Information Systems for Business Performance (MSc)


Programme Description

Our MSc Information Systems for Business Performance (ISBP) programme is a conversion course offered by the Cork University Business School at UCC. The programme provides you with a coherent set of skills that are essential in building, managing, and leveraging effective and efficient information systems (IS) for organisations. Our MSc ISBP graduates will acquire the skills necessary to manage and leverage information systems for problem-solving, value-generation and cost savings,

This is a 12-month intensive course with industrially mentored collaborative projects. Students are taught from beginner level and prepared to take up business analyst/programmer and management positions in IT departments in small, medium or large organisations, whether public or private, in the financial services, manufacturing or any sector. 

We have been awarded the GradIreland Postgraduate Course of the Year for seven consecutive years and our graduates have an excellent employment record.  

View our course brochure here.

Students take taught modules to the value of 60 credits in Part I and complete a research project to the value of 30 credits in Part II.

Part I
IS6121 Leveraging IT Seminar Series (5 credits)
IS6136 Professional Practice Skills and Ethics (5 credits)
IS6137 IT Sourcing and Project (5 credits)
IS6138 IT Governance and Compliance (5 credits)
IS6139 IS for Organisational Performance (5 credits)
IS6140 Enterprise Business Intelligence (5 credits)
IS6150 Electronic Business Models and Systems (5 credits)
IS6151 Business Models for Disruptive Technology (5 credits)
IS6152 Business Analysis Requirements, Skills and Techniques (5 credits)
IS6153 Application Design (5 credits)
IS6155 Database Analysis and Design (5 credits)
IS6156 Databases for Management Information Systems (5 credits)

Part II
IS6056 Collaborative Industry Research Project (30 credits)

Part II consists of an industry research project that allows for practical experience of a research project in a business context. This collaborative project will allow groups of students to specialise in an assigned industry sector (e.g. financial services, technological, pharmaceuticals, government, retail/distribution) in the context of a research project carried out under the supervision of an industry expert and an academic specialist. Groups will develop a proposal and carry out fieldwork in order to produce a report on their topic.

Consult the ?Postgraduate College Calendar (MSc ISBP) for further information.

Why Choose This Course

The MSc ISBP is currently one of the most popular postgraduate courses in our School. Key elements of this course include:

  • hybrid business/IT orientation
  • focused on understanding how organisations operate
  • strong links with industry
  • curriculum based on leading-edge technologies
  • emphasis on developing students’ ability to work as a team
  • develops technical skills from scratch
  • customised career and professional workshops
  • challenging and collaborative industrial projects
  • mentored by leading industrial entrepreneurs, Chief Executive Officers, IT managers, Chief Information Officers and business consultants
  • access to an IS and business alumni of over 2,000 professionals

Skills and Careers Information

Our MSc ISBP graduates are employed nationally and internationally as business analysts, programmers, managers, web and database developers, project managers, auditors, researchers, business intelligence consultants, marketing managers, and consultants in industry sectors reliant on IS. In recent years our graduating classes have achieved virtually 100% employment.

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Learning Outcomes

For the MSc (Information Systems for Business Performance) (NFQ Level 9, Major Award)
On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to:

  • Communicate and work effectively to a high professional standard;
  • Demonstrate advanced analytical and problem solving skills associated with effective practice;
  • Engage in advanced application of frameworks and techniques in organizational settings;
  • Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the business context within which modern organisations operate;
  • Leverage IS/IT to improve business performance.

For the Postgraduate Diploma in Information Systems for Business Performance (NFQ Level 9, Major Award)
On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to:

  • Communicate and work effectively to a high professional standard;
  • Demonstrate advanced analytical and problem solving skills associated with effective practice;
  • Engage in advanced application of frameworks and techniques in organizational settings;
  • Demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the business context within which modern organisations operate;
  • Leverage IS/IT to improve business performance.
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Practicalities & Assessment

The MSc in Information Systems for Business Performance is a full-time programme running for 12 months from the date of first registration for the programme.

