Undergraduate courses

Corp Resp & Eth (QSTIS171)


Introduction to Information Systems (QSTIS223)

Provides students with an understanding of the important role that information and information technology play in supporting the effective operation and management of business. Elaborates on the themes of "place to space" and the implications for business of the digital enterprise. Focuses on learning IS concepts in the context of application to real business problems.


Managing Information Security (QSTIS428)

Combines technical and business approaches to the management of information. It will address technical issues such as cryptography, intrusion detection, and firewalls along with managerial ideas such as overall security policies, managing uncertainty and risk, and organization factors. We will examine different aspects of computer security such as password, virus protection, and managing computer security in dynamic environments. Topics will also include network security and how to secure wireless application and services. These technical details will be placed in a business context. The class will have a practical focus as we examine current "best practices" in area. There will be several guest speakers in the security area. This will be a project-oriented class and students will present their research projects during the last several classes. 4 cr.


Implementing Information Systems Solutions (QSTIS434)

Examines best practices for successfully implementing Information Systems solutions. Formulates the appropriate governance, architecture, and planning required for successful IS implementation, and provides the student with hands- on software training and approaches for successful IS implementation. Examines issues related to IS outsourcing including the development of international service level agreements, the human impact of outsourcing, and the legal and social implications of outsourcing. Upon completion of this course students will master the complex methods and practices to frame a problem, and propose an actionable solution, that would be expected from top consultants and business executives.


Building Web Applications for Business (QSTIS454)

Designed to teach business students the strategic value gained from a competitive advantage perspective around the organizational planning, implementation strategies and on-going modification strategies regarding the process of building functioning web applications on multiple platforms. The course will utilize a number of approaches throughout the semester which will enable students who are not hard-core programmers to learn what code does, how to write and utilize existing code modules and why and how it works, doesn't work, creates challenges and opportunities in an organizational structure . The goal at the end of the semester is for students to have a very thorough theoretical understanding, appreciation and application of the development process in surrounding Web strategies and applications for business.


Managing Data Resources (QSTIS465)

Required for Management Information Systems concentrators. Provides a practical and theoretical introduction to data management focusing on the use of relational database technology and SQL to manage an organization's data and information. Introduces recent topics such as data warehouses and Web databases. Includes a project to design and implement a relational database to manage an organization's data. 4 cr.


Agile Development Methodologies (QSTIS467)

This course is designed to provide the students with an overview of Agile Development methodologies. The course introduces the various methods currently used in the industry and then focuses on the primary methodologies used today, SCRUM and Kanban. Students will learn the tools of these software development approaches that produce deliverables to end users every two to four weeks. We analyze the value each of these methodologies bring into the development process and the reasoning behind a corporation selecting one method over the other (or a combination of both). In addition, the students will be introduced to CA Project Management software, the leader in the industry for SCRUM. Students will learn to analyze requirements, create backlogs, schedule "stories" to be developed, hold Standup meetings, Reviews and Retrospectives.


Designing Information Systems (QSTIS469)

Required for Management Information Systems concentrators. Studies the process of designing and implementing management information systems. Students will learn to analyze organizational information requirements, develop specifications for information systems, manage systems development projects, and understand implementation issues. Key implementation concepts that affect management decisions will be discussed, and reinforced with programming examples. Design support tools will be used to support the design process. Includes a project to design an information system.


Electronic Commerce (QSTIS472)

The Internet has brought about significant change in the way business is conducted. The rules and business models, however, for the new economy are still in their infancy. This course provides a grounding in the concepts of electronic commerce, and then moves to an examination of the emergent and emerging business models. The IT/IS infrastructure that supports these various business models is addressed, particularly architecting systems including privacy and security issues.


