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The College of St. Scholastica
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Brandon Olson, Ph.D.
Department Chair
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(218) 723-6799
bolson1@css.edu

Computer Information Systems (CIS)

Fast Facts: Computer Information Systems (CIS)

  • Students learn about current and emerging computer technologies and how to apply these system technologies to solve organizational problems

  • Core curriculum includes courses in programming languages, hardware systems and database modeling

  • Systems development courses cover the analysis, design and development of new computer systems utilizing state-of-the-art software and methodologies used in the computer industry

  • Courses are constantly updated to keep pace with changes in the industry

  • Professors have extensive professional experience encompassing education, science and technology

  • Latest technologies include web development, mobile device programming and 3D game design

  • High percentage of female and international students bring diverse perspectives to the program

  • Students work with faculty on joint research projects in preparation for future graduate research

  • St. Scholastica was named on the list of Top 200 schools for Native Americans pursuing degrees in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) by Winds of Change magazine

  • Program offers a series of “concentrations” to choose from or allows students to create a custom concentration to match their interests. Areas of concentration include:

    • Management or Applied Economics: Learn to apply new technology in a business setting

    • Healthcare: Information technology is one of fastest-growing areas in the healthcare system

    • Web Development and Electronic Commerce: Provides not only technical background in web development but also artistic design and the business side of e-commerce

    • Mathematics: Designed for students who plan to pursue graduate study or work in scientific or other career fields using complex programming applications. Computational theory, programming, and calculus-based mathematics are emphasized

    • Software Engineering: Prepares students to apply the principles of computer science and engineering to the design, development, testing, maintenance and evaluation of software systems. It will help make students productive members of teams in a variety of software engineering applications.

Program Requirements

Major: 70 core credits 
Minor: 20 credits

Internships

Students complete real-world projects for actual clients as part of this program. In addition, all Computer Information Systems (CIS) majors are required to complete an internship. The department has developed partnerships with many innovative companies in the Duluth and Twin Cities areas. St. Scholastica students have developed a reputation for high-quality performance in many area businesses.

Careers

The demand for computer professionals continues to expand. The Federal Bureau of Labor Statistics expects job opportunities in computer-related fields to be better than any other field for at least the next decade. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, graduates with a computer science major earned the highest starting salaries in 2013. Scholastica graduates find work as web developers, software engineers, database specialists and system analysts. An increasing number of graduates are working for computer consulting firms, while others are managing information systems of large and small organizations.

Sample curriculum

Here are some classes you could take as part of this major or minor. Please note that you would not necessarily need all of these courses to fulfill a major or minor. This list doesn't include general education courses. Be sure to create your course plan in consultation with your advisor.

Course Creation Center

Expand and Collapse Coursework

Expand and Collapse CIS 2011 - Hardware/Software Systems

A survey of technical topics related to computer systems with emphasis on the relationships between computer hardware, system software and application software. It explores different operating systems (with an emphasis on Microsoft Windows), hardware configurations, memory management techniques, and networking. Prerequisite: CIS 1004

Expand and Collapse CIS 2085 - Programming I with Java

An introduction to object-oriented programming using the Java language, a cross-platform Internet programming language. The course examines the nature of programming and its use in solving problems. Students learn to read and write programs using standard programming structures, including input/output, control statements, loops and methods. No prerequisite.

Expand and Collapse CIS 2087 - Programming II with Java

Continuation of object-oriented programming. The course deals with problems involving arrays and teaches techniques and methods to handle files and structures. This course expands on the object concepts introduced in CIS 2085. Prerequisite: CIS 2085.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3089 - Data Structures & Algorithm An

Fundamental concepts of algorithm analysis and the specification and implementation of data structures and data types are introduced. Topics include linked lists, stacks, queues, binary search trees, sorting, searching and graphs. Prerequisite: CIS 2087.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3107 - Database Modeling

Provides an understanding of fundamental concepts in the management of data, hands-on experience with a small-scale database management system, and an awareness of the application of business data base management systems. Lab exercises involve use of a relational DBMS to load, update and retrieve information from a database. Prerequisite: CIS 1007.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3108 - Systems Analysis & Design

An in-depth focus on the five phases of the systems development life cycle. Topics include: preliminary investigation, physical and logical documentation, detailed investigation of requirements and alternative specifications, analysis and design techniques, implementation considerations, development of logical and physical data flow diagrams, data modeling, prototyping, CASE tools and the use of Gantt and PERT charts. A sample project is introduced and is integrated using the SDLC methodology. Prerequisite: CIS 3107.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4109 - Systems Development Implement

An in-depth systems development lifecycle practicum. Students work in teams to analyze, design, implement and document a complete information system. Most projects come from systems design requests from the local community. Prerequisite: CIS 3108.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4555 - Software Development Internshp

A capstone experience integrating knowledge and skills gained through other programming and systems development courses. Involves significant participation in software development projects in a real or simulated business setting. The experience must be equivalent to 150 hours of work experience for each block of 4 credits. Prerequisite: consent of department internship coordinator.

