UNDERSTANDING TECHNOLOGICAL SOCIETY
Intro STS – 14508 – STS 201 – 002 Coll of Science & Liberal Arts Department: Humanities
Class 8:30 am – 9:55 am Monday /ThuRsday Cullimore Hall LECT 3 Spring 2017
Prof. Gareth Edel , PhD.
Office Hours: Held in Cullimore 435 or on benches outside Cullimore Hall,
10:30- 11am Tues/Thurs, 1-1:30 pm Tues/Thurs, 11-Noon on Monday, Additionally Available by appointment.
Course Summary Description: This course looks at issues related to science and technology as they participate in and effect our society and our life experiences. Topics include: work, city planning, online social media, sustainability. We will be particularly working to develop an understanding of technologies as part of techno-social systems, and to increase the complexity of our views of technology as performing multiple functions, constraints and enablement.
Quizzes (5) 15%
Required Reading Response Write-ups (500-750 words, show reading and engagment) (5) 15%
Midterm Examination 30%
Final Examination 40%
Note: While quizzes draw entirely from the readings, exams will test on subject matter from in class lectures, and
students are strongly encouraged to attend every class, take notes, and ask questions.
Extra Credit will be available for completing Reading Responses on weeks without required, additional opportunities will be announced as we go. Students are welcome to request and suggest further extra credit opportunities.
Course Policy on Plagiarism: Any form of cheating or plagiarism will be grounds for failure in the course per NJIT Academic Integrity Policy. http://www.njit.edu/academics/integrity.php. Failure to properly Cite or recognize quotation or indirect material will automatically fail the assignment and be considered grounds for potential further action.
COURSE OUTLINE & ASSIGNMENTS
WEEK 1 Topic: What is Technology
Jan 19 – Thursday(First Day Of class) – Welcome to Class, Review of Syllabus
WEEK 2 Topic: How “things” have politics.
Jan 23 & 26 Reading Due:Langdon Winner, 1980. “Do Artifacts Have Politics.” Daedalus 109 (1): 121-136 (Read whole article)
From Reprinting in The Whale and the Reactor: https://rekveld.home.xs4all.nl/tech/Winner_WhaleAndReactor_ch2-3.pdf
AND Robert Moses, 1945 “Slums and City Planning,” www.theatlantic.com/issues/45jan/0145moses.htm
Reading Response Writing #1 Due
WEEK 3 Topic: Technology in our lives today.
Jan 30 & Feb 2 Reading Due: Putnam, Robert. Bowling Alone Article 1995. Selection:
Turkle, Sherry. Alone Together (Selection); P. 1-14 http://apps.carleton.edu/curricular/aiseminars/assets/Sherry_Turkle_book.pdf
Sander, T.H. & Putnam, R.D..2010 “Still Bowling Alone” journal of Democracy. 20 #1,
Reading Response Writing #2 Due
WEEK 4 Questioning our assumptions.
Feb 6 & Feb 9 Reading Due: Three Blog Entries:
Katherine Viner, 2016, The Guardian,
Justin Fox,2014, The Disruption Myth, the Atlantic
Gladwell, Malcolm. 2002. “Smaller: The disposable diaper and the meaning of progress.” Gladwell -smaller
Quiz # 1 (Wed Class)
WEEK 5 What is Sustainability?
Feb 13 & Feb 16 Reading Due: “The Next Industrial Revolution,” McDonough and Braungart, Atlantic Monthly,
‘ The Great Oasis’ Bilger, Burkhard The Great Oasis A plan to combat desertification.
Reading Response Writing #3 Due
WEEK 6 Technology and Work
Feb 20 & Feb 23 Reading Due: Mac McClelland, 2012, “I was a warehouse wage slave”, Mother Jones.
Jeffrey Pfeffer, ”The Case against the ‘gig economy’, Fortune Magazine Online
David Rodman (Editor) “How Technology is Destroying Jobs”, The MIT Tech Review Online
Echkardt & F. Bardhi, “The Sharing Economy Isn’t about sharing at all” Harvard Buisiness Review
Quiz # 2 (Wed Class)
WEEK 7 – Mid Term Week
Feb 27 Mid Term Review
Mar 2 Mid Term Examination
WEEK 8 Race and Technology
Mar 6 & Mar 9 Reading Due: Anthony Walton, “Technology Versus the African Americans” Atlantic Monthly
Wendy Hui Kyong Chun, 2009, Intro. to special issue- “Race and/as technology” in Camera Obscura http://cameraobscura.dukejournals.org/content/24/1_70/7.full.pdf+html
Reading Response Writing #4 Due
WEEK 9 No Class For Break
Mar 13 – Spring Recess (No Classes)
Mar 17 – Spring Recess (No Classes)
WEEK 10 SCOT
Mar 20- (First class following Spring Recess) & Mar 23 Reading Due: Introduction and Chapter from Wiebe Bijker’s
‘Of Bicycles, Bakelite and Bulbs’ – http://sciencepolicy.colorado.edu/students/envs_5110/bijker.pdf
` Quiz # 3 (Wed Class)
WEEK 11 Science The very Idea
Mar 27 – (Last day to withdrawal) & Mar 30 Reading Due: Shapin & Shaeffer –truth/credibility/science ideal
Intro to 2011 ed. http://press.princeton.edu/chapters/i9440.pdf
Quiz # 4 (Wed Class)
WEEK 12 The Media
Apr 3 & Apr 6 Reading Due:
McChesney, R.W. & Nichols, J.. 2000. It’s the Media Stupid . Stories Press SELECTION: pp.21-25, 27-
Lark Federman On Mcluhan http://individual.utoronto.ca/markfederman/MeaningTheMediumistheMessage.pdf
Recommended/Optional: Lawrence Lessig, Code v2 http://codev2.cc/download+remix/Lessig-Codev2.pdf Quiz # 1 (Wed Class)
WEEK 13 STS In Practice of Design
Apr 10 & Apr 13 Reading Due: Dean Nieusma’s “Alternative Design Scholarship” http://www.academy.rpi.edu/2008_STEM_Workshop/Nieusma/Nieusma%20Design%20Ed%20Pubs/Nieusma%20-%20Alt%20Design.pdf ` + 1 Additional Reading TBA
WEEK 14 Final Thoughts
Apr 17 &Apr 20 Reading Due:’The Engineer as social Radical’ by Mathes and Gray (NOT YET POSTED ONLINE)
+ 1 Additional Reading TBA
Reading Response Writing #1 Due
Apr 24 Final Exam Review
Apr 27 Final Exam Review
May 1st FINAL DAY OF CLASS – FINAL EXAM
May 3-4 Reading Days, May 5-11 Exam Days