Master of Science in Information Systems

Why Lindner for Information Systems?

The Master of Science in Information Systems program at the Lindner College of Business combines core business knowledge with Information Systems-focused technical courses and real-world experience. This program is renowned for its strengths in enterprise resource planning (ERP), business intelligence, database design and modeling, and project management.

Are internships/co-ops required for the Master of Science in Information Systems program?

Yes. All full-time students Master of Science in Information Systems students are expected to complete the industry practicum

What are the prerequisites for the MS IS degree?

The only requirement is that applicants have completed a bachelor's degree in any discipline. Please see the MS in Information Systems requirements page for further details.

Do I need an undergraduate degree in Computer Science or MIS or Engineering to be accepted into the program?

No, we accept applicants from all academic and professional backgrounds. Some of our most successful students have had backgrounds in fields as diverse as music and Spanish.

How technical is the MS IS Program?

The MS IS program at the University of Cincinnati is primarily a technical program. It focuses on the core aspects of Information Systems such as systems development, network design, data modeling, ERP, etc. That being said, as the program resides within the Lindner College of Business, students are offered business courses which help them increase their business acumen. Graduates of the MS IS program become technical professionals with sound business knowledge.

Do I need to take the business background courses before I apply to the program?

Business foundation courses are reviewed at the time of application to determine any course waivers. You will be notified in your admissions decision what, if any, business foundations courses you may be required to take. 

What does the admissions committee look for?

The admissions committee considers the overall profile of each candidate including his or her undergraduate performance, GMAT or GRE scores, work experience, letters of recommendation, and extracurricular involvement before making an admission decision.

How many classes does a student typically take each semester?

We recommend that full-time students take nine courses (18 credits) each semester. Please note that each semester is divided into two seven-week sessions. International students are required to carry a full load in order to maintain their immigration status.

How long will it take to complete my degree requirements?

The Master of Science in Information Systems academic program can be completed in two semesters with any remaining courses completed during the six-month paid internship period. Each student’s actual time to degree will depend on the workload an individual student carries, prior academic preparation and the duration of their internship.

Program highlights

  • Lindner's MS IS program provides a flexible, innovative curriculum, accommodating students with diverse educational backgrounds and work experiences.
  • The full-time program is typically completed in 18-24 months depending on the duration of the required industry practicum experience. Flexible class options accommodate working and part-time students.
  • Among one of the most affordable programs in the nation, with scholarships ranging $2,000-$10,000 depending on standardized test scores and language proficiency.
  • On-campus employer seminars and recruiting: Almost every week throughout the school year, major employers seeking analytics and technical talent will present seminars, recruit, or interview MS Information Systems students.
  • Our MS IS faculty conduct leading-edge research and have extensive experience in both industry and academia. The faculty leverage their expertise to offer practical, leading edge courses that are designed to put students two steps ahead of the competition.
  • MS IS students may decide to pursue specialized graduate certificates — such as Data Analytics or Health Care. Students may also pursue an MBA in addition to an MS IS degree.
  • To ensure students have access to the latest technology and the best job opportunities, the program cultivates close ties with the local business community and technology partnerships with major Information Systems vendors and solution-providers.
  • Recent program graduates have garnered an average starting salary in excess of $100,000.

What you'll learn

The MS Information Systems core curriculum focuses on business and information technology skills and includes courses in project management, ERP, systems analysis, business intelligence, database management, and web development.

The program is a pioneer among graduate Information Systems programs, requiring every full-time student to complete a minimum six-month paid internship before graduation.

Core courses

IS 7012: Web Development with .Net
This course is an introduction to the development of web-based applications, using Microsoft's Visual Studio and covering ASP.Net using Visual C#. Students will be expected to develop a simple web application that incorporates these technologies. Students will learn how to integrate the frontend (web site) with the back end (database) of an application. The course will cover the implementation of navigational structures, input and validation controls, and data controls in web applications.

