Information Sciences and Technologies Master of science degree

696b27a0-9242-4b71-9a70-4a966c6f7eb0 | 90587

Overview

Online Option

Dive deeper into the study of how information is understood and applied as you work to solve the unexplored problems that are challenging the computing industry.


Technology has woven itself into the fabric of society, binding people and information closer together than ever before. This new digital era brings with it exciting innovations. It also brings a host of new, unexplored problems that can be unlocked through data analytics. The MS in information sciences and technologies provides an opportunity for in-depth, career-oriented study that explores how information is understood and leverages the most current data analytics techniques to address industry problems.

The internet has brought a new kind of democracy where all information is created equal. No longer the sole province of experts and the traditional media, it has become grassroots, viral, and global. The sheer volume and lightning speed of information transfer has changed how the world communicates, educates, learns, and ultimately solves problems. As the web and its related technologies evolve, users need help in managing these new tools.

Graduate study in a computing discipline that only focuses on traditional computing approaches is not flexible enough to meet the needs of the real world. New hardware and software tools are continually introduced into the market. IT professionals must have a specific area of expertise, as well as adaptability, to tackle the next new thing. Or, just as often, retrofit available technologies to help users adapt to the latest trends.

The MS in information sciences and technologies provides an opportunity for in-depth study to prepare for today’s high-demand computing careers. Companies are drowning in data—structured, semi-structured, and unstructured. Big data is not just high transaction volumes; it is also data in various formats, with high velocity change, and increasing complexity. Information is gleaned from unstructured sources—such as web traffic or social networks—as well as traditional ones; and information delivery must be immediate and on demand.

As the users' advocate, IT professionals also need the critical thinking skills to problem-solve in a wide variety of computing situations, combined with an understanding of the needs of their audience. Just knowing how technology works is no longer enough. Today, computing professionals need to know how to make it all work.

The information sciences and technologies program addresses the web systems and integration technologies, and the information management and database technology pillars, of the IT academic discipline, along with the additional option of discovery informatics.

The program can be completed on-campus or online. The on-campus program consists of 30 semester credit hours of graduate study and includes four core courses, four or five track or domain electives (depending upon capstone option chosen), and either a thesis or project. The online option consist of 9 core courses and a capstone project.

Domain electives

Chosen only by those enrolled in the on-campus option, domain electives are available in: analytics, information management and database technology, or web systems and integration technologies. With permission of the graduate program director, students may select the special topics track to fulfill this requirement. See the graduate program director for more information.

Thesis/Capstone options

For the on-campus option of the program, students may choose a project or a thesis to build upon their domain of study. The project option is 3 credit hours and requires one additional 3 credit domain elective. The thesis option is 6 credit hours and does not require an additional elective. The online option consist of a capstone project.

Industries


  • Computer Networking

  • Internet and Software

  • Electronic and Computer Hardware

Typical Job Titles

Web Master Network or Systems Administrator
Database Developer Software Engineer
Malware/Threat Researcher Senior Analytics Associate
Full Stack Developer Business Process and Technology Analyst

100%

outcome rate of graduates

$80k

median first-year salary of graduates

Latest News

  • August 20, 2019

    Computer keyboard and mouse.

    New School of Information formed in RIT’s Golisano Computing College

    RIT’s Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences is forming a new School of Information to recognize the changing roles of information professionals. The school aims to bridge the digital divide and make computing solutions available, accessible, usable and suitable to all.

  • November 20, 2018

    Improving ASL communication

    Matt Huenerfauth and his research team are developing animations of American Sign Language—a language that requires precise control of hand and body movement as well as facial expressions.

