Innovation starts with their very existence. Indiana University's School of Informatics is made up of an interesting combination of programs like computer science, informatics, library science, information science, and intelligent systems engineering that makes them one of the largest and most accomplished schools of its kind. Its extensive programs are brought together by the focus on technology and information. These two fields are rapidly changing and bringing on new ideas, new applications, and new discoveries. These bring innovations that are developed by the faculty, and bring the problems that the students will aim to solve.
The School of Informatics was founded in 2000 and was the first of its kind and added someone extraordinary to the world of information and technology. IU brought together the computer science department and the school of informatics in 2005, and then in 2013 the school of library and information science joined. The degrees that are available are designed for what engineering actually is and what it will be, as opposed to what it was in times past. The approaches to information technology are modern and reflect the current situation as well as what will be in the future. The school works to provide an environment that encompasses a varying array of students, faculty, and staff—this includes women as well as under-represented minorities, and even individuals with a range of talents and intellectual interests. The school has a broad view of computing and information technology education allows for a sturdy foundation for the diverse goals that it holds.
HCI, or Human-Computer Interaction has mainly been an area for engineers and psychologists. In this program, it is approached from the design perspective. The focus is on more than just using technology to solve a problem. It centers on creating a technology experience that is intuitive, functional, and delightful for those who are using it. The goal of the HCI program is to teach students to think like a designer. The approach is certainly research based, but it is nowhere near rigid. Students will follow a tightly structured curriculum that will prepare them for for their professional careers, so there is enough room for each student to pursue their individual interests. During the time that a student is in the MS HCI program, they will refine their own personal design philosophy through coursework that will: teach important history, literature, and investigation of HCI design, introduce students to the many frameworks, research techniques, as well as creative exercises, help students to learn the vital skills needed to use and design current and new applications, and explore the socioeconomic consequences of utilizing technologies in various cultures.
Students within the program come from all different types of backgrounds including computer science and liberal arts. Because all students in the program work together on projects quite often, they will become part of a tight group that works in cohesive collaboration. This will help students to build meaningful relationships that will last long after they graduate. Almost half of the Master's students work to publish original research by the time that they graduate.