Information Technology Management


Curriculum Guideline Three

Court leaders must know the fundamentals and ensure that they and their technical staff stay current with how other organizations and courts are using technology successfully.   Every court leader must appreciate both the capacities and the limitations of always-evolving technology tools.  To establish and manage expectations, court leaders must know what options exist, how technology evolves, the issues that arise with the use of technology, and how to select the most appropriate solution.  No one can manage what they do not adequately understand.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities

  • Knowledge of approaches taken by other courts to address information technology needs and problems, as well as resources available at the national level to monitor technological developments including, among others, the National Center for State Courts (NCSC), SEARCH Group, and the Forum on the Advancement of Court Technology (FACT);
  • Knowledge of the need for functional standards and the case management functional standards being developed by the National Consortium on Court Automation Standards through the Conference of State Court Administrators (COSCA) and NACM Joint Technology Committee (COSCA/NACM JTC); Ability to articulate court functional requirements;
  • Knowledge of both the capacities and limitations of information technology for specific court functions and how to match competing technologies and vendors to the functional requirements of the court, its judges, and its staff;
  • Knowledge of technology life cycles and how technology evolves through future, emerging, current, and obsolete stages;
  • Skill in assessing architectural options including centralized and consolidated, point- to-point coordinated systems, and hub and spoke hybrid systems, among others, for hardware, applications, and operating systems in the judicial branch and justice system;
  • Knowledge of data integration architecture options including data warehouses and data integration hubs; 
  • Knowledge of infrastructure options: facilities, computer equipment, system software, networks, telecommunications, infrastructure support staff, data, operational procedures, finances, and other components;
  • Ability to oversee help desk problem management systems that serve end users;
  • Knowledge of application systems including case management, financial management, jury management, administrative systems, public access, and their integration in the courts, and the hardware and software required to support these systems;
  • Knowledge of the systems development life cycle and its evaluation, planning, procurement, development, and implementation stages;
  • Knowledge of software engineering processes including design, coding, and testing and the role court staff plays at various points in these processes to ensure quality;
  • Knowledge of the Internet and its implications for court technology infrastructure, user interfaces, information exchange, standards, integration, and confidentiality;
  • Knowledge of electronic government and how to link court applications to the Internet;
  • Knowledge of the need for court disaster recovery contingency planning and how to put disaster recovery plans in place;
  • Knowledge of office automation technologies including electronic mail, word processing, spreadsheets, Internet access, and database tools and their application in the court environment;
  • Knowledge of integrated document management and records management technologies used to store, index, and retrieve active and archival court records including imaging, document management, and electronic filing;
  • Knowledge of technologies for facilitating and capturing verbatim records of court proceedings including audio and video recording, court reporting technologies, videoconferencing, assisted listening devices, and language interpretation and translation and their potential to expedite and improve trial and appellate processes;
  • Knowledge of technologies used to display and preserve evidence presented in the courtroom including document cameras, PC simulations, and projection systems;
  • Knowledge of technologies used to organize and access statutes, rules, court opinions, and other legal works including online legal research databases, CD-ROM legal collections, and Internet services;
  • Knowledge of other technologies necessary to support court operations including security, facilities management, telephones, and photocopy;
  • Knowledge of alternative policies and issues surrounding security, privacy and confidentiality, public access, electronic and otherwise, and the need for written policies in these areas.

View the Summary of Information Technology Curriculum Guidelines or click on each of the other four Curriculum Guidelines to see the associated Knowledge, Skills and Abilities:

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