Information Retrieval

The details
Computer Science and Electronic Engineering (School of)
Colchester Campus
Postgraduate: Level 7
Sunday 17 January 2021
Friday 26 March 2021
30 July 2020


Requisites for this module



Key module for

MSC G51512 Big Data and Text Analytics,
MSC G30412 Data Science,
MSC G30424 Data Science,
MSC G304PP Data Science with Professional Placement,
MPHDG30448 Data Science,
PHD G30448 Data Science

Module description

Search engines have become the first entry point into a world of knowledge and they form an essential part of many modern computer applications. While much of the underlying principles have been developed over decades, the landscape in search engine technology has changed dramatically in recent years to deal with data sources magnitudes larger than ever before (the rise of `big data').

As a result of that new paradigms for storing, indexing and accessing information have emerged. This module will provide the essential foundations of information retrieval and equip the students with solid, applicable knowledge of state-of-the-art search technology.

Module aims

The aim of the module is to provide the essential foundations of information retrieval and equip the students with solid, applicable knowledge of state-of-the-art search technology. Through directed reading and via practical assignments the module also exposes students to a variety of advanced information retrieval techniques.

Module learning outcomes

After completing this module, students will be expected to be able to:

1. Design and implement a standard information retrieval system
2. Understand standard IR models and their merits and limitations
3. Demonstrate practical knowledge of developing large-scale search applications
4. Demonstrate practical knowledge of employing state-of-the-art open source software for IR
5. Demonstrate an understanding of commonly used evaluation approaches in IR
6. Demonstrate practical knowledge of employing advanced concepts of search applications such as personalisation, profiling and contextual search

Module information

No additional information available.

Learning and teaching methods

Lectures, lab sessions and classes


  • Croft, W. Bruce; Metzler, Donald; Strohman, Trevor. (c2010) Search engines: information retrieval in practice, Boston: Pearson Education.

The above list is indicative of the essential reading for the course. The library makes provision for all reading list items, with digital provision where possible, and these resources are shared between students. Further reading can be obtained from this module's reading list.

Assessment items, weightings and deadlines

Coursework / exam Description Deadline Weighting
Coursework   Assignment 1  12/02/2021  40% 
Coursework   Assignment 2  19/03/2021  60% 

Overall assessment

Coursework Exam
100% 0%


Coursework Exam
100% 0%
Module supervisor and teaching staff
Dr Alba Garcia Seco De Herrera, email: alba.garcia@essex.ac.uk.
Dr Alba Garcia Seco De Herrera, Dr Shoaib Jameel
School Office, email: csee-schooloffice (non-Essex users should add @essex.ac.uk to create full e-mail address), Telephone 01206 872770



External examiner

Dr Robert Mark Stevenson
University of Sheffield
Senior Lecturer
Available via Moodle
Of 538 hours, 0 (0%) hours available to students:
538 hours not recorded due to service coverage or fault;
0 hours not recorded due to opt-out by lecturer(s).


Further information

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