Information Systems and Management (MSc)

This mid-career Master's degree in information systems and management is designed for those with a degree in information systems, computing or management; or those with extensive experience in the use of information systems in organisations, or the management of IT.

It will build on your understanding of information systems and management, offering the opportunity to study at an advanced level within or across several areas, including information systems project management, development and change management, and computing-based innovation.

Students who complete the programme successfully will have gained an in-depth theoretical and practical knowledge in their chosen area of study, which they will be able to use in:

  • analysis of problems
  • evaluation of technology options
  • deployment of appropriate solutions
  • research into, or development and deployment of, new information-based technologies.

The use and management of information systems in organisations is emphasised. For those entering with management qualifications, study of information systems development and related material is required.

Highlights

  • Focuses on information systems project management.
  • Provides graduates who have a first degree in information systems, computer science or management with opportunities to deepen and broaden their knowledge.
  • Develops appropriate foundations for continuing on to an MPhil/PhD in information systems or technology management.
  • The Birkbeck Knowledge Lab draws on multi- and interdisciplinary perspectives and methodologies from across the sciences, social sciences and the arts, to investigate how digital technologies and digital information are transforming our culture and how we learn and work.
  • You will have 24-hour access to several laboratories of networked PCs with a range of language compilers, databases, and project management and other application software. We are connected, via the SuperJANET network, to the computers of other academic institutions in London, elsewhere in the UK and abroad.
  • In the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF), more than 75% of our research outputs in Computer Science were ranked world-leading or internationally excellent.

Course structure

You take a mixture of computing, information systems and management modules selected according to your qualifications on entry.

The modules Information Systems and Project Management for Informatics are compulsory for all students; Introduction to Software Development is compulsory for students without a computing or information systems degree or appropriate experience, and may be taken as an option by other students.

You choose from a selection of option modules to complete the programme requirement (subject to availability and agreement by the programme director).

This list of modules is not exhaustive and you may request to take other relevant modules from the Master's programmes of the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems or the Department of Management, subject to availability and approval by the programme director.

Please note that not all option modules may be offered every year. Note also that, in any one year, some modules may be offered only during the day or only in the evening.

Module groups

Compulsory modules

Option modules

MSc Information Systems and Management dissertation

  • Entry Requirements

    Entry requirements

    A good Bachelor's degree in computing, information systems or management. Joint honours graduates in two of these fields are particularly welcome.

    Applicants without the specified degree-level qualification but with significant information systems development experience will also be considered.

    International entry requirements

    If English is not your first language or you have not previously studied in English, our usual requirement is the equivalent of an International English Language Testing System (IELTS Academic Test) score of 6.5, with not less than 6.0 in each of the sub-tests.

    If you don't meet the minimum IELTS requirement, we offer pre-sessional English courses, foundation programmes and language support services to help you improve your English language skills and get your place at Birkbeck.

    Visit the International section of our website to find out more about our English language entry requirements and relevant requirements by country.

    Visa requirements

    If you are not from the European Economic Area (EEA) and/or Switzerland and you are coming to study in the UK, you may need to apply for a visa.

    The visa you apply for varies according to the length of your course:

    • Courses of more than six months’ duration.
    • Courses of less than six months’ duration.
    • Pre-sessional English language courses.

    International students who require a Tier 4 visa should apply for our three-year evening study BA/BSc/LLB degrees, as these are classified as full-time study and qualify for student visa status. If you are living in the UK on a Tier 4 visa, you will not be eligible to enrol as a student on Birkbeck’s part-time evening study degrees.

    For full information, read our visa information for international students page.

    Credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL)

    If you have studied at university previously, you may have accumulated credits through the modules you studied. It may be possible to transfer these credits from your previous study to Birkbeck or another institution. You should discuss this with the Programme Director when you are making your application.

    Find out more about credits and Accredited Prior Learning (APL).

  • Fees

    Fees

    Part-time home/EU students: £4375 pa
    Full-time home/EU students: £8700 pa
    Part-time international students: £7425 pa
    Full-time international students: £14850 pa

    Students are charged a tuition fee in each year of their programme. Tuition fees for students continuing on their programme in following years may be subject to annual inflationary increases. For more information, please see the College Fees Policy.

    Additional costs

    As well as fees, you should expect to pay other study-related expenses, for travel to and from College, books, stationery, etc. Birkbeck provides advice and financial support for students who experience hardship in meeting the travel costs of essential fieldwork or study visits.

    On this programme, you will also have to pay for the following additional costs:

    The Prince2 module is an optional element of this programme, which may incur an additional cost.