Platform Strategy & Design (QSTIS474)

Today's most valuable and powerful companies do not offer standalone products or services, but rather platforms which enable transactions between multiple customer groups -- think Alibaba, Airbnb, Amazon, eBay, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Salesforce, Uber, etc. This course explores the unique strategy challenges and economic foundations of such platform businesses. What makes platforms special relative to regular product businesses? Why are platforms so powerful, yet so hard to build? How should platforms be designed and priced? How much responsibility should platforms take for bad things they enable their participants to do (e.g. fake news and ad scams on Facebook, counterfeits on Alibaba)? When and how can regular products or services be transformed into platforms? How should other businesses deal with the rising power of platforms that they depend on? The course will use a mixture of conceptual frameworks, (light) economic models, and case studies to provide students with a thorough and in-depth understanding of what it takes to build or invest in platforms. Such an understanding is indispensable to anyone seeking a career at technology companies or aspiring to become an entrepreneur or venture capitalist.


Innovating with Information Technology (QSTIS479)

Surveys the organizational implementation, uses, and impacts of advanced information technology including decision support systems, management support systems, and expert systems. Includes a group project to design and develop a decision support system.


Directed Study: Management Information Systems (QSTIS498)

Directed study in Management Information Systems. 2 or 4 cr. Application available on Undergraduate Program website.

Graduate courses

Tpcs an&Inf Tec (QSTIS605)


Digital Project Build (formerly Managing Networked Systems) (QSTIS705)

This course is similar to the current course offered in the MBDi summer intensives. It runs concurrent with the other two classes and integrates the python and analytics knowledge taught throughout the program, culminating in the production of an analytics program or application.


System Design for Business Networks (QSTIS706)

Provides a comprehensive review of the theory and practice of Information Systems Analysis and Design. Students explore the tools and techniques associated with a process, a data-oriented, and an object-oriented view of systems design and evaluate the implications of the emerging technologies of computer-aided software design.


Systems Architecture (QSTIS707)

Focuses on Operating Systems for workstations and mainframes with emphasis on the operating system as both a provider of service and manager of resources. It includes discussions and cases in the management of technology and technical people as well as personal issues professionals and managers.


IT Strategies for a Networked Economy (QSTIS710)

This case-based course demonstrates the role that information technology plays in shaping business strategy and business models. It provides an overview of the key technologies that are important in today's business environment and introduces organization and management concepts relating to the information technology function. The course also illustrates the relationships between organizational performance and the ability to leverage knowledge assets.


IT Strategies for a Networked Economy (QSTIS711)

This case-based course demonstrates the role that information technology plays in shaping business strategy and business models. It provides an overview of the key technologies that are important in today's business environment and introduces organization and management concepts relating to the information technology function. The course also illustrates the relationships between organizational performance and the ability to leverage knowledge assets.


Mastering IT Strategy (QSTIS714)

This is a capstone course to integrate the key concepts and approaches to managing IT in modern corporations. Using a set of leading-edge case examples, frameworks, the students will have an opportunity to understand how IT strategy supports current business models while shaping tomorrow's business models. Students will master the intricate challenges of placing IT at the core of modern enterprises. They will have an opportunity to apply their learnings to a company of their choice through a course project.


Topics in Analytics and Info Tech Strategies (QSTIS716)

This case-based course demonstrates the role that information technology plays in shaping business strategy and business models. It provides an overview of the key technologies that are important in today's business environment and introduces organization and management concepts relating to the information technology function. The course also illustrates the relationships between organizational performance and the ability to leverage knowledge assets. This course covers this material in a concentrated format for students who have completed an undergraduate management degree.


Systems Architecture in Management and Applications (QSTIS717)

The objective of this course is to provide an overview of the concept of systems architecture and how it has evolved from a technical notion to an important business issue. The course has several themes: (1) Students develop an appreciation of how a business may leverage architectural design choices for operational and competitive advantage, both at a technical and business level. (2) Students obtain insight into how interface driven systems (those using APIs) enable flexibility and increased innovation. (3) Students are confronted with the difficult aspects of modern systems, such as parallelism and concurrency, and how these technical challenges are managed. An introduction to programming in Python provides a context to help students develop a hands-on understanding of these concepts. Care is taken to not just apply the technical material to management contexts, but also inform business strategy and organization and operations through these architectural principles.


