ISQS 5341 
Fall, 2003


Business Problem Solving and Information Technology

Instructor: Zhangxi Lin
Office: BA 708
Phone: 742-1926 (office)
Class meetings: TTh 3:30-4:50p, BA 271 
Office hours: TTh 10:00a-12:00p or by appointment

A. About This Course:

This is a leveling course for graduate students in MIS major or those graduate students who want to obtain the foundations in business problem solving with information technology. Differentiated from a typical Management Information Systems course, this course covers a broad range of issues including:

1)  The principles of information systems and systems integration, and, with the help of numerous case studies, showing how to apply those principles to solving business problems.

2) Implementation of business process integration with information technology, e.g. Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP), revealing the linkages between business processes and how they can be supported in enterprise-wide integrated systems.

3) The fundamentals of computer programming, including the application development environment of Windows and Linux, Web-based application scripting, such as html, xml, MS Access, and CGI, the concepts of data structures and algorithms, object-oriented programming.

4) The introduction of web services focused on their applications and the archtecture (BPEL4WS, UDDI, WSDL and SOAP). This serves two purposes: a) to provide students the information about the latest progress in IS applications in addition to the contents covered in a textbook; 2) to train students' ability to capture the fast moving IT by research and self-taught.

An information system design case will be conducted and evolved through out this semester in complement to the theoretical contents in the textbook. The case will cover a series of issues in ERP:

  • System analysis
  • Project planning
  • Process design
  • System realization
  • Implementation
  • Transition and operation

B. Textbook:

Required Textbook:

Information Systems: Foundation of E-Business, 4/E

Steven Alter, University of San Francisco

ISBN: 0-13-061773-3
Publisher: Prentice Hall
Copyright: 2002
Format: Cloth; 587 pp
Published: 08/13/2001

C. Grading Policy:

  • Two of three exams will be counted for total 200 points. 
  • Three quizzes are equally weighted, 60 points
  • One programming project, 50 points.
  • Homework assignments 30 points
  • Class participation and involvement 20 
  • Total 360 points
  • Extra bonus credits up to 20 points

D. Attendance:

Attendance will not be taken. However, previous statistics showed that the paritcipation  in the class is closely related to the outcomes of tests.

E. Examinations:

All exams are close-book and close-notes. One of the three exams (two midterm exams and one final exam) will be dropped, whichever is the lowest. One can exempt the final exam if one has earned 225 points in two midterm and three quizzes.

You are required to take the test in the class room at the scheduled date and time, unless you have disabling conditions. In which case, alternative place and time may be discussed. Most questions will be chosen from the questions at the end of the chapters and from the supplemental materials distributed in the class.

Make-up test may be available in the case that you could not take the test at the specific time due to medical emergencies or unexpected travel plans. If you need to reschedule a test, you must contact the instructor before the scheduled test.

Three quizzes will be held for the programming lectures. No make-up test will be scheduled for the quizzes.

F. Homework Assignments:

Ten homework assignments are available during the semester. Submissions are required. Tests are closely relevant to the assignments. Working seriously on the homeworks will guarantee you better scores in tests.

G. Projects:

Students will work individually in a web-based programming project throughout this semester. The project will be demonstrated  and presented in the class.

H. Extra Bonus Credit:

In the following cases you may earn extra credits:

  • Accomplishing an extra programming project showing good capability in application design and implementation (extra project topics are to be determined). The project must be completed by the second midterm exam in the required quality
  • Active participation in the class.
  • Any recognized contribution to improving teaching and researching for this course.

I . Course Schedule:

See here.

J. Others