Online Ph.D. Programs in Management Information Systems

Degree Options & Potential Careers

Students pursuing their online Ph.D. in management information systems can explore a variety of career opportunities. These programs allow students to enhance their knowledge and skills in management information systems. During their doctoral program, students explore complex topics in management information systems, preparing them for careers in research and higher education. Ph.D. holders experience widespread career opportunities and high potential pay.

Should I Earn an Online Ph.D. in Management Information Systems?

Earning an online Ph.D. in management information systems can lead to a variety of benefits. Many students choose to pursue the degree to advance their career opportunities. Doctoral degree holders enjoy access to the widest scope of careers in the management information systems field since they hold the discipline's highest education. Some students choose to pursue a doctoral program in management information systems to grow within their current company, taking advantage of more prestigious job openings.

Management information systems professionals who hold a doctoral degree experience the field's highest pay brackets. Another benefit of earning an online Ph.D. in management information systems is that students can expand their skills and knowledge to an expert level. Highly skilled individuals stand out from other candidates and often appear more appealing to employers.

Students enjoy a variety of benefits in management information systems doctoral programs, allowing them to cater their degree to their specific career goals and personal interests.

What Can I Do With an Online Ph.D. in Management Information Systems?

Earning an online Ph.D. in management information systems prepares students to pursue research and teaching careers focused on implementing, analyzing, and designing computer-based information systems along with other associated economic and organizational problems. Throughout their program, students develop a strong foundation in research methodologies, reviewing different field concepts.

Upon graduating, students can find work through government agencies, private businesses and corporations, and colleges and universities. Ph.D. graduates typically focus their careers on higher education while those who pursue a DBA follow a research-oriented career pathway. In addition to working in management information systems, graduates can focus their career on computer science and computer information management.

Throughout their curriculum, students focus on building the specific set of skills and knowledge they need to find success professionally after graduation. Management information systems skills coincide with the skills needed in other fields, allowing students to pursue a variety of career opportunities. Some graduates focus on nonprofit work while others explore careers in research, scholarly work, industry management, and government sectors.

Students should determine their career goals before they enroll in a particular program. Most programs allow students to choose coursework specific to their long-term career goals and work with an academic advisor for career preparation.

Doctoral graduates experience full access to the management information systems field since they hold the highest possible degree, allowing them to pursue many careers. Additionally, these graduates enjoy high salary potential.

Computer and Information Research Scientists

In charge of monitoring research efforts as they complete information and reports using computers, these scientists complete investigative tasks and process data during the information gathering process, using computers to research various concepts and apply them to computational models to resolve specific issues.

Computer and Information Systems Managers

These managers lead information technology departments. They manage teams and ensure effectiveness and productivity. They work to ensure all program applications and modifications run smoothly as they develop team-level strategic plans along with product maps.

Postsecondary Teachers

Graduates who hold their Ph.D. in management information systems can pursue careers as postsecondary teachers in the field, creating curricula, assignments, and exams to expand the skills and knowledge of their students. These teachers conduct regular research and publish their findings in academic journals.

Data Scientists

Actively making use of data, data scientists collect information from various sources, analyzing information to better understand how to use it through business platforms. These scientists collect large sets of unstructured and structured data, discovering opportunities and solutions to widespread problems.

Principal Software Engineers

These engineers develop, design, test, deploy, and integrate a company's software. They also work with new technology research, design of individual software components, and concept specification. These engineers derive new product development and concepts as they deliver product prototypes.

Management Information Systems Ph.D. Program Overview

In the sections below, students can review various types of doctoral degrees, curriculum examples, and program outcomes. Use these sections to gain a better understanding of management information systems doctoral programs and what's required in the application and admissions processes.

Types of Doctoral Degrees in Management Information Systems

Students interested in earning their doctoral degree in management information systems can choose between a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) or a Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) with a concentration in management information systems. To decide between the two degree types, students should determine their long-term career goals.

A Ph.D. program in management information systems prepares students for careers in social sciences. Degree-seekers gain the skills and knowledge to perform academic research, leading to roles as professors at business schools. Ph.D. students often enter their program immediately upon obtaining their master's degree, focusing on their career after graduation.

