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I'm getting a BSBA Computer Information Systems. Does anyone here have that degree? What type of job do you have or have had. Is this degree pointless compared to a CS degree?

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Last Post by Rashakil Fol
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I'm getting a BSBA Computer Information Systems. Does anyone here have that degree? What type of job do you have or have had. Is this degree pointless compared to a CS degree?

I'd say it depends on the program. I personally went for the CS degree. I have worked with, and hired/not hired people from both types of programs. It always depended on the job. Some schools still call them MIS degrees (uhg). It really comes down to what you wish to do in your career: technical, or manager type (IMHO).

CS types tend to be more technical and mathematical in nature, CIS tends to push the business side of things. Our CIS people primarily do project management type jobs (MS project, paper work paper work paperwork). The CS types do all the 'real' work. (No offense intended to CIS/MIS types :))

dale

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I'm currently working on my CIS, in my last year. I chose CIS because the people from the school I talked with said it involved the most programming courses, which is all I wanted to do. Of course, after I started and found out how little math I'm required to take I asked them about it. I was answered with: "well, you're doing software programming, and math isn't a big part of that". That should've been my hint to switch, to another school.

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Well personally im working on a BS in CIS with a minor in CS, at the school i go to they told me that more of the CIS grads end up with jobs as say system admin and db admin and stuff like that and the CS get more of the programming jobs but there are alot of each degree that do other stuff along the lines of IT so in all reality it doesnt really matter as most jobs for IT positions actually ask for a BS in CS or related field suchs as CIS or MIS so really i dont think it will matter all that much. personally im not sure what i will use my CIS major and CS minor for but as of now im working as a computer programmer. so that experience might end up getting me a programming job instead of sys admin or db admin :)

but as mentioned above in the CIS major they do alot more business side of IT such as system administration and Database Administration and even more into business. but CS will give you more Computer theory and math. so if you like theory and math i recommend the CS but if not i recommend the CIS :)

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I m doing plain old BS in CS. I will be a sophomore after this semester. I have an ambition to transfer my credits to some other school where I can take graphics and games programming courses. In my country the hype is now all about Computer Engineering. Few cares about Computer Science. Most students want to do BS Computer Engineering and then want to do an MS in Electrical Engineering.

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I got the practical degree but I wish I had gotten the more rigorous and theoretical one. Now I am studying it on my own.

Everybody will get a programming job who wants one. I suspect the ones with the more rigorous background will find more interesting work.

Name your poison, it works out for everybody, and you wouldn't belive how little some people know and still make a living doing it. I recall one programmer who did not know the difference between source and object code. But she just went through the prescribed steps without understanding them and met management's expectations as a rather lightweight programmer.

Then there was the programmer from the federal government who attended a seminar on syncsort and at the end of it angrily demanded to know that this 'byte' was that they kept talking about.

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Not sure what country you are from asif_NSU, but if you are from United states... I know that West Virginia Univ. has graphics and game design courses in the computer science program. There are alot of people in computer engineering, and like you said... I am also dual majoring, Computer engineering and Electrical Engineering. There are also still alot of Computer science courses that are required with the computer engineering degree. (I think have to take 5 or 6 CS courses). For this reason, my school also offers the daul majors in EE and CS or CPE and CS or you can do all three.

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Hey Castro,

To be honest, it will depend on what you really want to do. The best programmers I've ever worked with have the CS background (not just the degree), because programming is all structure, theory, and math. If your concentration is to work in a Fortune 100 company building enterprise-wide network applications, a CIS degree won't help you much. Also, CIS (IMHO) includes a plethora of languages and not enough about fundamentals. Languages just implement a solution, and the best architects understand how to implement something based on an environment, not dictate a language preference.

I also agree there will be a lot of 'programmers' in the field, but not many who understand truly what they're programming. If you get the CS degree, it will most likely set you apart from the everyday coders.

ej :mrgreen:

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Then there was the programmer from the federal government who attended a seminar on syncsort and at the end of it angrily demanded to know that this 'byte' was that they kept talking about.

