IS 399 Cooperative Education in Information Systems (Credits: 1 – 3)


This course provides the opportunity for IS majors to earn academic credit while employed in a professional position under the Cooperative Education Program. The course is repeatable to a maximum of six credits for a second co-op assignment. Course grading is Pass/Fail only, based on the students meeting the requirements of the Office of Professional Practice, and an acceptable performance evaluation from the employer.

Note – This course cannot be used to fulfill the major requirement for an upper-level IS elective.

Prerequisite: You must be concurrently enrolled in the Career Center’s Internship Practicum Course, PRAC 098 or PRAC 099.

Enrollment Procedures:

  1. First, arrange your internship with the UMBC Career Center.  Register your internship for PRAC 98 or 99 on UMBCworks using these instructions or schedule an appointment with Jen Spencer Heilman ( online or by calling 410-455-2216. Once registered, the Career Center will send you an email confirmation for your enrollment in PRAC 98 or 99, with instructions for requesting credit.
  2. Once your credit request is sent via email, email the IS 399 instructor, Dr. Joshi ( and confirm your interest in taking IS 399 and for how many credits.
  3. Dr. Joshi will enter permissions after checking a few things, like your GPA and number of credits you have taken so far, and if all looks good, she will give you permissions to register for the class.
  4. You need to then register for IS 399.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Q. How do I get an Internship?

A. There are two primary methods to getting an internship: If you have no job or placement you should meet with a staff member at the UMBC Career Center and discuss resources for your search and learn about current opportunities. If you already have a job in the IT field you should visit the Career Center or complete the online PRAC registrationin order to link your current position to the internship program. If you have a position and you are not sure if it qualifies for IS 399 credit, contact the IS 399 instructor.

Q. The Career Center has sent me an email confirmation for my enrollment in PRAC, now what do I do?

A. Make an appointment with the instructor for IS 399 by emailing them. The instructor will make sure you are eligible for the class and give you the syllabus.
If you are registering prior to the last day of the regular add date for the term, you will be given electronic clearance and you can then go online and register. If you are registering for IS 399 late in the term, there will be an extra step involved to get you added to the class that the instructor will discuss with you. (IS399 is open until about 1 month after the start of classes in the Fall and Spring.)

Q. I have been given electronic clearance to register and I have tried adding the class but it doesn’t show up on my course list with the number of credits I thought I would get.

A. IS 399 is a variable credit course available for 1, 2, or 3 credits. To complete your registration, you must indicate the number of credits you want. Go back and try again and pick the credits and add the class. (You may have to try a drop/add.)

Q. I notice there is a PRAC class listed on my class list, is that the same as IS 399?

A. No. You must be concurrently enrolled in PRAC and IS 399. PRAC is also a Pass/Fail class and it separately noted on your transcript. PRAC has its own set of requirements/assignments. Contact the Career Center for questions about PRAC and see the Intern/Co-op/Service/Research tab on your UMBCworksaccount for these assignments.

Q. Do I have to pay for IS 399?

A. If you are part-time student, then you pay by credit count as usual. If you are a full-time student and are taking it as part of your Fall or Spring semester then the price is included in your full-time tuition.

Q. Why would anybody pick less than the full 3 credits?

A. For some students they are taking the IS 399 class as part of finishing their degree and only need 1 or 2 upper level credits to graduate. Some students have limited internship hours and only qualify for a smaller number of credits. Some students are more interested in getting their current internship posted to their transcript and don’t want to pay for the extra credits.

Q. IS 399 was the greatest course I ever had, can I do it again?

A. Sure – up to a point. The limit is 6 credits no more than 3 per semester. You do need to think about your transcript. It is great to have 1 internship listed but does it do you better to have it listed again or would you be better served using your time to include another structured elective course and potentially improve your GPA? Contact your IS Advisor for advice.