featured an interview of Syracuse University School of Information Studies (iSchool) Assistant Professor of Practice Anthony Rotolo about IST 600 Star Trek in the Information Age, a new class being offered this spring.

The class, which filled up the first day of registration, will examine episodes of the popular science fiction television show Star Trek and how the topics of the show relate to real world issues like information security, privacy, intellectual property, social media, mobile technology and much more.

“I had always thought that Star Trek was a great teaching tool, and I’ve been known to use Trek examples to make a point,” Rotolo told producer Geoff Herbert. “When I was participating in the Twitter chat about Generation Y career issues, I referenced Captain Picard’s willingness to give teenage Wesley Crusher some real responsibility, which I thought addressed the frustrations the young professionals were having with their more reluctant superiors. The comment was very well received within the chat and by many of my Twitter followers who began encouraging me to teach a course on Star Trek.”

The class will be structured in such a way that students unfamiliar with Star Trek will still be able to follow along and participate in class discussions. Also, the students will take their ideas outside the classroom by participating in a blog dubbed “The Collective” inspired by the Star Trek alien race known as the Borg. The blog serves as one of the way non-students can get involved in the discussions.

“Students will be encouraged to use Twitter during class, and I will be tweeting as well,” said Rotolo, who in addition to his role as associate professor is the social media strategist of Syracuse University. “Anyone not in the class will be able to follow along using the course hashtag #TrekClass — and all are welcome to join the discussion.”

Rotolo also teaches IST 486/686 Social Media in the Enterprise and IST 400 Social Media for the Music Business. He was also appointed the first-ever social media strategist for the iSchool and Syracuse University in 2009. In this position, Rotolo is working to expand the iSchool’s leadership in social media as an area of study and as a way to enhance traditional instruction. Rotolo holds a B.S. in Information Management and Technology and a M.S. in Information Management, both from the Syracuse University iSchool. In May 2009, he received the iSchool Outstanding Faculty of the Year Award, and in December, he received the Web-based Information Science Education Consortium’s 2009 Excellence in Online Education Award.

Rotolo writes for the iSchool’s official blog, “Information Space” at, and his own blog at Contact him on LinkedIn at or on Twitter at