Information Systems Security or Computer and Information Science Degree?

30 pts.
Tags:
Career Development
CCNA
CCNP
Certifications
CIO
Information Systems Security
IT careers
IT education
Network+
Security
I am roughly one year from graduating with my B.S. in Information Systems Security. So far, I've completed my general education requirements, and am now beginning my core and major classes. Lately, I've found myself second-guessing my decision of ISS: is an ISS degree such a good idea? Or should I change to a more "general" degree, such as Computer and Information Science (CIS)? The ISS degree focuses primarily on the techie/management aspect of security. My core classes involve an introduction into networks, security threats/defenses, cyberlaw, audits, hardening, etc. I can choose from four elective classes which branch out into programming. The CIS degree seems to have a more flexible approach to IT. The curriculum focuses primarily on computer algorithms, Unix/Linux and C, and programming. If my career goals is to work in IS, become a network engineer, or even becoming a CIO (after graduate programs), then which degree is best for my goals? Does it even matter if I receive certifications, such as Network+, Security+, CCNP, or CCSP?

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Thanks. We'll let you know when a new response is added.

From my experience, I have found two things to ALWAYS be necessary:

1.) Security
2.) Maintenance

We will always need security. It will always be an issue.

Our systems need to be maintained, and as long as we have them, that will be the case.

Hope this helps!

-Schmidtw

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  • Treewhiskey
    Schmidtw, Thank you for your quick answer. I've chosen to stick with Information Systems Security. Network+, CCNA, and CCNP can always be "tacked" on after the degree. Thanks.
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  • Treewhiskey
    I agree. The network side of things is often misunderstood and is a worrisome source of being able to exploit hosts. Next in line would be programming and understanding bugs/vulnerabilities. In the IT trenches? So am I - read my IT-Trenches blog
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  • Kevin Beaver
    The degree you get is only as good as what you put into it. I have a technical degree and strongly believe it helps me in my day to day work. Others would disagree. A degree helps but it's not everything as I talk about in this articleWill a degree or certification help enhance your IT career? and in this audio program Certifications, Degrees, or Experience - What's Best for Your Security Career?. Best of luck!
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