Information Technology
Project Management

Course Syllabus

This section provides you with a description of the course including a weekly syllabus for the course on Project Management.

Tour of the Course

Take a 4:09 minutes tour of the course.  Slides You Tube► 


This course focuses on project management as applied to management of healthcare Information Technology projects.  Students learn critical path analysis, project resource management, crashing projects, assessment of project quality and analysis of project risks. Students learn to use media for effective project communication.

Course Objectives

Upon completion of this course the student will be able to:

  1. Describe the electronic health records industry
  2. Discuss the impact of Electronic Health Records on efficiency, quality and cost of care
  3. Explain the relationship between Computerized physician Order Entry and medication errors
  4. List the barriers to implementation of Electronic Health Records
  5. Explain the need for formal project management in contrast to other forms of management or to self managed projects.
  6. Contrast the roles of project managers in various organizational environments and various phases of the project
  7. Describe the evolution of project management field and its use in healthcare.
  8. Produce a statement of work (SOW) and decompose overall project goals.
  9. Describe alternative methods of managing scope of a project
  10. Develop a work breakdown structure (WBS)
  11. Define the products of a project and final end of the project, including non-concrete products such as reputation.
  12. Estimate time needed for completing various sub-tasks in an Information Technology project within healthcare
  13. Analyze task dependencies to identify project’s critical path and project schedule.
  14. Establish project budget
  15. Prepare detailed project plan
  16. Select and manage project team and vendors
  17. Track performance against project plans and budget
  18. Assess project quality through regular monitoring of progress and nature of progress.
  19. Analyze personnel cost of a project and tradeoffs between cost of project and completion date.
  20. Calculate earned value of contributions made by different people in the project.
  21. Prepare project communication plans
  22. Use media in management of projects.
  23. Assess risks of project failure
  24. Improve teamwork.
  25. Plan for effective project meetings

Required Textbooks

Following textbooks are required reading:

Houston S, Bove LA. Project Management for Healthcare Informatics, 2007.
Additional material are posted to the web.

Recommended Textbook

  • The Art of Project Management by Scott Berkun

Course Prerequisites

To benefit from this course you need to have the following:

  1. Computer, modem, speaker, phone line and Internet connection are needed to listen to course lectures. A fast computer and modem will save considerable time in this course.  Computers are available at the University laboratories but access to computers within the classroom is a distinct advantage.  On many occasions, the instructor will be helping students do assignments within the class.  If you do not have a computer with you, you will not be able to take advantage of this option.
  2. In several projects, you will need to prepare narrated presentations.  To complete this task, you need to have a microphone, narrate your slides, convert your narrated slides to video file (using 30-day free Camtasia or similar software) and post your work on the web.   Narrate & Convert Slides►  SWF  Narrate Slides
  3. Microsoft Power Point, a browser, and free Flash software are needed for viewing some portions of reading.   
  4. Microsoft Project Management software (student version) or an equivalent software is needed.  Download►  MAC

If you are not sure you meet the course requirement, do not wait.  Discuss your concerns with the instructor.

Course Assignments

The faculty's evaluation of student's learning is based on the following:

  1. Learn one, do one, teach one assignment:  The students are expected to actively participate in teaching the course.  In particular, the following is expected: You Tube►

    • Teach at least two lectures in the class.  Select a reading, record a presentation and upload it to the Internet.  Post the URL for your presentation on class Blackboard site. Narrate► Upload►
    • Actively help at least 3 other students in the course to do one of their assignments.
    • Comment on project reports and presentations from 3 of your peers.
    • For all lectures, either evaluate the lecture or ask a question about it. Post your evaluation or question online. 
  2. Final exam:  Final exam is comprehensive and open book.  The questions and answers are similar to weekly assignments.  Portion of the final exam requires access to Project Management software.   

  3. Course ProjectsStudents are expected to complete the following 3 projects:

    1. Plan a personal project.   Take a long term and complicated personal project (e.g. personal development plans, finding work, losing weight) and plan activities over the next month that could help you towards this goal.  Make sure that at least 10 activities are listed, each with at least 3 required precedents.  Make sure alternative activities to accomplish the same goal are listed.  Identify critical pathways.  Maintain a diary of time spent on various activities.   Compare actual and estimated length of activities.  Prepare narrated slides reporting the details of the plan and extent plans were carried out.  Convert narrated slides into video format.  Post the video on a public domain without your name or personal identifying information.  Send the URL of the report on your project to the instructor.  More
    2. Plan field project (implementation of an EHR or an improvement project):  Plan out either an improvement project or a project to implement an electronic health record.  Make sure that the project has at least 10 task and that each task has at least 3 precedents before the task can be started.  Find and interview people who have completed a similar project to make sure that the estimated length of activities are reasonable.  Prepare a narrated set of slides that reports on your plans (less than 10 minutes).  Start your narration with the customer's voice, highlighting the need for your proposed project.  Describe the details of your plans.  Visually show the critical path.  Explain why the estimated times are reasonable.  Convert narrated slides into video format.  Post the video on a public domain site without your name or personal identifying information.  Send the URL for the site to your instructor.  This assignment can be completed in a group of 2 persons, as long as you have not done any other group work together.  More
    3. Tutorial paper Write a paper teaching one aspect of the IT project management to future students using the Wiki environment provided within the course site.  This assignment can be completed in a group of 2, as long as you have not done any other group work together.  Each member of the team should review the work of other students using a rubric provided by the instructor and solicit a review for the team's work.  A list of potential topics are provided by the instructor or you can select your own and get the instructor's approval.  You can base on your work on the work completed by other students in previous semesters but you must make a significant improvement.  More
  4. Weekly assignments:  At the end of each lecture there are two sets of assignments.  The first set is called "What do you know?"    These are questions about information presented within the lecture reading or slides.  Do not answer these questions based on your experience or other sources.  No creativity is needed in this section of the course.  You can copy answers verbatim from course material.  The second set is called "Rapid Analysis."  The answer to these questions require data gathering, analysis and insights.  Weekly assignment are due one week after the lecture is given.  No late assignments are accepted.  Occasionally, students are asked to redo these assignments before they are fully accepted.  If an assignment is redone, the maximum grade for it is 80%. 

