Is an Information Systems Degree Worth It? [2021 Guide]
Is an information systems degree worth it? A bachelor’s degree in information systems may be the right choice for you if you’re interested in working with computers, including hardware and software applications, in a way that supports operations within a business.
A bachelor’s degree in computer information systems covers a broad range of topics relating to computer information systems, mathematics, management, and communications. Careers in this field include computer programmers, information security analysts, computer network architects, and computer and information systems managers.
These careers often come with a high annual salary, and the field is growing at an above-average rate.
If you are interested in this field and the various careers related to it, a degree in information systems is likely to bring many welcome job opportunities with competitive salaries.
Is an Information Systems Degree Worth It?
Yes, a bachelor’s degree in information systems is likely worth it. With an average salary of $88,240 and 11% job growth (Bureau of Labor Statistics), a degree in information systems can help you launch a career in this in-demand field.
With a focus on the use of computers and information systems within a business, this degree may be worth it if you’re interested in helping organizations use information systems and computer hardware and software more effectively.
Common information systems career paths include:
- Web developer
- Database administrator
- Information security analyst
- Computer systems analyst
- Network and computer systems administrator
The entry-level educational requirement for most careers in information systems is a bachelor’s degree. The field of information systems is predicted to see above average growth over the next several years, as more and more jobs are created in this field.
Some careers, such as software developer and information security analyst, are predicted to experience extreme job growth by 2029, at 22% and 31% respectively, over the next several years.
These positions may also offer a good return on investment with high average annual salaries of $107,510 for software developers and $99,730 for information security analysts.
How to Decide Whether an Information Systems Degree is Right for You
Maybe you have an interest in working with computers, or in helping businesses utilize technology effectively, but still aren’t sure if you want to take the leap into pursuing an information systems degree.
Here are a few of the reasons you might make the decision to pursue a bachelor’s in information systems.
1. You are interested in how computer information systems impact businesses.
Perhaps you have an interest in computer systems. But do you also enjoy the idea of working in a business environment, and helping an organization and individuals implement these systems in an effective way?
If the idea of learning about information systems and applying this knowledge in practical ways to help organizations function efficiently sounds appealing to you, then a bachelor’s degree in information systems may be an ideal choice.
Careers related to a degree in information systems may include responsibilities such as developing database structures to support data analysts within an organization, creating security plans for organizational data, and administering or terminating system access.
Responsibilities may also include recommending improvements to business processes related to data security.
2. You like working with computer software and hardware.
A bachelor’s in information systems may be a good fit for you if you enjoy or are interested in working with computers to design, explore, or implement software and evaluate the efficiency or functionality of hardware, especially as it relates to business needs.
In an information systems career, you may be responsible for communication networks such as LANs, WANs, and intranets, the creation and maintenance of databases where information is stored, and verifying security of hardware and software applications.
If this sort of technological work is up your alley, then a bachelor’s in information systems is a great place to start.
3. You are interested in self-employment opportunities.
Do you like working for yourself rather than within an organization? With a bachelor’s degree in information systems you may be qualified to work as an independent consultant, operating your own business.
Many employers outsource the responsibilities of information systems roles to external consultants or agencies. Outsourced roles may include web developers, information security analysts, and computer system analysts.
Top 5 Things You Can Do with an Information Systems Degree
An information systems degree can open many doors and help you access a wide range of career options.
Here are some of the careers you might pursue with a degree in information systems.
1. Web Developer
For the position of web developer, some employers may consider hiring you with an associate’s degree while others may require a bachelor’s degree as an entry-level education requirement.
In this career, you may have the ability to specialize in positions such as back-end web developer, front-end web developer, or webmaster.
2. Database Administrator
Database administrators are responsible for ensuring the safety and security of organizational data.
That may include planning and executing data backups, ensuring proper functioning of organizational databases, and granting or terminating user access to databases. It may also include performing system updates and maintenance on a regular basis.
Specialized database administrator roles include systems database administrator and application database administrator.
3. Information Security Analyst
Information security analysts are responsible for the safety and security of an organization’s entire computer system and network. That may include protecting the organization’s network from cyberattacks.
Other job tasks for information security analysts may include monitoring network access, identifying and investigating breaches, and implementing protection mechanisms and software including firewalls and encryption. This position requires a bachelor’s degree as entry-level education.
