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Journal of Information Systems Education

Abstract

A sharp reduction in student enrollment in the information systems major has become an urgent issue in the information systems (IS) community. This study investigates the factors affecting the selection of major by business students, the relative strengths and weaknesses of the IS major with respect to those factors, and the short-term and long-term strategy to counteract this phenomenon. A questionnaire-based field survey of 246 students at twelve universities in the United States was conducted. The data was analyzed using an analytic hierarchy process. The results demonstrate that the IS major retains its share of strength in factors like personal interest, aptitude, starting salary, and job flexibility. However, the study also shows that factors like most difficult major, hard to find jobs, insufficient promotional efforts, and indifference to institutional reputation are of concern and these issues need further addressing for improving the competitiveness of the IS major. Referent group also had pessimistic opinions in majoring the IS. The short-term and long-term suggestions to enhance the competitiveness of the IS major are provided.

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