The iSchool, College of Information Science and Technology
The iSchool, College of Information Science and Technology educates interdisciplinary professionals to provide information services and systems to meet a wide range of needs. The iSchool complements its educational programs with research that increases the benefits of information science and technology for all sectors of society.
In fall 2013, The iSchool, College of Information Science and Technology became part of Drexel’s new College of Computing & Informatics (CCI), which combines the core strengths and assets of Drexel’s many undergraduate, graduate, and professional programs in computing and informatics that are currently offered in three different colleges. The College of Computing & Informatics, led by founding Dean David E. Fenske, serves as a hub for multi-disciplinary computing and informatics activities by uniting the faculty, professional staff, and students from the former College of Information Science and Technology (the iSchool), the Department of Computer Science in the College of Engineering and the Department of Computing and Security Technology in Goodwin College of Professional Studies.
Current students are continuing in their respective colleges/schools for academic year 2013-14, and will continue on their current curriculum trajectory. All students in the academic units in the iSchool, Department of Computer Science, and the Computing and Security Technology program will be matriculated in the new College beginning in the fall 2014 quarter.
About the College
Founded in 1892, the iSchool offers programs leading to a Master of Science (Library and Information Science), a Master of Science in Information Systems, a Master of Science in Software Engineering, a Master of Science in Health Informatics, and a PhD in Information Studies. The MS in Health Informatics is a collaborative effort with the College of Medicine and the College of Nursing and Health Professions.
All four master's degree programs are offered online or on campus (the PhD in information studies is only available on campus). The College also administers the information science and technology track of the University's multidisciplinary MS in Software Engineering (MSSE) degree. Additionally, the College offers advanced certificate opportunities for librarians and information specialists, and terminal experts in related fields to update their education or develop new specialties.
The College of Information Science and Technology is also known as the iSchool. This identity highlights the College’s participation in the iSchools Caucus and its status as a founding member of the organization. The iSchools Caucus is an international alliance of library, information science and information system schools, the purpose of which is to raise awareness and understanding of the information sciences as a cutting-edge and progressive field of study.
For more information about the College, visit the iSchool's website.
About the Goals of the College
- To provide the student with a foundation for understanding, developing, and operating information systems, services, and products — including information creation, organization, communication, processing, and storage, as well as the technical, social, and human context in which information professionals operate
- To relate fundamental concepts to practical applications, and to provide the student with the necessary skills to function as a responsive professional in a variety of specialized roles
- To ground the student in state-of-the-art information technologies
- To encourage a spirit of inquiry and criticism, and to advance the theory and practice of the information professions through research and publication
- To contribute to the growth and development of the information professions
The general learning objectives of the College are to prepare graduates of the degree programs to:
- Take positions of professional leadership
- Balance and integrate human and technical aspects of information systems, services, and products
- Exhibit a strong client orientation in delivering information systems, services, and products, including an understanding of the implications of a culturally diverse society
- Use a variety of information technologies and readily adopt appropriate new technologies
- Analyze people’s information requirements and match them with available technologies
- Analyze the flow, structure, and use of information among people and within organizations
- Develop and defend positions on relevant social, political, and ethical issues
- Communicate effectively with others
- Develop critical thinking skills
Programs for professional development include an Advanced Certificate in Information Studies and Technology, the Certificate in Healthcare Informatics, the Certificate in Cybersecurity, Law and Policy, as well as additional opportunities for post-master's study.
Placement of Graduates
The iSchool maintains a Career Services Office with job listings from international, national and local sources on their website.
Graduates with outstanding academic records and faculty recommendation are eligible for membership in Beta Phi Mu, an international honor society for information science and technology graduates, which has established its Sigma Chapter at Drexel, and Upsilon Pi Epsilon, international honor society for the computing and information disciplines. Outstanding students are also eligible for membership in Phi Kappa Phi, a national scholastic honor society.
Deadlines for applications to the iSchool differ from those of the University. Applicants to degree programs must take the Graduate Record Examination and have the scores sent to Drexel University. See the iSchool's Admission web page for specific deadlines.
Although enrollment in the full-time programs is recommended whenever possible, part-time study is common. Courses are typically offered in the evening, online, and occasionally on Saturdays.
Scores for the GRE General Test are required for all master's and PhD applicants. Master's applicants will be automatically reviewed for a GRE waiver at the College's discretion based on a previous degree GPA. Generally the GPA threshold needed to receive a waiver is an overall 3.2 cum GPA or a half cum of a 3.2 on a 4.0 scale. Exceptions may apply.
Doctoral students must enroll as full-time students for at least three consecutive terms. Students may be admitted to the program for part-time study. All applicants to the PhD program are required to take the General (Aptitude) Test of the GRE. PhD applicants are not eligible for a waiver of the GRE requirement.