Expand and Collapse ENG 3364 - MGT Communications: Written

Emphasis on the writing process as appropriate to the management situation. Students complete a series of writing assignments including letters, memos, proposals, problem-solving reports, informational reports and group writing projects. The emphasis is on audience adaptation, clarity of purpose, adequacy of support and correct format. Students will be introduced to writing for the electronic media. Students must be juniors and have some professional experience before enrolling. Prerequisite ENG 1110 or competency.

Expand and Collapse MGT 3150 - MGT Communications: Written

Emphasis on the writing process as adapted to the management situation. Students complete a series of writing assignments including letters, memos, proposals, problem-solving reports and informational reports and procedures, with an emphasis on audience adaptation, clarity of purpose, adequacy of support and correct format. Students will be introduced to writing for electronic media. Students must be juniors and have some professional experience before enrolling. Prerequisite: ENG 1110 or competency.

Expand and Collapse Concentrations

Expand and Collapse Business Analysis

Expand and Collapse ACC 2210 - Principles of Financial Accounting

An introduction to the preparation and use of financial accounting information. Course includes preparation and analysis of financial statements and related disclosures.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3287 - Software Quality Assurance

Growing competition is increasing the demands on software quality, which calls for rigorous quality assurance. In this course the students will learn the life cycle of software quality assurance, its goals, benefits, standards, related models and costs. Students will learn that the software quality is not only code-weighted but also depends on several other attributes that make software of high quality. Prerequisite: CIS 2085 and CIS 3108.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4041 - Web Design

Explore the design principles that characterize successful Web sites and use modern tools for creating Web sites. Design issues will include the differences between print and electronic media, working within the limits of the technology, and how the user's contexts and goals affect Web design. Web sites will be critiqued from both an aesthetic and functional standpoint and students will be required to design and build fully functional Web sites. No prerequisites; CTA/CIS 2041 recommended.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4042 - Computer Security

An overview of different computer security threats and measures that can be taken to make computers more secure. Hands on experience with a wide range of security techniques will be used to show the various threats to computer systems. Both technical and management solutions to security problems will be discussed. Student will be required to sign a code of conduct at the start of class given the sensitive nature of the material covered. This course will attempt to cover the major aspects of security including: risk management, access control, security architecture, physical security, telecommunications security, cryptography, business continuity, and disaster recovery.

Expand and Collapse MGT 3350 - Designing Successful New Produ

Expand and Collapse PSY 3331 - Statistics

Covers basic statistical concepts and methods useful in conducting research and evaluating results of studies done by others. Topics include frequency distributions and graphs, measures of central tendency and variability, transformed scores, correlations, multiple regression, hypothesis testing (t test, analysis of variance, and chi square), selection of appropriate statistics, calculation with MS Excel spreadsheets and SPSS, interpretation of the "results" sections of journal articles, and numeracy (understanding and using numbers in decision-making). Prerequisite: competence in arithmetic.

Expand and Collapse Health Informatics

Expand and Collapse HIM 2101 - Medical Language

The study of terminology common to medicine; utilizing word elements as a basis for building medical terms and analyzing meanings; defining, pronouncing, and spelling commonly used medical terms; conversion of layman’s terms to appropriate medical terminology. In addition, terminology of specific medical allied health specialties (surgery, dentistry, radiology, etc.) and abbreviations are reviewed.

Expand and Collapse HIM 2102 - Intro to Pharmacotherapeutics

An introduction to the variety of drugs used for disease treatment for each body system. A general understanding of how drugs work, their potential and limitations, as well as their diversity and number will be explored.

Expand and Collapse HIM 2111 - HIM Technologies in Practice

Application of technology to HIM practice including electronic health records, clinical information systems, management information systems in HIM; this course will focus on hands on experience with electronic systems including the Academic Electronic Health Record (AEHR) via AHIMA’s virtual lab and other technology applications for creating, managing, and storing and retrieving electronic health data. Prerequisite: HIM 2110.

Expand and Collapse HIM 3132 - Medicolegal Issues

Study of the U.S. judicial system; hospital, medical staff and other professional liability; health information as evidence; consent for treatment; retention and release of medical information; the health record as a legal document; risk management, prevention and potential; confidentiality of health information; and a patient's right to know. Prerequisite: HIM 2110.

Expand and Collapse HIM 4415 - Health Data Analytics

Provides a foundation for designing databases and analyzing healthcare data to enhance clinical and administrative decision-making. Topics include database management, data analysis, data reporting, SQL, statistics, data mining, and data visualization. Students will have practical experience with software applications used in the healthcare industry.

Expand and Collapse PSY 3331 - Statistics

Covers basic statistical concepts and methods useful in conducting research and evaluating results of studies done by others. Topics include frequency distributions and graphs, measures of central tendency and variability, transformed scores, correlations, multiple regression, hypothesis testing (t test, analysis of variance, and chi square), selection of appropriate statistics, calculation with MS Excel spreadsheets and SPSS, interpretation of the "results" sections of journal articles, and numeracy (understanding and using numbers in decision-making). Prerequisite: competence in arithmetic.