DBA students typically enter their program after earning an MBA and completing a few years of field experience. These students commonly enroll in their program because they want to broaden their horizons and expand their field knowledge. These individuals focus on management research and practical research, looking to resolve specific problems.

A key difference between DBA and Ph.D. programs is the reason behind the studies. For instance, Ph.D. students often seek careers in academia, working as research-focused college professors in management information systems. DBA students typically already hold success in the field beyond practical knowledge. These students usually want to grow themselves intellectually and focus on research-oriented careers.

Application Requirements and Admission Criteria

Many factors go into application decisions in doctorate in management information systems programs. Applicants must first complete an admissions application and pay the associated fee, usually around $50. Applicants must meet their program's minimum GPA requirements, usually between 3.0 and 3.5 GPA depending on the institution.

Many programs in management information systems require applicants to submit their GMAT or GRE scores and meet the minimum score requirements. Applicants usually must submit at least three recommendation letters from educational or professional contacts. Some other supplemental admissions materials include a statement of purpose, a resume, or cover letter. All applicants must also provide the admissions department with their official college transcripts.


Students pursuing their online Ph.D. in management information systems must typically complete 60-65 credits of coursework. Students must first complete breadth requirements or general concepts, such as accounting, economics, marketing, management, operations management, and finance. Along with breadth requirements, management information systems students must complete technical requirements including business database design, data structures and operating systems, and business systems analysis and design.

Online management information systems students must also focus on basic competencies including enterprise application infrastructure, advanced database management, and distributed processing and telecommunication systems. Additionally, students must focus on research methods and specialization courses. Aside from typical coursework, students must also complete a dissertation. Dissertations allow students to make a unique and original contribution to their field knowledge, defending their claims. Along with the final written product, doctoral students working on their dissertation must complete a class as they conduct research for their dissertation.

Enterprise Data Management
In this course, students learn about the fundamental topics in database design, analysis, and implementation, focusing on the practical elements of business.
Models for Quantitative Analysis
This course focuses on the exchange and creation of scholarly information, most often through small group settings. The course explores basic computational terminology and linear programming.
Data and Web Mining
In this course, students gain foundational knowledge for data mining research through various structured and unstructured applications centered around web and data.
Economics of Information Systems
Students in this course review economics of information systems major themes and concepts, including frequently used methodologies.
Research Methodologies
During this course, students develop a knowledge of the research methodologies used in the field, including case studies and experimental design.
Design Science Research Methodologies
Throughout this course, students review key survey and research articles in the management information systems field.
Statistical Foundations of Machine Learning
Students in this course explore fundamental statistical principles and statistical inference, reviewing marketing and finance concepts.
Telecommunication Systems Management
This course highlights information systems techniques and concepts that students can use in various business process management systems and electronic business environments.

Program Outcomes

Students pursuing their online Ph.D. in management information systems cultivate business knowledge revolving around synthesizing current theory. They explore the relationship between business decisions and global environments, making connections to cultivate success in the field. Students also focus on communicating with diverse audiences regarding applications, perspectives, and business theories.

Graduates with their online Ph.D. in management information systems can use a variety of business practices to positively impact society. Coursework develops students' skills and knowledge, allowing them to effectively derive solutions to problems they determine through business research. Regardless of their chosen program, students pursuing their doctorate in management information systems gain the skills and knowledge to succeed in the field.

Accreditation for Online Management Information Systems Ph.D. Programs

Students earning their online Ph.D. in management information systems should pay special attention to their school's accreditation type, noting the defining differences between regional and national accreditation. Nationally accredited colleges and universities focus primarily on technical and career education while regionally accredited institutions feature liberal arts-based coursework.

Nationally accredited institutions often feature lower tuition rates than regionally accredited counterparts, although nationally accredited institutions usually get excluded from tuition reimbursement plans. Students attending regionally accredited institutions enjoy inclusion in tuition reimbursement plans, often making the elevated tuition costs worthwhile in the long run. Credits from nationally accredited institutions are often turned away in transfer situations, but those from regionally accredited counterparts are widely accepted, making regional accreditation more desirable and prestigious.