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Online Education (information Management Degree)

By Expert Author: John Srob

Why Should I Pursue an Information Management Master's Degree?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), you may qualify for an information systems management position with a bachelor's degree in a computer-related subject area. However, the BLS also states that potential employers often prefer to hire managers who hold an appropriate master's degree.

If you are looking for an accredited school offering a graduate program in information management, consider checking the online database offered by the National Center for Education Statistics. It offers a listing of more than 170 schools that may offer master's degree programs in the field (www.nces.com).

An information management master's degree program can provide you with the skills necessary to manage an information technology (IT) department. It can also provide the knowledge you need to perform installation and maintenance of computers and information systems, to assist with storing and retrieving company information and to perform upgrades on a system.

What Can I Expect in a Program?

You might qualify for admission to a master's degree program in information management if you hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. Your bachelor's degree need not be in information systems, but a school may require you to have completed computer-relevant courses. You may be required to have achieved a minimum acceptable score on either the graduate records exam (GRE) of the graduate management admissions test (GMAT). Schools may also ask you to submit a statement of purpose essay and a number of letters of recommendation.

A graduate program in information management can take 1-2 years to finish and can consist of 24-45 credits. Completion can lead to a Master of Science in an area such as information management or management information systems. Schools may give you the option of participating on a full- or part-time basis.

Typical courses you might encounter include information systems development and management, data communication and systems, systems analysis and design, information measures, project management and data warehousing. Your choice of electives can determine your concentration. Some common concentrations are data administration and management, information security, information system applications, project management, health information systems management and network management.

Often you may be required to complete a capstone project, illustrating your ability to apply theory to practice. A school may give you the option of completing a master's thesis or sitting for a comprehensive examination. You may also have the opportunity to serve an internship.

What Online Opportunities Are Available?

You can easily find online and on-campus master's degree programs in information management. Some schools may even allow you to split your participation between online and on-campus courses. Programs may consist of a combination of independent study courses and courses in which you're assigned to a class group. Class group courses are those in which your participation is part of a cooperative effort with other students and are conducted through an online course management system.
Types of computer information management degrees
Computer information management degrees can be at associate's, bachelor's or master's level. They lend themselves to distance and online learning, but can you can also study them full-time. Most computer management degrees will cover some or all of these areas:

Principles of business and communications
Information storage and retrieval
Operating systems
Programming languages
Website design
Systems analysis
Networks
Principles of database systems
Internet and Intranets
Health information management

§ The Master of Information Management (MIM) degree prepares you to be a leader in the use of information and technology in your organization. Drawing from management, computer science, information systems, and information science, the MIM program provides you with the skills and knowledge to successfully meet users’ information needs, lead efforts to develop organization information management capabilities, develop and deploy emerging technologies, and manage high-value information resources.

§ The MIM program gives you the opportunity to work, learning from their expertise and cutting edge research. There are many specializations available to you that will help you focus on your research and professional interests. These specializations include: Strategic Management, Technology Development and Deployment, Curation and Management of Digital Assets, User Interface/User Experience, Data Analytics, Project Management, Strategic Management of Information, or Information Management Research (or create an Individualized Program Plan specifically designed to meet your needs). You will work with faculty and colleagues from a variety of disciplines, industries, and cultures. The intellectual depth and diversity of the MIM program provides a rich platform for advancing your career in information management.

What is the focus of the MIM program?

The MIM program integrates elements of management, computing, and information science to address critical social, economic, legal, and policy challenges associated with supporting information use by individuals and organizations. The MIM program has been offered at the College Park campus since Fall 2003 and at the Universities at Shady Grove campus since Fall 2011, graduating over 300 professionals.
The specific goals of the MIM program are to:

Prepare professionals for leadership positions that bridge the gap between technology-oriented staff, functional personnel, and management.
Address the growing need for skilled information professionals who can strategically manage information and technology assets to fulfill critical information needs in organizations.
Provide leadership in the information management field through the study of ethical, political, social, and technical issues related to information management in modern society.
Assist organizations in the formation of information policies, development and application of information systems and services, and the use of information management technologies and methods.


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