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Information Systems

See Both Sides – and Solve the Problem – with an Information Systems Major

While being in the middle sometimes gets a bad rap, information systems (IS) experts consider it the ideal place to be. IS comes to life at the intersection of technology and business. By choosing information systems, you’ll make a big impact by keeping technology projects on schedule and within budget, communicating how a company’s investment in technology translates to operational efficiencies, and even troubleshooting network problems.

IS is an exciting field because things are always changing and information systems experts can be found in practically every industry from technology and healthcare to insurance and banking. 

Prepare for an Information Systems Career with a Bachelor’s Degree

Majoring in information systems (IS) prepares you for a career as a valued liaison between business operations and technology. Through your business foundation courses – accounting, management, finance, human resources, economics and marketing – you’ll understand the how and why of business operations. Your technology courses let you dive into programming, analytics, technical communications and database management, so that you will be able to identify innovative uses of technology.

Central to your success on both sides of the equation, are your general education courses that enable you to communicate effectively, think critically and work as part of a team to solve complex issues facing organizations. You can also count on your professors, who will add insight gathered from their own experiences to fuel your success. 

Curriculum & Course Descriptions

124 Semester Hours
Fundamental General Education Core (24 hours)
English Composition (3 hours)

Choose a minimum of 3 semester hours from:

ENG 120 - College Writing (4)
In this course, students acquire the writing competence necessary for conducting and presenting research. A variety of assignments, beginning with personal reflections, build upon one another, as students develop ideas that respond to, critique, and synthesize the positions of others. Students systematize and organize knowledge in ways that will help them in all of their courses. The course also emphasizes the elements of good writing style, appropriate grammar and mechanics, clarity of language, and logical and cohesive development. It culminates in submission of a documented research paper.
Mathematics (3 hours)
MATH 160 - College Algebra (4)
This course is designed to prepare students for Applied Calculus and Discrete Mathematics and to provide the mathematical background needed for the analytic reasoning used in other courses. Topics include functions and their graphs, including exponential and logarithmic functions; complex numbers; systems of equations and inequalities; matrices; basic principles of counting and probability; and other selected topics.

Choose MATH 150 Fundamental Algebra as the prerequisite. Course can count as a University elective.

Sciences (6 hours)

Choose a minimum of 6 semester hours from the Science discipline.

One must have a laboratory component.

Social and Behavioral Sciences (6 hours)

A minimum of 6 hours of Social & Behavioral Sciences coursework is required.  Choose from Anthropology, Economics, Geography, History, Political Science, Psychology, and Sociology.  Must select at least two different disciplines to meet requirements.

Arts and Humanities

Choose a minimum of 6 semester hours from:

HUMN 211 - Intro to Ethical Analysis & Reasoning (2)
The goal of this course is to help you improve your ethical analysis and reasoning skills. You will be introduced to the art of formulating and assessing ethical arguments according to the standards of logical thinking and critical analysis. In this course, you will discover how to apply the following questions to your job and everyday life. Why do we need ethics if we have laws to govern our behavior' Does the majority view determine what is ethical and what is not' Are feelings, desires, and preferences reliable ethical guides' Is it ever appropriate to criticize another individual's (or culture's) ethical judgment' Are people always responsible for their actions' Do human beings have a natural tendency to good, a natural tendency to evil' both' neither' Is there a single moral code that is binding on all people, at all times, and in all places'
  • Choose additional coursework from the Humanities discipline.

