This course begins your study of information science -- a field that focuses on the relationship between information systems and their users. The "Information Age" requires that we know how to gather, manage, and evaluate data and information. Naturally, the study of information cannot go very far without encountering the role of information technology (IT) -- in other words, computers, data communication networks, data storage mechanisms, information analysis and presentation, and software applications. Information technology enables many of society's information-dependent institutions to function. For example, our information-rich financial system (including banks, credit cards, and the stock market) could not exist in their present form without computer-based IT. In addition, IT has changed the way people communicate with each other. Information scientists are just beginning to study and understand the impact of email, wikis, social networks, and text messaging on human behavior and relationships.
Upon completion of this course, students should be able to:
- Have an "organizational awareness" of the technical, economic, and social issues that arise when designing and managing information systems in organizations
- Explain of the space of applications of information technology, and (to the extent this is understood), what works and what doesn't, and why
- Apply several formal approaches to modeling information organization and informed decision making
- Develop good research and professional communication skills with a particular focus on writing