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What is an iSchool?

iSchool graphicEach year, the world creates more than 281 billion gigabytes of information. So much information can be overwhelming. Rigorous study of the users and uses of information at the UW iSchool helps answer questions like

  • How can we connect people with the right information at the right time?
  • How can we use information to help people achieve their potential?
  • How can we harness information’s capacity as an agent for positive change?

Information schools are interested in the relationship between information, technology, and people. Graduates of information schools use their expertise for the advancement of science, business, education, and culture. This expertise is gained through the iSchool movement's investigation of the uses and users of information, as well as information technologies and their applications.

In practice, this information orientation provides a focus on the organizational and social issues related to the ways people create, store, find, manipulate and share information. Graduates of information schools are adept at designing, refining and building information systems. They are attuned to the needs that drive people to seek information. They are concerned with issues like access, privacy and usability. And they understand the increasingly complex social and organizational environments in which people seek to fill their information needs — in theoretical, virtual and physical spaces. They are ambassadors for the transformative power of information when applied ethically and effectively.

The UW Information School: A Home for Innovators and Leaders

As a leading member of the iSchool movement, the UW is a model for other information schools around the globe. The UW iSchool's approach to information instruction and scholarship builds on the traditional roles filled by information professionals and infuses this with a strong emphasis on the technologies through which information is increasingly delivered. By tackling key social and technical problems in the information field, the iSchool has become an important link between users of information and designers of information systems, connecting society with the information it needs.

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