Assessment: The assessment methods vary in order to facilitate group and individual applied learning. Report writing, presentations, development projects, and in-class exams are examples of the types of assessments used.

Who teaches this course

The MSc ISBP is taught by Cork University Business School faculty and senior researchers with expertise in leading-edge technologies and enterprise solutions. Industrial mentors from organisations, banks, and consultancies are heavily involved in the course through the industrial project and as course advisors to ensure ISBP’s ongoing relevance to employers.

Full module information is detailed in the section below.

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Entry Requirements

To be eligible for the MSc in Information Systems for Business Performance candidates must hold at least Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) or equivalent, except graduates holding a degree in business information systems or equivalent.

Candidates who do not meet or achieve the Second Class Honours Grade II in a primary honours degree (NFQ, Level 8) standard may be admitted to the programme on the basis of extensive practical or professional experience as deemed appropriate by the Professor of Business Information Systems and the School of Commerce, under Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL). 

View the grades comparison table

Non-EU Candidates

Non-EU candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to Irish university primary degree level. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. To verify if you meet the minimum academic requirements for this programme please visit our qualification comparison pages.

For more detailed entry requirement information please refer to the International website .

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Application Process

1. Choose Course

Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to three courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.

2. Apply Online

Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the online application portal. Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a €50 application fee for all courses apart from the Education - Professional Master of Education - (Secondary School/Post-Primary Teacher Training) which has a €100 application fee.

3. Gather Supporting Documents

Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to the online application portal in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.

  • Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
  • Any supplementary items requested for your course.

Please log into the online application portal for more details.

4. Application processing timeline

Our online application portal opens for applications for most courses in early November of each year. Check specific course details. 

5. Rounds

For courses that are in the rounds system (Irish and EU applicants), please check the rounds closing dates here.

Questions on how to apply?

Please use our web enquiry form to contact us.

The closing date for non-EU applications is 30 June 2023

Non-EU Applications

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

Apply Now

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Frequently Asked Questions

MSc ISBP Frequently Asked Questions

  • What Skills Will I Acquire? 

You will know how to manage information systems and leverage the potential of the latest Information Technologies (IT) to create value for the firm; reducing costs, solving organisational problems or providing better products and services to customers. 

  • What Are the Employment Opportunities? 

The programme will prepare you to take up business analyst / programmer and management positions in IT departments in small, medium or large organisations. This could be within the public or private sector or in the financial services, manufacturing or any other industry sector reliant on information systems for its performance.

  • Are all modules compulsory? 

Yes. The programme has been carefully designed in such a way as to provide you a complementary and coherent set of skills to enable you to work successfully in the E-Business sectors. As a result, all modules are compulsory.

  • What size are classes? 

Class sizes usually vary from year to year

  • Will I have time for a part-time job during the year? 

The very nature of the programme means that it is quite intensive and so we do not advise that anyone should have a part-time job. We understand however that financially, this may not be an option for some. If personal time is managed correctly from Sept-June, this may be an option. However, the summer project is quite intensive and as you will be working as part of a team, we strongly advise against part-time work. Weeks can be long (40hrs +) and full commitment is required.

  • What are the fees for this programme? 

Please refer to the UCC fees office website for the most up to date fees schedule

Graduate Profile - Grace Walsh

Grace Walsh, Business Support Analyst at Version 1 - MSc Information Systems for Business Performance

Why did you choose to pursue an MSc in BIS @ Cork University Business School? 

In my final year of my Bachelors of Business Studies, I noticed myself gravitating towards technology graduate positions. While I had a keen interest of the role technology plays in businesses, my undergraduate could not qualify me for such roles. I had heard through word of mouth that BIS @ Cork University Business School was well known for their technology courses, so I started looking at what was on offer.

ISBP immediately stood out to me as my springboard into tech, as it catered for those with no technical background while keeping the focus on business. I felt it was a perfect choice to get me onto my prospective career path as a business analyst.

How has an MSc from BIS @ Cork University Business School shaped your future career?

