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Teaching social impact of technology via writing

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1 Author(s)
Tsang, E. ; Dept. of Mech. Eng., Univ. of South Alabama, Mobile, AL, USA

Students of the 1990s are probably more sophisticated about environmental issues than undergraduates of previous decades, since a number of states (including Alabama, Florida, Wisconsin and New Jersey) have adopted an environmental education curriculum in K-12. Another reason for the including of social impact of technology into the engineering curriculum is that engineering students also make decisions concerning technology and the environment as citizens. An informed public is vital to the functioning of a democratic society. What kind of understanding should engineering undergraduates have concerning "social" impact of technology? This paper proposes several ideas for such an education, and a curriculum module to teach social impact of technology via writing. For schools with Writing Across the Curriculum, writing is an effective medium to teach social impact of technology, because it is an excellent pedagogical tool and also because local examples can normally be found to illustrate the interaction of technology, society, and values in a variety of engineering courses

Published in:

Frontiers in Education Conference, 1994. Twenty-fourth Annual Conference. Proceedings

Date of Conference:

2-6 Nov 1994