Nova (NSU) Ph.D in Information Systems Questions

Discussion in 'IT and Computer-Related Degrees' started by rlong107, May 29, 2008.

  1. rlong107

    rlong107 New Member

    Hey everyone,

    I was wondering if anyone could comment on Nova Southereasterns Ph.D program in Information systems or related subject matter. Specifially I have four questions:

    1) Type of Online Delivery (i.e. asynchronous or synchronous)
    2) Faculty competence in the Computer/IT college
    3) Professional opportunties during and after graduation
    4) Overall impressions of the program, how your degree (if you attended or know someone who has) has been received by others etc.

    I have decided to leave the NCU Ph.D in Business Admin (Computer & Information Security) because (1) the program uses dated material (2) IMO, mentors lack both professional credentials (i.e. doctoral level classes taught by master level mentors, no CISSP and related security certs etc, lack of indusry experience), and (3) all didactic and no experential learning. Student should be atleast directed to test LiveCDs or something of the same nature.

    I have a decent amount of experience in the field (and certs) and after taking 3 CIS courses at NCU in the Information Security realm, I found them way too rudimentary and very questionable. I believe my time at Capitol really "spoiled" me when it comes to Information Assurance/Security education. Aside from being an NSA/DHS center of excellence, the curriculum, materials, resources, and professors were all state of the art. Thus, I am entertaining Nova because it is another NSA/DHS center of excellence (was just recertified), and the program is of mixed delivery. If anyone has any other program suggestions, that would be great as well. Any help would be appreciated.

    Last edited by a moderator: May 29, 2008
  2. eric.brown

    eric.brown New Member

    I have no personal experience with Nova's IS PhD but have heard good things from folks. There is a Nova MS student on here (I think he's still around) who might be able to provide some insight.
  3. eric.brown

    eric.brown New Member

    I meant to add the following:

    Have you considered Dakota State's D.Sc.? They also have been recognized by NSA/DHS as a center of excellence.

    More info:
  4. Andy Borchers

    Andy Borchers New Member

    I know a little as I've graduated from the NSU DBA program (with an ITM concentration). NSU has absolutely first rate facilities. The SCIS folks are located in the building as the Business school. NSU is committed to high quality programs and certainly don't lack for resources.

    Regards - Andy

  5. rlong107

    rlong107 New Member

    Thanks for the response Eric. I checked out the Dakota State program before and it looks very solid. How has your experience been? How are classes delivered (i.e. asynchronous or synchronous)? Only reason I asked about Nova is cause its a bit close to my current home (im in florida).

    Andy, I have visited the NSU campus several times. Its a VERY impressive campus, I was impressed although I didnt actually go into the SCIS building.

    I been nagging the dean of Capitol's IA program for a while now, and as of today, he stated that their doctoral program in IA is set to start "sometime in 2009." Kinda ambigious which is the reason I am entertaining other options; I would like to get started as soon as possible. Capitol would be nice since I'm originally from the DC area, so going back for residencies or something would kill two bird with one stone (visit family / school). Does DSU have residencies? Like DSU, the Capitol program (as of today, according to the dean) is a Doctor of Science program as well (Dsc in Information Assurance to be exact). In any case, thanks for the info.

    Last edited by a moderator: May 29, 2008
  6. RFValve

    RFValve Well-Known Member


    I only heard good things about Nova. They have plenty full time tenure faculty working full time at many places to back it up. I know one person that did it and told that no residencies were required (I don't know if this is still the case).

    I teach computer security and wouldn't recommend a PhD in Information Security. The problem is that you are getting a degree with a very narrow specialization that looks like will be saturated very soon given the tons of programs that are coming out of many places like Devry,NCU, Sans institute, etc. If you are interested in security, just get a CISSP, Ec-council, Sans institute, etc certifications and get a PhD in Information Systems. In 10 years from now or even less, Information Security will be like E-commerce nowadays .
    I got myself the advanced computer security certificate from Stanford, it doesn't cost much and looks good on a resume. I also did the MCSE security and this was enough to get me into some teaching gigs. I have a DBA in Information Systems but did not specialize in security. Teaching gigs in Security were easy to get about 2 or 3 years ago but now I don't get anything in security since there are tons of CISSPs looking for work. I'm teaching now some courses in supply chain management that seems to be the next trend in IS.

    In few words, since the IS world is so dynamic, it is not worth to try to specialize in something that you might not need in 4 or 5 years from now. Get a general education in IS and just get certifications when the market requires them.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 29, 2008
  7. eric.brown

    eric.brown New Member

    I love DSU. Classes are asynchronous via the web, synchronous to other locations in South Dakota and on-campus. Each course I've taken has been a mix of on-campus students and web students. The course delivery is via video and PPT decks.

