FAQ for Undergraduate MIS Students Considering the MBA Program with a Concentration in IA, MIS, or Both

Can I complete an MBA with an MIS concentration if I've already completed a BBA with an MIS concentration?

The short answer is yes. That said, developing a plan of study can be tricky due to some overlaps among the BBA and MBA MIS concentrations. There are some graduate MIS courses that you can't or shouldn't take since they overlap undergraduate coursework. The overlaps include MGMT 634 (similar to 459), 637 (similar to 329), and 632 (similar to 331/461). However, there are several more graduate MIS courses from which to choose, including some that count toward both the MIS and IA concentrations.  Note that a few of the graduate IA courses also overlap undergraduate MIS courses: 636 (similar to 336) and 647 (similar to 437).  Again, however, there are several more from which to choose such as 646, 648, 649, occasional special topics courses, and computer science courses (if you meet the prerequisites).

A concentration advisor must approve your MIS and/or IA graduate plan of study.  Be sure to review your concentration requirements with an advisor BEFORE you begin your graduate coursework, as your advisor will determine which courses count toward your graduate concentration(s).

What are the differences and similarities between the MBA MIS and IA concentrations?

The MIS concentration prepares you for applications development and system administration positions. The IA concentration prepares you for more specialized roles in system/network security, internal and criminal investigations, and auditing. They overlap in the areas of system/network administration and management.

How does the MBA MIS concentration differ from the BBA MIS concentration?

The BBA concentration has fewer courses though it has some, such as MGMT 337 and 461, that have no graduate equivalents.  The BBA concentration prepares you for entry-level positions in applications development and system administration.  The MBA concentration expands the managerial content and provides additional specialized courses in system and network administration and security.  It includes courses such as management of information systems (630), project management (631), computer forensics (646), and advanced IS security (648) that don't exist at the BBA level.  Other advanced courses are in the works for academic years 2012/2013 and later.  The unique MBA courses prepare you for higher-level IS and IT administrative positions and for specialized system management and security positions.

Are accounting courses a required part of the MBA IA concentration?

There are no required courses in the MBA IA concentration, though MGMT 636 (assuming that you don't waive it based on completing MGMT 336) is effectively required since it's a prerequisite to most other computer-oriented IA courses.  Whether accounting courses add value to your IA study plan depends on your background and aspirations.  In practice, there is increasing overlap between accounting, MIS, and IA. UNM Anderson's program is uniquely positioned to prepare you for such work environments.  A student can choose from accounting-related courses in auditing, fraud, and white collar-crime, and computer-related courses in computer forensics, intrusion detection, and IT security. A student can mix and match from both "sides" to customize their program.

If you completed the BBA/MIS and did not take MGMT 336 or 437 then you can complete the MBA IA concentration without taking any accounting-oriented accounting courses. If you completed both 336 and 437 as an undergraduate then you usually have to take at least one accounting-oriented IA course because there aren't 5 graduate computer-related courses from which to choose.  Accounting-oriented students usually face the same issue with respect to taking computer-related IA classes, especially if they completed MGMT 336 or 443 as an undergraduate.

Why would I (as an undergraduate MIS major) want to take accounting-oriented IA courses?

The short answer is because they cover useful information and skills and because it will increase your flexibility in the job market. In particular, MGMT 642 (Fraud Accounting) covers many legal concepts that are central to forensic investigators whether they're oriented toward accounting or computer technology. If you're considering internal or criminal investigation as a career path then you probably want to mix courses from both "sides" of the IA concentration.

Can some courses "double-count" toward the MBA MIS and IA concentrations?

Yes. Courses that overlap include 636, 637, 646, and 647. Other overlaps are considered on a case-by-case basis. A typical student who completed a BBA with an MIS concentration can complete both the graduate MIS and IA concentrations with 8 courses, effectively double-counting 2 courses.

How many courses (credit hours) must a student who has completed a BBA with an MIS concentration take to complete an MBA with a dual MIS/IA concentration?

The total number of courses required to complete the MBA with both concentrations varies. The primary determining factors are:

In the best case, for a student with B grades or better in all undergraduate core courses completed within the preceding 5 years, most graduate core courses are waived and the total number of graduate credit hours that must be completed is 33 (11 courses). All students must take MGMT 504, 511, and MGMT 598. That leaves eight courses - enough to complete a dual MIS/IA concentration.

How do I know which courses to take and which will count toward the concentrations?

You should meet with both the MBA advisor (in the advisement center) and one or more of the faculty IA concentration advisors (currently Professors Brody, Flor, and Seazzu) BEFORE you begin your graduate coursework.  Start with the MBA advisor, who will determine which, if any, MBA core classes you can waive and how many credit hours you must complete.

Then, meet with one or more of the IA or MIS faculty concentration advisors.  They'll help you to develop a study plan that best matches your background and future goals. Choose a faculty concentration advisor or advisors depending on your interests:


This page was last updated on 06/25/12