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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Marianne K Sweeny
INFX 544
Seattle Campus

Information Retrieval Systems

Introduction to theory and models in information retrieval and the systems for storage and retrieval of unstructured information. Examines information retrieval architectures, processes, retrieval models, query languages, and methods of system evaluation, methods and tools for document analysis, interfaces, and usability.

Class description

High level introduction to information retrieval systems that includes core examination of behavior models, information retrieval architecture, storage and models and algorithms. Examines current Web search engine methods, key algorithms, optimization methods and effective search within the enterprise. Focus of class will be on information architecture and user experience.

Student learning goals

Understand the foundation mechanics of all information retrieval systems

Understand information seeking behavior using mechanical tools

Understand modern information retrieval concepts of non-text retrieval and the influences of user behavior

Understanding of search engine optimization, search engine advertising and enterprise search concepts

Confidence in ability to manipulate placement in search engine results due to thorough understanding of how results presentation is determined

General method of instruction

Lecture Guided class discussion

Recommended preparation

If possible, read or read about You are Not a Gadget by Jaron Lanier. I will present on this work in the first class and refer to it throughout the course.

Class assignments and grading

There will be weekly assignments: a one page summary and critique of an information retrieval blog post. A list of topical blogs will be provided on the course website.

Grading is done on a point/percentage basis with points distributed between weekly assignment [50%], class discussion participation [30%] and the final exam [20%].


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Marianne K Sweeny
Date: 02/26/2013