MSIQ Curriculum

The MSIQ program requires 27 hours of graduate course work with an additional six hours of either a thesis or project. The curriculum is consistent with relevant guidelines provided by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and the Association for Information Systems (AIS). The program emphasizes analysis and critical thinking as they relate to the principles and practices of information quality. Students must be able to effectively communicate and advocate the results of their analyses, and assist developers, managers, and other stakeholders in the implementation of information quality processes, policies, and improvement plans.

Courses may be taken on either a part time or full time basis. Graduate credit may be granted for equivalent course work from other institutions, with approval of the MSIQ program coordinator and the Graduate School dean. All master’s degree requirements must be satisfied within six consecutive calendar years of admission to the program, excluding time lost for military service. For a complete list of rules and regulations governing the MSIQ program, please review the UALR graduate catalog that is available online (Link for Online Graduate Catalog).

Required Courses

  • IFSC 5345 Information Visualization
  • INFQ 7303 Principles of Information Quality
  • IFSC 7310 Information Systems Analysis or MGMT Systems Analysis and Design Methods
  • INFQ 7367 Information Quality Policy and Strategy
  • IFSC 7320 Database Systems or MGMT Advanced Database Management Systems
  • INFQ 7322 Information Quality Theory
  • INFQ 7342 Information Quality Tools and Industry Landscape

One 3-hour, non-information quality elective (must not start with INFQ Prefix)

  • IFSC 5325 Data Mining Concepts and Techniques
  • IFSC 5330 Database Security
  • IFSC 5339 Network Security
  • IFSC 5399 Special Topics (Title will vary)
  • IFSC 7321 Information Science and Theory
  • IFSC 7325 Advanced Data Mining
  • IFSC 7330 Information Systems Security
  • IFSC 7331 Network Science
  • IFSC 7350 Electronic Commerce
  • IFSC 7360 Data Protection and Privacy
  • IFSC 7399 Special Topics (Title will vary)
  • MGMT 7308 Advanced Business Communications
  • MGMT 7312 Team Development
  • Others with approval of Graduate Coordinator

One 3-hour, information quality elective (must start with INFQ Prefix)

  • INFQ 7337 Project and Change Management
  • INFQ 7348 Entity Resolution and Information Quality
  • INFQ 7318 Total Quality Management and Statistical Process Control
  • INFQ 7399 Special Topics in Information Quality

Capstone Elective (one of the following)

  • Six credits of Graduate Project: Students may elect to complete a graduate project in one semester (INFQ 7686) or to spread the graduate project over two semesters (INFQ 7386 taken twice) to complete the required six credits of IQ Graduate Project coursework. As a third option, students can also elect to coordinate 3 credits of cooperative education experience (INFQ 7391) with the graduate project (INFQ 7386 taken once).
  • Six credits of Graduate Thesis. Students may register with Advisor Approval in any of the following Thesis courses: INFQ 7198, 7298, 7398, 7498, 7598, or 7698 over one or more semesters to complete the required six credits of IQ Graduate Thesis coursework.

Consecutive Enrollment Policy (Effective Fall 2012)

  • Students that begin their capstone project or thesis must continue to enroll in project or thesis hours until successful completion of the project or thesis.
  • Students are advised to plan their project in advance, including scheduling adequate time for the approval of the final report.
  • The oral defense should be given during the final semester in which a student is registered for their last 6 project hours.
  • Students that need additional time to complete a project must enroll in 3 hours of project in the next semester. This includes the summer semester.
  • Failure to maintain consecutive enrollment may require the student to restart the project/thesis process and submit a new project/thesis proposal.

Course Descriptions

INFQ 7303 Principles of Information Quality: This course provides a rigorous exploration of information quality concepts, assessment, and problems in organizational information systems, databases and data warehouses. A combination of state of the art literature review and hands-on projects is used to develop knowledge and ability to meet objectives.

INFQ 7318 Total Quality Management and Statistical Quality Control: This course provides an understanding of how the concepts and techniques of Total Quality Management may be applied to information products. Topics include continuous improvement strategies, statistical process control, experimental design, capability analysis, quality cost assessments, benchmarking, acceptance testing, and auditing.

INFQ 7322 Information Quality Theory: This course is designed to provide students with the theoretical foundations critical for developing a deep understanding of the state-of-the-art information quality research from the technical, organizational and strategic perspectives. This course will prepare students to work on their thesis, project, and conduct research in the field of information quality. More specifically, students will be exposed to concepts, principles, tools, and models, and techniques that are essential for information quality definitions, measurement, analysis, and improvement. Additionally, students will be exposed to most current, cutting-edge research that goes beyond current industry practice in information quality.

INFQ 7337 Project and Change Management: A course on how to manage information quality improvement projects within an organizational context, including the processes related to initiating, planning, executing, controlling, reporting, and closing a project. Additional topics include identifying project champions, working with user teams, training, documentation, project integration, scope, time, cost-benefit studies, risk analysis, and change management.

INFQ 7342 Information Quality Tools and Industry Landscape: This course is designed to develop and increase capability and skills that students need to critically understand what IQ software tools, techniques, and prototypes are currently used in industry, government, and research laboratories. The course will prepare students to make software tool recommendations on corporate data quality programs. Students will conduct a survey of academic literature and industry practices in terms of IQ tools such as data cleansing, profiling, and auditing, and will participate in a hands-on workshop on commercial IQ tools from participating vendors in the field.

INFQ 7348 Entity Resolution and Information Quality:  An examination of the theory and practice of entity resolution (ER), and the relationship between ER and information quality.  Topics include the primary activities of ER, the major ER system architectures, methods and techniques for determining reference equivalence, major theoretical models for ER, entity-based data integration, ER case studies, and hands-on ER exercises with commercial and open-source ER tools

INFQ 7353 Case Studies for Information Quality Professionals: This intensive and interactive course is designed to develop and increase the student’s capability and skills to critically understand what constitutes data quality, how to analyze and solve data quality problems, and how to institutionalize data quality projects in an organization where data quality is not the most critical priority.

INFQ 7367 Information Quality Policy and Strategy: This course explores the top management, strategic perspective for aligning competitive strategy, core competencies, and information quality. Topics include the development and implementation of IQ policies and plans to achieve organizational goals; how to define systems that support the operational, administrative, and strategic IQ needs of the organization, its business units, and individual employees; approaches to managing technology and the information systems function in organizations, role of the CIO.

INFQ 7386/7686 Graduate Project: Prerequisites: Graduate standing and consent of the student’s graduate advisor. Students, under faculty supervision, will conduct directed research on a particular problem or area of information quality and will produce reports and other deliverables appropriate to the project. The MSIQ Project Handbook is available online (MSIQ Project Guidelines).

INFQ 7198/7298/7398/7498/7498/7698 Thesis: Prerequisites: Consent of thesis advisor. Scholarly investigation of a selected problem in information quality culminating in a written and orally defended thesis. The UALR Dissertation and Thesis Guide is available online (Link for UALR Dissertation and Thesis Guide).

IFSC 5325 Data Mining Concepts and Techniques: In-depth, practical coverage of essential data mining topics, including OLAP and data warehousing, data preprocessing, concept description, association rules, classification and prediction, and cluster analysis. Advanced topics include mining object-relational databases, spatial databases, multimedia databases, time-series databases, text databases, the World Wide Web, and applications in several fields.

IFSC 5330 Database Security: Focus on security issues in databases systems and introduction of how current and future commercial systems may be designed to ensure secrecy and confidentiality. Topics include security models, basic security mechanisms and software, statistical database security, intrusion detection, security models for next generation databases, tested techniques and proven strategies for securing an Oracle environment – from the operating system to the database to the network, and how to implement security using Oracle’s built-in tools.

IFSC 5339 Network Security: This course provides students with a concise and in-depth overview of security issues in current computer networks. It first gives a brief introduction of cryptographic algorithms and protocols underlying network security applications, including encryption, hash function, public key algorithm, digital signatures, and key exchanges. Then, it focuses on the security issues in current computer networks as well as network security tools and applications, including Kerberos, X.509v3 certificates, PGP, S/MIME, IP security, SSL/TLS, SET, and SNMPv3. The course will cover network intrusion-detection techniques and systems.

IFSC 5345 Information Visualization: The design and presentation of digital information. Use of graphics, animation, sound, visualization software, and hypermedia in presenting information to the user. Methods of presenting complex information to enhance comprehension and analysis. Incorporation of visualization techniques into human-computer interfaces.

IFSC 7310 Information Systems Analysis: Methods of problem identification and definition, data collection and measurement, feasibility study methods, work measurement techniques, task analysis, simulation studies, impact analysis, evaluation methods, forms and display design, proposal writing, documentation and programming standards, design strategies, documentation, and evaluation.

IFSC 7320 Database Systems: Database systems and data modeling, including entity-relationship model, relational data model, normalization, structured query language (SQL), transaction management, object-oriented databases, and basics of physical database design and query evaluation.

IFSC 7321 Information Science and Theory: This course provides a rigorous exploration of information theory including entropy, value strategies, security, extraction, and emission of information.

IFSC 7325 Advanced Data Mining: Advanced techniques for knowledge discovery and data mining from large databases. graphical and kernel-based machine learning, active and online learning, mining with uncertainty, spatial and temporal data mining, data mining large micro array and protein array data sets.

IFSC 7330 Information Systems Security: This course aims at providing a solid theoretical foundation in Information Systems Security, including both Computer Security and Communications Security. The security issues in information systems as well as techniques for ensuring information systems security will be studied. The course will focus on the study of security policies, models, and mechanisms for secrecy, integrity, and availability. The basic principles of information systems security will be discussed, including basic crypotography and its applications, security in computer networks and distributed systems, access control models and mechanisms for database security, multilevel database security, steganography, Internet security, and control and prevention of viruses and other rogue programs.

IFSC 7350 Electronic Commerce: Seminar style course designed for doctoral level student to be able to explore jointly the field of electronic commerce theoretically, conceptually and through applications including electronic markets, strategy, business models, impacts of information and communication technologies, organization and social behavior, as well as selected economic perspectives.

IFSC 7360 Data Protection and Privacy: Concepts and methods for creating technologies and related policies with provable guarantees of privacy protection while allowing society to collect and share person-specific information for necessary and worthy purposes. Methods include those related to the identifiability of data, record linkage, data profiling, data fusion, data anonymity, de-identification, policy specification and enforcement and privacy-preserving data mining.

MGMT 7308 Advanced Business Communication: Analysis of communication issues in the global socio-technical environment. Assessment of organizational communication systems. Refinement of written and verbal communication competencies.

MGMT 7312 Team Development: Organizational theory and principles of developing and managing teams.