Platform Strategy and Design (QSTIS827)

To thrive in the modern economy, managers, entrepreneurs and investors need a thorough understanding of platform businesses. Indeed, today's most powerful and valuable firms, from Airbnb, to Amazon, Facebook and Salesforce, operate as platforms connecting buyers and sellers, or users and advertisers, or users and third-party developers. These platforms derive their value from network effects and the ability to harness innovation from their users. Drawing on cases from social media, entrepreneurship, enterprise software, mobile services, and consumer products, we will analyze and learn to launch platform startups, convert existing businesses into platforms, and compete in a platform-centric world. Students will learn to apply concepts from industrial economics, market design, and game theory to real problems.


Managing Information Security (QSTIS828)

This MBA elective (also open to undergraduates) will combine a technical and business approach to the management of information. It will address technical issues such as cryptography, intrusion detection and firewalls along with managerial ideas such as overall security policies, managing uncertainty and risk and organization factors. We will examine different aspects of computer security such as passwords, virus protection and managing computer security in dynamic environments. Topics will also include network security and how to secure wireless application and services. These technical details will be placed in a business context. The class will have a practical focus as we examine current best practices. There well be several guest speakers in the security area. This will be a project oriented class and students will present their research projects during the last several classes.


Business Transformation (QSTIS829)

Every business sector is undergoing profound changes partly due to the recent financial crisis but also due to the impact of information technology. This course allows MBA students a chance to engage with how IT impacts business operations in a strategic way. The distinctive feature of this course is that we will have real-life cases from companies and the students will have an opportunity to present their analysis and recommendations to corporate executives. We will use latest cases and articles as well as review and work with leading-edge practice from companies. Reserved for MBA students only.


Competing in Business Networks (QSTIS830)

Business strategy has been profoundly affected by the pervasive connectivity enabled by the internet, modern communications and the explosion of connected devices. Add to this the emergence of intelligent sensor technologies such as Mote, RFID and many forms of nano technologies, the business strategists of today have the opportunity to fundamentally transform the nature of the modern business model. This course uses the design concepts of platforms to examine the characteristics of and the implementation issues associated with the design and deployment of these new business models. The course is divided into three parts. First, the concept of business capabilities and the design logic of platforms will be explored. These concepts will be examined from both an economic perspective and from the perspective of designing adaptive business processes. Second, the course will use case studies to explore how these concepts have been applied across multiple industries including, retail, healthcare, transportation, manufacturing and a variety of service contexts. Finally, the implementation and leadership issues associated with the deployment of these concepts will be discussed using case studies and through dialogue with invited speakers.


Advanced Topics in IT Strategy (QSTIS831)

This course will build upon the concepts and frameworks discussed in IS 714. Students will choose a sector and company as a focal point to develop and write a strategic position paper that explores a significant business opportunity. The paper will define the business opportunity and present original research and analysis of this opportunity in support of the recommendations and conclusions. Each paper will been reviewed and evaluated by both a professor and a designated business executive. Class sessions will involve open and constructive discussions each students? work progress addressing issues such as core value proposition, methodologies used in the analysis and feedback on recommendations. Industry guest speakers will be used stimulate ideas and to provide a means to obtain meaningful feedback.


Networks and Social Media (QSTIS832)

As the penetration of online and mobile technologies continues to advance, instant messaging, mobile phone communication, micro-blogs, and online social networks are shaping how we interact with the world and each other. The explosion of data surrounding these interactions is a powerful microscope that permits research into behaviors and their social and economic outcomes at an unprecedented scale and level of detail orders of magnitude greater than what was previously possible. The emerging field of network science describes these interconnections and gives us tools to understand their importance to our natural, social and business environments. This course will introduce the theory and practice of network science and cover numerous applications in the realms of business, health and politics. We will explore questions such as: How can firms and policy makers harness the power of social media? How can we promote or discourage population level change? How do behavioral contagions form and become viral? What is the value of a tweet? Topics may include: network structure and dynamics; social network analysis; weak and strong ties; structural holes; homophily; community structure; information propagation and cascades in networks; the dynamics of influence; social and behavioral contagions; word of mouth; viral product design; strategic competition; crowdsourcing; incentives and gamification; and others.