The standard requirement for the MS or MSIS degree is 45 credits. Students should allow approximately five to eight terms to complete the program.
In addition to the above-mentioned requirements, prospective MS, MSIS, and MSHI students must also complete the Credit for Work Experience form. This form can be found in the Admissions Requirements section of each program on the iSchool website. (This form must be completed and returned for an application to be considered complete regardless of whether or not the student is requesting Credit for Work Experience.)
All entering MS students must have a demonstrated competency in the use of basic desktop software.
MSIS and MSSE applicants should have a strong technical background either through education or work experience.
Although the time limit set by the University for completion of any degree is seven years, the iSchool strongly recommends that part-time students complete the master’s degree in no more than four years, for a meaningful and cohesive educational experience. On average, most part-time students complete the program in two to three years.
For additional information on how to apply to graduate programs at the iSchool, visit Drexel University's Admissions page.
The iSchool offers many different types of aid including research assistantships (PhD only), endowed scholarships, dean's and doctoral fellowships. All eligible students and applicants can apply for any available aid incentives provided that they meet the stated criteria and submit the required documentation. All information, including criteria and application procedures, is located on the College's Scholarships web page.
Professional Development Programs
The iSchool, College of Information Science and Technology offers opportunities for librarians and information specialists in related fields to update their education or develop new specialties.
Advanced Certificate in Information Studies and Technology (ACIST)
This non-degree program provides specialized training beyond the master's degree so that practitioners can update and extend their skills and knowledge by adding position-relevant coursework in order to meet their current employment requirements. It is not intended to provide coursework that can be applied to the iSchool master's or doctoral degrees. The program leads to an Advanced Certificate in Information Studies and Technology awarded through the iSchool.
Applicants must have completed a master’s degree in areas such as library science, computer or information science, information systems, instructional technology, software engineering, or other appropriate degrees from a suitable accredited program that has prepared them for advanced study in the area chosen for specialization. Applicants must meet all the general requirements for admission to graduate studies and the iSchool. Admissions requirements include: completed graduate application form, photocopies of transcripts from all colleges and/or universities attended, essay, resume and Graduate Record Examination (or equivalent), if required.
The Advanced Certificate in Information Studies and Technology consists of a minimum of eight courses that must be completed within three calendar years. Students must take four INFO courses as well as complete the final independent study within the iSchool. The three remaining courses may be taken from offerings within the iSchool or from other programs in the University, based on consultation with the student's advisor and agreement of the faculty mentor. [More courses, including a practicum in place of the independent study, may be required for students holding a master’s in library science who are seeking certification as School Library/Media specialists in Pennsylvania.]
Students design a program of study in consultation with a faculty mentor, and must complete the required courses within three calendar years. Such individualized plans often require coursework found in other Drexel departments or other universities, but at least 4 courses must be chosen from iSchool courses. Students also complete an independent study project, which integrates studies, field experiences, individual reading, and work experience. Successful completion of the certification program requires a cumulative grade point average of 3.0.
Post-Master’s Study for iSchool Alumni
Applicants who hold a master's degree from the iSchool may request readmission by contacting the iSchool.
Special Associate Study
Students who are currently enrolled in a Library Science or Information Systems graduate program at another university may take a graduate class from the College by applying for Special Associate status. Applications for Special Associate students are accepted every quarter. Admissions requirements include: completed graduate application form and a letter from your graduate advisor or department head indicating which classes you have permission to take and that you are in good academic standing.
For additional information, view the College of Information Science and Technology's Professional Development page.
Certificate in Cybersecurity, Law & Policy
Students in this new three-course (9 credits) online certificate program will receive the fundamentals on cybersecurity, policy and issues of cyber law. The program is intended for legal policy and technological professionals who want to bridge the gap between technology and the laws that govern cybersecurity. This certificate is the first of its kind that examines technical and policy issues under one umbrella while looking at issues of cybersecurity.
Visit the Drexel Online site for additional information about the Certificate in Cybersecurity, Law & Policy.
Specialist Certificate Programs
Continuing education opportunities to update or enhance initial skills and knowledge are an important part of many professions. The iSchool's five-course Specialist Certificate Programs allow students to expand their skills and specializations beyond the master's degrees. Like the Advanced Certificate in Information Studies and Technology (ACIST), these certificate programs require a master's degree, must be completed within three years, and will be recorded on a student's transcript. Applicants must have a master's degree from an ALA-accredited program or a graduate degree closely to the chosen specialization (e.g. history for the Archives Specialist certificate program) as well as pre-requisites for individual courses. Students with unrelated master's degrees or those who lack the pre-requisites are eligible to apply to the Advanced Certificate in Information Studies and Technology program.