Expand and Collapse Mathematics

Expand and Collapse CIS 3089 - Data Structures & Algorithm An

Fundamental concepts of algorithm analysis and the specification and implementation of data structures and data types are introduced. Topics include linked lists, stacks, queues, binary search trees, sorting, searching and graphs. Prerequisite: CIS 2087.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4115 - Artificial Intelligence with Robotics

Gives students an in depth understanding of modern artificial intelligence methodologies, techniques, tools and results. Students learn the theoretical and conceptual components of this discipline. Topics covered: history of AI, search techniques, knowledge representation, reasoning, natural languages, machine learning, robotics, neural networks and expert systems. Students implement the above topics by means of computer programs written in laboratory. Interactions between artificial intelligence and other disciplines will be explored.

Expand and Collapse MTH 2221 - Calculus I

Limits, continuity and fundamental theory of differentiation, symbolic and numerical calculations of derivatives, applications of derivatives; definite integrals and Riemann sums. Prerequisite: Precalculus or ACT Math score of at least 29.

Expand and Collapse MTH 2222 - Calculus II

Study of numerical integration, applications of definite integrals, improper integrals, sequences and infinite series, basic ideas and methods for solving differential equations. Prerequisite: MTH 2221.

Expand and Collapse MTH 2401 - Discrete Mathematics I

Elementary graph theory including matrix representation; coding and sorting applications; combinations and permutations; voting and apportionment; introduction to logic; elementary algorithm analysis and design; mathematical induction. Prerequisites: MTH 1111, Java Programming language or instructor's permission.

Expand and Collapse MTH 3322 - Linear Algebra

Further study of systems of linear equations, matrices and determinants, vector spaces and subspaces, linear transformations, eigenvalues and eigenvectors, diagonalization. Prerequisite: MTH 2222 or instructor's permission.

Expand and Collapse MTH 4411 - Probability and Statistics I

A survey course in mathematical probability and statistics. It includes probability distributions and densities, mathematical expectations, functions of random variables, introduction to estimation theory and hypothesis testing and applications. Prerequisite: MTH 2222.

Expand and Collapse Software Development

Expand and Collapse CIS 3034 - Client-Side Web Development

Provides an introduction to creating web applications with a rich client-side interface. The course focuses on the use of standards-compliant programming techniques and innovative approaches to user experience design. Gives students practical experience in working with current and emerging web technologies for the client-side of applications. Prerequisite: CIS 2085 or consent of instructor.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3089 - Data Structures & Algorithm An

Fundamental concepts of algorithm analysis and the specification and implementation of data structures and data types are introduced. Topics include linked lists, stacks, queues, binary search trees, sorting, searching and graphs. Prerequisite: CIS 2087.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3230 - Game Design and 3D Modeling

An introduction to the diverse tasks required for 3-D game development. An overview of the game design industry and game development processes lead to development projects that use leading development tools. Sophisticated 3-D models are created using modeling software and incorporated into the development projects. Assessment is based on student's understanding of the methodologies, use of the development tools, and aesthetics of the designs. Prerequisite: CIS 2085.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3285 - Software Design

An introduction to software engineering and the processes for building software systems. The course examines the software lifecycle and the methods used to manage software projects. Students learn to create software designs from user requirements using UML, convert these design into software, and test and maintain this software. Since software design entails significant interactions between parties, people management and team management methods are explored including analysis of the ethical implications of the software design process. Prerequisite: CIS 2085 and CIS 3108.

Expand and Collapse CIS 3334 - Mobile Device Programming

Develop applications for a variety of resource constrained devices such as cellular phones, pagers and personal digital assistants (PDAs). Students will explore the creation of graphical user interfaces, data storage, network access and game development. Activities include creating applications for mobile devices using both high-level and low-level industry standard interfaces and developing a distributed application over a wireless network. Prerequisites: CIS 2087 or consent of instructor.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4034 - Server-Side Web Development

Provides an introduction to web site administration and the use of a web development IDE for the creation of database driven web applications. The course focuses on server-side programming and database access for web applications; giving students practical experience with current development environments. Pre- or co-requisite: CIS 2087 and CIS 3107 or consent of instructor.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4042 - Computer Security

An overview of different computer security threats and measures that can be taken to make computers more secure. Hands on experience with a wide range of security techniques will be used to show the various threats to computer systems. Both technical and management solutions to security problems will be discussed. Student will be required to sign a code of conduct at the start of class given the sensitive nature of the material covered. This course will attempt to cover the major aspects of security including: risk management, access control, security architecture, physical security, telecommunications security, cryptography, business continuity, and disaster recovery.

Expand and Collapse CIS 4115 - Artificial Intelligence with Robotics

Gives students an in depth understanding of modern artificial intelligence methodologies, techniques, tools and results. Students learn the theoretical and conceptual components of this discipline. Topics covered: history of AI, search techniques, knowledge representation, reasoning, natural languages, machine learning, robotics, neural networks and expert systems. Students implement the above topics by means of computer programs written in laboratory. Interactions between artificial intelligence and other disciplines will be explored.

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  • "I chose computer information systems because I knew the skills that I would get from this major would be transferrable everywhere. No matter which language the country speaks, no matter what laws it has, the skills I gained here would always be applicable."

    – Elena Samota, ‘13