IS 7020: Process Modeling
There is no activity more fundamental to the field of information systems (IS) than the analysis, design, and development of systems. In this course, students will learn to analyze and document the requirements for a system, using two distinct approaches to process modeling. The first of these is BPMN (Business Process Modeling Notation) - a technique that is quickly becoming the standard for business process modeling. The second is an Object Oriented approach, using UML (Unified Modeling Language) - specifically, students will learn to draw use case diagrams, class diagrams, and sequence diagrams.

IS 7024: XML and Web Services
This course introduces the concept of Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) and its two main components - web services and XML. First, the course covers the structure of XML files, including XML Schemas and namespaces. Next, techniques to transform (XSLT) and extract information from XML files (XPATH) are presented. Finally, the main components of Web Services, such as WSDL and SOAP, are discussed. The course uses Visual Studio 20008, Visual C#, ASP .Net, and Windows Communication Foundation as a way for students to practice the concepts discussed in the lectures.

IS 7030: Data Modeling
This course provides in-depth coverage of the principles of data modeling. Starting at the highest level of abstraction, the data requirements culled out from user requirements specification are rendered as a conceptual data model using Entity-relationship modeling grammar. Students then learn how to map the conceptual model to the logical tier using relational modeling grammar, in preparation for the ultimate database design. Workshop sessions are included to provide students hands-on modeling opportunities. A basic introduction to Structured Query Language (SQL) is also included.

IS 7032: Database Design
This course provides in-depth coverage of the principles of database design. It is a follow on to IS 7030. Having learned to develop relational data models in the first course, students start this course with concepts related to validating and revising the database design using normalization theory. This is followed by relational algebra and structured query language (SQL) for data definition (DDL), data manipulation (DML), data control (DCL), and deeper level of data querying (DQL) for the implementation of the database design. Finally, higher level normalization concepts are introduced. Workshop and laboratory sessions are included to provide hands-on learning experience in normalization procedures and SQL.

IS 7034: Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence
This course is designed for the comprehensive learning of data warehousing technology for business intelligence. Data warehouses are used to store (archive) data from operational information systems. Data warehouses are useful in generating valuable control and decision-support business intelligence for many organizations in adjusting to their competitive environment. This course will introduce students to the design, development and operation of data warehouses. Students will apply and integrate the data warehousing and business intelligence knowledge learned in this course in leading software packages. Prerequisite: IS 6030 or IS 7032.

IS 7036: Data Mining for Business Intelligence
This course is designed for the in-depth learning of data-mining knowledge and techniques in the context of business intelligence. The topics include association rules, classification, clustering and text mining. Students will apply and integrate the business intelligence knowledge learned in this course in leading software packages. Prerequisite: IS6030 or IS7032.

IS 8044: IS Security
This course is an overview of the field of Information Security, Privacy, and Assurance. It introduces students to the key issues associated with protecting information assets, determining levels of protection and response to security incidents, and designing a consistent, reasonable information security system, with appropriate intrusion detection and reporting features. Topics covered in the course include: inspection and protection of information assets, detection of and reaction to threats to information assets, pre- and post-incident procedures, technical and managerial responses, and an overview of the Information Security Planning and Staffing functions.

IS 7050: ERP 1
Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Systems are large, cross-functional systems designed to promote integration among the various business areas. While there are many ERP systems, SAP has, by far, the highest market share. An important step in implementing SAP is configuration, which involves selecting options in SAP to align with the specific requirements of the business. This course is a hands-on introduction to SAP configuration. Specifically, students will go through the process of setting up a small trading company on SAP, including setting up the organization structures, master data, and rules; and processing transactions to test the setup. The course covers three SAP modules - FI, MM, and SD.

IS 7060: IS Project Management
This course focuses on the management of IS projects, although many of the concepts examined also apply to other projects. Planning, organizing, staffing, and controlling projects require traditional management skills as well as an understanding of specific project management tools and techniques. This course starts with an overview of project management concepts. It then discusses project planning, monitoring, and controlling. It also covers the politics of projects, project staff, and teamwork issues. The Project Management Institute's "A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge," along with current research and management trends related to IS project management, provide the framework for the material covered in this class. The course uses Microsoft Project for hands-on exercises.

