IST 195: Information Technologies is a basic course in personal information management tools and the place of information technology in the workplace. Going beyond a basic computer literacy course, IST 195 exposes students to a wide variety of techniques to manage information in computerized form, from basic spreadsheet concepts to complex database management systems.

Students learn how to develop search strategies to find information in the library, on the World Wide Web, and in massive commercial information retrieval systems.

The course introduces the conceptual basis and strategies for effective graphic presentation of information and fosters creative use of graphic concepts for traditional paper and oral presentations, as well as in webpage development. Students are also introduced to basic computer programming techniques, learning the underlying structures of logical program development. Plus, the place of information technologies in the business world is investigated.

Complex versions of the same tools that help individuals manage information are used in all types of businesses to solve problems, to make their operations run smoothly and efficiently, and to gain competitive advantage. Knowledge of the place of these tools in the business environment—along with an introduction to how networking and telecommunications management improve business operations—provides students with a basic understanding of how information technologies play an integral part in business today.

Course Outline

Assuming a reasonable comfort level with basic word processing, the course will cover the following topics:

  • Computer hardware and software basics: Operating systems, digitization, storage devices, peripheral devices
  • Personal software: Spreadsheets, image manipulation, webpage technologies, essential programming skills
  • Societal issues: Privacy, intellectual property, netiquette
  • Computers in the Workplace: eCommerce policies, issues and technologies, information security and cryptography, networking, database management systems