SCIENCE IN SOCIETY
Credit points: 15
This subject introduces students to the nature of science in the context of current debates about Science in Society. Students will explore what science is, how it works and how science and society interrelate. SCI1SIS provides opportunities to discuss and debate global and local socio-scientific issues. Students will be presented with a diversity of values and viewpoints on these issues and will be guided to develop the necessary skills to communicate effectively with people holding a range of views. Students will work in groups on one socio-scientific issue and apply their knowledge to evaluate the arguments, evidence and misconceptions about science presented as part of debate about the issue. This subject addresses La Trobe's Global Citizenship Essential. Global Citizenship entails a deep appreciation of how we live in an interconnected world, being able to recognize the global context of concepts, act across cultures and boundaries, and work with diverse communities - now and in the future.
SchoolSchool of Life Sciences
Subject Co-ordinatorMartin Steinbauer
Available to Study Abroad StudentsYes
Subject year levelYear Level 1 - UG
Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes
01. Identify, summarise and evaluate ethical, political, economic, social or scientific arguments around a current socio-scientific issue using media sources
- Students are presented with a series of socio-scientific case studies (e.g. genetically modified foods, child vaccination, wind turbines, brumby culling). They learn some of the basic science associated with each case study and also explore aspects of the nature of science related to the issues. Students use media sources (newspapers, websites, etc.) to identify, classify and evaluate a range of arguments presented in support or opposition to different positions around a chosen socio-scientific issue.
02. Apply knowledge of: 1. the nature of science (its boundaries, methods, tools and dissemination practices) and 2. some foundational scientific concepts to explore and evaluate a chosen current socio-scientific issue.
- Students prepare, in a group of 3, an audio visual document (i.e. a movie) of approximately 15 minutes in duration documenting the issue. The movie should include the basic science, the range of issues and interviews with people representing a range of views on the issue.
03. Identify and evaluate a range of misconceptions about science in the context of a socio-scientific issue
- Students write an individual report of approximately 1000 words analysing a statement of position about their chosen socio-scientific issue. The statement includes various misconceptions about the nature of science and arguments presented in the statement are based on factual inaccuracies and/or contain logical fallacies. Students use basic scientific knowledge + a knowledge of the nature of science to write a critical response to the statement.
04. Evaluate their performance as a member of a team using a reflective journal.
- Throughout the video project, students will record their reflections on their performance as a member of the team.
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Melbourne, 2019, Semester 2, Blended
Maximum enrolment sizeN/A
Subject Instance Co-ordinatorMartin Steinbauer
One 2.0 hours directed reading per week on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via face-to-face.
"One two-hour online self study module per week."
One 1.0 hours lecture per week on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 31 and delivered via face-to-face.
One 2.0 hours seminar per week on weekdays during the day from week 31 to week 43 and delivered via face-to-face.
|One Argument Analysis (500 word equiv)||10||01|
|One group 15-minute movie documentary (700 word equiv)||25||01, 02, 03, 04|
|One individual essay (1000 word equiv)||20||01, 02, 03|
|Online learning activities (6 quizzes 50 word equiv each, 300 words equiv total)||30||01, 02, 03, 04|
|Two 750 word reflective reports (1500 words total)||15||02|