Science, Technology & Society

Catalog of Science, Technology and Society Courses

The following are regularly taught courses which count toward the STS major. Other special topics courses may also count toward the major. An annual list of courses available for STS credit is published in the Butler schedule of classes, or on this website.

Special STS Courses: 


ST200. Introduction to Science & Technology Studies  

An introductory survey of the variety of humanistic and social scientific approaches to the study of science and technology. Topics include the social, political, cultural and economic structure of science and technology, scientific objectivity, scientific communication and rhetoric, science education.


ST205. Science & Society Speakers Series Seminar (1 credit hour) 

This course is a companion seminar to the Woods Lectures in the Sciences and Mathematics.  In addition to attending all Woods Lectures during the semester, students will attend preparatory and follow up sessions in which they learn about these scientists' work and their relation to broader societal issues. Students will have opportunities to interact personally with some of the world's leading scientists, mathematicians, and technologists. (U-G) (1)


ST310. Social Studies of Science and Technology 

This course investigates science and technology as socio-cultural processes, institutions and products.  It explores how the science and technology are embedded in society as a whole, and how cultural variations affect their manifestations.  Attention is given to the varying methods by which social scientists study science and technology. (U-G) (3)


ST320. Philosophy of Science.

An analysis of some philosophical questions about the natural sciences, including the problem of distinguishing science from pseudoscience, the nature of scientific explanation, the structure and confirmation of scientific theories, the relationship between theories in different scientific domains, scientific revolutions, and the relationship between science and reality. (U-G) (3)


ST330. Language, Rhetoric and Science

This course investigates how language and rhetoric influence the production and communication of scientific and technological knowledge.  We investigate the language of science, its development and its conventions, and its use and misuse.  We explore how social, economic and political influences affect scientific language and communication. (U-G)(3)


ST390. Topics in Science, Technology and Society.

An investigation of a topic in the study of science, technology and society. (U-G) (3)


ST401, 402, 403. Independent Study in Science, Technology and Society.

Offers the qualified student of Science, Technology and Society the opportunity to pursue a topic of individual interest. Open only to juniors and seniors with the permission of the instructor and of the director of the STS program. (U-G) (1,2,3)


ST 411, 412, 413, and 416 Internship in Science, Technology and Society.

Offers the qualified student of Science, Technology and Society the opportunity to participate in a supervised work experience in a position that will enhance their understanding of STS issues. Junior standing plus ST200 and one 300 level STS course. and seniors with the permission of the director of the STS program. (U) (1, 2, 3, and 6)


ST499. Honors Thesis. (U) (3)

Disciplinary STS Courses:

STS students take courses from various academic departments to complete their major:

History: The History of Science; The History of Technology

English: Literature and Medicine; Science Fiction and Utopian/Dystopian Novels; Writing about Health; Writing about the Environment; AIDS and Society

Philosophy: Religion and Science; Philosophy of Biology; Religion and Science Fiction; Biomedical Ethics

Psychology: Human Sexuality

Sociology: Medical Sociology; Mental Health and Society

Political Science: Environmental Justice; The Earth Charter; Eco-tourism

Biology: Urban Ecology; Conservation Biology; Environmental Science; Environmental Policy and Practicum

Chemistry: Environmental Chemistry

Economics: Environmental and Natural Resource Economics

Pharmacy: Public Health and Social Inequities; Ethics and Health Care; Medical Spanish

See our list of STS Electives.