Computer Information Systems and Security
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Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) offers bachelor's degrees in Computer Information Systems and Security (CISS) that prepare graduates to become leading professionals in information systems and technology in all industries. OLLU has been designated as a National Center for Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It is part of an elite group of colleges and universities nationwide to receive the designation.
The programs prepare graduates for the wide-ranging field of information technology through hands-on experience with emerging technologies in the areas of:
- Computer and Network Security Foundations
- Database Management
- Information Assurance and Security
- Network Administration
- Operating Systems
- Systems Analysis and Design
The CISS programs are tied to the federal government's objectives that encourage training and development of skilled professionals in order to protect the nation's information technology infrastructure. Graduates of the program are prepared to help develop, manage and protect computers and networks in government, medical centers, financial centers in virtually every sector of the economy.
OLLU also offers a Master of Science degree in Information Systems and Security.
CISS Degrees and Programs Offered
The Bachelor of Science (BS) in CISS focuses on the technological components of Computer Information Systems and Security. Students get comprehensive knowledge in information systems and computer technology to prepare them to work in a variety of industries to manage an organization’s information systems.
The Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) in CISS emphasizes the business aspects of CISS. The degree prepares students to protect the valuable information technology assets of an organization and serve in a liaison role between information technology and the other business functions of an organization. Students pursuing the BBA complete core business courses as well as specialized CISS courses.
The Bachelor of Applied Studies (BAS) inn CISS is designed for IT professionals and technical school and community college students with an associate’s degree in information technology or telecommunications. Credit for the associate’s degree in an IT field is applied to the bachelor’s degree.
The minor in CISS pairs well with many of the majors offered at OLLU to enhance a student’s knowledge of computer programming, hardware and operating systems.
A certificate in Cyber Security is available to all Computer Information Systems and Security (CISS) programs. Students must earn a grade of C- or higher in all of the CISS core courses and in 12 credit hours of additional cybersecurity courses.
Also available to non-CISS majors, particularly those already pursuing a minor in CISS who take an additional 18 hours to earn the certificate.
Spanish-speaking students can earn a bilingual CISS degree with through the Biliterate Certificate Program. Spanish-speaking students take specialized Spanish classes and fulfill a portion of their major requirements by taking courses taught in Spanish.
Learn more about the Biliterate Certificate
Studying CISS at OLLU
Community and Service-Learning
As part of OLLU’s dedication to community service and service-learning, there are courses within the CISS curriculum that are specifically designed for students to take their knowledge into the community in the form of service projects. Recent community service projects include teaching seminars to senior citizens on online safety and building an app for a local nonprofit organization.
Internships and Work Experience
CISS students are strongly encouraged to pursue an internship while studying at OLLU. Students have gained invaluable experience by taking what they have learned to some of the top companies in San Antonio and across the country. Many students who complete an internship have been offered jobs before graduating. Some students are also work on campus in the IT Department.
Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP)
CISS students at OLLI have the opportunity to join the campus chapter of the Association of Information Technology Professionals (AITP). Becoming a member of AITP allows for students to network with industry professionals, participate in regional and national competitions, keep up to date on industry trends and explore leadership opportunities among other benefits.
Center for Information Assurance Management and Leadership
Students in OLLU’s CISS program have access to the University’s Center for Information Assurance Management and Leadership (CIAML). The center was created to provide access to high-quality information assurance and security policies, procedures, standards and guidelines for the industry, the government and higher education. It serves as a resource for students and the community.
Full-time faculty memebers in the Computer Information Systems and Security Department and the School of Business and Leadership have extensive professional and academic experience. Most have doctoral degrees and/or professional certifications. Seasoned practitioners who teach selected courses complement full-time professors as adjunct faculty. View School of Business Faculty.
Students studying CISS at OLLU have multiple opportunities to gain hands-on experience that prepare them to develop, manage and protect computers, information systems and networks in virtually any sector:
Computer Lab – A dedicated CISS lab and virtual machine technology are available for students to access specialized software and leading-edge tools.
Security Lab – A limited-access lab allows students to analyze actual malware samples and other sensitive cybersecurity tools while isolated from the university’s main computer network.
Penetration (PEN) Testing and Incident Response – Students test computer systems to see if they are able to survive hacks or attacks.
CyberSaints Team - Participation on this team further develops students’ skills and knowledge through regional and national cybersecurity and information technology competitions.