Business Analytics in Practice Assuming Introductory Programming (QSTIS833)

This course will introduce students to programming-based tools and techniques for becoming an analytically-minded manager. The course covers both a hands-on introduction to the concepts, methods and processes of business analytics as well as an introduction to the use of analytics as the basis for creating a competitive advantage. In the first half of the course, we will learn how to extract value from data by asking the right questions and using the appropriate analytical methods and tools. These methods comprise data preprocessing steps, explanatory analysis, optimization routines, and machine learning techniques. Having developed an understanding of the fundamentals, in the second half of the class our attention shifts toward learning how managers can use these techniques as the basis for decision making and creating competitive edge from their enterprise data. Basic programming in python (e.g., IS717, taken by all MSDi students) is a prerequisite.


Emerging Perspectives and Synthesis (QSTIS837)

This course is intended to serve two purposes--(a) an opportunity to expose students to leading-edge faculty research that has not yet been integrated into the Master's curriculum; and (b) allow students to develop a synthesis of how technology and business domains are interwoven in the transition from an industrial age to a post-industrial age with pervasive impacts of information technology and systems. Students will be exposed to a set of leading-edge ideas by SMG faculty members as well as guest lectures and discussions. Each student will have an opportunity to reflect on these ideas by developing a paper on a chosen topic that serves to maximize learning in the program. We believe that this one-week intensive course (based on some of our experiences with a program for IBM Corporation) will be a useful synthesis of leading-edge ideas for the MS-MBA students.


Advanced Analytics For Managers: Data Mining (QSTIS841)

The widespread proliferation of IT-influenced economic activity leaves behind a rich trail of micro-level data about consumer, supplier and competitor preferences. This has led to the emergence of a new form of competition based on the extensive use of analytics, experimentation, and fact-based decision making. In virtually every industry the competitive strategies organizations are employing today rely extensively on data analysis to predict the consequences of alternative courses of action, and to guide executive decision making. This course provides a hands-on introduction to the concepts, methods and processes of business analytics. We will learn how to obtain and draw business inferences from data by asking the right questions and using the appropriate tools. Topics to be covered include data preparation, data visualization, data mining, text mining, recommender systems as well as the overall process of using analytics to solve business problems, its organizational implications and pitfalls. Students will work with real world business data and analytics software. Where possible cases will used to motivate the topic being covered. Prior courses in analytics, data management and statistics (such as IS823) will be helpful but are not required.


Sustain Projcts (QSTIS847)


Digital Strategy for Emerging Business Leaders (QSTIS854)

The use of AI, IOT, 5G, cloud computing and other disruptors are transforming industries and business models. In this class students will learn, practice and build digital strategies that extend Porter's Five Forces. Students will be able to engage top executives in proposing new ways to grow top and bottom line. In addition to case studies and class exercises, we will bring in industry experts to share their real world experience. In lieu of a final exam, students will form into project teams that will analyze, develop, present and gain buy-in for a specific digital strategy. In addition, the course will cover topics business leaders need to drive new value by partnering effectively with IT, including such key management concepts as digital delivery, governance, architecture, and decision rights.


Digital Transformation: Immersive Interactions and Insights at Silicon Valley (QSTIS855)

This course will be a one week intensive held in Silicon Valley. The course is designed to achieve two objectives. First, to develop an appreciation for the role of Silicon Valley in Digital Innovation and, secondly, to examine how digital innovations are impacting key shifts in specific sectors. Students will be placed into teams and be expected to develop specific insights as the basis to engage in interactions with corporate executives, alumni and follow classmates. Teams will also visit leading companies involved in each sector and develop and present their team's perspective on key digital trends and leadership challenges for their sector.


Synthesizing Digital Efforts to Deliver Better Outcomes (QSTIS883)

Most organizations today -- of all sizes and stages of maturity -- are undertaking internally and externally focused digital initiatives. Success of these programs varies widely, as they are dependent on numerous factors, both strategic and tactical. Foremost among them are how individuals with skills across strategy, project/program management and analytics think about their purpose individually, what they prioritize and how they work together collectively, and how they measure not just the output of individuals, but the outcomes delivered by the team. In this class, students will learn the leading thinking, practices, tools, and methods used by top digital professionals today, and will apply them as a cross-functional team toward the research, ideation, analysis, design, and creation of a digital prototype that addresses an unmet need in the market.