  5. Professional activity:  You are required to identify a project manager on Linked In or in person.  The instructor will provide you with a letter of recommendation and the individual you identify is expected to help your as a mentor, examine your project plans and giving comments on how you can improve.  At end of the course, your mentor is expected to endorse you within Linked In or through emails to the instructor. 

    You may also wish to participate in a local professional meeting.  This could be student organized professional meetings or local chapters of national professional meetings.   You are urged to join a professional association that fits your career and participate in one of their local meetings.  If you are interested in project management or information systems, you may want to look into the following organizations: 
    PMI, HIMSS.  If you are interested in general management, you may want to look into ACHE.  If you are interested in process improvement , consider IHI. This assignment can be substituted with other professional activities, with prior approval of the instructor.  PMI► HIMSS ACHE  IHI ANIA CARING

Course Evaluation

The course assignments are graded using the following distribution of points:

Distribution of the points:

Letter grades will correspond to
the following numerical grades:




A -


B +







Teach one


Final exam 20%
Tutorial paper 20%
Two Projects 20%
Weekly assignments 20%
Professional activity 5%

Oral presentations are rated by the course faculty based on four criteria:  correctness of content, appropriateness of images, effectiveness of the communication, and diligence in maintaining privacy.  In addition, oral presentations are rated by peers using a rubric provided by the instructor. 

Students are expected to evaluate the faculty and the lecture after each lecture.  Student evaluations of the course are available throughout the course.  Course evaluations are posted on the pages where they were entered.  

Teaching Methods

Students learn through several different methods:

  1. Interaction with Faculty. Course faculty are available online. Recorded lectures are available online.  Students questions are answered within 48 hours online so all students can benefit from the answers.  Lectures include hands on demonstration of the software.  Class presentations are made at scheduled class times. 
  2. Learn one, do one, teach one. Students learn better when they teach the concepts covered in the lectures. For selected assignments, students are asked to comment on the work of their colleagues using a rubric provided by the instructor.
  3. Use of educational technology. Students are expected to be familiar with Internet use.  Some assignments require use of software, provided through the course.  Student reports are required to be presented using multi-media (narrated slides or videos).  Numerous relevant web sites are found throughout the course. These links provide additional resources and a means of information exchange, professional networking, and project collaboration.   Students are expected to produce and upload media to the web.

Topical Outline



Session Title



Introduction to Information Technology  More► 



Description of careers in information technology  More►


  History of project management  More►



Project initiation and planning  More►



Work Breakdown Structure  More►



Activity cost and duration  More►



Critical Path method  More► 



Project execution and monitoring  More► 



Project risk assessment  More► 
Guest speaker:  Geff Garnhart, PMP  More►



Evaluation of draft of tutorial paper  More  Bring your paper and complete peer evaluations in class.

Guest speaker:  Jeff Collmann Ph.D.  More



Project teamwork & communications   More



Benefits of information technology  More



Impact of project management  More►



Field project and tutorial paper are due on last day of class.  Personal project is due on the scheduled final exam date.  Play Jeopardy game  Game

Disability Accommodations

If you are a student with a disability and you need academic accommodations, please contact the instructor.

Academic Integrity

Student members of the University community pledge not to cheat, plagiarize, steal, or lie in matters related to academic work.  The following will be considered violation of the honor code:  making up the diary data, using data of another student, making up result of the analysis, use of presentation prepared by others, and failure to reference sources and acknowledge assistance.

Course Faculty

This course has a number of faculty, including the following:

Farrokh Alemi, Ph.D. Email►

Enter Your Email Address

If you are enrolled in this course, you would receive weekly communications from the course faculty.  In order to make sure that you receive the information on time, please provide us with your email address.

This page is part of an undergraduate course.  It was first created in 1/2/2008.  It was last edited on 01/31/17 by Farrokh Alemi, Ph.D.  Copyright protected.