Current News and Events at SISAT

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Kenneth Dozier Defends his Dissertation on September 29th, 2011 at 1pm.

His dissertation is titled: "Theory, Design and Evaluation of a Learning Object Game Immersed in Complex Systems".

Click here for his abstract.



Thomas A. Horan named dean of School of Information Systems and Technology

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Thomas A. Horan has been appointed dean of Claremont Graduate University's School of Information Systems and Technology (SISAT), effective July 1, 2011.

Thomas A. Horan, Claremont Graduate UniversityHoran is a national leader in designing innovative approaches to technology in both government and business environments. As dean, he hopes to leverage that expertise to broaden SISAT's reach in both training tomorrow’s technology leaders as well as conducting cutting-edge research.

"The faculty and students at SISAT are highly talented and dedicated to advancing the role of technology in achieving positive organizational and societal impacts," Horan said. "I am excited for the opportunity to connect these talents with new opportunities, both globally as well as right here as part of CGU's pursuit of excellence."  

Horan has deep roots at CGU, having received both a PhD in applied psychology (’88) and master's degree in public policy (’84) from the university. After seven years of applied policy work relating to technology in Washington, DC, he returned to the university in 1995.

He has been the driving force behind several major technical innovations, including projects that bring electronic health records to underserved communities, map dangerous highways, and improve patient care in emergency medical services systems.

He has supported this research by raising some $5 million in grants and donations over the last decade.  Much of this success has been through his directorship of the Kay Center for E-Health Research as well as research partnerships with major universities such as the University of Minnesota.  Horan intends to continue this work as he leads the school into new realms of research and teaching.

Horan is a prolific author who has written more than 120 technical articles and related publications. He has also taken an active role in campus leadership, serving twice on the Faculty Executive Committee and playing a major role in President Deborah Freund's Steering Committee on CGU Excellence.

Horan succeeds Terry Ryan, who will return full time to SISAT’s faculty and focus on his research and teaching relating to social learning software.

 “I am grateful for Terry’s calm leadership during a time of pronounced change at the university,” Horan said.

About the School of Information Systems and Technology


Based at Claremont Graduate University in Southern California, SISAT is one of the top programs to offer a masters or PhD in information systems, health information management and more.



SES/SISAT Inter-field Student Sue Feldman Earns Two Publications in Top Journals This Month

Ms. Sue Feldman, Assistant Director of the Kay Center for E-Health Research and interfield PhD Student at CGU (SES and SISAT) has recently earned two new publications in top journals.  The first appears in the Journal of Association of Information Systems (JAIS) and explores the value of IT as it applies to health information exchanges in disability determination and can be found here. The second,  an analysis of the Social Security Administration’s Medical Evidence Gathering and Analysis through Health IT (MEGAHIT) application, appears in the February issue of the International Journal of Medical Informatics (IJMI) and can be found here.  Additionally, it is worth noting that the original version of second article was recently cited by the White House.   Both articles were co-authored with SISAT Associate Professor and Kay Center for E-Health Research Director Dr. Tom Horan.  SISAT congratulates Ms. Feldman on these two outstanding achievements



Kay Center SISAT PhD Student Sue Feldman and Professor Tom Horan Win Best Paper Award at HICSS

SISAT/SES inter-field student Sue Feldman and SISAT professor Tom Horan recently won the “Best Paper” award at the 44th annual Hawaii International Conference on System Sciences (HICSS). The paper titled, Cyberinfrastructure of Secondary Use of EHR Data: SSA’s Use of the Nationwide Health Information Network, was based largely on the work Feldman completed as an intern at the Social Security Administration. Sue Feldman is Assistant Director of the Kay Center for E-Health Research and works directly under Dr. Horan, the center’s director. An abstract of the paper can be found below. SISAT congratulates Ms. Feldman and Dr. Horan for this notable honor.

Abstract: This study examined the use of the Nationwide Health Information Network as a cyberinfrastructure for secure and interoperable transport of existing clinical data from electronic health records. The context for this study was secondary use of existing data for Social Security Administration (SSA) disability determination. The medical records were requested and gathered using an SSA developed application called MEGAHIT. While challenges were expressed in terms of some technical standards such as gateway specifications, successes were articulated in terms of turnaround time for the release of information of under 2 minutes, a 30% time saving in overall medical information development.



