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The Department of Science and Technology Studies, UCL is an interdisciplinary centre for the integrated study of science's history, philosophy, sociology, communication and policy, located in the heart of London. Founded in 1921. Award winning for teaching and research, plus for our public engagement programme. Rated as outstanding by students at every level.
At UCL, the academic mission is paramount. Our ambition is to achieve the highest standards in our teaching and research.
Join us for BSc, MSc, and PhD study.
Staff books include:
Masters-level taught modules 2012-13
STS offers a range of taught postgraduate modules within the context of our taught Masters degrees. These modules also are available to UCL students in other taught postgraduate degrees, subject to the approval of the home department.
Students should register in Portico. These courses are intended for taught Masters-level students. The timetable follows our taught Masters programme, with these modules scheduled for Term 2. The student's home department should decide on which variant of the module is suitable within the degree programme. For more information, contact our Graduate Tutor, Dr Jon Agar (link).
HPSCGA17 Philosophy of Science
This course addresses some fundamental questions about the nature and development of scientific knowledge, including the following:
- What differentiates science from other systems of thought and ways of engaging with the natural world? Is there a "scientific method" that guarantees the superiority and reliability of scientific knowledge?
- Is there progress in science, or merely change from one worldview to another, each maintained by social agreement? Do scientists choose between competing theories in a rational way?
- What is the relationship between observation, theory and experimentation?
- Does science give us an objectively true description of an independent physical reality, or useful tools of thought, or both?
Tutor: Dr Chiara Ambrosio (link)
Timetable: Term 2. Tuesdays 2-4
HPSCGA17 has a credit value of 30, with 300 study hours expected. Two pieces of coursework (4,000 words and 50% each)
HPSCGA17B has a credit value of 15, with 150 study hours expected. One piece of coursework (4,000 words)
HPSCGA18 Sociology of Science and Technology
This course traces the development of the sociology of science, examining the different schools of thought, key theoretical and conceptual frameworks, and empirical studies which have shaped the development of the field. It also examines the extrapolation of concepts from the sociology of science to the analysis of the social dimensions of technology, and considers contemporary sociological studies of the organisational contexts of science and technology.
Tutor: Dr Brian Balmer (link)
Timetable: Term 2. Tuesdays 4-6
HPSCGA18 has a credit value of 30, with 300 study hours expected. Two pieces of coursework (4,000 words and 50% each)
HPSCGA18B has a credit value of 15, with 150 study hours expected. One piece of coursework (4,000 words)
HPSCGA19 Science, Governance and the Public
This course explores the academic literature on the relationship between science and society, with particular reference to the governance of new science and technology. We will look at theoretical and empirical studies that try to understand the changing roles of, and relationships between, key actors, including government, the scientific community, industry, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and the public. The course finishes with discussion of a number of case studies in the governance of specific areas in science and technology.
Tutor: Dr Jon Agar (link)
Timetable: Term 2. Fridays 2-4HPSCGA19 has a credit value of 30, with 300 study hours expected. Two pieces of coursework (4,000 words and 50% each)
HPSCGA19B has a credit value of 15, with 150 study hours expected. One piece of coursework (4,000 words)
HPSCGA20 Science, Technology and Medicine Across Medieval Worlds
This seminar studies the transfer of scientific knowledge from the ancient Greco-Roman world to an Arabic context from the ninth century onward and a Western Christian context from the eleventh century to the eve of the Renaissance. We will examine how and why centres of learning, such as Alexandria and Baghdad or southern Italy and Spain, brought both continuity and change to the scientific tradition. By studying geography, astronomy, physiology, contagious diseases, and pharmacology, we will explore the ways in which Muslim, Jewish and Christian views of knowledge influenced each other in the formation of a scientific method and spirit of inquiry into the natural world based on a pagan past. How did the different sciences, such as medicine, geography, astrology, and mathematics, connect with each other and with philosophy and theology? We will also consider the Western spread of scientific knowledge out of the learned Latin-speaking world to a broader audience through translations into the European vernaculars.
Tutor: Dr William Maclehose (link)
Timetable: Term 2. Mondays 2-4
HPSCGA20 has a credit value of 30, with 300 study hours expected. Two pieces of coursework (4,000 words and 50% each)
HPSCGA20B has a credit value of 15, with 150 study hours expected. One piece of coursework (4,000 words)
HPSCGA11 Science, Technology and Medicine in Antiquity
This course looks at the activities of the ancients in attempting to understand, predict and control the world around them. The main focus is the Greek ‘investigation concerning nature’ and its philosophical, religious and social context. We look at the study of the heavens, including theories of how the world came into being, medicine, mathematics and technology. We also look at how the Greeks thought of disciplines such as astrology and alchemy and how their activities related to magic. While the main focus is the Greeks, we also look at the Babylonian and Roman cultures, their medicine, technology and how they conceived of the world around them.
Tutor: Dr Andrew Gregory (link)
HPSCGA11 has a credit value of 30, with 300 study hours expected. Two pieces of coursework (4,000 words and 50% each)
HPSCGA11B has a credit value of 15, with 150 study hours expected. One piece of coursework (4,000 words)
Page last modified on 27 nov 12 19:30 by Joe Cain
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