These certificate programs are available in the following subject areas:
|INFO 530||Foundations of Information Systems||3.0|
|MS(LIS) Required Courses|
|INFO 515||Research in Information Organizations||3.0|
|INFO 520||Social Context of Information Professions||3.0|
|INFO 522||Information Access & Resources||3.0|
|INFO 521||Information Users and Services||3.0|
|INFO 640||Managing Information Organizations||3.0|
|MSIS Required Courses|
|INFO 532||Software Development||3.0|
|INFO 605||Introduction to Database Management||3.0|
|INFO 608||Human-Computer Interaction||3.0|
|INFO 614||Distributed Computing and Networking||3.0|
|INFO 620||Information Systems Analysis and Design||3.0|
|INFO 630||Evaluation of Information Systems||3.0|
|INFO 638||Software Project Management||3.0|
|INFO 646||Information Systems Management||3.0|
|Completion of at least four of the following courses is required for the degree. Additional courses from this list may be taken as electives.||12.0|
|Perspectives on Information Systems|
|Advanced Database Management|
|Applied Database Technologies|
|Analysis of Interactive Systems|
|Design of Interactive Systems|
|Knowledge Base Systems|
|XML and Databases|
|Social and Collaborative Computing|
|Information Retrieval Systems|
|Cognition and Information Retrieval|
|Requirements Engineering and Management|
|Information Systems Implementation|
|Information Technology Integration|
|Software Engineering Process I|
|Software Engineering Process II|
|Intro to Web Programming|
|Digital Library Technologies|
|Information Systems Auditing|
|Organization & Social Issues in Healthcare Informatics|
|Electronic Records Management|
|Issues in Informatics|
|Free Electives *||9.0|
Courses in the distribution course set that students do not take to meet the distribution requirement may be taken as free electives. All other master's level INFO courses may be taken as free electives. MS/MS(LIS) students may not take courses designated as doctoral level or courses INFO 861, INFO 863, or INFO 998.
Drexel University Libraries is a learning enterprise, advancing the University’s academic mission through serving as educators, supporting education and research, partnering with researchers, and fostering intentional learning outside of the classroom. For students and faculty in The iSchool, College of Information Science and Technology, the Libraries provide a collection of over 600,000 books, periodical literature from over 35,000 journal titles residing in over 460 databases. All fields of inquiry are covered, including: library and information science, computer science, systems engineering, information systems, and technology. Resources are available online at library.drexel.edu or in-person at W. W. Hagerty Library. The Libraries also make available laptop and desktop PC and Mac computers, printers and scanners, spaces for quiet work or group projects and designated 24/7 spaces. Librarians and library staff, including a liaison librarian for information science and technology, are available for individual research consultations.
Located in Room 106 of the Rush Building, the College’s iCommons features desktop computers, a wireless/laptop area, free black and white printing, more collaborative space for its students and a furnished common area. There is a fully equipped conference room for student use with a 42” display and videoconferencing capabilities. The iCommons provides technical support to students, faculty, and administrative staff. In addition, the staff provides audio-visual support for all presentation classrooms within the Rush Building. Use of the iCommons is reserved for all students taking iSchool courses.
The computers for general use are Microsoft Windows and Macintosh OSX machines with appropriate applications which include the Microsoft Office suite, various database management systems, modeling tools, and statistical analysis software. Library related resources may be accessed at the iCommons and through the Hagerty Library. The iSchool is a member of the Rational SEED Program which provides cutting-edge CASE and project management software for usage in the iCommons and iSchool classrooms. The iSchool is also a member of the Microsoft Academic Alliance known also as “DreamSpark” which allows students free access to a wide array of Microsoft software titles and operating systems.
iSchool students can access Drexel’s mail server from within the iCommons. The iCommons, student labs, and classrooms have access to networked databases, print and file resources within the College, and the Internet via the University’s network. Email accounts, Internet and BannerWeb access are available through the Office of Information Resources and Technology.
The College maintains 6 classrooms equipped for audio-visual presentation. These rooms typically contain a networked PC, HD video player, ceiling mounted projectors, and other equipment for presentations and demonstrations. Four of these classrooms are fully equipped to function as laptop computing labs for networking, programming and database-related projects.
Information Technology Lab
In 2013, the iSchool redesigned its laboratory in support of the degree program in Information Technology. This lab consists of enterprise class information technology hardware that students would encounter in industry positions. The hardware includes 20 high powered workstations that are available to students and specialized networking lab simulation software. The hardware is networked and reconfigurable utilizing multiple virtual technologies as needed for the various classes the laboratory supports. In addition a special system has been built into to the classroom to allow for conversion into a standard laptop computing lab utilizing motorized monitor lifts that allow the monitors and keyboards to recess into the desk.
The Rush Building’s Alumni Garden provides additional collaborative space for students, alumni and faculty. The Garden features wireless networking, tables with built-in power outlets, accessible covered patio and balconies and a bicycle rack. The Alumni Garden may be reserved for Drexel events.