A bachelor’s degree in Information Systems (IS) is designed to prepare you to work in all areas of business where information technology is used; in other words, virtually anywhere. IS degree holders can potentially wind up with a broad spectrum of job titles from database specialist to systems analyst, programmer or even web designer. Many job listings for IT administrators also call for applicants with information systems training.
Stated differently: information systems is one of the more general types of technology degrees. It provides you with a foundation in both technology and business concepts. While this can potentially help you get a “foot in the door” in many business settings, it’ s also likely that you’ll want to gain certification in skills like C# or C++ later on if you want to advance beyond an entry level job. While you’re working on your bachelor degree in information systems, you might also consider using your electives to take courses in areas like security or cloud computing – more specialized areas where the demand for experts is relatively strong these days.
Computer Tech Specialty Courses
Like just about all bachelor’s degrees, a BS in information systems will require you to take some “core” liberal arts courses in English, math, communication, and political science or history. Those will be followed with a series of “foundation” courses that focus more squarely on technology including:
- Database design and management
- Systems analysis
- Technology planning
- Programming concepts
- Consulting, designing and maintaining information systems
- Develop/refining business processes
- Network engineering
Advanced courses are offered in most IS programs that take a “deeper dive” into specific tech subjects like E-Commerce Technology Management, object-oriented programming or software engineering.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, information systems administrators in the U.S. earn median salaries in a broad range from $88,000 to $141,000, though earns are very much affected by the particular industry where they are employed. Software publishers pay on the high end of the scale, while insurance carriers are on the lower end.
A Degree That Comes With Many Different Names
Because there are many potential job pathways with IS training, colleges and universities offer a number of different degrees that all fall under the heading of Information Systems. Some of these include:
- Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems
- Bachelor in Business Administration- Business Information Systems
- Bachelor of Arts in Computer Information Systems- Information Systems Management
- Bachelor of Science in Information Technology- Information Systems
In addition, many schools have now developed IS degree programs that are more industry specific, or which provide a higher degree of specialization at the bachelor’s level. Some interesting options you’re likely to come across include:
BA Business/Information Systems: Students learn about current business practices and how to design, develop and implement information systems in a high technology environment. Courses unique to this program may include procurement, business law and troubleshooting (searching for and correcting computer problems and assisting system users).
Bachelor in Computer Information Systems/Health Information Systems: students who enroll in this program have a desire to work in the healthcare sector. In addition to the standard IS courses, the curriculum will cover EMRs (electronic medical records), PACS (picture archiving systems) and HIPAA (the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act).
Bachelor in Computer Information Systems/Information Systems Security: The security of private information is a huge concern nowadays. Students in this type of program learn how to design policies, procedures, standards and protocols for information security and apply them in their work environment. They also ensure that security is in compliance with laws, standards and practices. Graduates may find work as an auditor, security analyst, disaster recovery analyst, strategic planner or a security tech specialist for a private company or government law enforcement agency.