Are you serious???? ROTFLMAO ...or am I gullible? :o

ej

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but as mentioned above in the CIS major they do alot more business side of IT such as system administration and Database Administration and even more into business. but CS will give you more Computer theory and math. so if you like theory and math i recommend the CS but if not i recommend the CIS :)

As far as getting hired now, I think companies will go for either and it isn't a huge difference. IS is more attractive than before because most of the lower level skills are heading offshore. I have BSIT and MMIS and am a programmer-analyst for a large corporation. I can't speak for all companies, but the one I work for doesn't value my programming skills as much as my higher level business skills, like the ability to communicate system requirements to people with questionable English speaking abilities.

I don't support offshoring and think Americans will produce a better product which is actually less costly in the long run, but onless this trend reverses I would go for the CIS program. You can always brush up on the lower level skills when needed. In fact, what you learn now in the CS program (except for higher level concepts) may not apply 10 years from now.

When I say "lower level" that isn't to suggest that they aren't good or respectable jobs. It means that the work is less abstract and more focused.

Good luck no matter what path you choose. I would hire either degree.

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Hey Castro,

If your concentration is to work in a Fortune 100 company building enterprise-wide network applications, a CIS degree won't help you much.

I also agree there will be a lot of 'programmers' in the field, but not many who understand truly what they're programming. If you get the CS degree, it will most likely set you apart from the everyday coders.

ej :mrgreen:

I simply don't agree with this. I think the answer depends on what work you are doing at these Fortune 500 companies. The company I work for is looking for systems analysts and is outsourcing the coding (which I don't agree with). The point is that the goal should be to design systems and not code them. A CS degree in my view is too low-level considering the more abstract skills required to do this.

That said, CS and CIS grads don't seem to have a problem finding work. But if your goal is to be a coder, you should really look and see what is going on in this industry before you get too attached to that idea.

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In fact, what you learn now in the CS program (except for higher level concepts) may not apply 10 years from now.

CS fundamentals have been around (officially) since the 60s and haven't changed much. (See Donald Knuth.) Unless there is some redefinition of rudimentary math and/or binary interpretation, not much will change. C and C++ have been around for a long time. Linux is a variation of Unix: same thing. (Linux first officially surfaced over 14 years ago.) Other than differences in 'flavor' CS hasn't changed as much as the Microsoft world would like for us to believe. And Donald Knuth has written a series of books, about 50 years old :!:, that are still regarded as the 'bibles' of CS. So, I guess I really disagree with this statement.

It's true that Python, Perl, Java .NET (C#), whatever are 'newer', but are just implementations getting to the root of solving classic CS problems. It doesn't matter, as much, about the languages (that do change) as understanding what they're trying to accomplish. CIS will not and will probably never delve that deep.

I agree, in a corporate environment, it will ultimately depend on the technical aptitude of the person, not the degree. But to architect a new solution in a networked environment today ultimately requires CS, not some technical management degree. If the goal is to manage, then a CS degree will still help, but CIS would be better. Working for a large company, our group respects CS a lot more than CIS. The directors here have CS concentrations, not CIS.

Just thought I'd chime in...it's Monday, after all. :mrgreen:

E.

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CS fundamentals have been around (officially) since the 60s and haven't changed much. (See Donald Knuth.) Unless there is some redefinition of rudimentary math and/or binary interpretation, not much will change. C and C++ have been around for a long time. Linux is a variation of Unix: same thing. (Linux first officially surfaced over 14 years ago.) Other than differences in 'flavor' CS hasn't changed as much as the Microsoft world would like for us to believe. And Donald Knuth has written a series of books, about 50 years old :!:, that are still regarded as the 'bibles' of CS. So, I guess I really disagree with this statement.

E.

Your experiences may differ. I think that CS and CIS programs vary quite a bit. Some of the CS programs "stuck in the 80s" comes to mind for me, however some of the CS programs are fantastic. I don't think we can say across the board that one is better than the other.

