GENS 207 | Course Introduction and Application Information

Course Name
Scientific Thinking and Society
Code
Semester
Theory
(hour/week)
Application/Lab
(hour/week)
Local Credits
ECTS
GENS 207
Fall/Spring
3
0
3
4

Prerequisites
None
Course Language
English
Course Type
Service Course
Course Level
First Cycle
Course Coordinator
Course Lecturer(s)
Assistant(s) -
Course Objectives The aim of this course is to help the students to develop a critical perspective about science and its relationship with society. In the first part of the course, the period during which modern science was born will be discussed in a broader fashion. In the second part, the focus will be on a series of issues taken from more recent periods of history of science. This course is for students that are interested in popular science.
Learning Outcomes The students who succeeded in this course;
  • to grasp science as a social activity and can discuss how it is related with the society that generates it
  • can formulate an opinion on why modern science was born in Europe in 17th century, and not in another place and time
  • express in what ways scientists’ understanding of the World and the Universe has changed after the “Scientific Revolution”
  • formulate an opinion on why modern science was born in Europe in 17th century, and not in another place and time
  • to formulate an opinion on why modern science was born in Europe in 17th century, and not in another place and time
  • to express in what ways scientists’ understanding of the World and the Universe has changed after the “Scientific Revolution”
  • to recognize the examples of pseudoscience and can understand why they are qualified as such
  • to exemplify the relationship between science and social inequality
Course Content Scientific method, practical guide to detect pseudoscience, GM food and biological evolutionary theory debate in Turkey and in the world

 



Course Category

Core Courses
Major Area Courses
Supportive Courses
Media and Management Skills Courses
Transferable Skill Courses

 

WEEKLY SUBJECTS AND RELATED PREPARATION STUDIES

Week Subjects Related Preparation
1 Introduction; presentation of the course and related questions. Examination of course syllabus.
2 Why there is so much difference between production capabilities (including science) of different societies? Diamond, J. (1997), Guns, Gems and Steel, Prologue: “Yali’s Question” & Chapter 3 “Collusion at Cajamarca”.
3 Cosmological thought before Copernicus, predecessors of Copernicus, Copernicus and the Church. Gribbin, J. (2002), Science: A History Chapter 1, “Renaissance Men”
4 Europe in the 16th century, Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler. Gribbin, J. (2002), Science: A History Chapter 2, “The Last Mystics”
5 First Scientists: Galileo and others. Gribbin, J. (2002), Science: A History Chapter 3, “The First Scientists”
6 René Descartes, Christiaan Huygens, Robert Boyle and first steps of science. Gribbin, J. (2002), Science: A History Chapter 4, “Renaissance Men”
7 Isaac Newton, Robert Hook and Edmond Halley. Gribbin, J. (2002) Science: A History Chapter 5, “Newtonian Revolution”
8 Midterm Exam Contents of Week 1-7
9 Theory of evolution and its adversaries. From Darwin’s time to the present. Hellman, H. (1998), Great Feuds in Science, Chapter 5 "Darwin's Bulldog versus Soapy Sam"
10 An example to the mistakes within the boundaries of science: Lord Kelvin’s calculation of Earth’s age. Hellman, H. (1998) Great Feuds in Science, Chapter 6 " Lord Kelvin versus Geologists and Biologists"
11 Examples of pseudoscience: Homeopathy and others. The boundaries of science, differences between mistakes and fraud. Goldacre, B. (2008), Bad Science, Chapter 4 “Homeopathy”
12 Science and Social Inequality I: Race and racism Gould, S. J. (1977) Ever Since Darwin, Chapter 27 "Racism and Recapitulation"
13 Science and Social Inequality II: Gender Hellman, H. (2001) Great Feuds in Medicine, Chapter 9 “Franklin versus Wilkins”
14 Summary and Discussion I Lecture notes
15 Summary and Discussion II Lecture notes
16 Final examination Contents of weeks 1-15

 

Course Textbooks

Recent popular and scientific literature 

References

 

EVALUATION SYSTEM

Semester Requirements Number Percentage
Participation
1
10
Laboratory / Application
Field Work
Quizzes / Studio Critiques
Homework / Assignments
Presentation / Jury
Project
Seminar / Workshop
Portfolios
Midterms / Oral Exams
1
40
Final / Oral Exam
1
30
Total

Contribution of Semester Work to Final Grade
5
70
Contribution of Final Work to Final Grade
1
30
Total

ECTS / WORKLOAD TABLE

Activities Number Duration (Hours) Workload
Course Hours
Including exam week: 16 x total hours
16
3
48
Laboratory / Application Hours
Including exam week: 16 x total hours
16
Study Hours Out of Class
16
3
Field Work
Quizzes / Studio Critiques
Homework / Assignments
Presentation / Jury
Project
Seminar / Workshop
Portfolios
Midterms / Oral Exams
1
29
Final / Oral Exam
1
35
    Total
160

 

COURSE LEARNING OUTCOMES AND PROGRAM QUALIFICATIONS RELATIONSHIP

#
Program Qualifications / Outcomes
* Level of Contribution
1
2
3
4
5
1 To be able to critically discuss and interpret the theories, concepts and ideas that form the basis of media and communication discipline.
2 To have the fundamental knowledge and ability to use the technical equipment and software programs required by the mediaproduction process.
3 To be able to use the acquired theoretical knowledge in practice.
4 To be able to critically interpret theoretical debates concerning the relations between the forms, agents, and factors that play a role in the field of media and communication.
5 To be able to critically discuss and draw on theories, concepts and ideas that form the basis of other disciplines complementing the field of media and communication studies.
6 To be informed about national, regional, and global issues and problems; to be able to generate problemsolving methods depending on the quality of evidence and research, and to acquire the ability to report those methods to the public.
7 To be able to gather, scrutinize and use with scientific methods the necessary data to for the processes of production and distribution.
8 To be able to use and develop the acquired knowledge and skills in a lifelong process towards personal and social goals.
9 To be able to follow developments in new technologies of media and communication, as well as new methods of production, new media industries, and new theories; and to be able to communicate with international colleagues in a foreign language. (“European Language Portfolio Global Scale,” Level B1)
10 To be able to use a second foreign language at the intermediate level.
11 To be able to use computer software required by the discipline and to possess advancedlevel computing and IT skills. (“European Computer Driving Licence”, Advanced Level)

*1 Lowest, 2 Low, 3 Average, 4 High, 5 Highest