Information Systems

Master of Computer and Information Science - Information Systems

MCIS - Information Systems - Cleveland State University Monte Ahuja College of BusinessThe Information Systems (IS) track in the Master of Computer and Information Science (MCIS) program at Cleveland State University is a specialized degree program designed to prepare students for careers as information professionals. The IS track is housed within the Monte Ahuja College of Business. The coursework combines a blend of technology and management-oriented courses designed to prepare the next generation of technology managers to lead enterprises in innovative ways. Specializations within the program allow students to build specific skill sets in areas such as: information security, information technology management and business analytics.

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Admission Requirements

In addition to meeting the Admission Requirements for the Graduate College, applicants to the MCIS-IS program must meet the following requirements:

  • A cumulative grade-point average of 2.75 or better.
  • Test scores from either the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) are required if at least one of the following conditions is true:
    • The applicant's undergraduate degree if from a college or university outside of the United States.
    • The applicant's undergraduate degree is from a college or university without at least a regional level accreditation.
    • The applicant's undergraduate cumulative grade-point average is below 3.0.
  • If an applicant received a master's degree or higher from a college or university with at least a regional level accreditation in the United States and had at least a grade-point average of 3.0, the GMAT/GRE requirement can be waived.
  • For those applicants who need to complete GRE or GMAT, the following minimums will be required:
    • A minimum total score of 500 if GMAT is taken; or
    • A minimum of 50th perentile in the Quantitative Reasoning portion of the GRE(or a 158 in the current scale).
    • A minimum score of 5th percentile for the verbal portion of the GRE(137 according to old GRE scoring system) or GMAT.
  • An official transcript from each college and university attended.
  • For applicants whose native language is not English, proof of having met at least one of the English language proficiency requirements is required. This proof will be per the standards used by the University.
    • If the TOEFL is taken, the minimum requirements are at least 550 for the paper-based test, or 213 for the computer-based test, or 78 for the Internet-based test. (If the Internet-based test is taken, minimum distribution requirements are: Reading - 20, Listening - 21, Speaking - 20, and Writing - 17).
    • Equivalent scores will be used if any other form of English proficiency test is chosen.

Preparatory Program

Students who do not have an undergraduate degree in Information Systems or a related discipline will be required to complete the following preparatory courses with a grade of "B" or better. Courses in the preparatory program should be completed prior to entering the program.

Course Name Waived?
IST 600 Fundamentals of Systems Development With equivalent of IST 211
IST 601 IT for Competitive Advantage With equivalent of IST 221 or IST 305
IST 603 Systems Analysis Methods With equivalent of IST 321
IST 604 Modern Database Design/Implementation With equivalent of IST 331
IST 606 Management of Business Networks With equivalent of IST 341

Application Deadline

Applications are accepted and process throughout the year. Domestic applicants, to be eligible for that semester, must submit complete application materials at least six weeks before the start of a semester.

For international students, complete application packages, including a completed application form, transcripts for all college-level work, and appropriate GRE/GMAT and TOEFL scores, must be received by the application deadline:

  • March 15 for Summer admission.
  • May 15 for Fall admission.
  • November 1 for Spring admission.

Although the Information Systems Department makes every effort to honor students’ requested dates of admission, this is not always possible. In some cases, it may be necessary to delay the admission date because of the schedule of required courses.

Degree Requirements

Students are required to complete a total of either 31 or 33 credits to earn the MCIS-IS. The degree consists of 18 credits of core courses for all students. There are three different sub-tracks that a student may take

Thesis Sub-Track Students in the Thesis sub-track are required to complete a minimum of 12 credits of elective coursework and 1 credit of Graduate Thesis Research for a total of 31 hours.
Non-Thesis Sub-Track Students in the Non-Thesis sub-track are required to complete 15 credits of elective coursework for a total of 33 hours.
Internship Sub-Track The Internship Sub-Track is available to both students in the Thesis and Non-Thesis sub-track. Students in the Internship sub-track can include up to 3 credit hours of a Graduate Internship as part of their elective coursework.

Core Courses (18 hours)

Core courses are to be completed by all students in the MCIS IS track.

Course Name catalog
IST 614 Project Management and Scheduling 2015-2016
IST 616 Emerging Technologies New for Fall 2015
IST 618 Systems Thinking and Modeling for Dynamic Information Systems New for Fall 2015
IST 621 Advanced Analysis and Design 2015-2016
IST 634 Enterprise Databases 2015-2016
IST 636 Managing Network Security and Risk 2015-2016

MCIS-IS Electives

Students are equired to complete 15 or 13 hours from the list of approved electives.

