Information Technology for Leaders

I taught this graduate course in the Organizational Leadership program twice at Mercyhurst College (now University).

See Collaborative Learning Projects for this course.

Course Description

Information Technology for Leaders investigates the history and impact of information technologies, from such early technologies as the printing press through the Internet revolution of the 21st century. Students are expected to think creatively about the role of information technology in organizations, and will develop a personal vision statement about that role. Collaborative groups will create blogs on research topics. Students will design and propose an individual research project. While they will be encouraged to use technology in their research projects, this is not a skills course, but one that fosters innovative and visionary leadership.

Learning Objectives

After completing this course, students should understand and be able to do the following:

  • Explain the history of information technology and its impact on society
  • Explain the development of systems thinking and the concept of paradigm shifts as related to information technology
  • Develop a personal perspective on innovation and the future of information technology
  • Design a research project relevant to leadership in information technology
  • Deliver a collaborative presentation on a selected topic
  • Participate in and moderate discussions, online and in class, on selected topics

Performance Expectations

I expect students to bring a spirit of creativity and innovation to the coursework, and to take seriously the concept of developing a vision about the role and direction of information technology. The course requires a significant amount of reading in books, articles, and online sources, as well as student-selected reading for research. Because we only have ten classes, I expect that we will all be prepared to discuss readings as assigned, so that our discussions build on previous readings as we go along. I do not think that a course with the goal of developing a perspective on innovation can be a traditional lecture course, but that it must be based on directed conversations in which we can all develop ideas. Of course I expect high quality writing and project design from you, but I also welcome innovation in traditional assignments. Please talk to me about any innovative ideas you have about your research project or your collaborative presentation.

This graphic illustrates the two-part design of the course: