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Online Information Systems Degree and Training Programs

Learn about online degree programs with information systems courses. Get an overview of the program types, requirements and course descriptions available for this field.

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Essential Information

Online programs in information systems are available at the associate, bachelor's and master's degree levels. Both associate and bachelor's degree programs are available in fully online and hybrid formats. These programs may require students to have access to specific software depending on the program. Master's degree programs are also available in 100% online programs and hybrid programs with on-campus classes; however, these programs may require an internship if the student doesn't have experience in the field. Master's degrees will also require students to have an undergraduate degree.

Associate Degree in Information Systems

Through this science-intensive degree program, students take introductory courses in office management, network repair and database management. They study concepts in networking, designing computer software and managing computer hardware. They acquire skills in making sure the systems are working well together and operating effectively. Enrollment requirements for this program include a high school diploma or a GED.

Program Information and Requirements

Completing the online associate degree program in information systems usually takes between 18 and 24 months. The program is available entirely online, but some schools offer students the opportunity to take classes on-campus if they live nearby. To complete the courses online, students can log onto the Web-based application. This enables them to communicate with their classmates and professors, complete assignments, take exams and work on group projects.

To complete the online information systems program, students must have reliable Internet access, a working computer and a valid e-mail address. They also need to have certain computer software programs, such Microsoft Office Suites, Adobe Flash and Acrobat Reader.

Course Topics

This degree program allows students to complete courses asynchronously, meaning they can complete courses anywhere and at any time. In addition to major classes, students must also complete their general education courses.

Tools and Operations for Networking

This course teaches students the basics of networking, so they can analyze operations and troubleshoot for network problems. They also begin using tools to keep the systems running.

Network Security

This introductory course familiarizes students with security strategies and techniques. They learn how to implement security systems and identify weak areas in the network.

The Web and New Media

Students taking this course learn to use the Web as a source for new media and technology. They study the way websites are built, so they can emulate the form and description and create their own.


Bachelor of Science in Information Systems

The bachelor's degree program in information systems is intensive to the sciences, and students take courses in computer networking, database systems, information systems and computer science. Students become familiar with concepts in implementing systems procedures, common standards of organization and security policies. To be eligible for enrollment, students must have a high school diploma or the GED equivalent. There are several online degree programs available in information systems and related programs.

Program Information and Requirements

The online bachelor's degree program in information systems takes about four years to complete. The program is available entirely online, although some universities may provide students the opportunity to complete courses on-campus. To complete the online portion of the program, they must log onto the Web-based application, where they can follow video lectures, complete assignments and interact with classmates.

In addition to a computer, students need reliable Internet access. Some courses may require certain hardware, such as a DVD player or a Webcam. Software programs, such as Acrobat Reader, a word processor and PowerPoint, allow students to experience putting network systems together and managing them.

Course Topics

Bachelor's degree courses in information systems are available through flexible scheduling, which allow students to complete them as they have the time and opportunity. Students are also responsible for completing general education classes, unless they've previously completed an associate's degree.

Computer Networking

Through this course, students study a variety of concepts in computer networking. Some aspects of the program may be hands-on, where students are expected to install and use a Linux network application.

Computer Systems Design and Analysis

Students taking this course learn how to analyze, design, implement and manage various computer systems. They learn how each system works and gain practical experience in logic systems, data modeling and documentation.

Fundamentals of Programming

This course provides students with practical experience in designing and programming. They use computer programming languages to overcome various technical, hardware and visual difficulties.


Master of Science in Information Systems

Intensive to the sciences, the master's degree program in information systems includes courses in computer science, network management, project management and systems analysis. Through the program, students study concepts relating to structuring, analyzing and implementing database systems, designing new computer software and ensuring the security of various computer systems. They acquire skills in solving computer-related problems and troubleshooting for potential problems. Students must have at least a bachelor's degree to enroll in the degree program. There are several schools offering online master's degree programs in information systems.

Program Information and Requirements

While this master's degree program is typically available entirely online, some schools require that students complete assignments on-campus. An internship may also be required for students who don't already have a job in the industry. Students access classes by logging onto a Web-based application, such as Blackboard, where they can watch pre-recorded video lectures, read teacher's lecture notes and interact with other students. They also have access to the online library, which allows them to upload completed assignments and take tests online.

Students must have a working computer and reliable Internet access to complete the online program. A word processing program, PowerPoint, Adobe Flash and Acrobat Reader are all necessary.

Course Topics

Through the online master's degree program, students complete the courses and the coursework entirely on their own time. There are no general education requirements for this degree program.

Information Structures

Students taking this course learn to design and develop computer software programs using the Java programming language. They study all elements of programming information structures to create user interfaces.

Systems Design and Analysis

This course covers many methods for designing and analyzing information systems. Students learn to decide whether the system is functional, how easy it is to use and its efficiency as an operating system.

Computer and Network Security

Through this course, students discover ways to analyze potential threats to network and computer systems and ways to prevent them. The course covers different vulnerabilities to a network system and techniques that can be used to reduce the threat level.


Career Information

With an associate's degree in information systems, students can find careers as database specialists, computer support specialists or computer systems administrators. Some employers may prefer an individual who has a bachelor's degree. According to the BLS, the median hourly wage for computer user support specialists as of May 2015 was $23.38. For network and computer systems administrators, the median hourly wage during the same time period was $37.41 (www.bls.gov).

The BLS projected job growth of 12%, faster than average for all occupations, for computer support specialists from 2014-2024. Network and computer systems administrators could expect job growth of 8%, faster than the average for all occupations, during the same decade.

Students who complete a bachelor's degree in information systems can pursue career opportunities as Web developers, database administrators, network systems analysts or computer systems analysts. The BLS reports that computer systems analysts made a median annual salary of $85,800 in May 2015. The BLS projected job growth of 21%, much faster than the average for all occupations, for computer systems analysts from 2014-2024.

A master's degree in information systems can lead to many career opportunities, including a position as an information systems manager. According to the BLS, the demand for computer and information systems managers is expected to grow by about 15% between 2014 and 2024. The BLS also reports that the median annual salary for information systems managers as of May 2015 was $131,600.

Regardless of their desired level of study, students have many options when searching for a degree in information systems. At the associate's, bachelor's, and master's levels, degrees are available entirely online, though students may have to complete an internship at the master's level.

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