Kay Center for E-Health Project Receives High Profile Publicity in Daily Bulletin


For the past 2 ½ years researchers at the Kay Center for E-Health Research, led by Dr. Thomas Horan have been developing and testing a health management tool that is designed to serve patients, typically with low-incomes and limited medical options, in local clinics. The result is HealthATM, a kiosk that allows patients to manage their health records as well as schedule appointments and order prescriptions. For a full version of the Daily Bulletin Q&A with Dr. Horan, use this link:


SISAT Research Professor Ben Schooley and PhD Student Sue Feldman Awarded Two Grants to Aid in Disability Research

SISAT is proud to announce that Clinical Research professor, Dr. Ben Schooley, and SES/SISAT PhD student Sue Feldman have been awarded two research grants. The first comes from the California Wellness Foundation, the second from the Special Hope Foundation. The grants total $285,000 and are being awarded through the Kay Center for E-Health Research. These two grants were made possible by the successful completion of smaller, exploratory awards (also through the Kay Center) from the Special Hope Foundation and from Medicaid Infrastructure Grants. “The current work focuses on the design and application of software tools to help low-wage people with disabilities obtain much needed health services to ready themselves for obtaining and retaining employment,” explained Dr. Schooley. “We will design and test the utility of GIS [geographic information systems], Adaptive Case Management, and web-based open source technologies to aid in health care referral making, job readiness, and job placement services.” Joining Dr. Schooley and Ms. Feldman on these projects will be SISAT Clinical Professor, Dr. Brian Hilton and students Gary Richmond (MSIS) and Nagla Alnosayan (PhD IST). Dr. Schooley and Ms. Feldman wish to thank Kay Center Founder, Steeve Kay, Kay Center Director, Dr. Thomas Horan, and Kay Center Visiting Scholar, Dr. Susan Daniels, for their unwavering vision and support for this work.


SISAT Doctoral Student Selected to Present at ICIS 2010 Doctoral Consortium

SISAT is proud to announce that PhD student Myungjae Kwak's dissertation proposal titled "Development of a Predicate-Based Biomedical Search Engine Based on Design Science Approach" has been selected for presentation at the ICIS 2010 Doctoral Consortium. Myungjae will present his proposal at International Conference on Information Systems in December in St. Louis, MO.


Myungjae’s advisor Dr. Gondy Leroy, commented on the honor of this selection, “This is a highly competitive doctoral consortium with only 40 attendees. Students from all over the world compete for a spot. Only one application is allowed per school.”

Proposals are submitted to two consortium committee members (faculty members) who review each proposal for pre-selection before forwarding it to the doctoral consortium chairs for final selection.  The comments from those that reviewed Myungjae’s proposal read, in part, “This is an excellent proposal that is developed in the recently emergent tradition of design science where an IT artifact is central to the development and execution of the research objectives.” The committee also referred to the proposal as “interesting” and as having “significant practical import.”

SISAT congratulates Myungjae on this outstanding honor.



SISAT Professor Dr Tom Horan Completes Lecture Course in Saudi Arabia.

At the end of June, SISAT Associate Professor and Director of the Kay Center for E-Health Research, Dr. Tom Horan traveled to King Saud Bin Abdulaziz University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia to provide a four-day, 28 hour lecture course in public health informatics to graduate students studying in health sciences. The trip was arranged by SISAT PhD candidate, Mr. Fadi Al-Buhairan. In addition to the course offering, Dr. Horan was afforded the opportunity to visit with leaders from government, industry and academia, including the university president to gain a better understanding of how health sciences education and research is conducted in Saudi Arabia. “It was an incredible experience,” said Dr. Horan. In addition to a return visit, Dr. Horan said there was discussion about developing an official partnership between KSBAU and SISAT that would allow for student and faculty exchange.



SES/SISAT PhD Student, Sue Feldman Awarded American Public Health Association Honor

SISAT is very pleased to announce that, Sue Feldman, an inter-field PhD student with the School of Education and SISAT and Assistant Director of the Kay Center for E-Health Research, has been awarded the American Public Health Association student research award for the Disability Section. The Disability Section of the American Public Health Association recognizes outstanding student research and educational achievements in the field of disability. The award is given to a student whose work will lead to a career in disability and public health. The student’s work must have demonstrated excellence in scholarship and leadership in independent projects that have advanced the health and quality of life for people with disabilities. SISAT congratulates Sue on her outstanding work in this area and looks forward to her continued success.


