare you for a wide range of career opportunities in IT management or technical roles. Through flexible online courses and practical experience, you will learn to effectively lead a team and implement innovative tech solutions that drive business success.

Degree Specializations

When you earn your MSIS degree online, you’ll have the opportunity to tailor your degree to fit your career path with our unique specializations. Specializing your degree can help you build the specific skills you need for your desired career path and give you an edge in a competitive job market. After taking core courses in information systems, you may choose to stay on a general degree track or specialize your education in Business Intelligence or Cybersecurity and Information Assurance.

Business Intelligence

Business intelligence systems combine data with analytical tools to present complex technical information in a usable format. With this degree specialization, you will learn how to analyze business data to make strategic decisions and better understand future market directions, regulatory environment, and actions of competitors. You’ll dive deep into course topics including text analytics, data warehousing, predictive analytics, and business intelligence in finance and healthcare.

Cybersecurity and Information Assurance

Cybersecurity is an issue of increasing importance to our global society, as businesses and government organizations work to secure private information and protect against security breaches. If you specialize your MSIS degree in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance, you will learn how to utilize data to create effective security solutions and prevent cyberattacks. You’ll hone your cybersecurity skills through course topics in network design, Python programming, cloud computing, ethical hacking, and more.

General Track

If you’re looking to earn a master’s degree in information systems that has a broader focus, you are welcome to select a general track instead of our two specialization options. When you choose to complete your MSIS degree with a general track, you will select approved courses in business, computer science, civil engineering, and GIS to meet your degree requirements. Your advisor will work with you to create a degree plan that helps you build a strong foundation for a successful career in business and technology.


AACSB Accreditation

The CU Denver Business School is accredited by AACSB International, a global nonprofit association that is committed to providing excellence in education for future business leaders. This accreditation represents the highest standard of achievement for business schools, with less than five percent of the world’s business programs obtaining AACSB accreditation. As an AACSB accredited degree, the MS in Information Systems program must meet rigorous academic standards and commit to providing high-quality education through strategic curriculum design and dynamic thought leadership.


STEM OPT Eligibility

The MS in Information Systems degree is a STEM-certified program, which means that our international students are able to apply for extended OPT. Optional Practical Training (OPT) is a program that allows international students to stay in the United States and gain work experience after graduating while remaining on an F-1 visa status.

While international students in most majors can work in the U.S. for 12 months on OPT status, those who major in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) may extend their OPT status by up to 24 months. As an international student, you will be eligible to apply for STEM OPT status after graduating with your master’s in information systems.


Center for Information Technology Innovation (CITI) Access

The Center for Information Technology Innovation (CITI) is part of the CU Denver Business School and includes prominent Colorado businesses as corporate sponsors and members. CITI matches the resources of the University of Colorado Denver with those of its member companies to provide a forum for exploring and creating innovative solutions to today’s information technology challenges.

As an MS in Information Systems student, you will have access to CITI’s resources, forums, and events. You’ll connect with students, faculty members, and industry leaders to talk about current technology and business trends, build your professional network, and gain insight from executives about what the top tech companies are looking for in new hires.

We bring to the class the elements that we know are essential for the next generation, and that’s enabling businesses through technology in a futuristic sense.

Dr. Jiban Khuntia, MSIS Associate Professor

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Jiban Khuntia PHd Director and Associate Professor

MSIS Curriculum Overview

Throughout your information systems master’s degree, you’ll dive into a wide range of managerial and technical courses ranging from business analytics and project management to network design and software development. Our core curriculum serves as the foundation for understanding the complex issues that occur when designing, implementing and managing information systems within an organization. You’ll take several elective courses as well, either within your chosen specialization or as a more general course of study. Your graduate degree will culminate in a capstone course that includes a project or a research paper.

MS in Information Systems Core Courses (15 credits)

Required courses:

  • Database Management Systems (ISMG 6080)
  • Information Systems Strategy (ISMG 6180)
  • Information Systems Security and Privacy (ISMG 6430)

Plus, select two of the following courses:

  • Analysis, Modeling and Design (ISMG 6060)
  • Business Intelligence Systems and Analytics (ISMG 6220)*
  • IT Project Management (ISMG 6450)
  • IT Governance and Service Management (ISMG 6830)
  • Programming Fundamentals with Python (ISMG 6020)**
  • Network Design and Analysis (ISMG 6120)**

*Course is required for the Business Intelligence specialization.
**Course is required for the Cybersecurity and Information Assurance specialization.

Business Intelligence Specialization (15 credits)

Business intelligence students must complete the following MSIS core course:

  • Business Intelligence Systems and Analytics (ISMG 6220)

Choose four of the following courses:

  • Text Data Analytics (ISMG 6470)
  • Data Warehouse and Administration (ISMG 6480)
  • Business Intelligence in Healthcare (ISMG 6810)
  • Business Intelligence and Financial Modeling (ISMG 6820)
  • Predictive Analytics (BANA 6660)

Students who pursue the Business Intelligence specialization will also select one free elective course from a list of approved courses in business, computer science, or civil engineering.

