Catalog: Info Courses

Lower-Division

Foundations of data science from three perspectives: inferential thinking, computational thinking, and real-world relevance. Given data arising from some real-world phenomenon, how does one analyze that data so as to understand that phenomenon? The course teaches critical concepts and skills in computer programming and statistical inference, in conjunction with hands-on analysis of real-world datasets, including economic data, document collections, geographical data, and social networks. It delves into social and legal issues surrounding data analysis, including issues of privacy and data ownership. Also listed as Computer Science C8 and Statistics C8.

A fast-paced introduction to the Python programming language geared toward students of data science. The course introduces a range of Python objects and control structures, then builds on these with classes on object-oriented programming. The last section of the course is devoted to Python’s system of packages for data analysis. Students will gain experience in different styles of programming, including scripting, object-oriented design, test-driven design, and functional programming. Aside from Python, the course also covers use of the command line, coding and presentation with Jupyter notebooks, and source control with Git and GitHub. This is an online course; students will attend regular live online sessions as well as reviewing recorded material.

This class is online and features required, weekly, live classes that are conducted through our online platform. Classes are collaborative seminars driven by problem solving and discussion. Between weekly live classes, students will complete coursework on their own time. Coursework is designed to be immersive and dynamic, engaging students in materials that prepare them for classroom discussions. This content includes dynamic videos, interactive case studies, self-paced lectures, and collaborative activities that foster teamwork.

This course provides an introduction to critical and ethical issues surrounding data and society. It blends social and historical perspectives on data with ethics, policy, and case examples to help students develop a workable understanding of current ethical issues in data science. Ethical and policy-related concepts addressed include: research ethics; privacy and surveillance; data and discrimination; and the “black box” of algorithms. Importantly, these issues will be addressed throughout the lifecycle of data — from collection to storage to analysis and application. Course assignments will emphasize researcher and practitioner reflexivity, allowing students to explore their own social and ethical commitments.

Course may be repeated for credit. One to four hours of directed group study per week. Must be taken on a passed/not passed basis. Lectures and small group discussions focusing on topics of interest, varying from semester to semester.

Upper-Division

This course explores the history of information and associated technologies, uncovering why we think of ours as "the information age." We will select moments in the evolution of production, recording, and storage from the earliest writing systems to the world of Short Message Service (SMS) and blogs. In every instance, we'll be concerned with both what and when and how and why, and we will keep returning to the question of technological determinism: how do technological developments affect society and vice versa?

This course covers the application of economic tools and principles, including game theory, industrial organization, information economics, and behavioral economics, to analyze business strategies and public policy issues surrounding information technologies (IT) and IT industries. Topics include: economics of information; economics of information goods, services, and platforms; strategic pricing; strategic complements and substitutes; competition models; network industry structure and telecommunications regulation; search and the "long tail"; network cascades and social epidemics; network formation and network structure; peer production and crowdsourcing; interdependent security and privacy.

This course introduces students to practical fundamentals of data mining and machine learning with just enough theory to aid intuition building. The course is project-oriented, with a project beginning in class every week and to be completed outside of class by the following week, or two weeks for longer assignments. The in-class portion of the project is meant to be collaborative, with the instructor working closely with groups to understand the learning objectives and help them work through any logistics that may be slowing them down. Weekly lectures introduce the concepts and algorithms which will be used in the upcoming project. Students leave the class with hands-on data mining and data engineering skills they can confidently apply.

This course introduces students to natural language processing and exposes them to the variety of methods available for reasoning about text in computational systems. NLP is deeply interdisciplinary, drawing on both linguistics and computer science, and helps drive much contemporary work in text analysis (as used in computational social science, the digital humanities, and computational journalism). We will focus on major algorithms used in NLP for various applications (part-of-speech tagging, parsing, coreference resolution, machine translation) and on the linguistic phenomena those algorithms attempt to model. Students will implement algorithms and create linguistically annotated data on which those algorithms depend.