Autism Communication Software Developed by Dr. Gondy Leroy Featured In Allergan Foundation Annual Report

The Allergan Foundation, a non-profit philanthropic organization based in Orange County, CA, recently recognized the outstanding work SISAT Associate Professor Gondy Leroy has done to improve the lives of children diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. This disorder affects several aspects of a child’s abilities; one of the most prominent is his/her ability to communicate. Autistic children are often severely limited in their verbal communication abilities, leading to frustration and emotional stress for both the child and the parent(s). Historically, communication between parent and child has been aided by the use of large, laminated pictures of various objects or people the child knows. Children would select certain pictures to respond to questions or make statements they could not be able to express verbally. Though this was an effective means of bridging the parent-child communication gap, Dr. Leroy saw an opportunity to greatly expand the amount of pictures and ease of use of this communication method through the development of a new software application. The result of Dr. Leroy’s research, conducted in collaboration with researchers at Old Dominion University is “PixTalk”, a free software application containing thousands of pictures that is downloadable to any Smartphone or PDA. “Children with autism love electronic devices and adapt easily to their use,” said Dr. Leroy. As such, the PixTalk application is proving to be an extremely effective tool for autistic children to use and communicate with. The PixTalk application is an ongoing project for Dr. Leroy and the Speech and Hearing Center at Cal State Fullerton has recently joined the project as a testing and evaluation partner. The full Allergan Foundation report on PixTalk can be found here.


SES/SISAT Inter-field Student Receives Transdisciplinary Dissertation Award

SISAT is proud to announce that School of Education (SES) and SISAT Inter-field PhD student, Sue Feldman, has been awarded a Transdisciplinary Dissertation Award.   These are designed to support research that involves at least three disciplines and includes dissertation advisors from at least two CGU Schools. Sue’s advisors are Dr. David Drew from SES and Dr. Thomas Horan from SISAT. Her dissertation, Public-Private Interorganizational Sharing of Health Data for Medical Evidence Development and Disability Determination has been informed and supported by both schools as well as the Kay Center for E-Health Research, at which Sue is also Assistant Director. The award recognizes both a student’s innovation in developing a transdisciplinary approach to their dissertation as well as the students advisors. All will receive a monetary reward upon successful completion of the dissertation. SISAT congratulates Sue on this prestigious and well earned award.



SISAT Research Team Earns Best Paper Award at ISCRAM

A paper entitled, “CrashHelp: A GIS Tool for Managing Emergency Medical Responses to Motor Vehicle Crashes was awarded Best Paper; honors at the Seventh International Conference on Information Systems on Crisis Response and Management (ISCRAM), held in Seattle, WA earlier this month. The team lead by SISAT professors, Dr. Benjamin Schooley, Dr. Brian Hilton and Dr. Thomas Horan and including SISAT PhD students, Yoonmi Lee, Rondalynne McClintock and Samuel-Ojo Olusola developed a GIS designed to provide comprehensive information on vehicular crashes to first-responders. The ISCRAM committee noted that, “The work reported demonstrates a very rounded approach to prototype development which illustrates many aspects of best practice, and the system itself promises to have many benefits.” SISAT congratulates the entire team on this award and supports their continued efforts in this area.



Kay Center for E-Health Research Authored Report Is Receiving Extensive National Attention

A recent report by the Kay Center for E-Health Research is receiving national coverage in the Health IT world.  The report, entitled “Using the Nationwide Health Information Network to Deliver Value to Disability Claimants: A Case Study of Social Security Administration and MedVirginia Use of MEGAHIT for Disability Determination” was released on Tuesday, January 26.  The report was authored by CGU PhD student and Assistant Director of the Kay Center for E-Health Research, Sue Feldman and co-authored by Thomas Horan, Associate Professor and Director of the Kay Center.

Fellow PhD student and Kay Center Research Associate, Fadi Al-Buhairan, assisted with the analysis. Health Information Technology (Health IT) is widely considered to be one of the key elements for improving the efficiency and quality of healthcare, most typically as connected to diagnosis, treatment and hospital operations. However this report examines Health IT for uses beyond the typical analyzing MedVirginia’s use of the NHIN to exchange claimant authorized Continuity of Care Documents (CCDs) with the SSA to expedite disability determinations. "With significant federal funds being devoted to Health IT as a result of the stimulus bill, there is concern about the benefits of Health IT systems,” Sue Feldman said, “We are thrilled that our report is receiving attention as we think it sheds light on the value proposition of Health IT.” SSA spends more than $500 million annually chasing down medical records.
While this case study reports on the potential hospital partner cost savings of about $2 million, there are greater and immeasurable social benefits to claimants waiting for Social Security disability determination, such as faster cash benefits, access to medical care, and decreased stress.

The report has been featured on several media outlets, including Federal Computing Weekly and most recently, has been a top download on iHealthBeat.