Assignments

Note: All the assignments #1, 2, & 4 should be submitted in both electronic (via the Assignments section in Canvas) and paper formats.

1. Review of Journal/Magazine [25%] (15% report + 10% presentation)

Specifications: no more than 1200-1500 words, double-spaced, stapled, page-numbered, APA style (5th ed.), default margin (1 inch); Post your choice of journal/magazine on Canvas by September 5

You will examine approximately 12 issues (or volumes) of a key journal in your field, proceedings of a major conference, or other sources about information and communication technologies (ICTs) in society. Assume that You got a dream job, and that your boss ask you to endorse (or not endorse) a journal/magazine to subscribe for the department to learn more about “social aspects of IT.”

Potential sources include popular tech-world magazines (e.g., Wired, Technology Review), professional magazines (e.g., Communications of the ACM, Interactions, D-lib Magazine, Online Magazine, MultiMedia & Internet@Schools), journals (e.g., The Information Society, Social Science Computer Review, Journal of the American Society for Information Science & Technology, Information Technology and Libraries), and conferences (e.g., Conference on Computer-Supported Cooperative Work, Conference on ACM CHI, or Hawaiian International Conference on System Sciences). In addition, there are numerous other journals and conferences that examine specialized technologies or application domains, such as distance education, multimedia, digital libraries, etc.

The review should summarize and analyze the selected source. Consider including the information about a range of topics examined, any specific traits from the best, typical, and worst articles, target audience, nature of contributors, etc. in the review. This activity will help us better understand the strengths/gaps in various magazines, journals or conference proceedings that examine social aspects of ICTs. You should also include evaluation of the source.

Use the reading of Week 2: Discourses about IT, especially the following article: Kling, R. (1994). Reading "all about" computerization: How genre conventions shape non-fiction social analysis. The Information Society, 10(3), 147-172. You need to cite this article in the report.

When you present the report in class, prepare a one-page handout that contains bibliographical information and a summary of the professional source. Bring the handout when you present the report. The presentation should be 5-6 minutes.

This activity will entail both a written report [15%] and in-class presentation [10%].

2. Short Paper [15%]

Specifications: no more than 1200-1500 words, double-spaced, stapled, page-numbered, APA style, default margin (1 inch)

Choose a technology platform (such as Talk page for a Wikipedia article or a thread in reddit) that’s used for knowledge sharing. You will observe and analyze online interactions on the chosen site and write a report on findings using the analytical lens of “boundaries.” Post the chosen article or topic name on Canvas by October 17th.

The paper should be structured as following:

  • Introduction that includes the rationale and justification of the site selection
  • Method that includes descriptions of the chose site, data collection, and data analysis
  • Analysis that demonstrates socio-technical understanding of the chosen site, with special attention to the analysis of boundaries (see the readings from Week 7).
  • Conclusion:
    • What you have learned
    • Future application of this analytical lens

Evaluation Criteria: Assignments will be evaluated by 1. Ideas (richness of information, elaboration, originality, interesting); 2. Coherence (clarity, unity, organization, transitions, logical sequence, synthesis, style); 3. Linkage (relevancy to class readings, connections made to in-class and outside readings); 4. Mechanics (spelling, citation format, grammar, sentence structure) in addition to specific requirements for each assignment.

3. Online Discussion Participation [10%]

You are expected to actively participate in the Canvas online course discussion forum at least once a week. As a discussion starter, you will be assigned to post once during the semester; this will involve you posting relevant materials to the weekly readings including a synthesis of the assigned readings and 3-4 thought-provoking questions to your classmates. The quality of these questions will strongly influence the quality of the weekly discussions. See some tips for good discussions questions.

The discussion starter should post by 5pm of Fridays (of course, the sooner the better), so that other classmates can make comments. All the comments for the week should be posted before Noon on Mondays (the day before the class meets).

4. Final project [40%] (15% for poster & 25% for paper)

Poster:

You will select a theoretical framework discussed in class (e.g., Social Construction of Technology, Public Sphere, etc.) or specific technologies discussed in class (e.g., ubiquitous computing, cellphone, Web 2.0, etc.) and choose one of the following project:

  • Conduct a state of the art literature review on a specific technology or related theory (synthesize at least 15-20 articles)
  • Conduct a small scale original research study
  • Do an assessment of an existing ICT in an organization or a social setting

Post your project description on Canvas by November 14th.

I'm expecting "conference paper quality." This article published in C&RL (2011, vol 72, no 1) evolved out of a final project submitted for this course. Cite at least 3 articles and/or book chapters from the course readings. Mark these readings with “*” in the reference list.

We will have the last class devoted to poster presentations. 3-4 students will have a 20 minutes poster session; and after each session, we have a fifteen-minute break. During the break, the next group of students who are assigned to the poster session can set up their posters.

  • Each poster presenter will be provided with an easel and a white poster board. The board will be 40 inches by 30 inches.
  • Poster presenters should bring all printed materials for their posters with them to the class. Push-pins will be available to construct your poster prior to the poster session. Remember you have less than 15 minutes to remove the previous poster and prepare for the new one.

The following links provide excellent guidance on preparing a high-quality poster:

Tips for making a large size poster at IUB

Paper:

Write a paper that accompanies your poster. The paper should be submitted by using the template available via Canvas page of the Course website and should not exceed 1500-2000 words (excluding references). This kind of paper is often used to select poster presentations for a conference. The paper supplements your poster by explaining core ideas of the poster and contains at least introduction, body, and conclusions. List the 3 articles or more you used from the course readings at the end of the paper. Mark these readings with “*” in the reference list. In addition, your list of works cited should follow APA guidelines. At the end of the paper, include the word count in [ ].

The grade distribution will be the following:

  • Poster 15%
  • Paper 25%

For those doctoral students who are taking Z764, please see the S764 requirement specification.