I personally feel more prepared to design databases and architect applications than some of the people with CS degrees that I work with, as that is a higher level concept centered around the business.

But then again, there are people from both sides who are quite successful at this. Perhaps my confidence comes from my graduate experience which I feel was much more valuable than my undergrad experience. Even more important than either is working knowledge of these concepts.

From a practical standpoint, it is looking like lower level jobs like straight coding are going to India. Because of this, CIS might be the best career decision. Short of a change in our trade policy, I have very low hopes for programming jobs.

Today's news on Dice.com is a study that says IT jobs in the US will shrink by 15%. Not great news for CS and CIS students.

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Hi there,

I wrote this in my previous post:

... it will ultimately depend on the technical aptitude of the person, not the degree. But to architect a new solution in a networked environment today ultimately requires CS, not some technical management degree.

It's all good one has management skills and a technical aptitude to go with it, as well as some inclination to understand the business side of the solution being developed (in my world, that is essential), but the actual nuts and bolts cannot be achieved without understanding the CS fundamentals behind a solution.

Of course it takes both, but to illustrate the point I am trying to make, let me issue a query: Would you want a Fortune 100 multi-million dollar solution built by a team of CIS-degreed people with a decent understanding of CS? Or would you want a a team of CS code junkies with a decent understanding of the business? If I had to make a hardline decision, I'd elect the latter. And that is why we're structured here in my world the way we are.

Maybe we're an anomaly in the corporate world, but our team has pioneered software and has been highly successful in this arrangement. Does that mean other team structures don't work? No, but we are a lean team that can get things done in a very short amount of time. When it comes down to it, for me, I rest on the CS background I have and not the management side. It seems a lot more valuable.

:)

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" Or would you want a a team of CS code junkies with a decent understanding of the business?"

I guess that is where we don't agree. I want someone with a very good understanding of the business designing the solution, and not just a "decent" understanding, to be leading the team and designing a solution. I think coders if not directed get tunnel vision. I have been both, and greatly appreciate direction when coding so I can focus on just that.

That said, I think coders should have an understanding of the business as well. I work for a very large corporation and a large IT shop. Business knowledge is paramount. The reason outsourcing is failing for our company is that goals of the business are lost in translation.

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The point I was trying to make was the other one: I would rather a system be implemented by someone actually understanding networks, memory allocation, IOCompletion ports, etc so a wonderfully-understood solution won't crash a week after it's released. Architecture is crucial, and I believe it is better (in the extreme example I cited) to have something in a production environment that works without an outage and can be scaled and modified easily to tweak it with what a business group wants.

In order to ensure an application is built correctly, a management concentration will not help a team of developers with that, from an academic standpoint. It is true the CIS side will help 'big picture' solving of a business need. What I am talking about is the technical implementation.

It is true that certain developers and development teams can and do get tunnel vision or seduced by the latest thing to come out to solve issues. It makes sense that someone would need to manage that from an overall vision standpoint. Again, I am talking about the actual build/install/test/implementation grind.

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The point I was trying to make was the other one: I would rather a system be implemented by someone actually understanding networks, memory allocation, IOCompletion ports, etc.

Most of the 4GL applications us CIS types develop with don't require us to address memory directly (of course we do garbage handling). You are describing lower level coding. I agree that CS grads would be best at this type of work.

I develop business applications using 4GL languages. For the type of development I do, I care about business requirements and converting them into a working application. The purpose of 4GL languages is to allow us to focus more on the business and less on the hardware/networks. If you are talking C, C++, Pascal, Assembler, or any other low level language I say CS all the way. If you are talking higher-level languages (keywork 'Visual') like VB, C#, Java, COBOL, ...etc than a CIS degree is perfectly suited to this (as are CS grads). I do alot of PL/SQL, T-SQL, ansi-SQL, and database design also.