Additional General Education Requirements (14 hours)
UNI 199 - University Seminar (2)
A mandatory course for entering full-time, degree-candidate students at Urbana. This course is designed to help freshmen adjust to the Urbana University and develop strategies for success by providing a "support group" during this critical period of adjustment and examining problems common to the freshman experience. Students must pass the course or be required to repeat it.
COMM 150 - Interpersonal Communication (4)
By using applied critical and creative thinking, students in this course will develop a set of communication skills that will enhance their personal and professional relationships and endeavors. This course will focus on skill development in key areas such as self, perception, listening, verbal messages, conversations, relationships, conflict management, persuasion, and public speaking.
OR SPCH 100 - Speech Communication (4)
This public-speaking course emphasizes the fundamentals of extemporaneous speaking. Skill-building activities and assignments focus on research, organization, reasoning, style and delivery of presentations as well as listening and audience engagement.
ENG 220 - Research Writing: Exploring Professional (4)
This is an intermediate course focusing on the composition of research papers. Students in this course prepare to be active participants in professional discourse communities by examining and practicing the writing conventions associated with their own fields of study and work. By calling attention to the conventions of disciplinary writing, the course also prepares students for upper-division college writing and the special conventions of advanced academic discourse. Course activities include three extended research papers, semi-formal writing addressing interdisciplinary communication, and readings fostering critical engagement with disciplinary conversations.
MATH 280 - Intro to Probability & Statistics (4)
This course is designed to serve students in the Computer and Information Sciences majors. The topics covered are descriptive statistics in numerical & graphical methods, probability concepts, discrete and continuous probability distributions, estimation theory, hypothesis testing, simple linear regression and correlation, and linear programming. These topics will be taught with a rigorous Algebra content and using a statistical software such as Minitab.
Professional Core (24 hours)
COMP 204 - Principles of Computer Networks (2)
This course serves as an introduction to the function, design, administration, and implementation of computer networks. Topics include network infrastructure, architecture, protocols, applications, and the OSI networking model.
COMP 281 - Database Management Systems (4)
This course covers fundamental concepts necessary for the design, use, implementation and administration of database systems. The course will stress the fundamentals of database modeling and design, the languages and facilities provided by database management systems, and some techniques for implementing and administering database systems.
ISEC 200 - Cyber Security Fundamentals (2)
The Internet has changed dramatically; so have the activities that are dependent on it in some shape or form. Understanding the need for security, it's influence on people, businesses and society, as well as business drivers is critical. The course also covers malicious attacks, threats and vulnerabilities common to the world of security, as well as access controls, and methods to assess and respond to risks. Hands-on labs accompany the various concepts that are taught.
COMP 111 - Introduction to Computer Science & Object-Oriented Programming (4)
This course provides an introduction to software construction using an object-oriented approach. The student learns and reflects on problem analysis, object-oriented design, implementation, and testing. To support the concepts and principles of software construction, the student will design, code, test, debug, and document programs using the Java programming language. Basic data types, control structures, methods, and classes are used as the building blocks for reusable software components. Automated unit testing, programming style, and industrial practice are emphasized in addition to the object-oriented techniques of abstraction, encapsulation, and composition.
OR ITEC 136 - Principles of Programming (4)
This course covers fundamental programming principles for individuals with at least some programming background. Major themes are structured programming, problem solving, algorithm design, top-down stepwise refinement, and software lifecycle. Topics will include testing, data types, operators, repetition and selection control structures, functions, arrays, and objects. Students will design, code, test, debug, and document programs in a relevant programming language.

Additional Information Systems disciplines acceptable for fulfillment of this area or transfer include*:

  • Accounting
  • Computer Science
  • Human Resources
  • Information Technology
  • Management
  • Marketing
  • Web Development

*A maximum of 8 credit hours may be at the 100 level. Other information systems disciplines not listed above may be accepted for transfer. Inquiries should be directed to the Information Systems program chair.

University Electives (26 hours)

Any undergraduate courses offered by the University except developmental education courses.

Major Area (24 hours)
INFA 300 - Introduction to Analytics (4)
This course leads students through the foundational concepts, methods and concerns related to the practice of information / data analysis from the posing of questions needing answers to gathering the data, generating statistics, analyzing the results, formulating answers to the questions, and reporting those answers. Course topics include defining clear, accurate and actionable research questions and the answers, selecting data and methods; generating relevant statistics and reporting the story the data tells regarding the questions and the sought-after answers using basic tools such as those intrinsic to spreadsheet software such as Microsoft Excel.
ITEC 430 - Information Technology Project Management (4)
This course provides an introduction to the concepts of information technology project management and techniques for initiating, planning, executing, monitoring and controlling of resources to accomplish specific project goals. Both technical and behavioral aspects of project management are discussed. While the focus is on information technology projects, the principles follow the nine project management knowledge areas outlined in the Project Management Institute's PMBOK® Guide Third Edition and thus are applicable to the management of any project. Topics will include integration, scope, time, cost, quality, human resource, communications, risk, and procurement management. Project management software utilization is emphasized.
MIS 310 - Info Systems Architecture & Technology (4)
This course provides a conceptual survey of general systems theory followed by a conceptual and technological survey of the structure of distributed information systems architectures, operating systems, network operating systems, peripheral technology and user interfaces. Interoperability between these architectural components will be explored and current technology and trends in each architectural element will be reviewed. This course will de-emphasize, although not ignore, mainframe architectures in favor of information architectures more applicable to client/server computing. The various interacting categories of client/server computing as well as the benefits and implications of such a system will be fully explored.
MIS 360 - Enterprise-Wide Electronic Commerce (4)
This course is designed to familiarize individuals with current and emerging business processes that utilize electronic data transmission technologies including the Internet. Topics will include network and Internet technology for business advantage, enterprise-wide business functions and processes, re-engineering of legacy processes through electronic commerce, and Internet-based business-to-consumer business ventures. Social, political and ethical issues associated with electronic commerce are reviewed. The purpose of this course is to educate a new generation of managers, planners and analysts of the realities and potential for electronic commerce.
MIS 400 - Systems Analysis & Design (4)
This course is designed to provide a platform for students to gain both an understanding of, and basic competency in applying, object-oriented systems analysis and design (OOSAD). Emphasis will be on knowledge and skills related to analyzing, modeling and designing processes using the OO model. Topics studied include the software development life cycle (SDLC), analysis modeling, requirements determination, process and function modeling, structural and behavioral modeling and class, method, data management, interface and architecture design. The learning process will be one of working through, both individually and as part of a team, a case study-based project aimed at resolving the case study issues.
MIS 495 - Information Systems Capstone (4)
This course provides a capstone experience that integrates the material contained in the General Education, Technical Area, Major Area Core and the Major Area elective courses of the Information Systems major. First, students review the major areas of the program including topics from the appropriate Major Area electives. Second, students manage and /or participate in an Information Systems project appropriate to their selected Major Area electives. Third, students take a standardized exam that includes topics from all Major Area Core courses and their declared Major Area electives.
Major Electives (12 hours)