BA 7077: Career Management
All full-time Lindner graduate students are required to register for the course BA7077 Graduate Career Management.  This course includes both in-class meetings and deliverables such as resume revision, LinkedIn profiles, mock-interviews, etc. These will be graded on a Pass/Fail basis.  This course provides Lindner College of Business graduate students with an advanced set of necessary skills and tools for continuous professional development and/or conducting a strategic job search in his/her field of choice.

IS experience

IS 7092: Industry Practicum 

This course is associated with the experiential component of the MS-IS program. It is a follow on to IS 7090. The purpose of this course is to allow students to engage in longer and more complex projects (whether as part of a co-op/internship, or an independent project) that go beyond the scope of a single course (IS 7090). - Prerequisite Definition: To take this course you must: Be enrolled in the following Plan BAI-MS.

IS electives

IS 8034: Big Data Integration
This course presents an overview of the principles of data integration, the fundamental basis for developing useful and flexible business intelligence platforms. Modern data integration needs differ from traditional approaches in four main dimensions that parallel differences between big data and traditional data: volume, velocity, variety, and veracity.

IS 8036: Survey of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence
This course is a survey of Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) from the Data Scientist’s perspective. It explores ML and AI topics, current and emerging technologies, and applications for students to gain understanding of the successful implementation of ML and AI to address key business and industry problems.

IS 8040: Enterprise Architecture
Enterprise Architecture represents the structure and operation of an organization to effectively and efficiently achieve its current and future business objectives. This course is designed to expose the student to the elements of Enterprise Architecture and to the roles and necessary skills required by the Enterprise Architect. It is a combination of theory and the practical, but the emphasis and focus will be on the practical. The problems addressed are real-world problems currently faced by organizations. Credit level: U, credit hours: 2. Prerequisites: See advisor for details.

IS 8064: CIO Forum
As an IS professional, the ultimate accomplishment is often to become the CIO of a major corporation. In this course CIOs and their associates will share their perspectives on what makes a successful CIO in an enterprise. A particular focus of the course will be strategic and operational aspects of a CIO's job. Time will be spent on the challenges, opportunities, environmental factors, organizational dynamics and other aspects that are incorporated as part of the CIOs leadership and operational responsibilities. Students will also be educated on how practices and approaches differ based on leadership styles, company operating principles, corporate culture, and inherent aspects of industry segments. The course will include presentations by various CIOs, business leaders, entrepreneurs and partner company leaders that comprise the ecosystem of the larger operating framework. The course will also address IT Career Perspectives from the viewpoint of industry thought leaders. How did successful CIOs get there? What are some of the career choices they made, and why? It is an opportunity for students to learn from senior executives, thus bridging the gap between theory and practice in IT management.

BANA 7025: Data Wrangling
This course provides an intensive, hands-on introduction to data management and data manipulation. You will learn the fundamental skills required to acquire, munge, transform, manipulate, and visualize data in a computing environment that fosters reproducibility.

BANA 7038: Data Analytics Methods
This course covers the fundamental concepts of applied data analysis methods. Various aspects of linear and logistic regression models are introduced, with emphasis on real data applications. Students are required to analyze data using major statistical software packages.

BANA 7046: Data Mining I
This is a course in statistical data mining with emphasis on hands-on case study experiences using various data mining/machine learning methods and major software packages to analyze complex real world data. Topics include data preprocessing, k-nearest neighbors, generalized linear regression, subset and LASSO variable selection, model evaluation, cross validation, classification and regression trees.

Non-IS electives

BANA 6037: Data Visualization
This course provides an introduction as well as hands-on experience in data visualization. It introduces students to design principles for creating meaningful displays of quantitative and qualitative data to facilitate managerial decision-making.

BANA 6043: Statistical Computinng
This is a course on the use of computer tools for data management and analysis. The focus is on a few popular data management and statistical software packages such as SQL, SAS, SPSS, S Plus, R, and JMP although others may be considered. Data management and manipulation techniques including queries in SQL will be covered. Elementary analyses may include measures of location and spread, correlation, detection of outliers, table creation, graphical displays, comparison of groups, as well as specialized analyses.