Cybersecurity and Information Assurance Specialization (15 credits)

Cybersecurity and Information Assurance students must complete the following MSIS core courses:

  • Programming Fundamentals with Python (ISMG 6020)
  • Network Design and Analysis (ISMG 6120)

Students must also complete the following five courses:

  • Cloud Computing Concepts, Tools, and Security (ISMG 6340)
  • Ethical Hacking Concepts and Methodologies (ISMG 6860)
  • IT Risk Management (ISMG 6890)
  • Digital Forensic Analysis (ISMG 6865)
  • Design Science Practicum (ISMG 6865) – OR an approved internship, with a required paper and presentation to be completed during the final 9 credit hours of the program.

General Degree Track (15 credits)

Students who choose to pursue a more general MSIS degree path may take information systems graduate courses and related graduate technology courses from across the business school, computer science, or GIS programs. If you are interested in choosing a general track, you’ll work with an advisor to create a customized degree plan.


Information Systems Career Paths

Careers in information systems are growing rapidly as businesses, government organizations, and nonprofits all continue to increase their focus on developing creative tech solutions to complex challenges. Earning your master’s in information systems from CU Online can help you stay ahead of the digital curve through hands-on business experience and cutting-edge technologies. Your graduate degree will equip you for a career in areas such as business intelligence, database management, project management, computer and network support, cybersecurity, web and mobile app development, and more.

Our program’s focus on the intersection of technology and business strategy offers you the opportunity to pursue a strategic or technical career path. Strategic careers will allow you to focus on the broader business applications of information systems through jobs such as System Analyst, Supply Chain Manager, or Chief Technology Officer. If you are passionate about using your technical expertise to improve business functions, you may choose a more technical career as a Web Developer, Data Analyst, Cybersecurity Analyst, or Systems Architect.

Regardless of the type of IT career path you pursue, there is an increasingly high demand for well-trained information systems professionals. According to a study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there is a 26% average increase in salary for IT professionals who earn a master’s degree, and tech jobs are expected to increase by more than 500,000 jobs by 2029.

Information Systems Job Titles

  • Software Designer/Developer
  • Systems Architect
  • Database Administrator
  • Technology Executive
  • Chief Technology Officer
  • Chief Information Officer
  • Business Analyst
  • Data Analyst
  • Systems Analyst
  • Business Intelligence Analyst
  • Computer Support Manager
  • Cybersecurity Analyst
  • eCommerce Specialist
  • Help Desk Manager
  • Mobile Applications Developer
  • Network Manager
  • Project Manager
  • Quality Assurance Manager
  • UX/UI Designer
  • Web Analytics/Web Developer

Business Center Connections

As an MSIS graduate, you'll have full access to our Business Career Connections team for life. Our connections to over 300 business partners provide exclusive opportunities to network with industry leaders. With over 10 years of career advising experience, our team of experts will help you navigate the corporate recruiting process for in-demand tech jobs.

Our career services include:

  • Career workshops designed to help you perfect your resume, LinkedIn profile, and job search process
  • Advising appointments to explore what your personal career path looks like, review your resume, or schedule a mock interview
  • Career events that help you hone your networking skills and meet hiring managers from top tech companies
  • Job announcements via monthly emails with the latest job and internship opportunities specific to your information systems degree

Tuition & Fees

At CU Online, we strive to keep our tuition costs affordable so that you can get a world-class education that fits your budget. When you earn a degree, you’re not simply getting a diploma — you’re making a lifelong investment in yourself and empowering your future career. We know that affordability is an important factor, and that’s why we’re here to help you explore all of the options available to fund your education.

Our Enrollment Navigators can answer any of your questions about tuition and financial aid, help you take care of the paperwork, and make sure you’re able to focus on reaching your goals. From financial aid and scholarships to corporate tuition assistance programs, we’ll work with you to find the best way to finance your CU Online degree.

Application fee: $50 for domestic applicants; $75 for international applicants

Total tuition for the MSIS program*:

  • In-state tuition: $18,780
  • Out-of-state tuition: $21,930

*Estimated tuition costs based on full credit hours for the MSIS degree (30 credits). Complete the form at the top of this page to contact an Enrollment Navigator for more details.

Financial Aid

Financial aid is available for eligible students to use toward paying educational costs while enrolled in a CU Online program. To determine your eligibility and apply for financial aid, you’ll need to fill out the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). When you submit your FAFSA, you will be considered for three types of aid: grants, work-study, and student loans. To be considered for federal financial aid, you will need to apply early and annually.

