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Eller College Home > Department of MIS > Master's in MIS > FAQs
Master's in MIS

Masters Frequently Asked Questions

Below are frequently asked questions from students interested in the Master's in Management Information Systems (MIS).

We invite you to also view our "Careers and Recruiting" pages on the main MIS Department website that may help you further.

General Admissions Topics 

Residency/Financial Aid Topics

Testing and Score Reports Topics

Preparing/Submitting and Application

General Admissions Topics

When is my application due?

The deadline for all students (domestic and international) is January 15. Your application must be received by 5:00 p.m. MST on that day in order to be considered. Please allow sufficient delivery time to ensure that your application supporting documentation is delivered by the deadline.

Why is the MIS admissions deadline so early?

The University of Arizona mandates that every department have their admissions applications submitted to the Graduate College NO LATER THAN February 1st. Although some of the other doctoral programs within the Eller College of Management have a deadline of February 1st, the MIS department has always been required to submit them earlier.

The MIS masters program uses the January 15th deadline because of the large number of applications we traditionally receive. Thus, it takes our admissions committee longer to complete the review process. So, be sure to get your materials submitted by the January 15th deadline.

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What are the prerequisites of the program?

A four year bachelor's degree or equivalent as outlined by the Graduate College.

Please see the Graduate College's website at http://grad.arizona.edu/admissions/admissions-requirements for more information.

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Do I need an undergraduate degree in Computer Science or MIS in order to receive acceptance into the program?

No. We accept students from a wide variety of academic and professional backgrounds.

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Do I need to take business background courses before I apply to the program?

No. Any required business background courses can be taken while in the program. You will be notified of any possible business courses that are needed upon your acceptance into the program.

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Do I need to know a programming language for the program?

Before joining our program, students should have experience in computer programming and in particular Web programming. Students should have knowledge and experience with (1) Java and (2) JSP and Servlets, PHP or .NET/J2EE. Knowledge of database connectivity via ODBC or JDBC is also recommended.

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What are my chances of being accepted into the program?

Until we have received your complete application, we are not able to predict your chances of being admitted into the program. The selection committee will consider all parts of every application submitted, including the essays and letters of recommendation. We want the best students in our Master's program, but we do not have a maximum or minimum number of students that we accept each year.

Due to enrollment limits, the Eller College does not find it possible to admit all applicants who meet the minimum entrance requirements. The Eller College, therefore, reserves the right to:

  • Refuse admission to any applicant
  • Require the withdrawal of any student whose condition endangers his or her well-being  or the well-being of others
  • Require the withdrawal of any student whose condition precludes him or her from doing the required work

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How long will it take to complete the MIS masters degree?

We offer several different Masters programs and depending upon which you apply for will depend on how long it will take you to complete the program.

Our Master’s in MIS with Concentrations program is 17 months long. Our Dual Degree and Master’s in MIS-Entrepreneur program can take up to three years to complete. Click here for more information on these programs.

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Do you accept international students?

Yes.

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What is the background of your students?

The background of our students is very diverse. The program attracts students from all over the world of various age groups, having different levels of education, work experience, and technical/professional expertise.

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Is work experience required?

No and Yes. Whereas work experience is not a mandatory requirement for entrance into the program, we feel that a student who has at least one year of work experience gains a better perspective of the  "real-world" which will enhance their educational experience.

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Are your classes on the semester system or the quarter system?

The University of Arizona is on the semester system. The fall semester starts in late August and ends in December. The spring semester starts in January and ends in mid-May. Whereas The University of Arizona has two summer sessions, the MIS department does not normally offer MIS courses during the summer sessions.

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Do you offer online or virtual degree programs?

All of our classes are in Tucson, and the nature of this program requires that our students be in residence here. We do not have a virtual or online degree programs at this time.

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Do you offer summer or evening classes?

No we do not offer either summer or evening classes at this time.

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Can I apply now, but start the program in the spring or summer?

Yes and no. You can apply any time throughout the year, but the MIS masters program’s curriculum begins only in the fall semester. The core courses in the spring term build upon the core courses taken in the fall term, so starting in the spring term is simply not practical. The MIS department does not normally offer MIS courses during the summer sessions.

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Where can I get a graduate catalog for the University of Arizona?

Please click here for the graduate catalog for the university.

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Residency/Financial Aid Topics

How is “residency” determined by the University?