OM 7083: Supply Chain Strategy
Presents an overview of issues relating to the design and operation of an organization's supply chain. Information is presented as a mix of technical models and applied case studies. Topics may include inventory planning, logistics, sustainability, global operations, supply chain collaboration and contracting.

Master of Science in Information Systems students must engage in either a six month internship (co-op), work on an employer's Information Systems project (part-time students) or Information Systems research (potential PhD students). Information Systems research should culminate in a written research paper.

Supervised industry practicum

A student may work on a technical, managerial or organizational project in the Information Systems field relevant to her/his current employment. The project will be supervised by a committee made up of an Information Systems faculty member and an appropriate member from the employer. The student must prepare a proposal not to exceed two pages which includes the problem statement, the scope of the project, and a project timetable. The proposal must be approved in writing by both members of the committee before the student undertakes the work. At the end of the project, the student must submit a project white paper prepared with guidance from both committee members. Students will be asked to present their work.

Supervised co-op work

In contrast to internships and other similar arrangements like summer jobs, co-op programs fully integrate the work experience with the education curriculum. Our graduate co-op students will be prepared for greater work autonomy such as Information Systems project management. Some of the expected features of the co-op program in the Master of Science in Information Systems are:

  • IS-related work with an employer for a minimum of six months on a full-time basis (40+ hours/week).
  • Mandatory co-op seminars offered by Information Systems faculty prior to the co-op experience.
  • A post co-op seminar following the co-op experience where a student presents the result of the work performed (or research conducted).
  • Academic credit for co-op experience.
  • Integration of the graduate co-op experience with academic experience. Some of the possible avenues for such integration are: remote learning while student is on co-op; specific learning modules related to the co-op experience; a communication network between the student, employer and an Information Systems faculty member to conduct relevant research; or preparation of work-based case studies with guidance from an Information Systems faculty while on co-op assignment.

Research project

This option requires the student to conduct independent research on some subject in the IT domain under the supervision of a faculty member in the Information Systems department. The student is responsible for identifying a tenure track faculty member in the Information Systems department who is willing to serve as Chair of his/her committee.

The Chair will work with the student to identify an appropriate subject for the research paper. The student must conduct a comprehensive review of the academic and practitioner literature on the subject, identify an interesting and original research question, and attempt to provide an answer to this question. The research project may consist of a broad spectrum of research paradigms including, but not limited to: 1) theoretical research 2) applied research, 3) case studies, 4) data collection and analyses, and any other research process deemed acceptable by the candidate's Chair and Committee.

Upon completion, the student must orally “defend” the work before a committee of three faculty members, including the Chair and at least one other tenure-track member of the Information Systems faculty. The third member of the committee may be a tenure-track faculty member in any department in the Lindner College of Business (including IS). A successful defense of the research project requires the unanimous acceptance of all three members of the Committee.

While open to any Master of Science in Information Systems student, this option may be especially helpful for students who wish to pursue a PhD in the future.

U.S. map with Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, Cincinnati, Dallas, NYC, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, and Seattle highlighted

During the 2022-23 academic year, our graduates achieved a 98% placement rate. These graduates earned an average salary of $106, 264.

77% of our students are employed in the Midwest, 5% id the mid-atlantic, 1% in the Northeast, 10% in the southeast, 3% ins the southwest, 3% in the west and 1% in the Northwest

Top companies hiring our students included:

  • University of Cincinnati
  • Amazon
  • Proctor & Gamble
  • Deloitte
  • Kroger
  • Cincinnati Children's Hospital
  • Fifth Third Bank
  • Ernst & Young
  • JPMorgan Chase
  • GE Aerospace

Harsh Shah, MS '18

Harsh Shah photo

Where are you from?

I come from the city of dreams in India, Mumbai. I lived there for the first 25 years of my life before moving to Cincinnati for my master's.

Why did you choose UC for your MS-IS?

With my bachelor's in IT and industry experience of close to three years, I wanted to enhance my technical skills, get some management skills, and get back to the IT industry quickly. The MS-IS program at UC is a perfect amalgamation of everything I wanted. I was exposed to disruptive technologies in machine learning, along with core management concepts in finance, accounting, and marketing. I got back to the IT industry quickly, within ten months of starting the program.

