The University of Southampton
Southampton Business SchoolPostgraduate study

MSc Knowledge and Information Systems Management (1 year)

With an emphasis on the way organisations share and create knowledge, as well as the effective development, use and management of information systems, this MSc integrates the technical, managerial and social aspects of these subjects. You’ll gain a broad perspective on the way organisations and individuals use digital technologies that will be highly valued by employers.

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Introducing your degree

This MSc in Knowledge and Information Systems Management will give you a deeper understanding of the ways in which information and knowledge are generated, used and shared within organisations. The course covers the strategic application of information technologies, including recent trends such as big data and cloud computing, and the development and use of information systems. You’ll also learn about the social and organisational aspects of managing knowledge, which are covered in more depth than on most other similar UK masters courses. Underpinned by our academics’ specialist research, the modules will encourage you to explore key theories through case studies and critical discussion of research papers. You’ll also gain practical analysis, design and consultancy skills that are highly attractive to employers.

Overview

In today’s big data world, businesses are increasingly interested in how they can use technologies to gather, share and analyse the growing range of data sources available to them and generate new knowledge about their customers and business processes. At the same time, web and mobile technologies have transformed the way businesses operate and enable organisations to carve out new business models. There is demand for professionals who understand the strategic applications of these digital technologies and are able to successfully manage the development and use of these systems. 

The MSc in Knowledge and Information Systems Management will equip you with the skills businesses are looking for. It covers the main theories and practice relating to information systems management but, unlike most UK MScs in this area, also has a strong emphasis on contemporary knowledge management. Knowledge management refers to the ways in which organisations generate knowledge, and how this knowledge is used by and shared among employees. It is underpinned by information systems and their supporting technologies but also linked with organisational management processes and human factors. This degree covers all these areas, giving you a more rounded view that will be of significant value to businesses in a range of sectors. 

You’ll learn about current technology trends, such as big data and cloud computing, and how they fit into a broader organisational context – for example how they might benefit organisations and how any barriers to adoption might be overcome. You’ll also gain an understanding of how digital technologies can be an integral part of a technology-driven business model that can enable companies to outsmart their competitors.

This MSc will be of interest if you have a background in technology or engineering and wish to put your learning into a wider management or organisational context, or if your previous education or experience is in general management and you would like to learn more about how organisations build, use and manage information systems.

Programme Structure

This course can be taken full time for one year or part time over two years (classes are taught in the daytime). If you are thinking about applying, please contact the programme leader below to ensure the way the course is delivered suits your needs. You’ll take compulsory and optional modules and complete a dissertation. 

The compulsory modules cover theory and practice relating to knowledge and information systems management, integrating the technological, managerial and social aspects of the subject. Optional modules give you the chance to personalise your learning according to your interests and career goals. They include consultancy skills, the application of simulation techniques in management, credit scoring and data mining, and managing the commercial potential of technological innovation.

The dissertation is also an opportunity to deepen your knowledge in order to achieve your career ambitions. Past students have studied a wide variety of topics including cloud computing, the concept of ‘connected cars’ as part of the internet of things, and issues relating to information security.

The blend of modules recognises that solutions to organisational problems aren’t just about technology, but involve different players with different, often conflicting, priorities. For example, modules such as Problem Structuring and Systems Thinking focus on understanding workplace behaviour as well as technological issues in order to analyse and resolve complex socio-technical problems.

Employment-focused teaching

While the course will give you a robust grounding in theory, our modules also include practical assignments that will enhance your employability. For example: 

  • As part of the Web Applications module you’ll take part in a simulated website tender process. Working as part of a team, you’ll assume the role of web consultant and interview a member of academic staff who plays the part of a potential business client. Based on an analysis of their requirements you’ll put together and present a commercial proposal.
  • The E-Business and Human-Computer Interaction module involves assessing the design and usability of a real company website or app, and examining how the company uses its digital channel as part of its business model. For example, previous students have looked at how various start-ups use digital technology in innovative ways. Your assessment will be based on a presentation of your findings.

Research-led education

The degree’s focus on the organisational processes of knowledge creation and sharing reflects the research expertise of our academics. When teaching, they draw on their invaluable practical industry experience. For example:

  • Programme leader Professor Christophe Mues leads several modules including Introduction to Knowledge and Information Systems Management. His research includes work with financial institutions on the use of predictive analytics to better quantify credit risk and create new insights about customer behaviour.
  • Dr Hameed Chughtai worked in the software industry for over 13 years before becoming an academic. He uses qualitative research to explore people’s engagement with information technologies, bringing his expertise in this area to the E-Business and Human–Computer Interaction module. 
  • Dr Jonathan Klein, who teaches the Problem Structuring module, conducts research into the structures, behaviours and contributions of communities of practice (groups of people within or across organisations doing similar work who get together physically or virtually to share skills and learning).
  • Research by Professor Con Connell, who leads the Systems Thinking module, includes studies into the use of narrative and storytelling approaches for the transfer and management of knowledge. He has extensive experience of information systems development in the NHS.

View the programme specification document

Key Facts

A distinctive emphasis on the management of knowledge as well as information systems management will give you a career advantage.

Covers the latest developments in technology, including big data and cloud computing.

Taught by academics who are at the forefront of knowledge management research and who have extensive industry experience.

Practical learning activities, such as a simulated consultancy exercise, will enhance your employability. 

