II TDS 150


Document Type

Course Change

Alternate Date

2007 - 2008


KEENE STATE COLLEGE 2007-2008 COURSE PROPOSAL FORM DATE: October 1, 2007 SPONSORING PROGRAM AND CHAIR: Department: Technology, Design & Safety Program: Technology Studies (sponsoring Social Science Interdisciplinary elective) Chair: Larry McDonald, 603-358-2976 lmcdonal@keene.edu PROPOSAL SPONSOR: Dr. Richard L. Foley (603-358-2893 rfoley@keene.edu) TITLE SUMMARY: II-TDS 150 Technology and Civilization (4 credits) PROPOSED ACTION: (Underline proposed changes ) Course Addition Number Change Title Change Credit Change Description Change Prerequisite Change Course Deletion Course Replacement Other: Four Credit Transition and listing as ISP- Interdisciplinary EXISTING (OLD) DATA: IDSS 150 Technology and Civilization. The development of technological literacy through an examination of the evolution, use and significance of technology; the social and environmental issues associated with industrialization; and the contemporary alternatives that affect the nature of the human condition. Occasionally PROPOSED (NEW) COURSE TITLE: II-TDS 150 Technology and Civilization. This course is a multidisciplinary exploration of technology that encourages students to assess the intended and unintended consequences of technical solutions through cultural, scientific, technological, economic, social and political lenses. Students will research self-selected topics to understand current issues and to select socially responsible solutions. 4-hour seminar. Spring PROPOSED (NEW) COURSE: COURSE OBJECTIVES: Upon completion of this course each student should be able to: • Describe in general terms the current scientific theory that outlines the evolution of the universe. • Define technology, social structures and systems. • Categorize technologies and key social structures/systems. • Describe the major epochs that mark the development of civilizations. • Identify intended and unintended consequences of technological solutions. • Identify and assess the critical issues facing their generation; eg: media disinformation, environmental degradation, climate change, “Peak Oil,” globalization, resource wars, the “War on Terrorism,” genetically-modified organisms, mal-distribution of wealth, control of space and sustainable solutions. LEARNING OUTCOMES: During this course, students will pursue specific outcomes related to the Integrated Studies program, the Interdisciplinary component and the Integrated Skills Sets. During their work in this course, students will: IS: Social/Environmental Engagement • identify elements of social and/or environmental structures: individual, group and system. • demonstrate a commitment to analyzing and/or solving social and/or environmental issues. • articulate the interrelations of natural and social-cultural systems, and the ways in which human agency can both degrade and sustain the environment IS: Global Issues • approach global issues from multiple perspectives in deriving solutions to potential conflicts. . • demonstrate a commitment to analyzing and/or solving global issues. • demonstrate knowledge about cultures, societies, religious worldviews and /or political/economic systems outside of the western context. Interdisciplinary • cross disciplinary boundaries to reveal new patterns and connections that reframe knowledge. • examine national and international issues through artistic, philosophical, cultural, scientific, technological, economic, social and political lenses. • analyze the assumptions and actions of society from multiple perspectives. Integrated Skills Sets Primary skills — focus on instruction in the course: Information Literacy • Identify general kinds of information available in the Mason library and at KSC • Incorporate information into written work and oral presentations • Develop research (project) using information appropriately Critical Thinking • Demonstrate the ability and willingness to approach a particular idea, problem, task or goal from multiple perspectives • Analyze and interpret evidence, conjectures, and alternative strategies related to a given ideas, problem, task or goal • Synthesize information, arguments, and perspectives in order to create new meaning, insight and understanding • Apply critical thinking to important ethical and societal issues and problems Reading • Identify contextual issues (author, date of publication, etc.) • Read with an awareness of purpose • Ask questions that lead to general understanding of material • Demonstrate an understanding and ability to relate discipline or interdisciplinary specific information to theories Writing • Organize, state and develop ideas clearly • Understand and value academic honesty • Incorporate research properly • Cultivate disciplinary and interdisciplinary expertise necessary to question sources, develop ideas, and offer interpretations • Develop complex positions or arguments through writing Secondary skills — supportive of course objectives, but not primary instructional areas: Creative Thinking • Use novel ideas, perspectives, or solutions when engaging in a problem, task or goal • Engage a problem, task or goal with sustained effort over a period of time • Express personal ideas, points of view, or feelings and bring those to a product • Invent and re-apply ideas • Solve unstructured problems Critical Dialogue • Organize what one wishes to convey • Speak with purpose when conveying thoughts/ideas • Demonstrate thoroughness of research and effective preparation in making formal presentation • Engage the listener through verbal and non-verbal behaviors • Practice mental engagement with the speaker in order to formulate thoughtful questions based on conversation and presentations Technological Fluency • Use Internet search techniques and engines with discrimination to find resources and information • Use appropriate presentation software to deliver a formal presentation • Use an information management program (e-portfolio or institutional repository) to organize, interpret and convey ideas • Employ computer media (visual images, sound, graphical displays, etc.) as appropriate in academic work RATIONALE: As a Professor in Technology Design and Safety, I previously had been teaching the social science interdisciplinary course IDSS 150 Technology and Civilization on a regular basis since 2000. Political Science Professor Chuck Weed and I developed and team-taught the pilot course that fall. We based our collaboration on our work together at an Antioch Graduate School seminar for faculty in higher education offered earlier that summer. The weeklong experience was designed to bring faculty from different disciplines together to design interdisciplinary courses. Chuck and I completely overhauled an existing interdisciplinary course that I had taught intermittently in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s when it was listed under the “Liberal Studies” prefix as LS 205 Technology and Civilization. Dr. Robert Andrews developed the original course in the early 1980’s. We had a great time working with the first group of students that fall, and we found ourselves endlessly amending the original challenges (individual and group student assignments), editing content and fine-tuning assessment tools. Unfortunately, department/discipline demands prevented us from repeating our experiment, but fortunately, student feedback and the match of the course content with the needs of TDS majors in Architecture, Technology (Product Design & Development) and Safety encouraged me to offer IDSS 150 at least once a semester. The range of student research in IDSS 150 over the previous seven years reinforced my intuition that II-TDS 150 would most appropriately be offered as an ISP-Interdisciplinary course as opposed to a Perspectives offering. I have found that the subject content of IDSS 150 had outstripped its social science parameters as students assessed the impact of technical solutions from a wide range of perspectives and their research projects required them to explore solutions based on a multiple of disciplines from the arts and humanities and the from the “hard sciences” — from biology to physics and chemistry. [refer to attached Appendix: Rationale, Student Outcomes II, Service Learning, Assessment and Texts for more background] RESOURCES: No additional staffing, facilities, and/or equipment will be required to move this course to the four-credit model. Dr. Foley has been working with the library faculty to expand reading material and media resources to meet the needs of students in TDS 140, TDS 160 and IDSS 150. While delivering ITW courses (pilots in the fall 2006 and spring 2007 and three sections fall 2007), Dr. Foley and librarian Judy Hildebrandt have collaborated on developing a formal strategy to improve student research using the library’s resources. Their efforts should position Dr. Foley to assist II-TDS 150 TechCiv students in maximizing the library’s resources. ADVISORY OPINIONS: No degree programs will be affected by this course change since II-TDS 150 would serve as an Interdisciplinary elective under the new Integrative Studies program.


Senate Curriculum Committee




Keene State College

II TDS 150