InformaticsAndy Ammons, Associate Professor of Biology
Carlos Gutierrez, Assistant Professor of Business, Sauder Chair
David Housman, Professor of Mathematics
Pat Lehman, Associate Professor of Communication
Kent Palmer, Associate Professor of Informatics
Informatics is an exciting new program in which computers are used to solve problems. Informatics students take a core set of informatics courses, which gives them a solid foundation in the principles of computer science and information technology. Students also take courses in a cognate area. Students then use computers to solve problems in their chosen cognate area. The five possible cognate areas are business; biology; communication; mathematics; and peace, justice and conflict studies (PJCS). The PJCS cognate is a distinctive Goshen program not offered by any other college.
Goshen provides a number of opportunities for students to get practical computer experience during college. Students often work with Information Technology Services (ITS), ITS media, and the public relations department on campus. Internships and volunteer opportunities are also available with local businesses and nonprofit organizations.
The informatics program at Goshen College blends strong technology skills with a traditional liberal arts foundation. Informatics students are problem-solvers who understand the broader context for learning and how it applies in the world beyond technology. Informatics always keeps in mind the needs of people and the best and most appropriate uses for technology.
Career and postgraduate opportunities
Business and nonprofit organizations are looking for people that are able to use computer technology to solve problems. Goshen informatics graduates are in demand for their ability to increase business productivity, design effective websites, set up social media marketing campaigns, and create apps for smartphones and tablets. Students who elect to continue their computer studies at the graduate level have consistently been able to obtain research or teaching assistantships to fund their graduate education.
Major in informatics
59-65 credit hours (Informatics core plus one cognate area below)
Informatics core courses (38 credit hours)
- Bus 220, Office Software Productivity 3
- Comm 326, Creating for the Web 3
- Info 200, Informatics I 3
- Info 230, Programming I 4
- Info 300, Informatics II 3
- Info 330, Programming II 4
- Info 340, Database Design 3
- Info 350, Computer Networking 3
- Info 355, Systems Analysis 3
- Info 405, Project Management 3
- Info 409, Capstone Project 3
- One Statistics/Research methods course below 3
Comm 240, Communication Research
Econ 207, Business Research and Statistics
Math 323, Probability and Statistics
Psyc 380, Statistics in Research
Soc 391, Methods of Social Research
Biology Cognate (27 credit hours)
Faculty contact person: Andrew Ammons
- Biol 110, Ecology and Evolution 4
- Biol 120, Cell Biology and Genetics 4
- Biol 130, Organismal Biology 4
- One of the following 4
Biol 311, Advanced Molecular Genetics
Biol 341, Advanced Cell Biology
- Biol 331, Junior Research Seminar2
- Biol 410, Senior Seminar1
- Chem 111-112, General Chemistry 8
Business Cognate (21 credit hours)
Faculty contact person: Carlos Gutierrez
- Bus 215, Entrepreneurship Finance 3
- Bus 315, Principles of Marketing 3
- Bus 318, Production/Operations Management 3
- Bus 403, Management Strategy 3
- Bus 409, Business Internship 3
- Bus 410, Business Capstone Seminar 3
- Econ 203, Principles of Microeconomics3
Communication and Media Cognate (21 credit hours)
Faculty contact person: Patricia Lehman
- Art 107, Design 3
- Art/Comm 108, Digital Design 3
- Art 208, Graphic Design I 3
- Comm 250, Writing for Media3
- Comm 375, Animation 3
- Comm 410, Senior Seminar 3
- Info 345, Web Applications 3
Mathematics Cognate (23 credit hours)
Faculty contact person: David Housman
- Math 205, Discrete Mathematics 3
- Math 211, Calculus I 4
- Math 212, Calculus II 4
- Math 301, Linear Algebra 3
- Math 321, Differential Equations 3
- Math 351, Mathematical Modeling 3
- Math 411, Seminar: History 1
- Math 412, Seminar: Connections 1
- Math 413, Seminar: Discoveries 1
Peace, Justice & Conflict Studies (PJCS) Cognate (22 credit hours)
Faculty contact person: Joe Liechty
- Bibl 321, Biblical Themes of Peace 3
- PJCS 325, Mediation3
- PJCS 350, Dynamics & Theology of Reconciliation3
- PJCS 370, Personal Violence & Healing 3
- PJCS 410, Senior Advanced Work1
- Any three additional PJCS courses9
|Fourth year||Goshen Core
Remaining Informatics courses
Cognate area courses
Senior Seminar (in cognate area)
Minor in informatics
18 credit hours
- Info 200, Informatics I 3
- Info 300, Informatics II 3
- Other Informatics courses (at least 8 credit hours 300-400 level)12
INFO 200 Informatics I 3
Topics in human-computer interaction and human factors, collaborative technologies and group problem solving, ethics, privacy, and ownership of information and information sources, information representation and the information life cycle, the transformation of data to information, futuristic thinking.
INFO 230 Programming I 4
An introduction to problem solving, algorithm development and structured programming techniques. Topics include pseudo-code, language syntax and semantics, loop and control constructs, primitive data types, objects, arrays, lists, files, and graphical user interfaces. Includes three lectures and one 75-minute lab each week.
INFO 300 Informatics II 3
Identification of information problems in biology, business, social justice, and other application areas. Survey of some of the previously proposed solutions. Goals include some synthesis of informatics with student cognate areas and an identification of possible capstone projects. Prerequisite: Bus 220, Comm 326, Info 200, 230 or consent of instructor.
INFO 330 Programming II 4
A continuation of Programming I. Emphasis is placed on program specifications, data abstraction, information hiding, encapsulation and object-oriented programming, use of API's, and use of list, stack, queue, and tree data structures. Includes three lectures and one 75-minute lab each week. Prerequisite: Info 230.
INFO 340 Database Design 3
The proper design of databases and their construction through diagramming tools and SQL. Attention is also given to form and report development, data warehouse and data mining issues, and administrative issues such as user security. Students gain experience in robust database environments such as MySQL and in web environments. Prerequisite: Bus 220, Info 230 or consent of instructor.
INFO 345 Web Applications 3
INFO 350 Computer Networking 3
Computer interfacing hardware and operating systems, serial and parallel I/O techniques, modems, file transfer, data communications, common computer networking protocols, and management of telecommunications networks. Prerequisite: Info 230 or consent of instructor.
INFO 355 Systems Analysis 3
A structured approach to solving organizational problems. The focus of the course is on determining the needs of the organization and meeting those needs through the design of an information system. Topics such as feasibility analysis, determining requirements, documenting processes and data requirements through modeling tools, designing a new system, and implementation issues are covered. Prerequisite: Bus 220, Info 200, 230, 340 or consent of instructor.
INFO 405 Project Management 3
Practice in managing the system life cycle; requirements determination for logical design, physical design, testing and implementation of a system. Other topics may include system and database integration issues; metrics for project-management and system-performance evaluation; managing expectations of superiors, users, team members and others related to the project; determining skill requirements and staffing the project; cost effectiveness analysis; presentation techniques; effective management of both behavioral and technical aspects of the project. Prerequisite: Info 355.
INFO 409 Capstone Project 3
In this course, Informatics majors apply the techniques they have learned in prior informatics and cognate area course work to a significant project of their own definition. The project may be completed through group effort. The design of the course follows the goals for the capstone experience. Students define the information problem for themselves, determine what techniques to use for the information problem they identify, and integrate human-centered and technical dimensions of information systems. Prerequisite: senior status or consent of instructor.