American College of Computer and Information Sciences: Distance Learning Programs In-Depth

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Distance Learning Programs
Birmingham, Alabama

Distance Learning Program

ACCIS offers Bachelor of Science (B.S.) and Master of Science (M.S.) degrees in business, computer science, information systems, and management. Certification courses for the Microsoft, CompTIA, Cisco, and PMI certifications that employers prefer are offered online through ACCIS's educational partner, Element K. All courses follow a flexible, self-paced format, with online chats as well as assistance from full-time faculty members that is offered during the week via phone, fax, and e-mail. There is no on-campus residence; students may enroll at any time and begin classes immediately. ACCIS currently instructs approximately 4,000 students located in more than 120 countries. ACCIS provides students the ultimate in flexibility and academic support. Students not only learn the course content, but also how to study independently using ACCIS's WebCT learning-management platform.

Delivery Media

ACCIS uses a mixture of texts and technology in all degree programs. Online degree courses offered through WebCT present reference materials and tutorials written by faculty members. Faculty-student interaction is achieved by small groups meeting weekly for online chats or through electronic mailing lists for each course. Course assignments, progress tests, and final examinations are required in all courses and are generally submitted online or electronically. Students are required to have Internet access, e-mail, word processing software, a printer, and an IBM PC–compatible computer with Microsoft Windows 95/98 or NT. Certification prep courses offer best-in-class content and cutting-edge delivery systems to create a rich learning environment.

Programs of Study

All B.S. programs require the completion of 123 semester credit hours, with 63 hours in the core curriculum and 60 hours in the major. All M.S. programs require the completion of 37 semester credit hours.

The B.S. in computer science uses C++ as the core language as well as offering Java, Visual Basic, and C#, preparing students for real-world object-oriented programming. Fundamental programming concepts that are taught include computer architecture, data structures, operating systems, and software engineering. The master's degree program in computer science focuses on in-depth treatment of theoretical foundations and methodologies in computer science. Topics include algorithm design, communication networks, database systems, software engineering, compiler design, and parallel processing.

The B.S. degree in information systems is designed for students seeking a broad-based knowledge of computer information systems as they are used in modern business and organizational settings. Required courses include foundation subjects, such as database administration, IT management, networking, and programming basics.

The Master of Science in Information Systems (M.S.I.S.) degree program equips managers and information specialists with the advanced skills organizations seek in upper-level IT management. The aim of the M.S.I.S. program is to produce graduates who are capable of leadership in information systems through the formulation and implementation of IT systems to address organizational needs.

ACCIS offers two B.S. degrees focused on business and management. The B.S. in management information systems is designed for students seeking to acquire fundamental knowledge of business concepts and information systems applications to create solutions for contemporary business problems. Students use modern learning tools to gain solid technical skills and broad-based knowledge of business management in preparation for entry into the growing field of IT managers. Students looking for a more traditional business path enroll in the B.S. in business administration. Students gain core business competencies in accounting, economics, finance, human resources, marketing, and organization management that are required for success in entrylevel management positions in all areas of business. The program uses an integrated approach to tie these competencies to a larger management philosophy to prepare students for real-life management decision making.

American College of Computer and Information Sciences (ACCIS) is a privately owned, independent college that was founded in 1988. With the goal of providing students with career-related educational opportunities for a lifetime, ACCIS offers Microsoft, CompTIA, Cisco, and PMI professional certification courses as well as bachelor's and master's degrees in business, computer science, information systems, and management. ACCIS students typically are adult professionals who wish to study via a self-paced format. For military members, ACCIS accepts TA, DANTES, and VA benefits. ACCIS is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of the Distance Education and Training Council (DETC).

Building on the undergraduate degrees in business and management, ACCIS's M.B.A. degree program focuses on real-world scenarios that managers use on the job. Advanced core topics in finance, management, marketing, and organization are addressed, and key elements of good management, including leadership, decision making, and communication, are stressed throughout the curriculum.

Certification courses prepare students for certification exams. As an authorized course developer and partner of Microsoft, Cisco, Novel, and CompTIA, courses offered through Element K meet the learning objectives tested. Professional certifications prepare students to enter the IT job market or to advance to a higher level.

Student Services

ACCIS offers an array of services to assist students in becoming involved participants in online learning as they prepare for careers in technology and management. Upon enrollment, each student is assigned a Student Service Advisor who tracks the student's progress and offers assistance in every facet of enrollment. Students can access a number of services through ACCIS Online, including chat rooms, bulletin boards, course e-mail lists, and ACCIS's online library. Online courses include links to textbook Web sites, practice exercises and self-tests, answers to frequently asked questions, and multimedia tutorials designed to ensure comprehension of complex concepts. Through MY ACCIS, students can check their grades, update their information, and complete other administrative tasks. ACCIS communicates with students weekly through broadcast e-mails about current events and changes. ACCIS also sponsors a number of organizations and events of interest to students. The Mentor Program matches academically strong ACCIS students and graduates with individuals who need additional assistance to improve their academic performance. ACCIS's student chapter of the ACM is the only purely distance learning chapter of this well-known professional organization. Annually, ACCIS inducts outstanding students into Delta Epsilon Tau Honor Society. Social chats, pep rallies, and other events, such as an online graduation ceremony, create a sense of community for ACCIS students and graduates.

Credit Options

Undergraduate students may receive up to a total of 90 hours of credit through a combination of credits transferred from other universities and credit awarded for life and work experience. The total 90 hours can be transfer credit, of which 30 hours may be applied to the student's major. Students may receive up to 30 hours of credit for life and work experience and have it applied to core curriculum courses. Graduate students in computer science may transfer 12 semester hours (three courses) from previous graduate work. Graduate students in the M.B.A. or information systems programs may transfer 9 semester hours (three courses) from previous graduate work. Life and work experience credit is not awarded in the M.S. programs. Students may also take certification courses in place of ACCIS electives. Once the student passes the certification exam, credit is awarded in his or her degree program.


ACCIS has 30 full- and part-time faculty members. Seventy percent of all ACCIS faculty members have earned their terminal or M.B.A. degrees. All full-time faculty members have extensive experience in distance education, as well as traditional classroom experience.


Graduation from high school or satisfactory completion of the GED is required for admission into the B.S. programs. A bachelor's degree from an institution accredited by an agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education is required for acceptance into the graduate programs. Students applying for the M.S. in computer science program must have a bachelor's degree in computer science, information systems, or a related discipline. Students entering the M.S. in information systems program must have a bachelor's degree in information systems, management, or a related field. All M.S. programs at ACCIS require that a student completed the undergraduate degree with a minimum GPA of 2.67 on a 4.0 scale.

Tuition and Fees

ACCIS tuition includes all textbooks, required software, and fees. Tuition for the B.S. programs is $225 per semester credit hour. Tuition for the M.S. programs is $250 per semester credit hour and $275 per semester credit hour for the M.B.A. Individual courses may be taken for $950 (undergraduate) and $1050 or $1150 (graduate).

Financial Aid

More than half of all ACCIS students receive financial assistance. ACCIS offers both interest-free and low-cost tuition finance plans. Students may also gain financing through Sallie Mae, Wells Fargo, and corporate reimbursement plans. Military benefits through Tuition Assistance, DANTES, and the VA are available to those who qualify.


American College of Computer and Information Sciences 2101 Magnolia Avenue, Suite 200
Birmingham, Alabama 35205
Phone: 205-323-6191
800-729-2427 (toll-free in the U.S.)
E-mail: [email protected]
Web site:


ACCIS offers open enrollment; students may begin their program at any time. Both printed and online applications are available. An ACCIS admissions adviser is assigned to each applicant to guide the enrollment process, which can be as short as one week. Following enrollment, each student completes an online orientation course that covers all ACCIS policies and procedures and introduces the available services and course materials.

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American College of Computer and Information Sciences: Distance Learning Programs In-Depth

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American College of Computer and Information Sciences: Distance Learning Programs In-Depth