Business Systems Development

Longhorns serving businesses and non-profits since 1981

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What is MIS 374?

  • MIS 374 is a required course for MIS (Management Information Systems) majors. We teach concepts and techniques related to the iterative software development lifecycle (SDLC) including how to analyze, design, build, test, and implement a software system. The course also teaches a multitude of other topics related to software development in a team.

Case-Based Teaching...

  • The first 25% of the course covers high-level considerations of organizational issues, system development goals, project risk, and team management. Students quickly gain an understanding of the SDLC and learn when to apply specific project management and design techniques in a case setting.

...with Real-World Experience

  • The last 75% of the course is a practicum project, which means the students work on a ~12-week pro-bono system development project for an actual business or non-profit. This allows students to apply the skills they learned from the case to an actual project and practice working with real people to develop a working IT system. We are always looking for non-profits and businesses in need of IT systems work!


Solution Analysis and Scoping

One learning objective for each student is to learn how to analyze an organization and work with a client to determine requirements for the best feasible solution that adds value. NOTE: We do not typically take on projects that are purely research or analysis without development. We expect the students to also build at least part of the system even if it's just a prototype or minimum viable product.

Web Development

Students have the skills to build websites or web applications to offer strategic, managerial, and operational value to your org. They can also explore use of social media and web analytics to help monitor the effectiveness of your website and social media towards your goals.

Data Management Solutions

Student teams are also equipped to create systems to help better manage an organization's data. This could include a creating database, or may leverage other data management tools to best fit the organization’s needs.

Other Solutions

Our students have skills that allow them to complete other systems solutions depending on the needs of the clients. For example, they can create custom systems solutions using a variety of technologies. Students can also learn new platforms, and implement and configure them for clients. A few examples of platforms implemented in past projects include SalesForce, Knack, ArcGIS, Little Green Light, Tableau. This list is not exhaustive, and is meant to illustrate the ability of our students to learn quickly and provide the solution that best fits the needs of the client.

PLEASE NOTE: Students who take this class are NOT dedicated full-time to this project (i.e. 40 hours per week) and are likely taking other classes while completing the project. That means an average student will work 8 hours a week on their practicum project. Teams consist of 4-5 students, so the team will spend 32-40 hours per week. Prior to MIS 374, all students will have taken Intro to Problem Solving with Python, Intro to Databases using SQL, and Web Development using MVC & C#. Native app development like iOS and Android are not taught in our core curriculum; therefore it is unlikely a team would be able to build a complete smartphone app in the given time frame.

See examples of past projects

Past Project Examples

  • All
  • Custom Apps
  • Data Management
  • Websites

Goodwill Industries

E/M Testing Application

Changing Lenses & Lives

Website and Online Donations Collections

Woom Bikes

Manufacturer Capacity Tracker

St. Elmos Brewing

Inventory Management System

House of Songs

New Website & Online Training


Map of Local Art Programs

Little Helping Hands

Salesforce Automation

Dell Medical School

Online Internship Application

Austin Swing Syndicate

Volunteer Management System

Examples of other clients

  • Adolescent Medicine Clinic
  • AGE of Central Texas
  • Allandale NA
  • API Design Build Group
  • Ascension Health
  • Asian American Culture Center
  • Athletes to Athletes
  • ATX Insurance
  • Aurora Grants Services
  • Austin Cancer Support
  • Austin Community College
  • Austin Creative Reuse
  • Austin Diaper Bank
  • Austin Gymnastics Academy
  • Austin Opportunity Youth
  • ATX Environmental Directory
  • Austin Justice Coalition
  • Austin Swing Syndicate
  • ATX Public Library Foundation
  • Austin Shakespeare
  • Austin Tejano Trails
  • AMO Inspection
  • Bat City Awards
  • Belt Out Loud Marketing
  • Bounce Marketing & Events
  • BRAVE Communities
  • Caldwell Brewing
  • CareFlash
  • CareBOX
  • Center for Child Protection
  • Center for Farmworker Health
  • City of Austin
  • Colin's Hope
  • College of Nature Sciences
  • Colony Park NA
  • Common Cause
  • Conspire Theatre
  • Cookbook for the Community
  • Curated Touring
  • Custom Sounds
  • Cycle Academy
  • Deep Eddy Psychotherapy
  • Dell Inc
  • Dell Medical School
  • ECHO
  • EarthFit
  • East 12th Merchant Assoc.
  • Emergent Execs
  • Energy 95 LLC
  • Eye Candy Boutique
  • Friends of Balcones
  • Fuel Your Soul Foods
  • Funky Chicken Coop Tour
  • Funk Studio
  • German-TX Heritage Society>
  • Granarly
  • Greyhound Pets of America
  • HARC
  • Handyband Collective
  • Healing Heroes
  • Health For All
  • Hero Network
  • House of Songs
  • Inside Out Construction
  • Insight Sandwich
  • JDK Creations
  • JBernhard Designs
  • Jester West Dorm
  • JJ Promo
  • JUST
  • Land of Manana
  • La Follia Austin Baroque
  • La Petite Provence Austin
  • Latakoo
  • Learn All The Time
  • Loves Realty
  • Maya Smart
  • Mimic Labs
  • Mission Capital
  • Mosaic on the Hill
  • Nagel Community Clinic
  • Nonviolence International NY
  • Oberle Photography
  • Orange Jackets Alumni
  • PAIR
  • Party On Texas
  • Patrizi's Restaurant
  • People's History in Texas
  • Pink Granite
  • Planting Seeds Tutoring
  • Polished Speech
  • Power For Parkinsons
  • PTSD Foundation
  • Preservation Austin
  • Primus Real Estate
  • Recovery in Higher Ed
  • Restoring Justice
  • Sauce Odyssey
  • Shakti Wellness
  • Sanare Ayur
  • Sips by
  • St Vincent de Paul Church
  • Texans for the Arts
  • Texas Adoption Center
  • Texas Advocates
  • TX Charitable Clinics
  • Texas Cultural Trust
  • Texas Fair Defense Project
  • Texas Here to Stay
  • Texas Homeless Network
  • Texas Natural Gas Foundation
  • Texas Parks and Wildlife
  • Texas Quick Realty
  • Texas School for the Blind & VI
  • Texas Victim Services
  • The ARC of Texas
  • The Beeswax Co.
  • The Final Acts Project
  • Therapy Austin
  • THRA
  • UT Laser Safety Program
  • UT Senate of College Councils
  • Wellsprings Village
  • Writers League of Texas
  • Young Mens Business League
  • Be an MIS 374 Client