Having graduated with my MSc in ISBP, I was fortunate enough to join a company and role that I aimed for back during my undergraduate but previously had not even made it past the first step due to my lack of qualifications.

Modules in the MSc have provided me with tangible skills that I use throughout the day in my workplace such as SQL and business analysis. With many of the modules also comprising of group work elements, it has also enhanced my soft skills which are essential in any career.

What else has BIS @ Cork University Business School offered you?

As part of the MSc, we were given the chance to work with one of many leading and innovative companies as part of our final year deliverable. Having the opportunity to engage and work with such companies on a professional level, on intriguing and impactful research topics is experience that anyone could only hope for before entering the workplace.

What advice would you give to others?

If you are considering applying for a MSc from BIS @ Cork University Business School, my advice would be to reach out. The lectures and staff are all willing to help and super friendly. Also connect with past students on LinkedIn from your prospective courses. Everyone has been there making that big decision, so never feel afraid to reach out to someone.

Graduate Profile - Shruti Balwant Habi

Shruti Balwant Habi, Business Analyst at Abbott – MSc Information Systems for Business Performance

Why did you choose to pursue an MSc in CUBS?

It was my dream to pursue masters and study abroad. Coming from an Information Technology(IT) background with close to 5 years of experience as a Technology Analyst, I was looking for a master’s program that would facilitate my transition into a business domain while retaining my technical skillset and MSc in ISBP was just that – unique blend of technical and business modules. Various learning opportunities are provided as part of BIS throughout the course through challenging hands-on assignments and industrial project where you solve real-world business problems,  this gets you very well prepared for the corporate world even before you step out of your masters.

How has MSc shaped your future career?

BIS has upgraded my career in a rather massive way. I always wanted to get into a Business Analyst role, and here I am working as a Business Analyst in Abbott right after completing my graduation. The credit goes to the highly competitive coursework, friendly classmates and supportive staff who guided me and put me in touch with a great network of people. I can’t thank the staff enough, they answered my questions outside of office hours, helped me with my resume during the summer, suggested me ways to improve myself, the list is endless. Regardless of your role, if you like business and technology, this is the major for you.

What else has CUBS offered you?

At CUBS, it’s not all work and no play, you will never be disappointed at CUBS because there is so much to learn outside classroom too through various extracurricular activities happening on campus (organised by various societies and clubs) and off-campus. I particularly liked Blackstone launch pad – they host hackathons, start-up labs and innovative challenges and participating in these gives you enormous confidence. I’ve always been proactive, which led me into meeting like-minded people and volunteering at numerous events. I volunteered in Climate change parade, European heritage days, Summer's Evening on the Quad. So if this is something you enjoy, you are definitely going to have a super exciting time at CUBS.

What advice would you give to others?

Looking back on the last year spent at college, the best advice I could give students is to sign up for the events happening around you and make connections and nurture them. If you want something go get it, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Don’t wait around for a right time to apply for jobs, start early and reach out to your network, if you apply for a role and aren’t selected, learn from it and make yourself well prepared for the next interview. There is always a second chance… at the end you do you and everything will be all right.

Winner 2018

Gradireland Postgraduate
Course of the Year – IT

MSc Information Systems for Business Performance was announced overall winner for the 2018 postgraduate course of the year (IT)


Multi-Award Winning ISBP 

Six out of six for MSc Information Systems for Business Performance (ISBP) after being named “Postgraduate Course of the Year – IT” for the sixth time in a row at the 2017 gradireland Higher Education Awards.  The awards celebrate excellence in postgraduate course provision, collaboration between industry and academia, and recognise employment initiatives provided by postgraduate course providers across Ireland. 

2018 Winner "PostGradIreland Course of the Year - IT"


2017 Winner "PostGradIreland Course of the Year - IT"

2016 Winner "PostGradIreland Course of the Year - IT" 

2015 Winner "PostGradIreland Course of the Year -Business" 

2014 Winner "PostGradIreland Course of the Year - IT" 

2013 Winner "PostGradIreland Course of the Year - IT" 



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