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Online Graduate Degrees for Information Systems with Course Info

Find out about online information systems courses and in which graduate degree programs they're most commonly offered. Get course descriptions, program info and online requirements to make an informed decision.

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Essential Information

Online information systems graduate programs are geared toward professionals wishing to advance their careers or move into a new industry. Master's or doctoral degree candidates may find fully online studies, as well as programs with a required hybrid format. Some programs may require residencies. Many programs offer specialized tracks of learning within information systems, such as data management.

Individuals interested in a master's program must have a relevant bachelor's degree prior to admission. Potential doctoral students must have a master's degree in information systems, computer science, information technology or in another related area of study; they may also be required to have professional experience in the field.

Master's Degrees

An online Master of Science in Information Systems program is intended for working professionals and can take up to two years to complete. Graduates completing one of these programs are prepared for managerial positions. They are able to communicate and apply information to real-world computer and networking issues. information systems. Students could explore the following topics in in these online programs:

  • Security
  • Database management systems
  • Interactive design and graphics
  • Software engineering
  • Networks
  • Systems analysis
  • Project management

Students are often assigned technical projects, such as the development of a website, and learn about both client-side and server-side technologies from their home computers. Many master's-level information systems degree programs offer concentrations in areas of information security and database management.

Doctoral Degrees

An online doctorate program in information systems can take a minimum of three years to complete. These programs sometimes offer concentrations in areas such as information science or information security. Graduates are prepared to teach in academia or conduct research in corporate, government or academic environments.

Online doctorate programs in information systems place heavy emphasis on research projects and completing a dissertation. To facilitate their research, online doctoral students typically have remote access to their school's library system, including subscriptions to specialized, scholarly information systems databases. It's common for online doctoral programs to require students to attend some on-campus sessions, possibly on weekends.

Individuals enrolled in information systems graduate programs encounter courses in database and project management, database security and programming languages. They might also be introduced to courses in business concepts as they relate to technology. Doctoral programs require students to take dissertation research courses. Distance learners in these programs may also learn about the following:

  • Human-computer interaction
  • E-commerce
  • Legal and ethical issues in computing
  • Systems analysis
  • Telecommunications

Learning Environment

Master's degree programs in information systems can often be completed totally online. Students have access to all course materials and opportunities to interact with instructors and peers through discussion boards or class chat rooms.

Doctoral programs are rarely fully online due to their intense focus on research and dissertation completion. An online Ph.D. program might include multimedia presentations and live video streaming as a format for learning and interaction, as faculty communication is particularly emphasized at the doctorate level. Some programs use a combination of online and campus-based instruction. Special residencies held at various points in the program allow students to get guidance on their individual research, attend seminars and interact with classmates or professors.

Online graduate degree programs in information systems provide flexible and convenient schedules for working professionals. Students can learn more about telecommunications, E-commerce, project management and other areas that can broaden their skills in the workplace.

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