Curriculum

Information Sciences and Technologies (thesis and project options), MS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
ISTE-605
Scholarship in Information Sciences and Technologies
IST graduate students are expected to make a scholarly contribution as a requirement for the MS degree. The Scholarship in Information Sciences and Technologies course provides students with the fundamental skills needed to define and conduct a program of scholarly investigation in the form of a capstone or thesis project. The course focuses on skills such as academic writing, searching the literature, identifying and articulating interesting and important topics and problems, scholarship ethics, developing capstone proposals, critical thinking, and effective oral and written communication and presentation of scholarship.
3
ISTE-610
Knowledge Representation Technologies
This course provides students with exposure to foundational information sciences and technologies. Topics include an overview of data types, structuring and processing data and knowledge, data transformation, and data storage and warehousing. Students will work with non-traditional (noSQL) data stores to manage large datasets in the context of specific problem scenarios.
3
ISTE-612
Knowledge Processing Technologies
This is the second course in a two-course sequence that provides students with exposure to foundational information sciences and technologies. Topics include internet middleware technologies, data and text analytics, and information visualization. Note: One year of programming in an object-oriented language, a database theory course, a course in Web development, and a statistics course is needed.
3
ISTE-600
Analytical Thinking
There is mounting evidence of a need to improve the ability of individuals and groups to think thoughtfully and analytically in order to develop appropriate and useful solutions to complex problems. Sources of complexity include human cognitive limitations, uncertainty, system dynamics, and reasoning errors. This course will provide students with frameworks, techniques, methods, and tools to improve analytical and critical thinking and presentation skills. Students will work individually and in groups on assignments and case study analyses.
3
 
Domain Electives
12
Second Year
Choose one of the following:
6
  ITSE-790
   Thesis in Information Sciences and Technologies
6
 or
 
