About the Program
Science, Technology & Society (STS) enables students to identify and analyze the ways that science and technology shape, and are shaped by, society; students interview campus-based researchers and write academic papers that link their research to the social needs they address.
The Scholars STS program emphasizes the importance of social processes to shaping scientific research and technological development. We also examine the opposite relationship: the ways that science and technology shape society. We are sponsored by the School of Engineering to help engineering majors think broadly about their work. Any student may join the program: about one-fourth of our students do not major in science, engineering or math, so our classes mix students interested in a variety of disciplines.
The program seeks students who wish to improve their abilities to:
a. work productively in small groups to complete research projects and to give formal presentations about their research
b. understand how culture, economics, law, professional training, funding, and employment settings affect the pursuit of science and the development of technology; conversely, understand how science and technology change these aspects of society
c. communicate with others who may lack their particular interests and analytical training, but nevertheless who need to learn what the student knows; sophomores may earn credit for participating in STS Serves!, which places students as science and math mentors for students in nearby public schools
d. collaborate with students pursuing different majors to understand the interactions of science, technology and society; the goal of this collaboration is to gain a life-long respect for interdisciplinary research and problem-solving
e. seek out research opportunities and internships by earning credit for informed and serious participation in campus career fairs and career center workshops, and by learning from upperclassmen who present to the freshmen about their research and internship experiences; sophomores may earn credit for their completion of internships
f. reflect on their individual skills, practical knowledge, and experiences to articulate their relationships to the broader contexts of society's needs, scientific research, and technological development
g. learn particular analytical methods in the academic discipline of Science, Technology and Society, and apply them to answer a serious research question of their own choosing, through participation in the sophomore Capstone class, CPSP 227.