With the advent of virtual communities and online social networks, old questions about the meaning of human social behavior have taken on renewed significance. Using a variety of online social media simultaneously, and drawing upon theoretical literature in a variety of disciplines, this course delves into discourse about community across disciplines. This course will enable students to establish both theoretical and experiential foundations for making decisions and judgments regarding the relations between mediated communication and human community. Also listed as Sociology C167.

This course provides an introduction to ethical and legal issues surrounding data and society, as well as hands-on experience with frameworks, processes, and tools for addressing them in practice. It blends social and historical perspectives on data with ethics, law, policy, and case examples — from Facebook’s “Emotional Contagion” experiment to controversies around search engine and social media algorithms, to self-driving cars — to help students develop a workable understanding of current ethical and legal issues in data science and machine learning. Legal, ethical, and policy-related concepts addressed include: research ethics; privacy and surveillance; bias and discrimination; and oversight and accountability. These issues will be addressed throughout the lifecycle of data — from collection to storage to analysis and application. The course emphasizes strategies, processes, and tools for attending to ethical and legal issues in data science work. Course assignments will emphasize researcher and practitioner reflexivity, allowing students to explore their own social and ethical commitments.

Specific topics, hours and credit may vary from section to section, year to year. May be repeated for credit with change in content.
Course may be repeated for credit. One to four hours of lecture per week. Meetings to be arranged. Must be taken on a passed/not passed basis.

Course may be repeated for credit. Must be taken on a pass/not passed basis. Individual study of topics in information management and systems under faculty supervision.

Core

8 weeks; 3 hours of lecture per week. This course introduces the intellectual foundations of information organization and retrieval: conceptual modeling, semantic representation, vocabulary and metadata design, classification, and standardization, as well as information retrieval practices, technology, and applications, including computational processes for analyzing information in both textual and non-textual formats.

This course is designed to be an introduction to the topics and issues associated with information and information technology and its role in society. Throughout the semester we will consider both the consequence and impact of technologies on social groups and on social interaction and how society defines and shapes the technologies that are produced. Students will be exposed to a broad range of applied and practical problems, theoretical issues, as well as methods used in social scientific analysis. The four sections of the course are: 1) theories of technology in society, 2) information technology in workplaces 3) automation vs. humans, and 4) networked sociability.

8 weeks - 3 hours of lecture per week.

This course uses examples from various commercial domains — retail, health, credit, entertainment, social media, and biosensing/quantified self — to explore legal and ethical issues including freedom of expression, privacy, research ethics, consumer protection, information and cybersecurity, and copyright. The class emphasizes how existing legal and policy frameworks constrain, inform, and enable the architecture, interfaces, data practices, and consumer facing policies and documentation of such offerings; and, fosters reflection on the ethical impact of information and communication technologies and the role of information professionals in legal and ethical work.

7 weeks - 4 hours of lecture per week.

7 weeks - 4 hours of laboratory per week. This course introduces software skills used in building prototype scripts for applications in data science and information management. The course gives an overview of procedural programming, object-oriented programming, and functional programming techniques in the Python scripting language, together with an overview of fundamental data structures, associated algorithms, and asymptotic performance analysis. Students will watch a set of instructional videos covering material and will have four hours of laboratory-style course contact each week.

General

Three hours of lecture per week. User interface design and human-computer interaction. Examination of alternative design. Tools and methods for design and development. Human computer interaction. Methods for measuring and evaluating interface quality.

This course addresses concepts and methods of user experience research, from understanding and identifying needs, to evaluating concepts and designs, to assessing the usability of products and solutions. We emphasize methods of collecting and interpreting qualitative data about user activities, working both individually and in teams, and translating them into design decisions. Students gain hands-on practice with observation, interview, survey, focus groups, and expert review. Team activities and group work are required during class and for most assignments. Additional topics include research in enterprise, consulting, and startup organizations, lean/agile techniques, mobile research approaches, and strategies for communicating findings.