In addition to coding, I also create design artifacts during the initial phases of the lifecycle (modeling and requirements documents) using System Architect which is similar to Rational Rose, only it sucks ;) FYI, don't encourage your company to purchase SA.

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I'd say it depends on the program. I personally went for the CS degree. I have worked with, and hired/not hired people from both types of programs. It always depended on the job. Some schools still call them MIS degrees (uhg). It really comes down to what you wish to do in your career: technical, or manager type (IMHO).

CS types tend to be more technical and mathematical in nature, CIS tends to push the business side of things. Our CIS people primarily do project management type jobs (MS project, paper work paper work paperwork). The CS types do all the 'real' work. (No offense intended to CIS/MIS types :))

dale

I must disagree with the statement that CS degree's are more respected than CIS or MIS degrees.It depends on your long term career goals.If you want to sit in front of a computer all day for the rest of your life and code sure go the CS route because that's all you will really do.CIS and MIS degree's are more diverse with a business mix.Therefore, you get to see the business end of the company and the IT end.You aren't just stuck in a cube world typing out code.So I say if you want to be able to advance higher in a company's hierarchy, I would go MIS or CIS you have more value to the company.Because programmers come a dime a dozen, but programmers with business skills and people skills don't.And as for the math part of CS it's is over rated, because I work as the Lead Developer for a civil engineering firm and most programs I write have very little math involved.You aren't going to use much Cal III unless you go work for NASA or some scientific based company.So in the end I feel CIS or MIS are more well rounded degree's in the business and corporate world and CS degree's lock you into coding.

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I think the best option is what I'm doing. For undergraduate, a B.S. in Computer Science with a minor in Business Computer Information Systems (So I get a taste of Business IT/CIS in my minor) with all of the math and programming skills in my major. Now that I'm graduating, I'm going to go on to my MBA for grad school. I think that makes a good mix of comp sci and business :)

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Now that I'm graduating, I'm going to go on to my MBA for grad school.

Which school do you plan on getting your MBA from? Are you going to get a general MBA or one that is tracked in an IT field? I'm wondering, because I'm just finishing up my BSIT with University of Phoenix and plan on moving on to an MBA program. I will probably use a different school for my MBA, even though I really enjoyed my undergrad there. Anyways, thanks in advance for answering my questions.

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Now, all these degrees are based on "theory"...what is the practical part of it? I'm new to CS. I enjoy programming.

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I have CIS degree. I also studied two years as CS major but it completely depends on what do you want to do in your future and what type of job you are looking for. CS and CIS are pretty much the same but CIS is new a term used for CS which actually means (Computer science and Business). I have been working as a software developer for 5 years now and I know many CS majors who are also working with me so we both are working as developers but mostly CS majors are focused on the software development that uses C++ technologies because these people write applications more technical for Operating Systems or Computer peripherals drivers or even embedded systems etc . CIS majors design business enterprise type applications like large scale ERP systems. We are back bone of the business industry. You probably heard of SAP, PeopleSoft, Great Plains, Oracle that is where we fit in but CIS majors also end up working as Systems Analysts , Business Analysts, QA analysts or Network Administrators. I prefer CIS major since they teach you about hardcore business courses like Financial and Managerial Accounting courses with computer programming. Also it does not matter whether you have a CIS major degree or CS major because you learn with the industry. CS majors sometimes end up working in the business industry just like my fellow developers and CIS majors also end up working in technical areas because you always upgrade your skills as you move on. I started my first job as a C++ developer to code for hand held devices.

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Bsc Computer Science is the best..trust me it is dificult but its worth it..i am doing second year...

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As mentioned above, CS always has a more mathematical approach with the focus being on maths rather than systems. Having a CIS will allow you to move into systems admin/support/management and will allow you to move into junior business application development. CS graduates tend to move into either scientific computing (research) or mission critical areas of development, where mathematical abilities are more important than generic system awareness.

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CS graduates tend to move into either scientific computing (research) or mission critical areas of development, where mathematical abilities are more important than generic system awareness.

This is, of course, a complete distortion of reality.

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