    The coursework has been interesting and reminds me of my on-campus graduate student days.

    From what I hear, DSU's Information Security and Assurance program is great...they get a lot of backing from the Banking industry (apparently there are a lot of banks in South Dakota).

    I'd highly recommend looking at DSU further. PM or Email me if you have more questions.
  8. PhD2B

    PhD2B Dazed and Confused

    What Eric said... ;)

    Not that I am interesting in switching to NSU, but it would be interesting to hear from someone who went through one of the PhD programs from NSU's computer science department.
  9. Ike

    Ike New Member

    I am an alumnus of Nova. I completed my PhD in Computer Information Systems in 2003.

    1) Type of Online Delivery (i.e. asynchronous or synchronous)
    Answer: Campus visits are required (4 times a year for cluster or twice a year for institute).

    2) Faculty competence in the Computer/IT college
    Answer: Majority of their faculty members are quite competent. Majority of them published at least twice a year in respected journals. About seven of them have published college textbooks. In fact, one of the best authors of C++, Java, and .NET (Dr. Deitel of Deitel and deitel) used to be a Nova CS professor.

    3) Professional opportunties during and after graduation
    Answer: Yes.

    4) Overall impressions of the program, how your degree
    Answer: Very satisfied. My degree has served me well.

    I concur with RFValve on info security specialization. It won't be a good idea to pursue info sec specialization at the doctoral level. If you choose CS or CIS, you will still take information security courses.
  10. eric.brown

    eric.brown New Member

    Ike - Thanks for the info.

    I didn't know Deitel had been a Nova Prof...definitely a well regarded individual in the CS world.
  11. PhD2B

    PhD2B Dazed and Confused

    Thanks Ike. I knew you had your PhD from NSU, but I couldn't remember what your degree was in. You'd think there would be more NSU computer department grads on this forum.
  12. Ike

    Ike New Member

    It's in Computer Information Systems. The only person that comes to mind is Dr. John Wetsch. John hasn’t posted here in several months. I am sure that there are other SCIS grads here.
  13. rlong107

    rlong107 New Member

    I like to thank everyone for their input; its truely appreciated. Sorry for the late response, but I got promoted and about an hour later they sent me TDY (go figure). In any case, going broad with the Ph.D and doing the concentration in security seems very practical. Keeping up with the certs is always part of my repertoire (holder of CISSP, CISA, NSA IAE/IEM CCNA, CCNP). I probably missed out on that viewpoint because my job is very security centric (IW officer), therefore I see everything through a security lens per se.

    In any case, as of now, I will lean towards the Nova route unless some other options turn up or they give me some serious leave to pursue a traditional Ph.D. I appreciate everyones input.
  14. scubasteveiu

    scubasteveiu New Member

    Not to spoil the fun --- buy I just finished an email exchange with the Dean over at Capitol and the unofficial go-live date for their PhD program is MAYBE Fall of 09.
  15. rlong107

    rlong107 New Member

    I had a similar email exchange with Ken Crockett (I am assuming this is who conversed with) and he reiterated the same information - Fall 09 as a tentative start date for the Doctorate level IA program. When I spoke to him in May, he stated it would be a Doctor of Science ( program. Since you spoke with him recently, did they decided on the more recognizable degree name, that is, PhD?

    I can see why they would want to go with a D.Sc degree for the program; its more of a practitioner oriented degree. As the same time, there are some notable practitioner-scholar Phds out there (e.g. clinical psychology), so using the PhD naming wouldn't be totally out the ordinary.

    In my opinion, they should just go with the PhD - less overhead with explaining what the degree "is." Then again, can a "College" offer PhDs? Or does it have to be a University per se? Is there a protocol for this? I actually always wondered about that. :confused:
  16. scubasteveiu

    scubasteveiu New Member

    You seem to have more information about the program than I ... which is good, so I can bother you about it.

    I do not mind the Doctor of Science (Pace U. has something similar for IT) as it seems to be a more tactical application of the knowledge. I do wonder if they plan on renaming the school to Capitol University!

    Any other details?
  17. rlong107

    rlong107 New Member

    Yea, I remember looking at Pace; Doctor of Professional Studies (DPS) I believe. The only other minor detail he mentioned was that graduates of the M.S. in IA program would more than likely be the first group of individuals notified of the program's pontential start. Other than that, no other details unfortunately although I plan to ask from time to time. I wouldnt mind the D.Sc designation at all, although I still might lobby a bit for the PhD :)
  18. scubasteveiu

    scubasteveiu New Member

    I stand corrected .... DPS. I remember that now.

    I hope we get the first crack at the program, as MSIA grads. If I go ahead with the program it would be a slow process, no 9 hour semesters or anything like that.

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