SOC41030 Sciences, Technologies & Societies

Academic Year 2022/2023

This new module examines the intertwining of science, technology and society. The first section looks at the major social-scientific traditions that study science as a distinctive activity and institution of advanced societies. The second section examines a selection of iconic technologies through case studies, with a view to understanding their varied relationships to science on the one hand and society on the other. The final section focuses on societies and the different places they afford to science and technology in attitudes, culture, education and policy. In this way, the complicated (and fascinating!) relationships between the various sciences, different technologies, and distinct societies are explored in an inter-connected manner, thus facilitating a nuanced, sophisticated and accurate understanding of science and technology and their importance in human societies.

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Curricular information is subject to change

Learning Outcomes:

1. Familiarity with different traditions of enquiry used to study science and technology.
2. Appreciation of central concepts and major theories used in the study of science and technology.
3. Detailed knowledge of a number of case studies of iconic technologies.
4. Capacity to critically assess current debates over science, technology and the nature of science policy.

Student Effort Hours: 
Student Effort Type Hours


Autonomous Student Learning




Approaches to Teaching and Learning:
Lectures; seminars; student presentations; task-based learning; debates; reflective learning; case-based learning; critical writing. 
Requirements, Exclusions and Recommendations

Not applicable to this module.

Module Requisites and Incompatibles
Not applicable to this module.
Assessment Strategy  
Description Timing Open Book Exam Component Scale Must Pass Component % of Final Grade
Portfolio: A 5000 word portfolio/essay submitted at the end of term. (Further details to follow.) Week 12 n/a Graded No


Carry forward of passed components
Resit In Terminal Exam
Summer No
Please see Student Jargon Buster for more information about remediation types and timing. 
Feedback Strategy/Strategies

• Feedback individually to students, on an activity or draft prior to summative assessment
• Feedback individually to students, post-assessment
• Group/class feedback, post-assessment

How will my Feedback be Delivered?

Porfolio/essay will require continuous work through-out the semester, drafts of which will receive feedback to help with the final version. Post-assessment feedback sheet for each student and general observations and feedback to class circulated via email.