The Office of the Registrar is the SOLE authority in all residency decisions at the University of Arizona. Neither the MIS department nor the Eller College of Management has any influence in these determinations. For more information on residency rules and requirements, please visit the following site: www.registrar.arizona.edu/residency/residenc.htm

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I am not a US citizen, but I am living in the United States. Do I still need to apply as an international student?

Yes. In order to qualify and apply as a domestic student, you must be a U.S. Citizen.

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Can you help me with my VISA questions?

Unfortunately, the complexity of these international regulations (and the frequency with which they change) prevents us from speaking authoritatively regarding this topic. Thus, we suggest that you visit the following site for more information:

http://travel.state.gov/visa/visa_1750.html

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What financial aid and/or assistantships are available?

Research and teaching assistantships are sometimes available depending on departmental and faculty needs. If you are interested in assistantships, you should wait until you are in the program as most faculty want to know students before hiring them as a teaching or research assistant. This makes it more difficult for first year students to get an assistantship. Most research assistants require significant programming or database experience. Student must have at least a 3.0 to have an assistantship.

Students can also get more information at:
The University of Arizona Human Resources website and the Graduate College financial support website.

Additional information on fees may be found at the Bursars office.

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Are internships required?

No. However, we strongly recommend that students actively seek summer internships in order to acquire corporate work experience.

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What is my estimated yearly cost for the program?

Please click here to see the estimated costs of the program as per the Graduate College's student's basic budget requirements.

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Testing and Score Reports Topics

Do I need to take the TOEFL?

The TOEFL is required only for international students. If you have a degree from an accredited US institution, you do not have to take the TOEFL.

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How long are my test scores valid? How old can my GMAT/GRE score be?

The GMAT/GRE score must be less than 5 years old at the time of starting to take your first class.

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How old can my TOEFL score be?

Test must have been taken within two years of the intended term of enrollment. 
(TOEFL exam taken in 2010 would be valid for Fall 2012).

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Do I need to send my official test score reports?

Yes. You will need to request that your official test scores (GRE/GMAT/TOEFL) are sent to the Graduate College at the University of Arizona. Visit the "Requirements" page to find the appropriate school codes.

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Do I need photocopies of my tests scores?

Yes, during the online application process you will need to upload photocopies of your test scores.

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Preparing/Submitting and Application

How is my GPA calculated for application eligibility?

The admission GPA that we use to determine your eligibility may be calculated in one of the following ways:

  • Undergraduate GPA is calculated over the last 60 semester units or last 90 quarter hours of the US undergraduate degree. In this situation, only the highest grade of repeated courses is counted.
  • If the undergraduate degree was completed outside the US, grades are converted to the US grading system and the GPA is calculated using the last two years of course work.
  • If you have completed 12+ semester units or 16 quarter hours of graduate level coursework for graduate credit in the US, the Graduate College will ignore your undergraduate grades and use this GPA for admissions purposes. If you have completed a master's or doctorate degree in the US, the Graduate College will admit you based on this GPA. Grades that are excluded from the GPA calculation include: S, P, Audit, grades awarded for professional programs (i.e., law, medicine, etc.).

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My GPA is below the average GPA of last year's class. Should I still apply?

Yes. Each applicant pool is evaluated separately. We also evaluate your entire breath of work and not just your standardized test scores or GPA.

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How do I apply for the Master's in MIS Entrepreneur Program?

Students seeking to participate in the Master’s in MIS Entrepreneur program must apply to each individual program (Eller’s McGuire Entrepreneurship Program and the MS MIS) separately. Each program maintains independent control over its admissions criteria and procedures. For application information to the McGuire Entrepreneurship Program, please visit their website.

For admissions information to the MS MIS program, please review the MIS Admissions information.

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How do I apply for the Dual Degree Program?

Students seeking to participate in the Dual Degree Program must apply to each individual program (MBA and the MS MIS) separately. Each program maintains independent control over its admissions criteria and procedures. For application information to the MBA program, please visit the MBA website.

For admissions information to the MS MIS program, please review the MIS Admissions information. Students already enrolled in the MBA Program who are interested in enrolling in the MS-MIS program should contact the MS in MIS Program Coordinator in the Dept. of MIS for further details. Students already enrolled in the MS MIS Program should go to the Eller MBA office in McClelland 210 to schedule an interview appointment.

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When is the earliest that I can apply for the program?

You can submit your application at any time during the year. We review the applications throughout the year, however only completed applications will be reviewed.

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For additional information, please contact us.