CSC 575 Intelligent Information Retrieval

Bamshad Mobasher

Office: CDM 833
Winter 2020-2021
Class number: 28190
Section number: 820
OLASY NCH00 Online Campus


This course will examine the design, implementation, and evaluation of information retrieval systems, such as Web search engines, as well as new and emerging technologies to build the next generation of intelligent and personalized search tools and Web information systems. We will focus on the underlying retrieval models, algorithms, and system implementations, such as vector-space and probabilistic retrieval models, as well as the PageRank algorithm used by Google. We will also study more advanced topics in text mining and intelligent information retrieval/filtering, particularly on the World Wide Web, including techniques and systems for document categorization, automatic concept discovery, recommender systems, discovery and analysis of online communities and social networks, and personalized search. Throughout the course, current literature from the viewpoints of both research and practical retrieval technologies both on and off the World Wide Web will be examined.



  • Introduction to Information Retrieval, by Christopher D. Manning, Prabhakar Raghavan and Hinrich Schutze, Cambridge University Press. 2008.
  • Research and Reference Articles (provided in class or online).



The final grade will be determined based on the following components:

Assignments = 65%
Final Project = 35%

The general grading scheme will be based on a curve, but the grade cutoffs will be no higher than: A = 90-100%, B = 80-89%, C = 65-79%, D = 50-64%, F = 0-49%. Within each grading range +/- grading will be used. At the end of the quarter, some adjustments may be made based on overall class performance as well as signs of individual effort.


CSC 403 (or equivalent background in data structures and algorithms) OR Permission of Instructor.



There will be 4-5 assignments involving problems related to concepts and techniques discussed in class, as well as experiments with various tools or systems. Unless otherwise specified, these assignments must be done individually. Generally, late assignments will be penalized 10% per day (with weekends counting as one day). All assignments must be submitted electronically (see the class Web site for more detail).


Course Project

The final project for the class can be either an implementation project or a written research project. The implementation projects would involve the design and implementation of an information retrieval, filtering, or personalization system (or a specific part of a system). The written projects must involve a detailed study, survey, and evaluation of one or more topics or systems related to information retrieval and filtering. Written projects must be done individually, while implementation may be done individually or in groups of up to 3 people (depending the size and the complexity of the project). Each group or individual must submit a specific project proposal to be approved. A list of project ideas and some additional details regarding the projects are available in the Project Section of the class Web site.


School policies:

Changes to Syllabus

This syllabus is subject to change as necessary during the quarter. If a change occurs, it will be thoroughly addressed during class, posted under Announcements in D2L and sent via email.

Online Course Evaluations

Evaluations are a way for students to provide valuable feedback regarding their instructor and the course. Detailed feedback will enable the instructor to continuously tailor teaching methods and course content to meet the learning goals of the course and the academic needs of the students. They are a requirement of the course and are key to continue to provide you with the highest quality of teaching. The evaluations are anonymous; the instructor and administration do not track who entered what responses. A program is used to check if the student completed the evaluations, but the evaluation is completely separate from the student’s identity. Since 100% participation is our goal, students are sent periodic reminders over three weeks. Students do not receive reminders once they complete the evaluation. Students complete the evaluation online in CampusConnect.

Academic Integrity and Plagiarism

This course will be subject to the university's academic integrity policy. More information can be found at If you have any questions be sure to consult with your professor.

Academic Policies

All students are required to manage their class schedules each term in accordance with the deadlines for enrolling and withdrawing as indicated in the University Academic Calendar. Information on enrollment, withdrawal, grading and incompletes can be found at

Students with Disabilities

Students who feel they may need an accommodation based on the impact of a disability should contact the instructor privately to discuss their specific needs. All discussions will remain confidential.
To ensure that you receive the most appropriate accommodation based on your needs, contact the instructor as early as possible in the quarter (preferably within the first week of class), and make sure that you have contacted the Center for Students with Disabilities (CSD) at:
Lewis Center 1420, 25 East Jackson Blvd.
Phone number: (312)362-8002
Fax: (312)362-6544
TTY: (773)325.7296