What unique perspective did you bring to the MS-IS Program at UC?

I think I brought rich experience in platform-agnostic software development, exposure to product development from scratch-to-end, lots of academic leadership experience, a positive and friendly attitude, and the enthusiasm to always learn more.

What advice would you give to prospective students?

This is a fast-paced program. Each course is just seven weeks long, with substantial coursework, individual and group projects, assignments, and classes four hours per week. Time management is a key factor to excel in this program. I would also advise potential students to have relevant work experience, as that really helps in getting co-ops and internships.

Program length

The University of Cincinnati Master of Science in Information Systems program may be completed as either a full-time student or as a part-time student. The full-time program can be completed in as few as 15 months, with most completing it in 18-24 months, which includes a required industry practicum experience. This program is STEM designated.

Current Cohort Profile

  • GRE: 310
  • GMAT: 608
  • Years of work experience: 3.6  
  • GPA: 3.4/4.0 scale
  • Age: 25

Student Testimonials

Andrew Aronow headshot

Where are you from?

Cincinnati, OH. St. Xavier High School; a common follow-up for any fellow Cincinnatians.

What unique perspective do you bring to the MS-IS Program at UC?

With my undergraduate degree in physics and seven semesters of assisting a physics class, I am enthusiastic about, and well-practiced in, explaining technical topics to varying audiences. Additionally, my work experience in the financial services industry provided great practice in hearing, within a client's initial request, the deeper business need they were really looking to solve. I also enjoy drumming, though I've yet to get a band together of other graduate students—adding that to the to-do list.

What advice would you give to prospective students?

Get to know your professors. You have access to leading researchers and experienced industry professionals who are sincerely excited to help you learn and grow.

What industry do you hope to start working in upon graduation?

Consulting, either in IT specifically or in a broader, strategic sense.

Anupriya Kushwanshi headshot

Where are you from?

I’m from India. I was born in East India but I have studied and worked in Central and South Indian states.

What unique perspective do you bring to the MS-IS Program at UC?

I represent a group of people having varied life experiences. I have stayed in four culturally different states in my country that each had their own language, cuisine and culture. As an MS-IS ambassador I am working toward filling the gap between academic cultures and beyond by guiding incoming students.

What advice would you give to prospective students?

Know where would you like to see yourself after the program. Choose your subjects wisely. Remember that seniors are always there to help. Network with people beyond your program and enjoy the beautiful fall and winter seasons here!

What industry do you hope to start working in upon graduation?

I would love to work as a data analyst. UC has great analytics courses and I’m excited for my spring semester when I get to study all my elective subjects.

Ankeeta Majumder headshot

Where are you from?

I am from Kolkata, the City of Joy. I lived there for more than 25 years before moving to Cincinnati to pursue my Master's in Information Systems at Lindner College of Business–one of the leading business colleges in the States.

What unique perspective do you bring to the MS-IS Program at UC?

I have an undergrad degree in information technology and around four years of work experience in the IT industry, where I have worked as a front-end web developer, quality assurance analyst, and business requirement analyst. Today, breakneck advances in technology and faster product lifecycles characterize the business environment. It becomes inevitable to make use of information technology and data analysis to discover innovative ways to solve business problems of today and tomorrow. I aspire to gain knowledge about the foundations of database and project management methodologies, data analysis and modeling techniques, along with statistical computing  and enterprise architecture insights. The courses offered in this program completely cater to my diverse experiences.

How has being an ambassador for the MS-IS program impacted your career?

As an MS-IS ambassador, it has been a privilege to have the opportunity to interact with upcoming students, help them with their questions, thoughts and concerns about the program, and in a way understand how every individual is thinking differently and how excited they are to get a master's degree. I also had the opportunity to interact with some students during my visit to India in December 2018. Kelly, our academic advisor, and my ambassador team, are always trying to leverage new aspects of the program, like in-class experience and advice from our seniors and current students. Being an MS-IS ambassador also enhanced my resume, since it reflects the decision-making skills and the responsibilities associated with it.

