M.Sc. (Digital Society) Admissions
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A unique interdisciplinary post-graduate programme at the intersection of information technology and social sciences for students from diverse disciplinary background
ABOUT THE PROGRAMME
With the use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) permeating and shaping every sphere of our public and personal experience, we find ourselves in an increasingly digital society. If ICTs have opened up immense possibilities for economic and social change, they also raise many questions.
- How transformative will these changes be?
- Will they be equitable and sustainable in addition to enhancing efficiency?
- Will they amplify existing social divides and create new ones in the process?
Answering these questions calls for better insights into the emerging digital ecosystem. It demands interdisciplinary skills combining an appreciation of technological possibilities along with a nuanced understanding of the economic, political, and socio-cultural context. But, more often than not, well-intentioned technologists and social scientists attempt to answer these questions within the narrow confines of their own disciplines. Consequently, the public, private, and development sectors face a capacity gap in leveraging ICTs for an efficient, equitable and sustainable digital society.
This impels us to ask: Are we prepared to design for a complex digital society? How should we train those designing, developing, deploying, and managing these technologies? Recognizing the socio-economic potential of ICTs, and the increasing need to train professionals in harnessing this potential, IIIT Bangalore has been offering a unique and innovative full-time 2-year Master’s Programme in Digital Society since 2015.
M.Sc. (Digital Society) programme at IIIT Bangalore aims to develop professionals who have an astute understanding of the digital ecosystem. In the Information Age, digital technologies have opened up immense possibilities for economic and social change that is inclusive and sustainable. Designing and deploying digital technologies, analyzing human-computer interaction or big data entail not just technological expertise but also a nuanced understanding of the social, cultural, and economic aspects of the digital society.
Students of the programme will gain insights into the design of digital technologies, and the policy challenges of deploying such technologies, with a broad-based training that will draw from computer science, engineering, research methods, management, economics and other social sciences, which will equip them with a rigorous understanding of technologies for development and the development of technologies.
A two week programme orientation on Technical and Social Science Foundations: This will consist of a series of sessions, including lectures, readings, and audio-visual media to expose students to the foundational logic of the programme and its interdisciplinary underpinnings.
Core Courses and Electives: Specifically designed for a heterogeneous student group to learn about and address various challenges of the digital society, including:
- Developing, deploying and managing large-scale digital systems;Designing interfaces for diverse populations;Socio-historical aspects of the “digital”;Policy and regulatory issues in the contemporary digital society;Quantitative and qualitative research methods, tools, and techniques, to examine user needs and outcomes, and to evaluate the impact of ICTs;Technologies such as cloud or mobile platforms, data analytics, social media, human-computer interaction, and spatial-information systems;Domain-specific understanding of the technology-society interface, including issues pertaining to education, governance, gender, identity, poverty, and public health.
Project-based learning: This involves small-group projects to address challenges of the digital society by applying learnings from the courses.
Thesis/Internship: In the final term, students will be required to either: (a) work on a Master’s thesis to hone their research skills; OR (b) undertake an internship to further sharpen their professional skills by applying the learnings from courses undertaken during the previous terms – this could involve working on a project within their parent organizations.
About the Faculty
Most of the faculty members involved in delivering the various core courses are affiliated to the Information Technology and Society (ITS) research domain and the Centre for Information Technology and Public Policy (CITAPP) at IIIT Bangalore. Faculty members from other research domains, such as Data Sciences and Software Engineering are also actively associated.
In addition, talks by external experts from the industry, government and academia are also arranged for the students. Students are also encouraged to take up projects in relevant external organizations as a part of their coursework.
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