Science, Technology & Culture
*101, 102 Scientific Investigations
A series of activity-based courses in which two topics will be introduced each semester that encompass a range of physical phenomena. Scientific concepts are introduced to provide a basis for understanding of phenomena such as rainbows, cloud formation, global warming, the development of scientific theories, and electrical brain activity. The main emphasis of the course will be on the processes of scientific investigation, with students developing hands-on projects throughout each semester. This course can be taken one or more times for laboratory science credit provided that new topics are covered in each course.
The course will meet for a total of six hours each week in a laboratory setting.
179 Women and Science in the United States
Science is the human endeavor to understand our world and our universe. However, the popular view of a scientist in the United States traditionally has not been one of a woman. There have been many social and institutional barriers to women who wish to pursue scientific careers. This course will examine these barriers, popular representations of scientists, and the history of women in science in the United States.
This course fulfills the U.S. Diversity graduation requirement.
211 Science from Antiquity to the 17th Century
The first half deals with Greek, Arabic, and Medieval Latin theories of matter, motion, and growth, including the transmission of science and science education. The latter half deals with the scientific revolution from Copernicus to Newton with attention focused on the radical restructuring of basic assumptions about nature and method.
212 Science from Newton to Einstein
Growth of quantitative methods in physical science and experimental methods in biology and natural history in the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries. Particular emphasis on Enlightenment and Romantic science, Darwinian evolution and genetic theory, the new physics of relativity and quantum mechanics, and modern cosmology. Gradual separation of science from philosophy and theology.
258 Topics in the History of Science
The nature of science as a major aspect of Western civilization. Examines science and the scientific enterprise by devoting particular attention to the following: the structuring of basic assumptions about nature and method; social, cultural, and religious dimensions of scientific change and discovery; noted developments in the physical and life sciences. Topics vary and will be announced each term. Recent topics have included: The Scientific Revolution, History of the Physical Sciences, Development of Cosmology, Science and Religion, Light in Science and Art, and Ethnoastronomy.
259 Writing Science News
Science hits the news more now than ever before. Is the news we read true to the research that it reports? Does it matter? Those are our concerns in this course. We analyze how scientists report their findings, how those findings become news, and what happens on the way. Taking knowledge into practice, you will conduct background research, interview scientists, and write your own science news. The portfolio you produce will include polished news releases based on science research at Dickinson. This course is primarily designed for future scientists who want to be able to communicate about their research, and for science majors considering a writing career. It is also appropriate for non-scientists who wish to be savvy consumers of science news.
This course fulfills the WR graduation requirement.
260 Energy and The Environment
A lecture course on the role of conventional and alternative energy sources, nuclear energy, and nuclear weapons in modern society. Topics may include the relationship of scientific principles to an understanding of the greenhouse effect, the thinning of the ozone layer, the disposal of nuclear waste, and the technology, effects, and proliferation of nuclear weapons.
This course fulfills the QR graduation requirement.
432 Senior Colloquium
The senior colloquium in science will explore new developments in science as well as philosophical, social, and ethical dimensions of the scientific enterprise. This will be a team-taught course in which senior science majors will work with faculty members to select readings and lead discussions.
One-half course credit. Prerequisite: senior standing with a major in one of the natural or mathematical sciences.
The following courses are offered on The Dickinson Science Program in England:
300 Science and Society
This course explores cultural, philosophical, and ethical aspects of the interplay between science and society. Particular emphasis will be placed on differences in perspective on scientific issues between Europe and the United States. Examples could include, but not be limited to, topics such as biotechnology, the environment, evolution, and health care, and their past and present representation in the media, literature and art.
301 Sustainability Science
This course explores the role of science in environmental sustainability. Particular emphasis will be placed on population
growth, biodiversity, renewable vs. nonrenewable natural resources (e.g., water, soil, energy, minerals), and temporal limits of nonrenewable natural resources (e.g., peak oil). Intercultural differences in perspective on sustainability issues will be examined between the UK, EU, and US.