Society & Technology CollegeExplore the complex, two-way relationship between technology and society. Learn how people - as individuals and as members of groups, organizations, and society as a whole - influence the development of science and technology as well as the consequences of technology for family, work, health and community. Read and reflect about topics that are not only interesting to talk about with friends but - given the importance of technology to all walks of life these days - could also put you on a promising career path that may not directly involve science or engineering. 

RESC 098 21 CRN: 17162
Technology Equals Progress

Prof. Sally Koutsoliotas, Physics & Astronomy

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Engineering Social Science, Writing Level 1

Technology is often, unquestioningly, perceived as a measure of the advancement of a society. The advantages that it provides, from the eradication of diseases to the capabilities of mobile communication, cause us to embrace technology. It is seen as a powerful tool for solving problems and alleviating the chores of regular routines. But does technological advancement ensure universal benefits? Every new development is a consequence of choices made by the members of a society. The goal of this course is to explore the inextricable connection between new technologies and the underlying values of the society developing them. We will examine current and historical examples to better appreciate the role of each.

RESC 098 22 CRN: 16522
The Grand Challenges

Prof. Mike Toole, Civil & Environmental Engineering

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Engineering Social Science, Writing Level 1

Are you looking to prepare yourself to tackle really big and important issues? "The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) has identified 14 Grand Challenges facing all people that require both technical solutions and non-technical perspectives. "Examples include making solar energy economical, providing access to clean water, reverse engineering the brain, and securing cyberspace." In this foundation seminar we will examine some of the 14 Grand Challenges, including the knowledge and research methods from the natural sciences, social sciences and all fields of engineering required to make progress to solving them. "This seminar is NOT an engineering course, although we will occasionally discuss scientific or engineering principles." We will come to understand the central roles that microeconomics, organizational management, the diffusion of innovations and public policy play in solving many of humanity's greatest challenges. "We will learn through reading both academic-oriented and popular press literature, classroom discussion, an occasional video, short writing exercises and a longer report on a relevant topic of the student's choice.

RESC 098 23 CRN: 15817
The Future is Now

Prof. Jan Knoedler, Economics

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Engineering Social Science, Writing Level 1

Humans have always been curious about the future. We are constantly asking ourselves, "what will happen tomorrow, next week, or a century from now?" In this foundation seminar, we will ask ourselves: What can we know about the future? Should we genetically engineer the perfect baby? Is genetically modified food really food? Is the internet robbing us of our privacy? Are our digital devices helping or hindering our social connections to one another? What is the future of the mind? This course is NOT an engineering course: we will be concerned with the ways in which society is impacted by technology and how society directs technological change. In "The Future is Now," we will ask and answer ethical questions relating to technologies from genetic engineering to surveillance technologies to food production to social networking, among others.

RESC 098 24 CRN: 17553
Say It With Statistics

Prof. Pam Gorkin, Mathematics

Fulfills the Following Requirements:
Writing Level 1

If someone tells you that a particular brand of yogurt has 20% fewer calories, is your immediate reaction "20% fewer calories than what?" If someone tells you that researchers have discovered that drinking full fat milk is good for you, do you wonder about the data they used to get to this conclusion? If so, this course is for you.

We will choose controversial issues like: "Does the voting process for the Baseball Hall of Fame need to be changed? Should parents 'bribe' their kids? Should police be required to wear cameras? Should everyone be a vegetarian? Should the death penalty be legal?" And we'll consider some non-controversial topics like, "Is math boring and useless?" (The answer is "no.")

All arguments will be made with and supported by mathematics and statistics. We'll cover basic logic and statistics, learn how to present our data numerically and visually, how to evaluate the data, what to check before accepting someone else's argument, how to tell a strong argument from a weak one, and how to argue more effectively.

Society & Technology College Student Staff


Mark Daley, Junior Fellow

Mark Daley

Hometown: Mendham, NJ
Major: Biomedical Engineering
Contact: mcd025@bucknell.edu

"The Society and Technology Residential College is a great program because it places you in an environment with people who are equally interested in how technology is changing the world. Sharing this passion, as well as sharing a class and living together, gave me the opportunity to make some of my closest friends soon after moving into my dorm. Undoubtedly, joining SoTech has greatly improved my First-year experience and will continue to enhance the rest of my time at Bucknell."

Nicholas Frediani, Junior Fellow

Nicholas Frediani

Hometown: Cranford, NJ
Major: Mechanical Engineering
Contact: nmf007@bucknell.edu

"Being a part of the Society and Technology Residential College has been a very rewarding experience. It enables you to build a close group of friends with a common interest who all live right next to each other, giving way to interesting conversations and activities on the hall and on trips. Residential colleges help stimulate a closer bond on freshmen halls early in the year through classes, trips, and common interests, and help make the transition to Bucknell more fun."

Emily Kuzoian, Junior Fellow

Emily Kuzoian

Hometown: West Hartford, CT
Major: Chemistry
Contact: eak017@bucknell.edu

"Becoming a member of the Society and Technology Residential College was without a doubt the best decision for me coming to college. Not only was the class extremely interesting,but I spent my entire freshmen year with really interesting people who had the same academic goals in mind. I honestly wouldn't change a thing. I have met some of the best people here in Smith and I look forward to staying close with them next year."

Madeline Milligan, Resident Fellow

Madeline Milligan

Hometown: Hillsborough, CA
Major: Chemical Engineering
Contact: mpm020@bucknell.edu

"The best part of the Res. College program is the people. Every student I met in the program was outgoing and eager to get involved in every campus activity, club, and event. I had something in common with almost every resident on my hall, and living with students with common interests made the transition to college a lot easier. I had a built-in set of friends before orientation even ended!"

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