Kies de Nederlandse taal
Course module: 192160400
Information Retrieval
Course infoSchedule
Course module192160400
Credits (ECTS)10
Course typeCourse
Language of instructionEnglish
Contact personprof.dr. T.W.C. Huibers
Lecturer D. Hiemstra
prof.dr. T.W.C. Huibers
Contactperson for the course
prof.dr. T.W.C. Huibers
Academic year2014
Starting block
Application procedureYou apply via OSIRIS Student
Registration using OSIRISYes
After completing the course, the student can:
  • Explain basic concepts in IR (indexing, matching, relevance, etc.).
  • Explain different approaches to IR (controlled vs. uncontrolled terms, manual vs. automatic indexing, exact matching vs. ranking, query by example, relevance feedback, etc.).
  • Explain mathematical models of IR (boolean retrieval, probabilistic retrieval, language models, logical models, etc.)
  • Set up and is carry out an experimental evaluation of an IR system.
  • Explain applications of IR (multimedia retrieval, web search engines, etc.).
  • Perform a practical and/or theoretical research project on a specific part/problem in the field of IR.
  • Present, discuss and defend the ideas, progress and problems of the research project to an audience of peers.
  • Present the result of the research in the form of a report.
Information Retrieval (IR) is the discipline that studies computer-based search tools. The course is divided into two parts. The first part provides the foundations of IR. The second part provides hands-on experience with new applications of IR. The foundations part addresses basic concepts like indexing, matching, relevance; it addresses approaches to IR, such as controlled versus uncontrolled terms, manual versus automatic indexing, exact matching versus ranking, query by example, relevance feedback, etc.; it addresses mathematical models of IR such as boolean retrieval, probabilistic retrieval, language models, logical models; and it addresses applications of IR like multimedia retrieval and of course web search engines. In the second part of the course, the students participate actively in research done at the University. Each student will choose a system module and/or problem, and will implement and/or research possible solutions. Problems can be practical or theoretical or both, and address all parts of IR systems, including the interface. Depending on the kind of problem chosen, there are requirements on other courses the student has to have followed. Solutions can be tested using data from international evaluation activities such as the Cross-Language Evaluation Forum (CLEF), the Text REtrieval Conference (TREC), and the Initiative for the Evaluation of XML Retrieval (INEX) in which the university is one of the major players. In this second part, the time schedules for the lectures will be used to set up a discussion forum in which all participants actively exchange their ideas, progress, and problems.

  • A good general overview of computer science at a Bachelor's level, including artificial intelligence and database systems.
  • Depending on the project chosen, knowledge of machine learning, knowledge of first-order logic, knowledge of human-machine interaction (these topics correspond to Master's courses, one of which is required for completing the project).
Required materials
Introduction to Information Retrieval by Christopher D. Manning, Prabhakar Raghavan and Hinrich Schütze (Free copy available on internet:
Recommended materials
Instructional modes



Kies de Nederlandse taal