    FYI: Our spots for Spring 2024 have been filled.
    We are already accepting applications for Fall 2024. Feel free to submit your project via link below and we'll be in touch!

    • Projects that encompass the full IT systems development process that can ideally be completed by upper level students in 11-12 weeks are ideal. Each project must incorporate the following components of the systems development process: analysis/design, developing a new system (at least creating a prototype) or augmenting an existing system ideally with a data management component, system testing and validation, and finally documentation of the system solution including user & developer guides, and testing results. Please refer to the Services section and Past Projects section for more information about the type of projects that align with our students’ skills .

    • This class is not a strategy or marketing class. If you are looking for market research or strategic planning, this class is not ideal for you since the curriculum does not cover these topics. If you need this type of assistance, we recommend that you look into the MBA+ Leadership Program, which pairs student groups with clients looking for this sort of service. Click here for more info on the MBA+ Program

      • Meet with the student team at least once per week through the entire project. Meetings should always be face-to-face (use of a video conferencing like Zoom is perfectly acceptable). Meeting more than once a week, especially in the first 4-5 weeks of the project, increases chances of project success. If you are going to have to miss a week please bring that up ahead of time. Since the biggest risk to a project’s success is lack of communication, meeting at least weekly with the student team is extremely important.
      • Actively communicate with students to help them understand the symptoms of your issue or need for this project. Provide as much detail as you can around your business/organization and the specific problem that you’re trying to solve so the students can better understand your requirements and propose better solutions.
      • Between weekly meetings, clients should commit additional time (2-3 hours at least) to be in communication with students and perform any tasks required (e.g. reviewing materials, gathering data). So it's reasonable for clients to expect to spend 3-5 hours a week on this project. If this time commitment isn't feasible, consider applying for a future semester when you have more time.
      • Give professors honest feedback at two milestones in the project via an online form that will require about 20 minutes of effort to complete each time.
      • If you are a non-profit, we prefer that you acquire your board's approval before signing up
      • Help us recruit more clients. We always are looking for organizations in need, especially non-profits with a great mission!

      • Work with the client to determine requirements, schedule, and deliverables.
      • Meet weekly with the client (in person or virtually) to keep the project moving.
      • Deliver a defect free final system with associated documentation and training and by the end of the semester.
      • NOTE: Students will likely be in other classes during this project which means they will not be full-time and will have to balance their project workload with other classes. For more information, please refer to the Services section.

      • Clients submit their project applications on the submission site via link above by the first week class (e.g. last week of August in Fall or the second week of January in Spring).
      • Project applications are reviewed based on when they are received, so projects submitted first are reviewed first. Fall semester projects are typically reviewed in July/August. Spring semester projects are typically reviewed in December/January. We cannot guarantee that each project submitted will be assigned a student team, and we will let you know early in the semester if your project has been selected.
      • Student teams bid on the projects by selecting their top 7 projects at the end of the fourth week of class each semester. Instructors will review their bids and make the final assignments of teams to clients.
      • The Tuesday after teams are assigned, the clients are invited to to a Zoom virtual meeting to meet teams.
      • Inception Phase – the first 4 weeks of the project (not including Spring Break) – clients and the students develop system requirements and create a project plan.
      • Development Phase – the last 6-7 weeks of the project – students build and test the system with your regular input, and create user/developer guides and train you on system use. The final system and report is delivered in the first week of May or second week December.

    • NOTE: If you choose to apply to become a client, you are committing to the expectations listed above and to act in a professional manner at all times. Professors do reserve the right to terminate the partnership if professionalism isn't maintained and expectations can't be met. Click here to apply to be a client for MIS 374 You'll need to create a UTEID first (if you don't have one) before you can submit your project application.

      NOTE: At the time of submission you do NOT need to have a specific idea about the solution that you need. Because the students are required to analyze your situation and propose possible system solutions, it is better to only provide context around the problem you’re facing (not how you hope the students will fix it). Please just submit 2-3 sentences about your organization and a few bullets on the issue/need you have. After you submit your application, an email alert will be sent to the professors who will eventually reach out before the semester starts.

      Also NOTE: By applying to be a client, you are not guaranteed the opportunity to work with the students in a given semester. Projects are selected based on the number of students in the course, how well the project aligns with the educational goals of the class, and the level of need of the client (e.g. non-profits generally don’t have the same level of resources to complete a project compared to well-established for profit organizations).


    MIS 374 has been part of the UT MIS program since 1981. Dr. Caryn Conley and Clint Tuttle currently serve as the instructors, the students’ project advisors, and the client liaisons for the course. Both Caryn and Clint are proud UT MIS alumni and even took this course in their undergraduate years. Both continue the MIS 374 legacy, bring their actual project experience and passion for good teaching into the course, which uses experiential learning to give students a real world learning experience.

    Dr. Caryn Conley

    Lecturer & Director of MSITM

    Clint Tuttle

    Senior Lecturer