Science Studies Minor Archived

The interdisciplinary Minor in Science Studies is designed for students in the Faculty of Arts who would like to examine the history, philosophy, sociology, and discourse practices of the scientific disciplines.

The purpose of this program is to promote the study of scientific work and thought from a variety of perspectives usually associated with the humanities and social sciences. Students will explore, for example, issues about the production and representation of scientific knowledge, the creation and maintenance of intellectual authority in the practices of the sciences, as well as relations between nature and culture. A background in science is not required, although curiosity about scientific matters is an asset.

Requirements for Minor in Science Studies
In consultation with an advisor, students should select 18 credits from the following courses, keeping in mind that some of them will have prerequisites. Students are advised to see a program advisor for information regarding courses offered in other faculties that will count towards the program. Also given below are a few lower division courses which are recommended but not required. Other courses may be included from year to year.

Program advisors are:
Dr. Alan Richardson, Department of Philosophy, alanr@interchange.ubc.ca
Dr. Judy Segal, Department of English, jsegal@interchange.ubc.ca

Courses Accepted for Minor Credit Year to Year
ANTH 400 (3/6) History of Anthropology
The development of anthropological theory and practice in institutional contexts.
Prerequisite: ANTH 300.

ANTH 427 (3) Topics in Medical Anthropology
Anthropological perspectives on health, illness, and disability as represented by classic and contemporary research in selected topics in medical anthropology including disease and human evolution, illness and human ecology, culture and epidemiology, ethnomedical systems, the relationship between folk and biomedicine and the cultural construction and social organization of health care, illness and disability. Specific content will vary from year to year. Consult the Department brochure.
Prerequisite: 1 of ANTH 100, SOCI 100.

ANTH 470 (3/6) Topics in Contemporary Theory
Selected topics in contemporary social and cultural theory which contribute to anthropological analyses. Topics may include Marxist anthropology, critical theory, theories of culture, phenomenology, behavioural ecology, structuralism, hermeneutics, formal theory and examination of specific social theorists.

BIOL 442 (3) Ethical Issues in Science
Theoretical and practical consideration of ethics in the practice, reporting, public impact and accountability of science.
Prerequisite: Fourth-year standing in any Faculty is required.

BIOL 446 (3) History and Philosophy of Biology
The nature of science, this history of evolutionary and molecular biology, philosophical questions about scientific methods and fundamental conclusions of biology.
Prerequisite: Fourth-year standing in any degree program is required.

CLST 306 (3) Applied Science and Technology in Classical Antiquity
The origins and achievements of applied technology in the Greek and Roman world from the Bronze Age to late Antiquity, with special attention to archaeological evidence.

CPSC 430 (3) Computers and Society
Impact of computer technology on society; historical perspectives; social and economic consequences of large-scale information processing systems and automatic control; legal and ethical problems in computer applications. Computers and the individual: machine versus human capabilities, fact and fancy; problematic interface between man and machine.
Prerequisite: Three credits of Computer Science and at least third-year standing.

ENGL 306 (6) History and Theory of Rhetoric
Major theories of rhetoric studied chronologically with particular emphasis on the relationship between traditional and modern theories.

ENGL 307 (3) Studies in Rhetoric
Topics in rhetorical theories and their application.

GEOG 345 (3) Geographic Thought and Practice
Major intellectual traditions of human and physical geography. Geographers and geography in society.

GEOG 440 (3) Power, Knowledge and Human Geography
Geography as discourse; power, modernity and the production of space; imaginative geographies and the representation of space.
Prerequisite: GEOG 345.

HIST 360 (3) Introduction to History and Philosophy of Science
An examination of historical, conceptual, and methodological conditions of scientific knowledge through detailed consideration of important episodes in the history of science.

HIST 442 (3) Gender, Technology and Society in History
The historical dimensions of current debates about technology, focusing on the interdisciplinary theme of gender.

HIST 455 (3) The Origins of Modern Science
Science and Society in the 17th and 18 Centuries.

HIST 456 (3) History and Social Relations of Modern Sciences
Science and society in the 19th to 21st Centuries.

MATH 446 (3) Topics in the History of Mathematics I
Historical development of concepts and techniques in areas chosen from Geometry, Number Theory, Algebra, Calculus, Probability, Analysis. The focus is on historically significant writings of important contributors and on famous problems of Mathematics.
Prerequisite: 27 credits in Mathematics.

MATH 447 (3) Topics in the History of Mathematics II
A continuation of MATH 446.
Prerequisite: MATH 446.

PHIL 360 (3/4) Introduction to History and Philosophy of Science
An examination of historical, conceptual and methodological conditions of scientific knowledge through detailed consideration of important episodes in the history of science.

PHIL 362 (3/4) History and Philosophy of Economics I

PHIL 363 (3/4) History and Philosophy of Economics II

PHIL 427 (3/4) Philosophy of Mathematics
Logicism, formalism and constructivism, implications of metatheorems such as those of Goedel and Church, mathematical truth, mathematics and mental construction, mathematics and the physical world.
Prerequisite: Philosophy or Mathematics courses totaling 9 credits at the 200 level or above.

PHIL 460 (3-6) Philosophy of Science
Issues common to all sciences. Philosophical questions including the character of scientific laws, theories and revolutions, the nature of scientific confirmation, causality, explanation and prediction, and the use of logic and probability. Difficulties in the interpretation of atomic physics and questions about relationships between biology and psychology. No philosophical background is assumed.

PHIL 461 (3/4) Philosophy of Social Science
Topics in the philosophy of science of special concern to the social and behavioural sciences; hypotheses and explanation; principles, theories, models; the formation of scientific concepts; the function of mathematics in social science.Prerequisite: 9 credits at the 200 level or above from Philosophy, Anthropology, Geography, Economics, History, Political Science, Psychology or Sociology.

PHIL 462 (3-6) Space and Time
Such topics as: Are space and time continuous? Is motion always relative to another body? Does time flow? Is time irreversible?
Prerequisite: PHIL 340 or 12 credits of Mathematics or Science.

PHIL 469 (3/4) Topics in Philosophy of Science
Topics such as probability and induction; foundations of measurement; theory construction.
Prerequisite: PHIL 460.

PSYC 312 (3/6) History of Psychology
The principal trends of psychological explanation and events in the history of psychology from the earliest times to the present. Open only to Major or Honours students or by permission of the instructor.
Prerequisite: PSYC 100 or six credits of 200-level Psychology.

SOCI 350 (3/6) Sociological Theories: Classical and Contemporary Approaches
An examination of selected traditions, conceptual problems, and current topics in the field of sociological theory.
Prerequisite: 1 of SOCI 100, SOCI 300.

SOCI 400 (3/6) Theoretical and Methodological Issues
Sociological theories and their relationship to methodological issues in the discipline.
Prerequisite: 1 of SOCI 100, SOCI 300.

SOCI 473 (3/6) Sociology of Mental Illness
A sociological approach to the meaning of mental illness; the organization of psychiatric treatment; problems in the explanation of the distribution of mental illness in a population.
Prerequisite: 1 of SOCI 100, SOCI 300.

SOCI 484 (3/6) Sociology of Health and Illness
Sociological perspectives on health, illness, and health care as represented in classic and contemporary sociological studies of selected topics such as illness experience, social aspects of the practice of health professionals, training of health professionals, and the social organization of health delivery systems.
Prerequisite: 1 of SOCI 100, SOCI 300.

In any given year, there may be other courses appropriate for Science Studies. For a list of these, see an advisor.

Recommended lower division courses: CLST/PHIL 211; HIST/PHIL 260; HIST 215, 216; PHIL 125, 220.