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An information system is a system that performs a set of information processes requiring information technology, data/ information and participants.

Elements of an information system

An information system may also be expressed diagrammatically as in Fig 1.A.

Fig 1.A

Information processes- the seven main information processes performed are:
collecting- the process of deciding what to collect, locating it and collecting it

organising- the process that arranges, represents and formats data for use by other information processes.

analysing- the process that interprets data, transforming it into information.

storing and retrieving- a two-step process for retaining data : storing saves data for later use; retrieving obtains data that has been previously saved

processing- the process that manipulates data and information

transmitting and receiving- the transfer of data within and between information systems

displaying- the process of presenting of information from an information system.


Environment- everything that influences or is influenced by an information system.

Purpose- the reason for the information system’s existence and is also used to measure the success of the information system.

Information Technology- is the set of tools used by an information system or its participants to perform work -- the hardware and software used by information systems.

Data/ Information- data is raw material entered into an information system in the form of images, text, audio, video or numbers. Information is data that has been ordered and given some meaning.

Participants- or direct users, are the people who carry out the information processes within the information system.