4. Computer Network Architect
Computer network architects are responsible for planning and building an organization’s local area network (LANs), wide area network (WANs), and intranet.
That includes troubleshooting computer network issues, planning cloud-based networks, managing network hardware and software, and identifying system updates based on organizational needs.
A bachelor’s degree in information systems is often the entry-level education required for this position.
5. Computer and Information Systems Manager
Computer and information systems managers are responsible for high-level supervision and management of computer and systems operations within an organization.
That may include planning work performed by direct reports, oversight of data security, approval of department strategies, negotiating product costs with vendors, and managing the department’s budget.
Positions may include chief information officer, chief technology officer, IT director, or IT security manager.
The entry-level education requirement for a computer and information systems manager is a bachelor’s degree. Some employers may require a graduate degree as well, such as a Master of Business Administration (MBA).
Information Systems Degree Alternatives
If you are looking to work in a position with greater focus on the technical aspects of computer systems or within a specific field such as healthcare, then an alternative to an information systems degree may be a better fit for you. Here are a few of those alternatives:
- Bachelors in Computer Engineering. A degree in computer engineering covers design and development of computer systems, including hardware and software interfaces.
- Bachelors in Computer Science. With a focus on data transformation, algorithms and programming, a bachelor’s in computer science covers technical, mathematical, and theoretical coursework.
- Bachelors in Health Informatics. A bachelor’s degree in health informatics covers topics relating to business operations, programming, and computer systems specifically related to working in the healthcare field.
There are a number of other alternative degree options, including a traditional or online degree in information technology, informatics, artificial intelligence, and information science.
Information Systems Careers & Salaries
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a bachelor’s in information systems can lead to a number of high-paying positions.
|Computer and Information Systems Manager||$146,360|
|Computer Network Architect||$112,690|
|Information Security Analyst||$99,730|
|Computer Systems Analyst||$90,920|
|Network and Computer Systems Administrator||$83,510|
With a bachelor’s degree in information systems, you may be able to break into this growing field, with an estimated 531,200 new jobs being created by 2029, high annual salaries, and the potential for career advancement from entry level to management and leadership positions.
Higher average annual salaries can be obtained more quickly with a masters or Ph.D. A master’s degree in information technology is worth it and a popular choice among graduate students.
Is Information Systems a Good Major?
A bachelor’s degree in information systems may be a good major for you if you’re interested in a career that will allow you to work with computer and technological systems, improving data security and designing and developing databases.
Majoring in information systems will help you gain the qualifications you need to enter into a computer and information systems career.
Since the Bureau of Labor Statistics is showing above average job outlook for a number of positions, including database administrator (10% growth by 2029), information security analyst (31%), software developer (22%), and computer and information systems manager (10%), obtaining a degree in information systems may be worth the investment.
On top of above average job growth over the coming decade, careers in information systems boast a high annual salary and offer opportunities for career advancement within the field.
Is Information Systems a Useless Degree?
A bachelor’s in information systems is far from a useless degree for anyone who is interested in the field of information systems, and its many career opportunities.
If you’re interested in working with computers, including information security, system analysis and administration, network management, or web design and development, then you will likely find this degree highly useful.
With a bachelor’s in information systems, paired with on-the-job experience, you may be qualified for advancement into a leadership or management role such as computer and information systems manager.
How Hard is an Information Systems Degree?
Obtaining a bachelor’s degree in information systems may require you to complete coursework related to mathematics, computer information systems, management, and communication.
Example courses may include statistical methods and applications, introduction to management, system design and analysis, IT project management, and internet computing.
The structure of information systems curriculum is intended to support the development of critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
You may find pursuing a degree in information systems is easier if you have interests or skills relating to mathematics, computer systems, information networks, and data security mechanisms.
Getting Your Information Systems Degree Online
So, if you have read this article and seem to check all of the boxes, it may be time for you to start seriously considering a degree in information systems. Information systems degrees offer a promising career outlook, with above average job growth, high annual average salaries, and potential for career advancement.
They offer the opportunity to work with computer systems and information management, helping businesses use information systems more effectively, or improve their data security measures.
If you are interested in working as a computer network architect, a database administrator, an information security analyst, a software developer, a computer and information systems manager, or in another related position, take the first step today and look into a bachelor’s degree in information systems.