MCIS-IS Electives Offered by the Monte Ahuja College of Business
Course Name Catalog
IST 610 Object-Oriented Programming for Information Systems 2015-2016
IST 612 Business Analysis 2015-2016
IST 615 Business Intelligency Systems 2015-2016
IST 620 Legal Environment of Information Systems 2015-2016
IST 635 Business Value of Information Technology 2015-2016
IST 636 Managing Networks and Security Risks 2015-2016
IST 641 Electronic Commerce 2015-2016
IST 642 Website Design and Development 2015-2016
IST 656 Advanced Information Security 2015-2016
IST 660 Data Mining and Business Intelligence 2015-2016
IST 664 Business Geographics and GIS 2015-2016
IST 665 Enterprise Resource Planning 2015-2016
IST 675 IT Governance 2015-2016
IST 680 Social and Information Network Analysis 2015-2016
IST 699 Thesis Research in Computer and Information Science 2015-2016
Elective Concentrations

Students are encouraged to take electives in the following prescribed concentrations. These will allow students to build upon the core curriculum by focusing on an area of specialization.

IT Management Concentration
Course Name Catalog
IST 612 Business Analysis 2015-2016
IST 635 Business Value of IT 2015-2016
IST 665 Enterprise Resource Planning 2015-2016
IST 675 IT Governance New for Fall 2015

In addition to the above courses, one additional elective is required.

Business Analytics Concentration
Course Name Catalog
BUS 575 Introduction to Business Analytics 2015-2016
BUS 600 Applied Business Analytics 2015-2016
BUS 601 Managing Databases for Business Analytics 2015-2016
BUS 602 Strategy for Business Analytics 2015-2016

For the Business Analytics Concentration, you will also earn the Certificate in Business Analytics. Additional electives IST 615, IST 660 and IST 664 are also recommended.


Security Concentration
Course Name Catalog
IST 656 Advanced Information Security 2015-2016
CIS 675 Information Security 2015-2016*
ACT 553 Information Systems Auditing 2015-2016

An additional two electives are required for the Security Concentration.


Approved Electives Offered in Other Departments
Course Name Catalog
ACT 553 Information Systems Auditing 2015-2016
CIS 630 Enterprise Application Development 2015-2016*
CIS 631 Distributed Object Systems 2015-2016*
CIS 632 Mobile Computing 2015-2016*
CIS 634 Object-Oriented Software Engineering 2015-2016*
CIS 635 Software Engineering Metrics, Economics and Mnagement 2015-2016*
CIS 636 Software Quality Assurance 2015-2016*
CIS 643 Graphical User Interfaces 2015-2016*
CIS 660 Data Mining 2015-2016*
CIS 675 Information Security 2015-2016
MBA 603 Management of Innovation/Technology 2015-2016
MKT 556 Customer Relationship Management 2015-2016
OSM 601 Supply Chain Analytics 2015-2016

*These courses are offered through the Washkewicz College of Engineering.

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How to Apply

Applicants to the MCIS program must meet the Admission Requirements for the Graduate College, as well as the Admission Requirements for the MCIS program.

Students applying to the MCIS program apply to the College of Graduate Studies, will be required to take either the GRE or GMAT exam and submit results before being considered for admission. Most College of Business graduate applicants are not required to submit letters of recommendation.

Applicants should adhere to the detailed application procedure and recommended application schedule as outlined on the Graduate College web site.

Applicants should note that GRE/GMAT test registration forms and fees must be received by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) at least three weeks before the selected testing day. The GRE/GMAT test is given continuously throughout the year. Information and applications may be obtained from the CSU Testing Center, room RT 1237, (216) 687-2272. Alternatively, you may contact GRE/GMAT at 1-800-717-GMAT or visit their web site at


The faculty in the department have a wide range of research interests and offer students the opportunity to work closely with them on research projects. Faculty publications over the past few years have been in the areas of multimedia computing, database analysis and design, numerical analysis, optimization, performance measurement and evaluation, operating system design, data communications and network design, artificial intelligence, new computing paradigms, simulation, object-oriented systems analysis and design, object-oriented programming, and decision-support systems evaluation and selection. Many Information Systems faculty members are also active in professional organizations.

Financial Assistance

The College of Business has a limited number of tuition grants and graduate assistantships available each year. These grants and assistantships are competitive and are based on students' undergraduate performance as well as GRE/GMAT scores. Tuition grants require 10 hours of service per week to the College. Graduate assistantships require a nine- to 12-credit-hour course load, and 20 hours of service per week. Application forms may be obtained in the Graduate Academic Advising Office, BU 219.