2023/24 Winter Session

All STS students in the MA program and in the PhD streams must register for STS 501, 502, and 597/598.

The following courses will all carry STS credit in the 2023/24 academic year. This list is not exhaustive—other course may count for STS credits with the approval of your supervisor and the STS program director. Students may register in these courses via the UBC Course Schedule.

STS Core Courses

STS 501 001 (cross-listed with PPGA591S) – Term 1 (Hugh Gusterson)

STS 502 002 (cross-listed with ENGL561A) – Term 1 (Kavita Philip)

STS 597/598 Term 1 to 2 Colloquium in Science and Technology Studies (Sylvia Berryman)

Media and Misinformation: The History of Truth from Pseudoscience to Propaganda

Professors Kavita Philip and Richard Cavell

Course Description: Information and propaganda, science and truth, planetary crises and democratic responses are inter-dependent. The lives of people and the planet will depend on our ability to communicate accurately and effectively. Media Studies, traditionally the locus for the study of communication technologies, has, by necessity, expanded its field to engage with disciplines such as Science and Technology Studies, Information Studies, Infrastructure and Network analysis, as well as with established disciplines such as History, Geography, and English. This new iteration of Media Studies has now become the most consequential place—inside and outside the academy—for a new critical, interdisciplinary vocabulary to take effect.

This course offers a design for a new kind of literacy. The future world citizen must be equally proficient in analyzing technical, historical, and narrative forms. Yet our disciplines parse, prioritize, and rank these forms of representation, creating students highly skilled in one or two but not across the diverse forms in which “truth” and “information” come packaged today. The future of education is interdisciplinary, because our crises are inter-connected, and because transdisciplinary citizens are needed to address planetary and political challenges. This course seeks to create a set of tools that will enable critique at the intersection of the history of truth and the future of citizenship.

STS 597/598 Colloquium in Science and Technology Studies – Term 1-2

STS Related Courses Taught by STS Affiliated Faculty

Graduate Courses

ENGL 505A 001 Term 2 Victorian Speculative Fiction (Suzy Anger)

PHIL514A 001 Term 1 Early Modern Philosophy (Margaret Schabas)

RES 500D 101 Term 1 Expertise under fire. Navigating the divide between scientific practice and science studies – (Gunilla Öberg)


Undergraduate Courses

GMST274 002 The Frankfurt School (Ilinca Iurascu)

PHIL311 001 Term 2 Philosophy of Aristotle (Sylvia Berryman)

Aristotle stands beside Plato as one of the dominant figures of ancient Greek philosophy and its legacy. His philosophical system offers new answers to problems of continuity through change; causation and the fundamental principles of the natural world; the nature of living beings; the soul, perceiving and thinking; and the goal of human life. Aristotle is considered one of the key figures in the early history of Western scientific thought.  In this course, we will approach Aristotle as a systematic thinker studying nature and human nature.

PHIL332 001 Environmental Philosophy (John Beatty)

We will pursue two central issues having to do with nature: what *value* does nature have, and what is it about *nature* that makes it valuable? These are philosophical questions that are also informed by ecology and environmental history.

PHIL362/ECON318 Term 1 History and Philosophy of Economics from Aristotle to Adam Smith (Margaret Schabas)

PHIL363/ECON319 Term 2 History and Philosophy of Economics from Ricardo to Keynes (Margaret Schabas)

PHIL364/HIST394 Darwin, Evolution and Modern Thought (John Beatty)

We will investigate the development of evolutionary thought, paying special attention to Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection. To broaden our perspective, we will consider not only the scientific but also the social, political, economic, religious, and philosophical sources of Darwin’s thought. We will also consider his influence in all these areas. The Darwinian revolution was an historical development – is an ongoing development – of wide-ranging significance.

RUSS 324A Term 2 Russian and Soviet Science Fiction (Katherine Bowers)

asynchronous online course

This course will explore the rich science fiction tradition in Russia and Eastern Europe. Earlier writers described visions of utopia and fantastic voyages to the moon, but in the twentieth century, which saw significant scientific and technological advances, the intensity of modern war and the pressure of the space race, and the ideological conflicts of the Cold War, science fiction came into its own. The class includes a mixture of text and film. We will explore the greatest science fiction of the twentieth century and delve into some emerging as the most important of the twenty-first century.


More to come soon