IBM and The University of Arizona are developing a course that will teach Management Information Systems and Marketing students to build online communities and social network systems using Web 2.0 technologies. The IBM/University of Arizona partnership is the first of its kind to bring these principles to the classroom, giving students early exposure to influential, emerging technologies. This is also the first in a new suite of courses from the MIS Department related to managing and marketing online services. The new course is designed to reinvigorate undergraduate student interest in information technology. Most students are already familiar with and have used sites like YouTube and MySpace, but this course will aide them with applying such knowledge to developing businesses.
The analyst firm Gartner Group predicts that by 2008, the majority of Global 1,000 companies will quickly adopt several technology-related aspects of Web 2.0 to advance their businesses. As companies increase their reliance on new Web-based technologies to capitalize on new business opportunities, the industry is showing greater demand for technology experts who can build and manage Web 2.0 resources including BitTorrent sites, wikis, blogs, podcasts, user groups and forums.