MI Reading Course Guide


Reading courses are intended to supplement, not duplicate, the existing MI curriculum. They can add flexibility to your MI program by providing you with an opportunity to further develop a specific interest in the information management field. With approval, students who opt to complete a reading course can delve into a topic in greater detail than might be possible within an existing course, or they may choose to study an area not covered by the MI curriculum.  Research studies, or special projects may also be conducted as part of a reading course.

Students enrolled in the MI or combined degree program, who have completed at least four three-credit graduate-level courses, and have a GPA of 3.3 (B+) or higher, may apply to complete a reading course.

MI students may take a maximum of two reading courses during their program.

Note: The MI program tries very hard to accommodate Reading Course requests. Priority will be given to topics that fit well with Faculty’s research interests.


Term Meet with Program Director   Submit Proposal to Supervisor  Submit Proposal to Program Director  Obtain final approval (Program Director/Program Manager)   Recommended Registration
Fall By Jul 1 By Jul 15 By Aug 1 By Aug 15 Fall term
Winter By Nov1 By Nov 15 By Dec 15 By Dec 22 Winter term
Summer By Mar 1  By Mar 15 By Apr 15 By Apr 22 Summer term

Roles and Responsibilities

Students and supervisors must review the pages below for a complete overview of the reading course process.

Completing a MI Reading Course


Whom should I speak to if I’m interested in doing a reading course?

Before embarking of a reading course, you must arrange to meet with the Program Director to discuss a potential topic and reading course logistics. The Director will evaluate and coordinate supervision. Come to the meeting prepared to discuss your proposed topic, and plan.

Who can do a reading course?

Students enrolled in the MI or combined degree program, who have completed at least four three-credit graduate-level courses, and have a GPA of 3.3 (B+) or higher, may apply to complete a reading course.

How do I formally propose a reading course topic?

After meeting with the Director and your supervisor, you must submit a complete reading course proposal. This must be submitted to your supervisor for approval by the agreed upon deadline. 

Once I get permission to do a reading course, are there timeline guidelines?

Note: These deadlines are guidelines. Please confirm deadlines with your supervisor.

Term SIM Director meeting Proposal Submission to Supervisor SIM Administration approval
Fall By July 1st By August 1st By August 15th
Winter By November 1st By December 1st By December 15th
Summer By March 1st By April 1st By April 15th

What should my reading course proposal include?

Your proposal must include:

  • Reading course proposal form (signed)
  • Title
  • Introduction
  • Purpose/objectives
  • Relevance to the Information Management field
  • Relevance to the MI Competencies
  • Selected reading list
  • Methodology (including requirement for ethics approval)
  • Timeline for activities in the course
  • Method of evaluation
  • Abstract
  • Research cluster to which your reading course belongs

How do I choose a research cluster for my reading course?

Research Clusters

Data, information and knowledge management including cloud computing; collaboration; data management; digital preservation; information management; information systems; knowledge management; privacy (collection, use, disclosure, security, destruction of information); records management; research data management; health program evaluation, open data.

Data science including big data; big data analytics; big data management; big data processing; citation analysis; cloud computing; cloud computing at scale; computational social science; empirical innovation studies; ethics; natural language processing; network analysis; personal information security; digital forensics.

Educational and informational services including children’s services; collaboration; collections development; community engagement; community-led services; data literacy; information literacy instruction; pleasure reading; readers’ advisory services; reading and literacy; young adult services; mediated information searching; scholarship of teaching and learning.

Human information interaction including accidental information acquisition; e-learning; geographic information behavior and use; group/collaborative information interactions; human-computer interaction; individual differences; information needs and behaviours; mobile interface theory; online catalog retrieval systems (pleasure reading); organizational learning; perceptions of internet-based technology; privacy; serendipity; social media; user engagement; web-based discovery systems.

Information and society including books for children and teens; business history; digital governance; ethics; geographic information identity; information governance; information policy; information society; informed civic engagement; innovation; knowledge systems; labour history; literature and film studies; print culture; privacy; privacy policy; publishing industry and its history; social media.

Information organization and representation including archival description; cataloguing; classification; data visualization; folksonomies; geographic information systems; geographic representation; images as information; information architecture; information systems; information visualization; knowledge organization; metadata; network science; organization of information; privacy; social tagging; taxonomies; thesauri; archival appraisal, archival outreach, health policy and procedure; information system implementation and evaluation.

Scientific information including environment management; fisheries management; grey literature; information networks; information use and influence; integrated coastal and oceans management; marine and oceans issues; marine governance; oceans data management; patent informatics; privacy in research and science; public policy and decision making; science-policy interface; scientific information portals; scientometrics; state of environment reporting; information in decision making; ontologies.

If you require assistance, contact your supervisor.

Do I need ethics approval before I begin my reading course?

If a reading course involves research with human subjects, ethics approval must be obtained.  Ethics approval is granted at the Faculty level; your supervisor can help you liaise with the Faculty of Management’s Associate Dean (Research) for the appropriate forms.

Who can be my supervisor?

The Program Director will evaluate and coordinate supervision. Potential supervisors could include: a full-time Department of Information Science faculty member, members of the Faculty of Graduate Studies. In special circumstances, an adjunct or external supervisor could co-supervise.

Are there opportunities to present my reading course work?

Your supervisor can advise you about opportunities for presenting your research. All students completing a reading course are encouraged to present in the Information Research Forum held in the Winter term.

How many reading courses can I do?

MI students may take a maximum of two reading courses during their program.