Three hours of lecture per week. This course covers the practical and theoretical issues associated with computer-mediated communication (CMC) systems (e.g., email, newsgroups, wikis, online games, etc.). We will focus on the analysis of CMC practices, the relationship between technology and behavior, and the design and implementation issues associated with constructing CMC systems. This course primarily takes a social scientific approach (including research from social psychology, economics, sociology, and communication).

Three hours of lecture per week. Prerequisites: Graduate standing. As it's generally used, "information" is a collection of notions, rather than a single coherent concept. In this course, we'll examine conceptions of information based in information theory, philosophy, social science, economics, and history. Issues include: How compatible are these conceptions; can we talk about "information" in the abstract? What work do these various notions play in discussions of literacy, intellectual property, advertising, and the political process? And where does this leave "information studies" and "the information society"?

Three hours of lecture per week. Policy and technical issues related to insuring the accuracy and privacy of information. Encoding and decoding techniques including public and private key encryption. Survey of security problems in networked information environment including viruses, worms, trojan horses, Internet address spoofing.

Three hours of lecture per week. This course focuses on managing people in information-intensive firms and industries, such as information technology industries. Topics include managing knowledge workers; managing teams (including virtual ones); collaborating across disparate units, giving and receiving feedback; managing the innovation process (including in eco-systems); managing through networks; and managing when using communication tools (e.g., tele-presence). The course relies heavily on cases as a pedagogical form.

"Behavioral Economics" is one important perspective on how information impacts human behavior. The goal of this class is to deploy a few important theories about the relationship between information and behavior, into practical settings — emphasizing the design of experiments that can now be incorporated into many 'applications' in day-to-day life. Truly 'smart systems' will have built into them precise, testable propositions about how human behavior can be modified by what the systems tell us and do for us. So let's design these experiments into our systems from the ground up! This class develops a theoretically informed, practical point of view on how to do that more effectively and with greater impact.

Discusses application of social psychological theory and research to information technologies and systems; we focus on sociological social psychology, which largely focuses on group processes, networks, and interpersonal relationships. Information technologies considered include software systems used on the internet such as social networks, email, and social games, as well as specific hardware technologies such as mobile devices, computers, wearables, and virtual/augmented reality devices. We examine human communication practices, through the lens of different social psychology theories, including: symbolic interaction, identity theories, social exchange theory, status construction theory, and social networks and social structure theory.

Three hours of lecture per week. Application of economic tools and principles, including game theory, industrial organization, information economics, and behavioral economics, to analyze business strategies and public policy issues surrounding information technologies and IT industries. Topics include: economics of information; economics of information goods, services, and platforms; strategic pricing; strategic complements and substitutes; competition models; network industry structure and telecommunications regulation; search and the "long tail"; network cascades and social epidemics; network formation and network structure; peer production and crowdsourcing; interdependent security and privacy.

Information privacy law profoundly shapes how internet-enabled services work. This course translates regulatory demands flowing from the growing field of privacy and security law to those who are creating interesting and transformative internet-enabled services. We focus both on formal requirements of the law and on how technology might accommodate regulatory demands and goals. Topics include: Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, unfair/deceptive trade practices, Electronic Communications Privacy Act, children’s privacy, big data and discrimination, Digital Millennium Copyright Act, intermediary liability issues, ediscovery and data retention, anti-marketing laws, and technical requirements of the European Union-United States Privacy Shield.

The design and presentation of digital information. Use of graphics, animation, sound, visualization software, and hypermedia in presenting information to the user. Methods of presenting complex information to enhance comprehension and analysis. Incorporation of visualization techniques into human-computer interfaces. Three hours of lecture and one hour of laboratory per week.

Provides a theoretical and practical introduction to modern techniques in applied machine learning. Covers key concepts in supervised and unsupervised machine learning, including the design of machine learning experiments, algorithms for prediction and inference, optimization, and evaluation. Students will learn functional, procedural, and statistical programming techniques for working with real-world data.

This course is a survey of Web technologies, ranging from the basic technologies underlying the Web (URI, HTTP, HTML) to more advanced technologies being used in the the context of Web engineering, for example structured data formats and Web programming frameworks. The goal of this course is to provide an overview of the technical issues surrounding the Web today, and to provide a solid and comprehensive perspective of the Web's constantly evolving landscape.