 
  ITSE-791
   Project In Information Sciences And Technologies
3
 
   Domain Elective
3
Total Semester Credit Hours
30


Domain electives

Course
Data Analytics
ISTE-724
Data Warehousing
This course covers the purpose, scope, capabilities, and processes used in data warehousing technologies for the management and analysis of data. Students will be introduced to the theory of data warehousing, dimensional data modeling, the extract/transform/load process, warehouse implementation, dimensional data analysis, and summary data management. The basics of data mining and importance of data security will also be discussed. Hands-on exercises include implementing a data warehouse.
ISTE-780
Data Driven Knowledge Discovery
Rapidly expanding collections of data from all areas of society are becoming available in digital form. Computer-based methods are available to facilitate discovering new information and knowledge that is embedded in these collections of data. This course provides students with an introduction to the use of these data analytic methods, with a focus on statistical learning models, within the context of the data-driven knowledge discovery process. Topics include motivations for data-driven discovery, sources of discoverable knowledge (e.g., data, text, the web, maps), data selection and retrieval, data transformation, computer-based methods for data-driven discovery, and interpretation of results. Emphasis is placed on the application of knowledge discovery methods to specific domains.
ISTE-782
Visual Analytics
This course introduces students to Visual Analytics, or the science of analytical reasoning facilitated by interactive visual interfaces. Course lectures, reading assignments, and practical lab experiences will cover a mix of theoretical and technical Visual Analytics topics. Topics include analytical reasoning, human cognition and perception of visual information, visual representation and interaction technologies, data representation and transformation, production, presentation, and dissemination of analytic process results, and Visual Analytic case studies and applications. Furthermore, students will learn relevant Visual Analytics research trends such as Space, Time, and Multivariate Analytics and Extreme Scale Visual Analytics.
Information Management and Database Technology
ISTE-721
Information Assurance Fundamentals
This course provides an introduction to the topic of information assurance as it pertains to an awareness of the risks inherent in protecting digital content in today’s networked computing environments. Topics in secure data and information access will be explored from the perspectives of software development, software implementation, data storage, and system administration and network communications. The application of computing technologies, procedures and policies and the activities necessary to detect, document, and counter unauthorized data and system access will be explored. Effective implementation will be discussed and include topics from other fields such as management science, security engineering and criminology. A broad understanding of this subject is important for computing students who are involved in the architecting and creation of information and will include current software exploitation issues and techniques for information assurance.
ISTE-722
Database Connectivity and Access
In this course, students will build applications that interact with databases. Through programming exercises, students will work with multiple databases and programmatically invoke the advanced database processing operations that are integral to contemporary computing applications. Students will examine and evaluate alternative approaches for each of these operations. Topics include the database drivers, the data layer, connectivity operations, security and integrity, and controlling database access.
ISTE-724
Data Warehousing
This course covers the purpose, scope, capabilities, and processes used in data warehousing technologies for the management and analysis of data. Students will be introduced to the theory of data warehousing, dimensional data modeling, the extract/transform/load process, warehouse implementation, dimensional data analysis, and summary data management. The basics of data mining and importance of data security will also be discussed. Hands-on exercises include implementing a data warehouse.
ISTE-726
Database Management and Access
Students will be introduced to issues in client/server database implementation and administration. Students will configure, test, and establish client-server communication and server-server communication with single and multiple database servers. Topics such as schema implementation, storage allocation and management, user creation and access security, backup and recovery, and performance measurement and enhancement will be presented in lecture and experienced in a laboratory environment. Students will configure and demonstrate successful communication between a database file server and multiple clients.
ISTE-728
Database Management and Access II
Students will explore the theory and application of advances database administration including database performance monitoring and tuning techniques. Standard topics in DBMS performance will be discussed including: physical and logical design issues, the hardware and software environment, SQL statement execution, indexes and front-end application issues. Techniques in performance monitoring and tuning will be investigated. In addition, advanced database backup and recovery, disaster recovery and other DBA topics will be explored.
Web Systems and Integration Technologies
ISTE-721
Information Assurance Fundamentals
This course provides an introduction to the topic of information assurance as it pertains to an awareness of the risks inherent in protecting digital content in today’s networked computing environments. Topics in secure data and information access will be explored from the perspectives of software development, software implementation, data storage, and system administration and network communications. The application of computing technologies, procedures and policies and the activities necessary to detect, document, and counter unauthorized data and system access will be explored. Effective implementation will be discussed and include topics from other fields such as management science, security engineering and criminology. A broad understanding of this subject is important for computing students who are involved in the architecting and creation of information and will include current software exploitation issues and techniques for information assurance.
ISTE-754
Client Design And Development
This course will explore the analysis, design, development, and implementation of client-side programming in the context of Internet technologies, mobile devices, and Web-based client systems. Students will learn to design and build usable and effective interactive systems, clients, and interfaces. Key features addressed will include browser and platform compatibility, object reusability, bandwidth and communications issues, development environments, privacy and security, and related technologies and APIs. Programming is required.
ISTE-756
Server Design And Development
This course provides students with advanced work in the design and implementation of highly-scalable server-side applications, and application programming interfaces (APIs). Topics include the effects of client requirements upon design, creating and blending heterogeneous data for analysis and visualization, and approaches to building highly-scalable services. Students will develop dynamic, data centric web systems, as well as building information services systems that are independent of the technologies that use them. Students will implement their own servers and services using programming languages. Exercises, programming, and projects are required.
ISTE-759
Secure Web Application Development
When building larger-scale web applications, there are a myriad of concerns that range from technology, security, framework, and architecture selection to runtime performance optimization. This course focuses on the development of secure integrated web applications that consume information served from one or many sources. Trends in web application development are identified and assessed. Programming projects are required.
Other approved electives
ISTE-740
Geographic Information Science And Technology
This course provides a survey of the theory, concepts, and technologies related to representation and understanding of the earth - a scientific domain known as Geographic Information Science and Technology (GIS & T). Students will gain hands-on experience with technologies such as Global Positioning Systems (GPSs), Geographic Information Systems (GISs), remote sensing, Virtual Globes (Google Earth), and web mapping mashups. Furthermore, students will learn relevant GIS & T theory, concepts, and research trends such as spatial reasoning, spatiotemporal data representation, and spatial analysis.
ISTE-742
Introduction To Geographic Information Systems
This course introduces students to the world of Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Course lectures, reading assignments, and practical lab experiences will cover a mix of conceptual, practical and technical GIS topics. Topics include GIS data models, basic cartography, geodatabases, spatial analysis, GIS software, and theory and concepts from the Geographic Information Science and Technology domain.
ISTE-744
Thematic Cartography And Geographic Visualization
This course examines concepts and techniques associated with dynamic map construction, usage, and assessment. Specific topics include thematic cartography, geographic information visualization, sources of dynamic geographic information, developing animated and interactive maps, mapping mashup development, using maps as a means to support group work, usability of dynamic maps, and current geovisualization research areas. Development of a visualization prototype and an associated scholarly paper in an area related to thematic cartography and geographic visualization are required.
ISTE-764
Project Management
Information technology projects require the application of sound project management principles in order to be developed on time, on budget, and on specification. This course takes students through the nine knowledge areas of modern project management and the utilization of project management principles in both traditional and agile environments.
ISTE-770
Foundations of Mobile Design
This course is an introduction to designing, prototyping, and creating applications and web applications for mobile devices. These devices include a unique set of hardware and communications capabilities, incorporate novel interfaces, are location aware, and provide persistent connectivity. Topics covered include user interaction patterns, connectivity, interface design, software design patterns, and application architectures. Programming projects are required. Students will examine and evaluate alternative approaches and then implement in working applications.
ISTE-774
Mobile Application Development I
This course extends the material covered in the Foundations of Mobile Design course and provides students with individual and team-based experience of creating interesting native applications for small-size form factor mobile devices such as smartphones using one of the major platforms. These devices are exceptionally portable, have unique sets of hardware and communications capabilities, incorporate novel interfaces, are location aware, and provide persistent connectivity. Students are encouraged to make creative use of these unique device characteristics and operating properties to develop innovative applications including inter-device communications. Programming projects are required.
ISTE-776
Mobile Application Development II
This course extends the Foundations of Mobile Design course in that students will learn to apply mobile design skills to develop applications in the Android platform. Students will design, develop, and test mobile applications using the Android Studio IDE. This course covers the major components such as activities, receivers, content providers, permissions, intents, fragments, data storage, and security. Programming projects are required.
ISTE-792
Capstone Guidance Colloquium
This course supports the proposal development process for graduate students enrolled in the MS in information sciences and technologies, the MS in networking and system administration, or the MS in human-computer interaction program who are beginning the project or thesis experience and require additional structure and support. Students begin the development of an acceptable proposal and through weekly meetings students are guided toward the completion of the proposal, which is a prerequisite for formal thesis or project registration. Note: Students must have completed all their course work prior to enrollment which is by permission of the graduate program director.