Technology Tools for e-Business (QSTIS885)

Focuses on how to build and manipulate data structures in a typical hardware/software environment. Emphasis is on building structures that represent organizational entities so users can examine them. The role of the analyst/designer in this process requires sufficient understanding of the technology to be aware of the options available and of the costs and benefits of these options.


Data Management (QSTIS889)

The ability to collect, organize, access, analyze and harness data is a source of competitive advantage for some and a competitive necessity for others. Getting an organization to the point where it has a data asset it can leverage is a non-trivial task. Many firms have been shocked at the amount of work and complexity that is required to pull together an infrastructure that integrates its diverse data sources and empowers its managers. This course will provide an introduction to the concepts and technologies that are involved in managing and supporting the data assets of your organization. We will cover data modeling, relational databases, including SQL, data warehousing and business intelligence.


Directed Study: Info Systems (QSTIS898)

Graduate-level directed study in Management Information Systems. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.


Directed Study: Info Systems (QSTIS899)

Graduate-level directed study in Management Information Systems. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.


Perspectives on Information, Organization and Strategy (QSTIS910)

The focus of this course will be on information, how it is shared and assessed across a variety of actors and how value can be generated by it in organizational and market contexts. The perspectives on information will be anchored by two disciplinary positions: economics and organization theory. The goal of this will be to bring a strong disciplinary approach and contrast to information and apply to classic challenges for organization and strategy (markets). The course will consist of a variety of readings as well as guest speakers representing these perspectives. The output of the course will consist of short ?reaction? papers as well as a final paper where the students states perspective on information and apply it to the primary research question(s) that is driving their graduate studies. Open to all PhD students at Boston University. Also open to MBA students with faculty member's consent.


Information Economics (QSTIS912)

This class will cover seminal works in the economics of information including the Nobel Prize winning ideas of Akerlof, Arrow, Spence, Stiglitz, and von Hayek. It will proceed through (i) concepts of information, its value and measurement (ii) search and choice under uncertainty (iii) signaling, screening, and how rational actors use information for private advantage (iii) how to price and package information goods (iv) how properties of information cause market failure (v) macroeconomic effects of information (vi) social and legal issues of owning information. Although primarily a theory class, it should be of interest to any student applying information economics in academic, commercial, or government policy contexts. Prerequisites are a graduate course in microeconomics and mathematics at the level of introductory calculus and statistics. Students will produce a major paper suitable for publication or inclusion in a thesis.


Topics in Information Systems Research (QSTIS917)

In this class we will a carry out a wide-ranging exploration of the IS research literature, looking at some of the most influential publications in the field as well as emerging work. Through close reading and vigorous discussion we will seek to understand the important methods, debates, and domains of inquiry. Objectives: - Develop a familiarity with some of the most influential papers in the literature. - Get a sense of the field. - Practice close reading, critiquing, and scholarly debate. - Synthesize a range of literatures. - Think carefully about some of the key concepts which are at the heart of the IS field of inquiry.


Research Seminar 2 (QSTIS919)

This course covers those important Information Systems (IS) theories and topics that are at the organizational level of analysis and below. That is, it focuses on the behaviors of single individuals and small numbers of individuals, such as dyads and teams. This is consistent with an approach to organizational phenomena that distinguishes between micro and macro levels of research, this course being the micro. The focus is on ways that individuals and teams use information technologies to acquire, process, and transfer information, and the effects these technologies have on individual cognition and dyadic and group interactions. It also investigates the design and implementation of information technologies and the impact of these on organizational outcomes. The course is designed to engender students with a broad knowledge of research at the intersection of information technologies and organizations, with an emphasis on theoretical underpinnings and methodological choices.


Directed Study: Info Systems (QSTIS998)

PhD-level directed study in Management Information Systems. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.


Directed Study: Info Systems (QSTIS999)

PhD-level directed study in Management Information Systems. 1, 2, or 3 cr. Application available on the Graduate Center website.