This course introduces students to practical fundamentals of data mining and machine learning with just enough theory to aid intuition building. The course is project-oriented, with a project beginning in class every week and to be completed outside of class by the following week, or two weeks for longer assignments. The in-class portion of the project is meant to be collaborative, with the instructor working closely with groups to understand the learning objectives and help them work through any logistics that may be slowing them down. Weekly lectures introduce the concepts and algorithms which will be used in the upcoming project. Students leave the class with hands-on data mining and data engineering skills they can confidently apply.

Three hours of lecture per week. Letter grade to fulfill degree requirements. Prerequisites: Proficient programming in Python (programs of at least 200 lines of code), proficient with basic statistics and probabilities. This course examines the state-of-the-art in applied Natural Language Processing (also known as content analysis and language engineering), with an emphasis on how well existing algorithms perform and how they can be used (or not) in applications. Topics include part-of-speech tagging, shallow parsing, text classification, information extraction, incorporation of lexicons and ontologies into text analysis, and question answering. Students will apply and extend existing software tools to text-processing problems.

Three hours of lecture per week. Introduction to relational, hierarchical, network, and object-oriented database management systems. Database design concepts, query languages for database applications (such as SQL), concurrency control, recovery techniques, database security. Issues in the management of databases. Use of report writers, application generators, high level interface generators.

This course introduces students to natural language processing and exposes them to the variety of methods available for reasoning about text in computational systems. NLP is deeply interdisciplinary, drawing on both linguistics and computer science, and helps drive much contemporary work in text analysis (as used in computational social science, the digital humanities, and computational journalism). We will focus on major algorithms used in NLP for various applications (part-of-speech tagging, parsing, coreference resolution, machine translation) and on the linguistic phenomena those algorithms attempt to model. Students will implement algorithms and create linguistically annotated data on which those algorithms depend.

This course covers computational approaches to the task of modeling learning and improving outcomes in Intelligent Tutoring Systems (ITS) and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). We will cover theories and methodologies underpinning current approaches to knowledge discovery and data mining in education and survey the latest developments in the broad field of human learning research. The course is project based; teams will be introduced to online learning platforms and their datasets with the objective of pairing data analysis with theory or implementation. Literature review will add context and grounding to projects.

Students will receive no credit for C262 after taking 290 section 4. Three hours of lecture and one hour of laboratory per week. This course explores the theory and practice of Tangible User Interfaces, a new approach to Human Computer Interaction that focuses on the physical interaction with computational media. The topics covered in the course include theoretical framework, design examples, enabling technologies, and evaluation of Tangible User Interfaces. Students will design and develop experimental Tangible User Interfaces using physical computing prototyping tools and write a final project report. Also listed as New Media C262.

Three hours of seminar per week. How does the design of new educational technology change the way people learn and think? How do we design systems that reflect our understanding of how we learn? This course explores issues on designing and evaluating technologies that support creativity and learning. The class will cover theories of creativity and learning, implications for design, as well as a survey of new educational technologies such as works in computer supported collaborative learning, digital manipulatives, and immersive learning environments. Also listed as New Media C263.

This course will cover new interface metaphors beyond desktops (e.g., for mobile devices, computationally enhanced environments, tangible user interfaces) but will also cover visual design basics (e.g., color, layout, typography, iconography) so that we have systematic and critical understanding of aesthetically engaging interfaces. Students will get a hands-on learning experience on these topics through course projects, design critiques, and discussion, in addition to lectures and readings. Two hours of lecture per week.

Three hours of lecture per week. Introduction to many different types of quantitative research methods, with an emphasis on linking quantitative statistical techniques to real-world research methods. Introductory and intermediate topics include: defining research problems, theory testing, causal inference, probability and univariate statistics. Research design and methodology topics include: primary/secondary survey data analysis, experimental designs, and coding qualitative data for quantitative analysis. No prerequisites, though an introductory course in statistics is recommended.

