What is MIS? Management Information Systems (MIS) is the application of information technology to support business activities. Because businesses are rapidly changing, there is a growing demand for graduates who have the analytical skills and business background to make business processes more productive. Therefore students of this degree program will learn to analyze an organization’s information needs, then design a computer-based delivery system to meet these needs, and finally direct the implementation and operation of the system. To develop information systems that fill users' needs, MIS professionals must understand organizational structures, business objectives, and business operations (including processes and the flow of data between processes), how to communicate effectively with users, and how to design systems that support their activities. MIS professionals must also stay up-to-date with evolving information technologies and have a solid foundation of technical skills to select appropriate technologies and to implement computer-based information systems. Thus, the MIS degree program combines computer-related courses with business courses. Since the failure of most computer-based information systems is not technical in nature but arises from the inability of individuals to design and use the systems properly, continued high demand for graduates trained in information systems is expected. A successful graduate of the MIS program will be able to: Select and apply appropriate systems analysis and design techniques to create a system design for a business process including systems development planning, requirements determination and analysis, and data/process modeling. Use modern application development products as prototyping tools in the systems development process. Create business applications in an event-driven programming language (such as Visual Basic) including the development of user interfaces, use of controls, writing/debugging code, and the creation of interactive menus. Apply data modeling techniques (such as normalization and ER diagramming) to create a database model. Implement a database model in a relational database management system (such as SQL or Access) including the creation of tables, establishing referential integrity constraints, loading data, creating views, and producing forms and reports using database data. MIS JOB OUTLOOK According to the 2006-2007 Occupational Outlook Handbook, employment of technology professionals is expected to increase much faster than average as technology becomes more sophisticated and organizations continue to adopt and integrate these technologies. This occupation is expected to rank among the top 20 in the number of new jobs created over the 1998 - 2008 period. Because employers continue to seek professionals who can combine strong technical skills with good interpersonal and business skills graduates with a bachelor's degree in MIS should enjoy favorable prospects for employment. The Occupational Outlook Handbook is produced by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which is a division of the U.S. Department of Labor. For more information visit their website at http://www.bls.gov/oco/home.htm. MIS GRADUATES ARE USUALLY HIRED AS: Systems Analysts / Developer / Architect Solves computer problems and enables computer technology to meet individual needs of an organization by tracking a company’s information flow and then designing a information system that allows managers to have fast and easy access to the information. Helps an organization realize the maximum benefit from its investment in equipment, personnel, and business processes. Plans and develops new information systems or devises ways to apply existing systems’ resources to additional operations by defining the goals of the system and dividing the solutions into individual steps and separate procedures. Technical Support Specialist / Help-Desk Technician Provide technical assistance, support, and advice to customers and users either by phone or in person. Troubleshooters interpret problems and provide technical support for hardware, software, and systems. May work within an organization or directly for a computer or software vendor. Computer / Information Systems Managers Direct the work of systems analysts, computer programmers, and other computer-related workers. Plan and coordinate activities such as the installation and upgrading of hardware and software; programming and systems design; the development of computer networks; and the implementation of Internet and intranet sites. Analyze the computer and information needs of their organization and determine personnel and equipment requirements. Database Administrator Develop, implement, update, test, and repair a company’s database(s). Set up computer databases and test and coordinate changes to them. Responsible for monitoring performance, archiving and backing-up information, and assuring the security of the confidential information stored in the system. Plan and coordinate security measures; may be responsible for the design and implementation of system security. Work with database management systems software and determine ways to organize and store data. Work in project teams to maintain database. Provide back-end support for databases on information banks (example: customer preferences, purchases histories, and demographics which companies devise promotions based on customers’ previous behavior). Network / Computer Systems Administrators / Data Communication Analyst Design, install, test, and evaluate systems such as Local Area Networks (LAN), Wide Area Networks (WAN), Internet, Intranet, and other data communications systems. Maintain network hardware and software, analyze problems, and monitor the network to ensure availability to system users as well as provide support in the day-to-day maintenance of the system. Spend a significant amount of time responding to emergencies such as hacker attacks or virus threats, troubleshooting new applications, and fielding a neverending barrage of computer-related questions from staff members. Web Producer / Development / Designers / Webmasters Create and maintain a website that communicates a company’s mission and promotes its product. Translate management’s vision into a graphically designed, HTML-coded website; Job is closely tied to the identity of a company – uniquely liaise the various business functions to produce a site that represents the company as a whole. Responsible for all technical aspects of a website, including performance issues such as speed of access, and cooperating with graphic designers to improve the sites image.
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