What is the Difference Between a Computer Science Degree and a Computer Information Systems (CIS) Degree?

Students often wonder what the differences are between computer science and information systems. Both deal with computers but they focus on different technological aspects. Before choosing a degree to follow, it’s important to understand what road each degree sets you down. Here’s the break down of each degree and what they specialize in.

What is a Computer Science Degree?

Computer Science focuses on technical and theoretical programs. A degree in computer science provides students with knowledge of computer operating systems, coding, computer networking, computer architecture, and database design. Computer science has roots in math, physics, and electrical engineering. Some people feel overwhelmed with the amount of math this degree requires but students who are comfortable with mathematics or have previous experience with it have few problems with it. The nice thing about a Computer Science Degree is that pairs well with a wide variety of degrees like woman studies, religion, chemistry, biology, and much more.

What is a Computer Information Systems Degree?

With a Computer Information Systems Degree, students focus on how to apply technology to business. Computer information systems takes technology and places it in a commercial setting. In addition to learning how technology works, students learn how to use the technology to benefit a company. The reviews for this degree are mixed. Some people enjoy that many topics are covered, while others become frustrated by the lack of focus on one particular subject. A computer information systems course includes business courses and managerial communications, as well as coding and other tech skills. This degree goes well with most business related majors and degrees in arts, graphics design, and communication.

What Jobs Are Available with Each Degree?

Luckily with both degrees there are a wide verity of jobs available. These jobs a listed separately but they often crossover.

Jobs available with a Computer Science Degree:

  •  Database designer or administrator
  •  Modeling and simulations
  •  Artificial intelligence (AI)
  •  Programming (scientific, system, design, interface, and computer control)
  •  Software development
  •  Software publishing
  •  Software engineering
  •  Quality assurance engineering
  •  Telecommunications planning

Jobs available with a Computer Information Systems Degree:

  •  Human computer interaction specialist
  •  Data warehousing and mining
  •  Help desk
  •  Internet services
  •  Chief information officer
  •  IS or IT management
  •  Database management or administrating
  •  Management consultant
  •  Management, systems, or operating research analyst
  •  Business application developer
  •  ERP administrator
  •  Business decision support specialist
  •  Internet or intranet manager

All degrees come with pros and cons. Students who enjoy programming and learning almost all aspects of technology may enjoy a Computer Science Degree but can find the amount of math and coding required over whelming. Students who enjoy marketing and learning about business will most likely enjoy a Computer Information Systems Degree. It covers a broad range of topics which some people enjoy but others become frustrated with. The nice thing about both degrees is that they can be combined with a wide verity of degrees and each of them guarantee a high amount of jobs available after graduation. It’s important to consider personal strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes, and what kind of job is desired after graduation before choosing your degree but either way, a good future is evident.

For more information on degrees, check out “Top 10 Best Online Computer Science Degree Programs“.

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