Graduates have gone on to work for Citi, Daimler AG, J.P. Morgan and IBM.

Programme Leader

Programme Leader

Entry Requirements

Typical entry requirements

Bachelors degree

2:1 classification UK bachelors degree or equivalent

Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.

Acceptable subjects: A wide range of subjects accepted in Business, Economics, Science, Engineering, IT, Management and Marketing, Communication, Education, Political Science, and Sociology

Required module areas: No specific entry requirement

Excluded subjects: English translation, Art/Performing Art, Vocational Studies

Work experience in a related field can compensate for degree subject/grades.

Pre-masters course

You are also able to progress to this MSc programme via the University's Pre-masters programme.

Selection process

The University’s Admissions Policy, available at www.southampton.ac.uk/admissions_policy, applies equally to all programmes of study. These are the typical entry criteria to be used for selecting candidates for admission. The University’s approved equivalencies for the requirements listed will also be acceptable. The entry criteria for our programmes are reviewed annually by the Faculty. Those stated were correct as of July 2015. Applicants should refer to their specific offer conditions on their offer letter.

International applicants

If English is not your first language, you will need to demonstrate that you have reached a satisfactory standard in an approved English language test.

The following scores are accepted for direct entry:

  • IELTS 6.5 overall with 6.5 in reading and writing, 6.0 in listening and speaking

All tests must be no more than two years old at the time of enrolment.

For more information visit a list of equivalent English language tests that are also accepted.

If you do not quite meet our English language requirements for direct entry, you may be eligible to apply for one of our pre-sessional English language courses. Please visit the Centre for Language Studies website for further information.

Visit our International Office website or the NARIC website for further information on qualifications.

Recognition of prior learning (RPL)

If you have professional experience, or credit through prior learning at another institution, you may be eligible to use this experience against some of the programme requirements for period of study. You will need to present evidence that you have met the learning outcomes of the programme. Read the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning Policy.

This page contains specific entry requirements for this course. Find out about equivalent entry requirements and qualifications for your country.

Modules

Typical course content

In addition to taking all core/compulsory modules, students must choose ONE or TWO optional modules totalling 15 CATS/7.5 ECTS points.

Please note: This specification provides a concise summary of the main features of the programme and the learning outcomes that a typical student might reasonably be expected to achieve and demonstrate if s/he takes full advantage of the learning opportunities that are provided. More detailed information can be found in the programme handbook (or other appropriate guide or website).

Fees & funding

Tuition fees

Fees for postgraduate taught courses vary across the University. All fees are listed for UK, EU and international full-time and part-time students alphabetically by course name.

View the full list of course fees

Funding

Scholarships, bursaries, sponsorships or grants may be available to support you through your course. Funding opportunities available to you are linked to your subject area and/or your country of origin. These can be from the University of Southampton or other sources.

Explore funding opportunities

Costs associated with this course

Students are responsible for meeting the cost of essential textbooks, and of producing such essays, assignments, laboratory reports and dissertations as are required to fulfil the academic requirements for each programme of study.

There will also be further costs for the following, not purchasable from the University:

TypeDescription
StationeryYou will be expected to provide your own day-to-day stationery items (eg pens, pencils, notebooks, etc). Any specialist stationery items will be specified under the Additional Costs tab of the relevant module profile.
BooksWhere a module specifies core texts these should generally be available on the reserve list in the library. However, due to demand, students may prefer to buy their own copies. These can be purchased from any source. Some modules suggest reading texts as optional background reading. The library may hold copies of such texts, or alternatively you may wish to purchase your own copies. Although not essential reading, you may benefit from the additional reading materials for the module.
Printing and copyingIn most cases, written coursework such as essays, projects and dissertations are submitted online and by hard copy. The costs of printing a hard copy for submission of such coursework will be the responsibility of the student. The cost of photocopying will also be the responsibility of the student. For more information about University printing costs, visit www.southampton.ac.uk/isolutions/students/printing
TravelSome modules may include optional visits. You will normally be expected to cover the cost of travel and admission, unless otherwise specified in the module profile.
OtherCandidates may use calculators in the examination room only as specified by the University and as permitted by the rubric of individual examination papers. The University approved models are Casio FX-570 and Casio FX-85GT Plus. These may be purchased from any source and no longer need to carry the University logo.

In some cases you'll be able to choose modules (which may have different costs associated with that module) which will change the overall cost of a programme to you. Please also ensure you read the section on additional costs in the University’s Fees, Charges and Expenses Regulations in the University Calendar available at www.calendar.soton.ac.uk.

Career Opportunities

The MSc in Knowledge and Information Systems Management provides a strong foundation for those looking to progress their careers in this field or who want to carry out research in the discipline.

This course will prepare you for a role related to an organisation’s management of knowledge, the management of its IT function or its information systems provision. You could also choose to go into IT, digital or web consultancy. Potential roles include chief knowledge officer or knowledge manager, project lead, business or process analyst, IT or digital consultant, or IT manager. If you are interested in a career in academia, this degree is excellent preparation for further study at PhD level and beyond.

Our alumni have gone on to work for organisations including: 

  • Citi
  • Daimler AG
  • IBM
  • J.P. Morgan
  • Chase & Co
  • KPMG
  • Hootsuite

Learning & Assessment

Study locations

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