Philosophical Reflections on Science and Technology

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FIG 38
Farid Masrour

for students advised by the College of Engineering

Philosophical Reflections on Science and Technology
Lecture 2, 2:30–3:45 MW
General Chemistry I
Lecture 1, 11:00–11:50 MWF; Discussion 311, 1:20–2:10 MW; Lab 611, 2:25–5:25 T
Introduction to Engineering
Lecture 1, 11:00–11:50 T

Science and technology have become such pervasive aspects of our modern life that it is very easy to ignore their presence and impact.

The main aim of Philosophy 104: “The Philosophy of Technology” is to help students develop a reflective stance toward the impact of science and technology on ethical, psychological, social, political, cultural, and environmental aspects of their lives. Some of the questions that we will discuss are:

  • Are science and technology mere instruments for the betterment of our lives?
  • In what ways do they shape our everyday life, values, needs, desires, and our natural environment?
  • In what ways are scientific and technological developments shaped by their social, political, economic, and cultural context?

Throughout the course, we also learn about some very influential schools of thought in the past century including existentialism, phenomenology, critical theory, and feminism. We will pay close attention to these conceptual frameworks and compare them with each other. You will be encouraged to apply these frameworks to the content introduced in the other courses linked to this FIG. Overall, this FIG will contribute to your knowledge of human culture, technology, and science. It also will help you develop your analytical skills, critical and creative thinking, and written and oral communication.

Chemistry 103: “General Chemistry I” — Introduction to stoichiometry and the mole concept; the behavior of gases, liquids, and solids; thermochemistry; electronic structure of atoms and chemical bonding; descriptive chemistry of selected elements and compounds; and intermolecular forces.

Interdisciplinary Engineering 110: “Introduction to Engineering” — Introduction to engineering disciplines and professional fields; engineering design process; grand challenges; sustainability, societal, multicultural and global issues encountered in engineering; economic and ethical constraints on engineering solutions; and employment and educational opportunities in engineering.