Course Syllabus

INSTRUCTOR   Marilyn Ostergren
EMAIL    Use Canvas inbox
OFFICE HOURS    By Appointment
TA   Nina Dang
EMAIL    Use Canvas invox
OFFICE HOURS    By Appointment



In this class, you will immerse yourself in the challenge of turning information into images.

You’ll walk away with the ability to recognize opportunities for conveying information visually, technical skills for producing visualizations, and knowledge of visualization and design principles to make those visualizations attractive and effective.

To be successful in this class you will need a plenty of time to spend in the computer lab or at your home computer if you have access to the necessary software.



My goal is to help you learn. I encourage your feedback and questions (in person or via email). I'll be available at every lab session and will also be happy to talk with you individually outside of class if you would prefer that. 


This is a hands-on course. Most of the time you devote to this class will consist of exercises and individual project work. Class time will also be used to give and receive feedback from your peers. I will cycle through the room and check in with each of you at least once each week.



You will receive a decimal grade for this class.

Exercises & quizzes

20% of your final grade will be based on the exercises

Late policy for exercises: For your sake, it is very important to keep up with the work in class. If an exercises or quiz is late, you won't receive the on-time point. The last day to turn in late assignments and quizzes is Friday, December 5 at 11:59 PM.

Process and Product

80% of your final grade will be based on products related to you final project which are due at the end of the quarter. The breakdown is as follows:

completeness of portfolio 5%

video presentation (which encompasses the learning expressed in the final infographic and portfolio) 70%

completeness of final infographic 5%

General grading information for the University of Washington is available here

Late projects are not accepted unless submitted no more than 24 hours after the due date. A late assignment will incur an automatic 50% deduction for its grade. If there are any extenuating circumstances, please notify the instructor BEFORE the day that the assignment is due.


The following paragraphs discuss matters governing academic conduct in the iSchool and the University of Washington.

Academic Integrity:
The essence of academic life revolves around respect not only for the ideas of others, but also their rights to those ideas and how they are attributed and shared. All of us engaged in the life of the mind must take the utmost care that the ideas and expressions of ideas of other people always be appropriately handled, and, where necessary, cited. For writing assignments, when ideas or materials of others are used, they must be cited. The specific format for the citation will vary – what is important is that the source material can be located and the citation verified.
In any situation, if you have a question, please feel free to ask. Such attention to ideas and acknowledgment of their sources is central not only to academic life, but life in general.

Please acquaint yourself with the University of Washington's resources on academic honesty.

Students are encouraged to take drafts of their writing assignments to the Odegaard Writing & Research Center ( for assistance with using citations ethically and effectively.

All of the expressions of ideas in this class that are fixed in any tangible medium such as digital and physical documents are protected by copyright law as embodied in title 17 of the United States Code. These expressions include the work product of both: (1) your student colleagues

(e.g., any assignments published here in the course environment or statements committed to text in a discussion forum); and, (2) your instructors (e.g., the syllabus, assignments, reading lists, and lectures). Within the constraints of "fair use", you may copy these copyrighted expressions for your personal intellectual use in support of your education here in the iSchool. Such fair use by you does not include further distribution by any means of copying, performance or presentation beyond the circle of your close acquaintances, student colleagues in this class and your family. If you have any questions regarding whether a use to which you wish to put one of
these expressions violates the creator's copyright interests, please feel free to ask the instructor for guidance.

To support an academic environment of rigorous discussion and open expression of personal thoughts and feelings, we, as members of the academic community, must be committed to the inviolate right of privacy of our students and instructors. As a result, we must forego sharing personally identifiable information about any member of our community including information about the ideas they express, their families, life styles and their political and social affiliations.
If you have any questions regarding whether a disclosure you wish to make regarding anyone in this course or in the iSchool community violates that person's privacy interests, please feel free to ask the instructor for guidance.

Knowing violations of these principles of academic conduct, privacy or copyright may result in University disciplinary action under the Student Code of Conduct.

Student Code of Conduct:
The Information School encourages an environment of academic integrity and mutual respect. As a member of the iSchool and UW learning community, students should read and follow the behavioral expectations identified in the University of Washington Student Conduct Code. The UW Student Conduct code oversees both academic and behavioral conduct of students. iSchool students are expected to act with integrity, respect the rights of others, and conduct themselves in a professional manner.

All incidents of alleged academic misconduct are reported to the Associate Dean for Academics who will investigate the situation. Academic misconduct reviews will adhere to the policies outlined in the Student Conduct Code and managed by the Office of Community Standards and Student Conduct.

Behavioral misconduct is not tolerated in the iSchool and any violations of UW policy are reported to the Office of Community Standards and Student Conduct for investigation. Misconduct that is a violation of state or federal law is reported to the University police.


To request academic accommodations due to a disability, please contact Disabled Student Services: 448 Schmitz, 206-543-8924, 206-543-8925 (TTY). If you have a letter from DSS indicating that you have a disability which requires academic accommodations, please present the letter to me so we can discuss the accommodations you might need in the class.

Academic accommodations due to disability will not be made unless the student has a letter from DSS specifying the type and nature of accommodations needed.



If you have any concerns about a course or the TA, please see the TA about these issues as soon as possible. If you are not comfortable talking with the TA or not satisfied with the response that you receive, you may contact the instructor of the course.

If you are still not satisfied with the response that you receive, you may contact Matthew Saxton, the Associate Dean for Academics in 015M Mary Gates Hall, by phone at (206) 685-9626 or by e-mail at

You may also contact the Graduate School at G-1 Communications Building, by phone at (206) 543-5900.

Course Summary:

Date Details