Information Sciences and Technologies (online option), MS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
ISTE-600
Analytical Thinking
There is mounting evidence of a need to improve the ability of individuals and groups to think thoughtfully and analytically in order to develop appropriate and useful solutions to complex problems. Sources of complexity include human cognitive limitations, uncertainty, system dynamics, and reasoning errors. This course will provide students with frameworks, techniques, methods, and tools to improve analytical and critical thinking and presentation skills. Students will work individually and in groups on assignments and case study analyses.
3
ISTE-610
Knowledge Representation Technologies
This course provides students with exposure to foundational information sciences and technologies. Topics include an overview of data types, structuring and processing data and knowledge, data transformation, and data storage and warehousing. Students will work with non-traditional (noSQL) data stores to manage large datasets in the context of specific problem scenarios.
3
ISTE-612
Knowledge Processing Technologies
This is the second course in a two-course sequence that provides students with exposure to foundational information sciences and technologies. Topics include internet middleware technologies, data and text analytics, and information visualization. Note: One year of programming in an object-oriented language, a database theory course, a course in Web development, and a statistics course is needed.
3
ISTE-780
Data Driven Knowledge Discovery (summer)
Rapidly expanding collections of data from all areas of society are becoming available in digital form. Computer-based methods are available to facilitate discovering new information and knowledge that is embedded in these collections of data. This course provides students with an introduction to the use of these data analytic methods, with a focus on statistical learning models, within the context of the data-driven knowledge discovery process. Topics include motivations for data-driven discovery, sources of discoverable knowledge (e.g., data, text, the web, maps), data selection and retrieval, data transformation, computer-based methods for data-driven discovery, and interpretation of results. Emphasis is placed on the application of knowledge discovery methods to specific domains.
3
 