Scholarships

Once you are admitted to the University of Colorado, you’ll have access to our internal scholarship portal where you can view and apply to many funding opportunities offered by the university. Scholarship opportunities typically require an application and may have specific eligibility requirements related to a student's academic merit, financial need, community service, work experience, and more. Unlike financial aid loans, scholarships are gift aid that does not have to be repaid. As a student, you will be able to apply for scholarships every semester.

Transfer Credits

If you are applying as a transfer student, your coursework from other colleges and universities could count toward your University of Colorado degree requirements. Transferring credits to your CU Online degree program may help you save on tuition costs and complete your degree sooner. Once you are admitted to the university, a transfer credit evaluation will be performed to determine how many transfer credits are eligible to apply to your degree.

Veteran & Military Student Benefits

CU Online is military-friendly and committed to providing service members and their families with a high-quality education that fits their distinct needs. As a CU Online student, you will have access to the Office of Veteran & Military Student Services (VMSS), which connects veteran, active duty, reservist, National Guard, and dependent students with fundamental support, services, and resources to ensure academic and professional success.

Our veteran and military students may use both veterans benefits and financial aid to pay for their education. Military benefits with CU Online include:

  • Waived application fee
  • GI Bill benefits
  • Potential to be awarded credit hours for military training and experience
  • Free tutoring and academic support

Connect with our Enrollment Navigators to learn more about the benefits and financial assistance available to military and veteran students.

Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP)

The CU Denver Business School is a partner of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE) — a regional, nonprofit organization that works with universities to improve access to higher education throughout the western United States. WICHE’s Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP) allows graduate students with residency in one of 16 qualified states and territories to receive our in-state tuition rates, which can lower the overall cost of your degree. To find out if you’re eligible for WRGP tuition rates, contact an Enrollment Navigator for more details.


Admissions

Our MSIS degree is designed for students from diverse academic backgrounds, so students from all undergraduate majors are welcome to apply. As you take the first step toward earning your graduate degree, our team of Enrollment Navigators is available to guide you through the application process. We’re here to help answer your questions about admission requirements, deadlines, start dates, financial aid, international student support and resources, and more.

Prerequisites
In order to apply to the Master of Science in Information Systems program, you will need to have completed an undergraduate degree from an accredited institution. No prerequisite courses are needed to join the program.

Admission Requirements
Once you’re ready to apply to the MSIS program, you’ll need to submit the following application materials by the deadline:

  • $50 application fee for domestic applicants; $75 fee for international applicants
  • Online application
  • Official transcripts from every college or university attended
  • Essay responses
  • Resume/CV
  • Letters of recommendation, if applicable
  • GRE or GMAT test scores, if required
  • English Language Proficiency scores (international applicants only)

After you submit your completed application and required materials, you will be able to check your admission status online. You’ll receive a final admission decision by email within two to three weeks of completing your application.

If you have questions about admission requirements for the MSIS program or would like help starting an application, connect with an Enrollment Navigator for more details.


Completion Time

To graduate with your master’s degree in information systems, you’ll be required to complete a total of 30 credit hours (10 courses). If you plan to take two classes each semester, you could complete your information systems master’s degree in as few as five semesters. Our flexible start dates in the fall, spring, and summer semesters allow you to begin working toward your MSIS degree as soon as you’re ready.

Our information systems curriculum is thoughtfully designed to equip you with the in-demand skills and practical experience you need to build a career, so we focus on keeping the number of credits required, and therefore cost, low. Many of our students choose to complete their degree on a part-time basis while continuing to work full-time. We allow students to take up to five years to complete their degree, but students who take one course every semester can expect to graduate in about three years.

The MSIS program is 100% online, which means you will never be required to attend classes in-person and you will have the flexibility you need to fit your education into your busy lifestyle. Our asynchronous courses and innovative online learning technologies give you access to the best education that the University of Colorado has to offer at the time and place that’s right for you. You’ll be able to share ideas with your classmates, collaborate on projects, and connect directly with faculty through Canvas, our easy-to-use remote learning platform.

As you start your CU Online program, our student support team will offer guidance regarding any technical requirements for the MSIS degree, help you register for courses, provide useful academic resources, and more. We’re here to offer the support and encouragement you need not just to make it to graduation, but to enjoy your journey along the way.


Apply Now

As you consider an online education, we understand that it’s important for you to know that you’re getting a high-quality, affordable, and flexible online education that helps you reach your goals. That’s why our team of Enrollment Navigators is available to offer guidance and answer any questions that you may have about our degree programs, financial aid options, transfer information, admissions requirements, and more.

Whether you want to talk through your degree plans, learn more about a specific program, or start your application, our Enrollment Navigators are here to provide friendly support as you decide if CU Online is the right fit for your future. Start the conversation by calling us at 303-315-3000 or filling out the form at the top of this page for more information.