What is information science?

You want to study but are not really familiar with the meaning of Information Science? Terms like Information Retrieval, Folksonomy or Abstracting are not your daily vocabulary?

Day by day you need to read up on something: What will the weather be like? When will my train arrive? Where shall I go on holiday? Today, the internet is the number one information source used to answer these questions. Your first step - as for most of the German Internet users - is loading the search engine Google. But how does Google find the relevant websites for you? According to which criteria are they sorted? Information Science tries to give answers to those questions and more.

Information is a transmitter of knowledge.

It may not only be searched digitally on the Internet, but also is available physically in libraries. In Information Science it is analyzed how relevant knowledge (mainly digital on hand) can be evaluated, provided, looked for and found. This is done in the digital age through information and communication processes. Web databases, library databases, but also databases in Deep Web can save relevant knowledge for individuals and businesses. But how should such knowledge be organized so that you can find what you’re looking for as soon as possible? An example of a knowledge structure represents the classification, which is characterized by a hierarchical system. Such a system, for example, you can find in libraries in which everything is sorted by topic. Another example is the categorization of videos on YouTube.

Perhaps the question appeared how it is possible that you can type some words into a search bar and receive texts, pictures, music or videos you are looking for? Which services does a system have to perform to process queries in natural language? Why is it possible to receive relevant documents even if you search using the wrong terms?

With the advent of social media the volume of data on the Internet has been increasing steadily. We post messages on Facebook and comment our friends. We distribute short messages in real time via Twitter and Co. We can get the freshest music videos on YouTube ... Are these online portals just pure fun or can we also identify relevant knowledge here?

Each of us is looking for information, but not a lot of people are interested in the difficulty of the process making that information findable. Do you want to see behind that curtain? Are you curious about how this world works in which the exchange of information is more and more important? Do you get on with English and have logical and mathematical understanding? Then this is the place to be!

Chair of Information Science

Univ.-Prof. Dr. Wolfgang G. Stock

Building: 24.53
Floor/Room: 01.83
Phone +49 211 81-12913
Fax +49 211 81-12917

Secretary's Office

Anneliese Volkmar

Building: 24.53
Floor/Room: 01.90
Phone +49 211 81-11535
Fax +49 211 81-12917

Head of the research group Web Science

Prof. Dr. Dr. Sergej Sizov

Building: 24.53
Floor/Room: 01.89
Phone +49 211 81-12387
Fax +49 211 81-12917
Responsible for the content: E-MailRedaktionsteam Institut für Sprache und Information