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Informatics is:

  • understanding the impact of technology and information on people.
  • the development of new uses for technology.
  • the application of information technology in the context of another field.

Information technology (IT) is rapidly changing the world, creating new challenges and opportunities every day. Informatics equips students to study IT, consider its social impact, and find ways to use technology to solve problems. The aim is to produce qualified information technology professionals who understand the ways people work with and use information, and who can develop solutions that are effective and easy-to-use. Usually, informatics is combined with another field of study or cognate. A number of cognates have been identified, such as bioinformatics, social informatics, business, new media, and health care informatics.

Informatics develops new uses for information technology and in order to solve specific problems in areas as diverse as biology, fine arts, health care, and economics. Informatics is also interested in how people transform technology, and how technology transforms us.

At the School of Informatics we emphasize problem solving, innovation, communications, and teamwork along with technical skills and knowledge. Our mission is to train students in state-of-the-art information technology and science with an emphasis on creative human applications, offering B.S. degrees in Informatics.

In many ways, informatics is a bridge connecting IT to a particular field of study such as biology, chemistry, fine arts, telecommunications, geography, business, economics, journalism, etc. Because of this, all undergraduate Informatics students choose a field or discipline that interests them (which we call a cognate). The cognate allows them to follow their own personal interests, and take courses in other programs at Indiana University.

Some cognates lead to recently recognized disciplines, such as biology leading to bioinformatics. Others lead to well-understood careers perhaps just emerging as disciplines, such as fine arts leading to top quality Web design, animations, and interactive art. For those interested in computers and programming, the computer science cognate adds further technology strength to our human-centered, problem solving curriculum.

Frequently Asked Questions
*What degrees are offered?
*What is a cognate, and how does it relate to my future career?
*Informatics / computer science / management information science: are they all the same?
*Why do IT students choose Informatics?
*What makes Informatics different from other technology schools?
*I'm in high school. What courses should I be taking?
*I'm an IUSB freshman. What courses should I be taking?
*What will I learn with an undergraduate Informatics degree?
*What skills will I develop with the B.S. in Informatics?
*What are some of the things Informatics graduates do?
*Are Informatics graduates finding jobs?
*What kinds of salaries are Informatics graduates commanding?
*What makes an Informatics graduate distinctive?
*Why do employers choose Informatics grads?
*What is the research focus of Informatics faculty?
Indiana University South Bend
1700 Mishawaka Ave., P.O. Box 7111, South Bend, IN 46634
Phone: (574) 520-IUSB or (574) 520-4872
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