Courses

551 Behavior and Experience of Information Users
This course examines information behavior and experience, focusing on how information users need, seek, give, and use information in different contexts. The purpose of this course is to provide theoretical and practical frameworks for information professionals who wish to design and evaluate information systems and services based on user-centered approaches. This course is organized in three units. The first unit introduces theories, models, and core concepts of information behavior to provide conceptual frameworks to interpret users’ behavior and experience in fundamental ways. The second unit introduces various research methodologies for studying information behavior, and provides hands-on experience with ethnographic methods. Lastly, students discuss the behavior and experience of information users in diverse contexts such as academic settings, professional work settings, everyday life, health contexts, and digital learning environments. Discussions focus on how the findings from information behavior and user experience research can be used to inform and improve the design of information systems and services.

531 Human Interaction in Information Retrieval
This course explores search user experience, search behavior, and evaluation in information retrieval systems. The purpose of this course is to introduce theory, research, and practice in relation to search user interfaces, search tasks, search queries, search user experience, interactive information retrieval, and IR evaluation. Students will be encouraged to consider the nature of interaction with information in various search systems, including Web search engines, multimedia search systems, mobile search systems, and social Q&A services. Students will have opportunities to discuss and critique empirical user studies in the field of information retrieval, focusing on user experience and human-centric evaluation to assess the quality of search systems.

500 Information in Social Systems
This course highlights a set of themes common to information challenges that have been confronted by societies and organizations across time and space and recurrent across different professional contexts. It provides an opportunity to build a common vocabulary and set of shared concepts among students across varied MSI career paths, as well as to develop an appreciation for the traditions, skills and insights in the intellectual traditions informing the School’s perspective. The course introduces students to a wide range of core theoretical and pragmatic concepts that we believe will anchor you to understand the complexity of information in social systems and the hard choices that information professionals face whether they are designing or implementing systems, selecting resources for access or preservation, designing interfaces to collections, establishing access policies and pricing mechanisms, or analyzing organizational data assets for better decision-making.

710-004 Doctoral Seminar in Human Information Behavior and Interaction
This course is designed to introduce foundational knowledge for a wide range of types of research conducted in order to understand how people interact with information, systems, and information technology in various contexts. The course will engage students in critical analysis of frameworks and concepts that have been used by information science researchers to study relationships between people and information. Students will also have opportunities to learn about problems, issues, and empirical research findings related to human information behavior and interaction. As a result, students should be able to discern contemporary and future research directions by identifying interdisciplinary relationships in the areas of information behavior, interactive information retrieval, and human information interaction.

647 Information Resources and Services
This course introduces the principles and practices of providing effective and efficient information services for intervening in user’s information seeking process successfully and meeting their information needs. Important considerations are interpersonal communication skills and questioning strategies in providing information services using a variety of reference service models. It also provides practical guidelines for evaluating and using a variety of reference sources and accessing reference tools. Additionally, this course discusses major historical and contemporary trends pertaining to reference and information services.