SOC 110 - Introduction to Information Studies
Section: 001
Term: WN 2008
Subject: Sociology (SOC)
Department: LSA Sociology
Requirements & Distribution:
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

Course Objectives: The vaunted Information Revolution is more than Web surfing, Net games, and dotcoms. Indeed, it is the foundation for an economic and social transformation on a scale comparable to the Industrial Revolution of the nineteenth century. As a culture we have learned from earlier such transformations and it is important to recognize those lessons and chart a path toward intellectual and practical mastery of the emerging world of information. At the School of Information, we take pride in our tradition, inherited from librarianship, of "user-centeredness" and public access. For this reason, not only will you, the "user" of this course, be given unusual attention, but intellectually, we will approach information technology from the perspective of end-users and their concerns.

This course will provide the foundational knowledge necessary to begin to address the key issues associated with the Information Revolution. Issues will range from the theoretical (what is information and how do humans construct it?), to the cultural (is life on the screen a qualitatively different phenomenon from experiences with earlier distance-shrinking and knowledge-building technologies such as telephones?), to the practical (what are the basic architectures of computing and networks?). Successful completion of this "gateway" course will give you, the student, the conceptual tools necessary to understand the politics, economics, and culture of the Information Age, providing a foundation for later study in Information or any number of more traditional disciplines.

During the run of this course, we will be systematically eliciting your feedback and analysis. These evaluation procedures are not, however, merely to make "guinea pigs" of you; rather, a key part of our assessments will use leading-edge electronic and information tools, and your ability to use those tools well will also be a key part of the agenda.

Materials for the Course
There are no books to be puchased for this course, as all readings are on-line. (However, if you need help writing, we strongly recommend Diedre McCloskey's Economical Writing. We also make the lecture slides available in Acrobat™ .pdf format and, if requested, we will post them as PowerPoint™ slides as well (Prof. Frost actually uses Apple's Keynote™). We also try to put the audio tracks of the lecture on-line in .mp3 format so that you can have your own podcast version of Prof. Frost screaming in your ear. All postings are done through the relevant syllabus pages.

SOC 110 - Introduction to Information Studies
Schedule Listing
001 (LEC)
TuTh 11:30AM - 1:00PM
002 (DIS)
W 12:00PM - 1:00PM
003 (DIS)
W 1:00PM - 2:00PM
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