STV100 Society, Technology and Values: Introduction

1 Introduction

1.1 Calendar description

Society, Technology and Values: Introduction

This course examines the interaction of the technologies developed by a culture with the values and social organization of that culture. The course exposes students to various definitions of society, technology and values, and it presents alternative views about how the three interact. These views are then applied to a number of spheres of influence, including patterns of employment and the role of work; medicine and health; polity and economy; sustainable development and the environment.

Credit wight: 0.5

Pre-requisite: None

1.2 Location and Time

Lectures: RCH 309, Tuesday 7-9pm
Tutorials: RCH 207 & 309, Tuesday 9-10pm

1.3 Instructor

Dr. Scott Campbell
E3 3174, Ext. 35635

Office Hours: Tuesday 1-3

1.4 Teaching Assistant

Karl Griffiths-Fulton

Office Hours: Wednesday 3-4 (E3 rm: 3174)

2 Course Details

2.1 Website

Use UW-ACE for access to lecture slides, assignment drop boxes, the reading list, and additional resources. There is also a discussion forum.

2.2 Policies

Attendance will be recorded in the tutorials and will be considered part of your participation grade. It is your responsibility to contact the instructor or your TA ahead of time if you are sick.

Late assignments will be penalized 1% from your final overall grade per day, to a maximum of the assignment value. Consideration will be granted if you contact the instructor before the due date. Unless otherwise noted, all assignments are due before 6pm on the due date.

Plagiarism, cheating, copying and other forms of intellectual dishonesty will be punished to the fullest extent of the appropriate University of Waterloo Student Academic Discipline Policies (see The penalties can be quite severe and ignorance is rarely a good excuse.

Exceptions will require documentation and, if wherever possible, considerable warning.

Regrading of assignments will require written justification; the entire assignment or test will be regraded.

Excessive Disruptions that affect other students will not be tolerated.

Feedback Anonymous course feedback is available at all times through UW-ACE.

2.3 Readings

In the UW bookshop you will find the STV100 reader for $29.49. Links to other required and supplementary readings will be provided on UW-ACE in the "Readings" folder.

Also in the "Readings" folder, you will find the Reading List, with the schedule of readings and a series of related questions. You are responsible for reading the assigned material before each tutorial and completing the questions provided so as to prepare for the tutorials and, ultimately, the tests.

2.4 Tutorials

Part of the goal for this course is for you to share your responses to the lecture and reading material and learn from other students. That is, I want you to speak up if you agree or disagree with the readings or the instructor, or if you have a relevant personal or professional story to share.

To that end, the class will be divided into tutorial sections of approximately 20 students, to be led by the instructor and the TA. Each section will meet four times, every other week at about 9pm, after the lectures, as indicated on the schedule.

You are responsible for completing the readings since your last tutorial, considering the related questions, preparing your own discussion notes, and most important, being ready to talk. Noisy eating and laptop computers will be discouraged during the tutorials unless absolutely necessary, as neither is conducive to good discussions.

2.5 Assignments and Grading

There are two different types of written assignments.

Question-and-answers, Due 15 October and 26 November, 10% total At least 30 hours prior to each midterm (by 1pm the day before), you must submit to the instructor a sample short essay question and appropriate answer (less than 300 words). Each submission will be worth 5%. In both cases, at least one submission, as determined by the instructor, will be included on the mid-term as one of the questions. NOTE: Late submissions will be graded according, with a penalty, but will not be considered for the test.

Short written assignments, 9 October and 13 November, 30% total Two short essays will be assigned. Each will be worth 15%. More details will be available on UW-ACE (including sample questions) and in-class in advance of each lecture.

These written assignments must be submitted electronically by 6pm on the due date. Documents should be 12-point, Times Roman font, 1" margins, and double-spaced. This corresponds roughly with 250 words per page. Always include your name, student ID, date, and a title. References and a bibliography should be consistent and employ a known citation style (MLA, Chicago Manual of Style, etc).

Two mid-terms, 16 October and 27 November, 25% each There will be two in-class mid-term tests, worth 25% each. Each will be two hours, a mix of short answer and short essays, closed book, and non-accumulative. More details will be available in class as we near each test.

Participation, 10% Your tutorial participation and attendance will be assessed. That is, you are expected to show up and contribute on a regular basis by doing the assigned readings ahead of time, preparing notes, and actively taking part in the discussions.

2.6 Writing Assistance

UW Counselling services offers series of Writing Workshops every fall. See

The English Language Proficiency Program also offers help for students who need extra assistance. See

2.7 Schedule

DateEvent or DeadlineLecture No.Tutorial Section
Sept. 110: Welcome
Sept. 181: Introduction1,2
Sept. 252: Technology & Work3,4
Oct. 23: Technological Diffusion1,2
Oct. 8Thanksgiving (UW closed)
Oct. 9Writing Assignment 1 Due4: Technologies of Power + Review3,4
Oct. 15Q&A for Test 1 Due
Oct. 16Mid-term test, in class
Oct. 235: Information Technology1,2
Oct. 306: Bio-tech & Cybernetics3,4
Nov. 67: Obsolescence & Waste1,2
Nov. 13Writing Assignment 2 Due8: Design & Failure3,4
Nov. 209: Progress + Review
Nov. 26Q&A for Test 2 Due
Nov. 27Final test, in class

See for more information regarding university dates for drop deadlines and related penalties.

Author: Scott Campbell <>

Date: 2007/09/12 10:00:36 AM