Current topic in analytics elective*
3
Second Year
ISTE-605
Scholarship In Information Sciences And Technologies
IST graduate students are expected to make a scholarly contribution as a requirement for the MS degree. The Scholarship in Information Sciences and Technologies course provides students with the fundamental skills needed to define and conduct a program of scholarly investigation in the form of a capstone or thesis project. The course focuses on skills such as academic writing, searching the literature, identifying and articulating interesting and important topics and problems, scholarship ethics, developing capstone proposals, critical thinking, and effective oral and written communication and presentation of scholarship.
3
ISTE-721
Information Assurance Fundamentals
This course provides an introduction to the topic of information assurance as it pertains to an awareness of the risks inherent in protecting digital content in today’s networked computing environments. Topics in secure data and information access will be explored from the perspectives of software development, software implementation, data storage, and system administration and network communications. The application of computing technologies, procedures and policies and the activities necessary to detect, document, and counter unauthorized data and system access will be explored. Effective implementation will be discussed and include topics from other fields such as management science, security engineering and criminology. A broad understanding of this subject is important for computing students who are involved in the architecting and creation of information and will include current software exploitation issues and techniques for information assurance.
3
ISTE-724
Data Warehousing
This course covers the purpose, scope, capabilities, and processes used in data warehousing technologies for the management and analysis of data. Students will be introduced to the theory of data warehousing, dimensional data modeling, the extract/transform/load process, warehouse implementation, dimensional data analysis, and summary data management. The basics of data mining and importance of data security will also be discussed. Hands-on exercises include implementing a data warehouse.
3
ISTE-782
Visual Analytics
This course introduces students to Visual Analytics, or the science of analytical reasoning facilitated by interactive visual interfaces. Course lectures, reading assignments, and practical lab experiences will cover a mix of theoretical and technical Visual Analytics topics. Topics include analytical reasoning, human cognition and perception of visual information, visual representation and interaction technologies, data representation and transformation, production, presentation, and dissemination of analytic process results, and Visual Analytic case studies and applications. Furthermore, students will learn relevant Visual Analytics research trends such as Space, Time, and Multivariate Analytics and Extreme Scale Visual Analytics.
3
ISTE-795
Capstone in Information Sciences and Technologies (summer)
This is the project-based capstone course for the master of science in information sciences and technologies program. Students work in teams to complete a substantial, integrative large scale system development projects. Submission of a project proposal, a formal set of development artifacts, a final project report, and a public defense with system demonstration are required.
3
Total Semester Credit Hours
30

*The current topic in analytics elective represents a current topic selected by the faculty. The current elective is ISTE-740 (Geographic Information Science And Technology). Other courses may be available in the future.

Admission Requirements

To be considered for admission to the MS program in information sciences and technologies, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Complete a graduate application.
  • Hold a baccalaureate degree (or equivalent) from an accredited university or college.
  • Submit official transcripts (in English) for all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work.
  • Have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 (or equivalent).
  • Submit a current resume or curriculum vitae.
  • Submit two letters of recommendation from academic or professional sources.
  • International applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores from the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE. A minimum TOEFL score of 88 (internet-based) is required. A minimum IELTS score of 6.5 is required. The English language test score requirement is waived for native speakers of English or for those submitting transcripts from degrees earned at American institutions.
  • Applicants from foreign universities must submit GRE scores. Scores from the GRE are strongly recommended for applicants whose undergraduate grade point average is less than 3.0.

Learn about admissions and financial aid 

Additional Info

Prerequisites

It is expected that prospective students will have a background in fundamental information technology concepts including object-oriented programming, website development, database theory and practice, and statistics. Students without the necessary background should complete the prerequisites before applying to the program. However, bridge courses are available to satisfy the prerequisites.

Bridge program

Students whose undergraduate preparation or employment experience does not satisfy the prerequisites can make up these deficiencies by completing prerequisite bridge courses as prescribed by the graduate program director. The bridge courses are not part of the 30 semester credit hours required for the master’s degree. Grades for bridge courses are not included in a student’s GPA if the courses are taken before matriculation; they are included if completed after matriculation. Since bridge programs can be designed in a variety of ways, the graduate program director will assist students in planning and course selection.

Maximum time limit

University policy requires that graduate programs be completed within seven years of the student's initial registration for courses in the program. Bridge courses are excluded.