A computer information system is a collection of hardware, software, databases, networks and procedures. The term often refers to a field of study in which students prepare for a career in information technology.
The hardware in a computer information system includes input and output devices, as well as the computers themselves. An education in computer information systems provides an understanding in how computers process input, such as typing on a keyboard, and the resulting output.
The software refers to the applications on a computer that processes data. A student of computer information systems learns how to use existing applications and to develop new ones.
Databases are a collection of data stored in one or more files. An expert in computer information systems is able to access, interface with and design these files.
A network is any connection between two or more computers. Workers dealing with computer information systems understand how to set up and transfer resources among multiple computers and the Internet, as well as fix any issues that arise.
When working with computer information systems, professionals should know the procedures required by an organization. If the hardware, software, databases and networks are not configured in a way to meet the organization's procedural requirements, the system fails to allow workers to carry out their jobs.