COVID-19 Intro STS syllabus updates

In light of the rapid updates many university instructors are making to their courses to move to remote/online instruction, I thought I would share my own updates here.

I have updated and streamlined content while mostly hewing to the weekly topical themes. I’ve included the discussion board tasks I will assign students below, too. In addition, each week I will have an approximately 15 minute video introducing the topic and key STS points, likely with accompanying slides, for students. I have emphasized asynchronous work and assignments. I have weekly office hours Zoom times by appointment, and 2 days with highly suggested real-time review sessions. Plus, I read online discussions as they go, and post redirections and encouragements as warranted.

In person, this class tends to include lectures as well as small group discussions and some group preparation for certain sessions. For the original syllabus (slightly modified this semester, but largely the same in scope and design), please go here.

Good luck, everyone!!

Week 9: Technology and Labor

Thursday, March 26 

  • 9-10 am EST: Midterm review

Short Assignment 2 – Infrastructure Walk due 9 am Thursday via Classes

Week 10: Digital Sociology

Week 11: Disaster Capitalism

Week 12: Cyborgs

  • Donna Haraway – A Manifesto for Cyborgs [PDF]
  • Manfred Clynes and Nathan Kline – Cyborgs and Space [PDF]
  • WATCH: Neil Harbisson – I Listen to Color
  • WATCH: Moon Ribas – Earthbeat
  • Disability Visibility Podcast – Episode 66: Cyborgs, featuring Ashley Shew and Jillian Weise [
  • TASK: In pairs (assigned), write a 350-500 word summary of ONE of the following aspects of cyborgs as explained by Donna Haraway in A Manifesto for Cyborgs.
  • TASK: Describe a “cyborg technology” you have used or are interested in. It can be real or fictional. In a couple sentences each, consider the following:
    • How does it (or would it) alter or expand your bodily experience if you were to use it?
    • Who uses it? Who could use it? Is that fair?
    • What would be its effects on society if its use was widespread?

Assignment 3 – Controversy Analysis due 9 am Thursday via Classes

Week 13: Medicine and Ethics

Week 14: Race and Science

Week 15: Health Activism // Wrap Up

Thursday, May 7

  • Final Exam Review

Assignment 4 – Public Health Editorial due 9 am Thursday via Classes

Final exam will be take-home, open book and open note. Date and time TBD pending university final exam schedule.

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