What advice do you have for incoming students?

My advice would be to think about which field they want to pursue based on their work experience. In the States work experience matters the most in getting a good internship, co-op, or full-time position. Every student in this program has their own perspective, building their career path and becoming an expert in their own field. This is a very fast-paced program, so it is very essential to keep up. Our professors and career advisors are always more than ready to help us learn and grow. It is very important to network here and seniors are always there to guide. All the best, enjoy the program, and welcome!

Roshana Raman photo

What are you involved with while pursing your Masters in IS at UC?

I am currently pursuing an MS-IS degree along with the Data Analytics certificate at UC. I’m also working part time as a graduate assistant at the UC Office of Institutional Research. My job entails a great deal of reporting and analyses for the entire university using analytical tools like SAS and Tableau.

How has being an ambassador for the MS-IS program impacted your career?

As an ambassador for the MS-IS program, it gives me immense pleasure to have the opportunity of presenting the MS-IS Career Analysis. There was certainly a feel-good factor when I was able to some of what I have learned since I got here into practice!

How would you describe the program’s faculty and staff?

We have excellent faculty comprising experienced professionals and researchers who are committed to helping us learn and advance in our careers. Angie Lucas, our program’s career coach, has always shown a keen interest in ensuring each student can schedule one-on-one meetings to discuss goals that motivate us to achieve our individual milestones. This program has truly been enriching and has taught me to be analytical and data-oriented, and I intend to reflect that in my work going forward.

What advice do you have for incoming students?

My little piece of advice to the upcoming batch would be to try become an expert in your own preferred niche areas. Build your public repositories and try your hand at interesting projects within that scope. If you’re looking to switch careers, kickstart your learning to be ahead of the game. And of course, network! All the very best and welcome!

Jaydeep Salian headshot

Where are you from?

I am from Mumbai, India, which is why I love the hustle and bustle of fast-paced city life.

What unique perspective do you bring to the MS-IS Program at UC?

I’ve been fortunate enough to have a variety of diverse life experiences. Mumbai is a multicultural city; people from all over India have migrated there. So I’ve grown up with a large and heterogeneous collection of people, absorbing different cultures and learning five languages and dialects on the way. I completed my undergraduate degree in Melbourne, Australia, where again I met a culturally diverse population, but this time on a global scale. These experiences have helped me in my professional life, where I worked as an SAP consultant, and I've learned to collaborate with many people with different characteristics

What advice would you give to prospective students?

I’d say give a lot of thought to where you want to be at the end of the program. Talk to our faculty and alumni about your interests and choose your courses wisely. UC has amazing resources that you absolutely should leverage. The program is very intensive but absolutely worth it. And last but not least, have fun!

What industry do you hope to start working in upon graduation?

I hope to continue my journey in ERP. I believe my technical skill,s along with the business acumen I’m gaining in this program, with hold me in good stead.

Kinjal Shah headshot

Where are you from?

I am from Surat, famously known as the textile and diamond city of India. However, I spent seven years working in Mumbai (Bombay), the financial and entertainment capital of India.

What unique perspective do you bring to the MS-IS Program at UC?

I have an undergrad degree in information technology and about eight years of experience in the IT Industry working in various roles: data analyst, SAP consultant, and SQL and web developer. This enriching experience has enabled me to understand the in-depth functioning of IT industry and its ever-changing technological needs. With my diverse experiences, I can better relate to different topics covered in this program and understand their industry applications.

What advice would you give to prospective students?

Be mindful of your future goals and understand how this program will help you achieve them. There will be multiple opportunities to learn and grow, as long as you demonstrate proactiveness and enthusiasm. This program is quite vast, but it is totally worth the time and efforts if you focus your energy correctly.

What industry do you hope to start working in upon graduation?

I am passionate about data analytics and data science. The MS-IS program along with the data science certificate has given me big head start in this area and I plan to pursue a career in this field upon graduation.

Contact Us

Headshot of Robert Rokey

Robert Rokey

Assistant Professor - Educator, Department of Operations, Business Analytics, and Information Systems

3457 Carl H. Lindner Hall