  • Teaching and assessment

    Teaching

    At Birkbeck, almost all of our courses are taught in the evening and our teaching is designed to support students who are juggling evening study with work and other daytime commitments. We actively encourage innovative and engaging ways of teaching, to ensure our students have the best learning experience. In the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF), the government’s system for rating university teaching, Birkbeck was allocated a Silver award.

    Teaching may include formal lectures, seminars, and practical classes and tutorials. Formal lectures are used in most degree programmes to give an overview of a particular field of study. They aim to provide the stimulus and the starting point for deeper exploration of the subject during your own personal reading. Seminars give you the chance to explore a specific aspect of your subject in depth and to discuss and exchange ideas with fellow students. They typically require preparatory study.

    Our distance-learning and blended-learning courses and modules are self-directed and we will provide you with interactive learning opportunities and encourage you to collaborate and engage via various learning technologies. These courses involve limited or no face-to-face contact between students and module tutors.

    In addition, you will have access to pastoral support via a named Personal Tutor.

    Methods of teaching on this course

    Most subjects are taught in seminars and lectures.

    Contact hours

    On our taught courses, you will have scheduled teaching and study sessions each year. Alongside this, you will also undertake assessment activities and independent learning outside of class. Depending on the modules you take, you may also have additional scheduled academic activities, such as tutorials, dissertation supervision, practical classes, visits and fieldtrips.

    On our taught courses, the actual amount of time you spend in the classroom and in contact with your lecturers will depend on your course, the option modules you select and when you undertake your final-year project.

    On our distance-learning and blended-learning courses, discussion, collaboration and interaction with your lecturers and fellow students are encouraged and enabled through various learning technologies, but you may have limited or no face-to-face contact with your module tutors.

    Timetables

    Timetables are usually available from September onwards and you can access your personalised timetable via your My Birkbeck Profile online (if you have been invited to enrol).

    Indicative class size

    Class sizes vary, depending on your course, the module you are undertaking, and the method of teaching. For example, lectures are presented to larger groups, whereas seminars usually consist of small, interactive groups led by a tutor.

    Independent learning

    On our taught courses, much of your time outside of class will be spent on self-directed, independent learning, including preparing for classes and following up afterwards. This will usually include, but is not limited to, reading books and journal articles, undertaking research, working on coursework and assignments, and preparing for presentations and assessments.

    Independent learning is absolutely vital to your success as a student. Everyone is different, and the study time required varies topic by topic, but, as a guide, expect to schedule up to five hours of self-study for each hour of teaching.

    On our distance-learning and blended-learning courses, the emphasis is very much on independent, self-directed learning and you will be expected to manage your own learning, with the support of your module tutors and various learning technologies.

    Study skills and additional support

    Birkbeck offers study and learning support to undergraduate and postgraduate students to help them succeed. Our Learning Development Service can help you in the following areas:

    • academic skills (including planning your workload, research, writing, exam preparation and writing a dissertation)
    • written English (including structure, punctuation and grammar)
    • numerical skills (basic mathematics and statistics).

    Our Disability and Dyslexia Service can support you if you have additional learning needs resulting from a disability or from dyslexia.

    Our Counselling Service can support you if you are struggling with emotional or psychological difficulties during your studies.

    Our Mental Health Advisory Service can support you if you are experiencing short- or long-term mental health difficulties during your studies.

    Assessment

    Assessment is an integral part of your university studies and usually consists of a combination of coursework and examinations, although this will vary from course to course - on some of our courses, assessment is entirely by coursework. The methods of assessment on this course are specified below under 'Methods of assessment on this course'. You will need to allow time to complete coursework and prepare for exams.

    Where a course has unseen written examinations, these may be held termly, but, on the majority of our courses, exams are usually taken in the Summer term, during May to June. Exams may be held at other times of the year as well. In most cases, exams are held during the day on a weekday - if you have daytime commitments, you will need to make arrangements for daytime attendance - but some exams are held in the evening. Exam timetables are published online.

    Find out more about assessment at Birkbeck, including guidance on assessment, feedback and our assessment offences policy.

    Methods of assessment on this course

    Assessment is by dissertation or project, written examinations and coursework.

  • Careers and employability

    Careers and employability

    Graduates go on to careers in information systems management, consultancy, and research. Possible professions include information systems manager, management consultant, or systems analyst. This degree can also be useful in becoming a logistics and distribution manager or IT consultant.

    We offer a comprehensive Careers and Employability Service to help you advance your career, while our in-house, professional recruitment consultancy, Birkbeck Talent, works with London’s top employers to help you gain work experience that fits in with your evening studies.

  • How to apply

    How to apply

    You apply directly to Birkbeck for this course, using the online application.

    Birkbeck can give you all of the information and help you need to complete your application form.

    Application deadlines and interviews

    You should apply as early as possible.