NSU’s CIS master’s program will begin this fall

Northwestern State University is enrolling now for its Master of Science degree in computer information systems, set to begin this fall. The 30-hour program will offer its first three classes, CIS 5300 – Advanced Data Communications Systems, CIS 5600 – Strategic Applications of Enterprise Software and CIS 5810 – Emerging Technologies and Human Computer Interaction.

The 33-hour degree program is offered completely online, the only program of its type offered by a public college or university in Louisiana. Students in the program will gain an in-depth knowledge in six computer information systems areas: cyber security, database administration and data mining, networking, programming, project management and software applications.

To enroll, students should have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution, two letters of recommendation and one of the following: (1) a 3.0 undergraduate GPA or (2) a 2.5 undergraduate GPA and either a GRE score of 280 (or equivalent GMAT) or an essay meeting certain requirements.

“While students do not have to have earned a CIS or computer science degree to be admitted, they will either need to have taken one of the following classes, have work experience in the subject matter covered in the class, be prepared to take an undergraduate class or learn the material on their own,” according to Curtis Penrod, senior coordinator of business programs and assistant professor.

These classes are as follows:

BUAD2120 – basic statistics

CIS 1030 – basic programming knowledge

CIS 2050 – basic hardware/networking/security knowledge

CIS 2980 – relational database knowledge

Either CIS 3300 – intermediate object-oriented programming OR CIS 3400 – networking and telecommunications

“This degree program will allow students to enhance their existing information technology skills,” Penrod said. “CIS has been a growth area in the Louisiana job market for the last few years and this degree allows NSU to help meet the needs of that market.”

Three of the top 10 largest areas of growth requiring a baccalaureate degree are in the computer information system field. Students who have already earned a bachelor’s degree can return to college to increase computer information systems skills and develop new skills.

Those without information systems backgrounds can develop new skills to change to an occupation with a higher salary and larger number of job prospects.

The master’s program builds upon Northwestern State’s nationally recognized bachelor’s program in computer information systems.