Select 12 hours in the areas of Analytics, Project Management, or Systems Analysis. See Academic Catalog and Course Schedule for available options.

Additional Requirements

All students are required to pass College Writing (ENG 120), and University Seminar (UNI 199) prior to enrolling in any course at the 200 level or above. Interpersonal Communication (COMM 150) or Speech Communication (SPCH 100) must be taken prior to enrolling in any course at the 300 level or above. Students must also meet the University algebra competency requirement. Students must also meet the University algebra competency requirement.

Careers

Make Your Mark in the Growing Field of Information Systems

As more industries expand their online capabilities, demand for mangement information systems (MIS) professionals will continue to grow. As an MIS major, you’ll learn key skills to launch a career as an information systems specialist. Systems specialists work as part of a technology team to maintain and troubleshoot computer and information systems. They also help to identify hardware, software and data needs and make recommendations to business stakeholders for more informed decision making.

Other jobs in the information systems field include data analyst, requirements analyst, business analyst, systems analyst and technical liaison. 

Program Outcomes

  1. Apply management information systems technology principles and tools to derive business strategies and outcomes.

  2. Recognize and translate business needs into executable projects.

  3. Evaluate current and emerging technology to continuously meet business needs.

  4. Perform qualitative and quantitative data analysis to drive business decisions.

  5. Apply technology and systems principles to industry-specific scenarios.

Undergraduate Studies Admission Requirements

Each applicant seeking admission to Urbana University is individually evaluated. Factors considered are past academic achievement, aptitude, extracurricular activities, and any additional evidence supporting the prospect of academic success.

To qualify for admission, applicants seeking an associate or bachelor's degree must present evidence of high school completion in the form of a high school diploma or GED. Careful consideration is given to the applicants academic record to include the curriculum, courses, and/or state mandated graduation tests. Results from standardized testing (either ACT or SAT) are required for first-time freshmen. Students who wish to apply for admission, but do not meet the minimum standardized test scores used for placement in University courses may be required to undergo placement testing.

Undergraduate admission requirements and materials:

A student who meets at least one of the following criteria is eligible for admission as a degree-seeking student:

  • Has provided official documentation of graduation from an accredited high school or its equivalent (see documentation required below), or
  • Has an associate, bachelor or master's degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education, an institution recognized as a candidate for accreditation, or an institution recognized by the Council of Higher Education Accreditation

Documentation required:

1. Documentation of high school graduation or equivalence is required for applicants who are transferring fewer than 24 semester hours that apply towards a degree.

2. If the student has transferable hours of 24 credit hours or more from a regionally accredited institution of higher education, then they will not have to provide a high school diploma or equivalence. Acceptable forms of documentation of high school graduation or high school equivalence for undergraduate admission must include one of the following:

  • Official high school transcript listing the date of graduation
  • Official GED certificate
  • Official documentation of having passed a State High School Equivalency examination
  • Official documentation of a home school completion certificate/transcript
  • Official transcripts from all educational institutions (college, universities, professional schools, etc.) attended

3. Any applicant seeking to be a first-time freshman undergraduate degree-seeking students at Urbana University must supply standardized test scores (ACT SAT) to be used for placement in courses., to determine athletic eligibility, and/or determine institutional scholarship qualification.

At any time the University may require an applicant to meet with the Admissions Committee to address questions that arise in the application review process. If an applicant requests transfer credit, official transcripts from any other regionally accredited institution are required.

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