Three hours of lecture per week. Theory and practice of naturalistic inquiry. Grounded theory. Ethnographic methods including interviews, focus groups, naturalistic observation. Case studies. Analysis of qualitative data. Issues of validity and generalizability in qualitative research.

Three hours of seminar per week.  This seminar reviews current literature and debates regarding Information and Communication Technologies and Development (ICTD). This is an interdisciplinary and practice-oriented field that draws on insights from economics, sociology, engineering, computer science, management, public health, etc.

As new sources of digital data proliferate in developing economies, there is the exciting possibility that such data could be used to benefit the world’s poor. Through a careful reading of recent research and through hands-on analysis of large-scale datasets, this course introduces students to the opportunities and challenges for data-intensive approaches to international development. Students should be prepared to dissect, discuss, and replicate academic publications from several fields including development economics, machine learning, information science, and computational social science. Students will also conduct original statistical and computational analysis of real-world data.

Special Topics

Course may be repeated for credit as topic varies.  Two to six hours of lecture per week for seven and one-half weeks or one to four hours of lecture per week for 15 weeks.  Prerequisites:  Consent of instructor.  Specific topics hours, and credit may vary from section to section, year to year.

Course may be repeated for credit. One and one-half to two hours of lecture per week for eight weeks. Two hours of lecture per week for six weeks. Three hours of lecture per week for five weeks.

Course may be repeated for credit as topics in management vary. One to four hours of lecture per week; two to seven and one-half hours of lecture per week for seven weeks. Specific topics, hours, and credit may vary from section to section and year to year.
Course may be repeated for credit as topics in technology vary. One to four hours of lecture per week; two to six hours of lecture per week for seven weeks. Specific topics, hours, and credit may vary from section to section and year to year.

Seminar

Course may be repeated once. Must be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. This is a zero-unit independent study course for international students doing internships under the Curricular Practical Training program. The course will be individually supervised and must be approved by the head graduate adviser.

An intensive weekly discussion of current and ongoing research by Ph.D. students with a research interest in issues of information (social, legal, technical, theoretical, etc.). Our goal is to focus on critiquing research problems, theories, and methodologies from multiple perspectives so that we can produce high-quality, publishable work in the interdisciplinary area of information research. Circulated material may include dissertation chapters, qualifying papers, article drafts, and/or new project ideas. We want to have critical and productive discussion, but above all else we want to make our work better: more interesting, more accessible, more rigorous, more theoretically grounded, and more like the stuff we enjoy reading.

One hour colloquium per week. Must be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. Prerequisites: Ph.D. standing in the School of Information. Colloquia, discussion, and readings designed to introduce students to the range of interests of the school.

Info 296A. Seminar (2-4 units)

Course may be repeated for credit as topic varies.  Two to four hours of seminar per week. Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. Topics in information management and systems and related fields. Specific topics vary from year to year. May be repeated for credit, with change of content.

Individual/Group Study

Course may be repeated for credit as topic varies. Weekly group meetings. Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. Group projects on special topics in information management and systems.

The final project is designed to integrate the skills and concepts learned during the Information School master's program and helps prepare students to compete in the job market. It provides experience in formulating and carrying out a sustained, coherent, and significant course of work resulting in a tangible work product; in project management, in presenting work in both written and oral form; and, when appropriate, in working in a multidisciplinary team. Projects may take the form of research papers or professionally-oriented applied work.

Course may be repeated for credit as topic varies. Format varies. Prerequisites: Consent of instructor.  Individual study of topics in information management and systems under faculty supervision.

Individual/Group Study

Course may be repeated for credit as topic varies. Four hours of work per week per unit. Must be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. Formerly Information 310. Discussion, reading, preparation, and practical experience under faculty supervision in the teaching of specific topics within information management and systems. Does not count toward a degree.
Course may be repeated for credit. Must be taken on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. Individual study in consultation with the major field adviser, intended to provide an opportunity for qualified students to prepare themselves for the various examinations required of candidates for the Ph.D. degree.