BS in Computer Information Systems

The computer information systems major prepares students for careers in the analysis, design, and implementation of information systems.

68-69 units

The BS in Computer Information Systems (CIS) program provides an integrated educational and practical foundation for students planning a career in the analysis, design, and implementation of information systems. Students are prepared for careers as systems analysts, application software developers, and information technology specialists. Students who have a strong interest in technology and its application, but are not primarily interested in the scientific and mathematical aspects of computer science, should find this program a good fit.

Information systems (IS) is the study of the application of computer technology in organizations. It is founded on two major reference disciplines: computer science and management. Unlike computer science students, IS undergraduates must complete some accounting and finance coursework. IS involves no coursework in engineering or scientific computing, and the mathematics courses are practical and applied. Traditionally, IS undergraduate curriculum focuses on managing information systems (the business side of IS); APU’s CIS program emphasizes the application of computer technology to information systems.

Knowledge of operating systems, computer networks, and database applications is emphasized in this major.

Career Opportunities

The Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems prepares students for advanced studies in fields such as computer information systems, computer engineering, computer security, and telecommunications.

The CIS program offers internship opportunities to prepare students for careers following graduation. Students gain hands-on experience at several local and national businesses and organizations, and these organizations regularly request APU students for internships and employment. Employment opportunities in the areas of system networking, database management, telecommunication, and web programming are in abundance.


Computer information systems students are required to have a laptop for classroom work. In addition to the General Education requirements, 53-54 computer information systems units, 6 mathematics units, and 9 business units (for a total of 68-69 units) are required for the Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems.

CIS Core Courses 1, 2
ENGR 110STEM as Vocation 33
CS/ENGR 120Introduction to Computer Science I F/S, 44
CS/ENGR 125Introduction to Computer Science II F/S4
CS/ENGR 160Discrete Structures F/S3
CS 230Systems Programming and Operating Systems F3
WRIT 242Writing 2: Entrepreneurial Tech Start-ups 53
CS/ENGR 260Algorithms and Data Structures F/S3
CS 290Database Management Systems F/S, 43
CS 325Telecommunications and Interfacing S3
CS 470Software Engineering F, 63
CS 480Senior Capstone Project S, 43
CS 491Computer Science Internship F/S, 63
Select at least one of the following (if both are selected, one will count as an elective)3
Web Programming S
Mobile App Development F
Upper-division CIS Elective Courses
Select four of the following:12-13
Quantitative Analysis for Management
Digital Logic Systems 4
Fundamentals of Network Administration F
Computer Architecture and Organization F
Web Programming (If not taken as core) S
Artificial Intelligence (If not taken as core)
Compiler Construction
Machine Learning S
Advanced Database Application Programming
Mobile App Development (If not taken as core) F
Internet of Things S
Cyber Security
Topics in Computer Science
Writing 3: Ethics in Computer Science 7
Embedded Systems
Computer Networks
Math Courses
MATH 130Introduction to Statistics 83
MATH 151Applied Calculus I3
Business Courses
ACCT 120Principles of Accounting I3
BUSI 240Introduction to Information Systems and Business Applications3
MGMT 210Principles of Management 63
Total Units68-69

The General Education Social Sciences course recommended by the Department of Engineering and Computer Science is CS 115.


The General Education Civic Knowledge and Engagement course recommended by the Department of Engineering and Computer Science is ENGR 101.


Meets the General Education Intercultural Competence requirement.


Meets 1 unit of the General Education Oral Communication requirement (taking CS 120, CS 290, and CS 480—or CS 120, ENGR 240, and ENGR 480—satisfies the General Education Oral Communication requirement).


Meets the General Education Writing 2 requirement.


Meets the General Education Integrative and Applied Learning requirement.


Meets the General Education Writing 3 requirement.


Meets the General Education Quantitative Literacy requirement.

F Offered in Fall only
S Offered in Spring only
F/S Offered in both Fall and Spring terms
EF Offered in Fall in even years
ES Offered in Spring in even years
OF Offered in Fall in odd years
OS Offered in Spring in odd years

Students should enroll in CS 120 in their first semester of attendance in the department. It is also imperative that students determine which math course they qualify for and enroll in that course during their first semester, continuing with all math courses until they have completed math requirements for the CIS program. If students do not know which math course they qualify for, they should contact the Academic Success Center at (626) 815-3849 to make an appointment for placement testing.

Contact the Student Services Center and/or the Academic Success Center for all General Education advising. 

Program Learning Outcomes

Students who successfully complete this program shall be able to:
  1. Analyze a complex computing problem and apply principles of computing and other relevant disciplines to identify solutions.
  2. Design, implement, and evaluate a computing-based solution to meet a given set of computing requirements in the context of the program’s discipline.
  3. Communicate effectively in a variety of professional contexts.
  4. Recognize professional responsibilities and make informed judgments in computing practice based on legal and ethical principles.
  5. Function effectively as a member or leader of a team engaged in activities appropriate to the program’s discipline.
  6. Apply computer science theory and software development fundamentals to produce computing-based solutions.
  7. Demonstrate scientific knowledge of computation comprising computer architecture, algorithm analysis, programming principles, and software design.