MOOC on Scientific Humanities-simplified version (recomposed by Michael Flower)

The MOOC has been abandoned but the introduction might still interest some readers. Michael Flower kindly recomposed part of it with introduction and videos.

"Scientific humanities" means the extension of interpretative skills to the discoveries made by science and to technical innovations. The course will equip future citizens with the means to be at ease with many issues that straddle the distinctions between science, morality, politics and society.
The course provides concepts and methods to :

  • learn the basics of the field called “science and technology studies”, a vast corpus of literature developed over the last forty years to give a realistic description of knowledge production
  • handle the flood of different opinions about contentious issues and order the various positions by using the tools now available through digital media
  • comment on those different pieces of news in a more articulated way through a specifically designed blog.

Course Format : the course was organized in 8 sequences It displays multimedia contents (images, video, original documents. You now have only access to the introductory videos. You may understood the videos fairly well if, in parallel, you hold a blog that allows you to follow the different elements outlined in the introductions. A chapter of Cogitamus a little French book to follow the MOOC is accessible here in English to give an idea of the procedure. More chapters can be sent on demand.

Course Syllabus

Please open the text recomposed by Michael Flower to have easy access to videos, texts and some ideas of the exercises.
Week 1: How to patrol the borderline between science and politics? Part 1-1 and Part 1-2 of the introduction.
Week 2: How to find one’s way in the scientific literature? Part 2-1 and Part 2-2
Week 3: How to handle technical innovations? Part 3-1 and Part 3-2
Week 4: How to deal with controversies? Part 4-1 Part 4-2 and Part 4-3
Week 5: Feedback: Bruno Latour comments on students blogs  
Week 6: How to understand the shifting nature of the natural world? Part 6-1 and Part 6-2
Week 7: How to become a citizen in the public life of science and technology? Part 7-1 and Part 7-2

Week 8: Feebdback: Bruno Latour comments on your participation in public debates-cancelled in this version