Science, Technology & Society

Science, Technology & Society

Why study Science, Technology and Society?
Science and technology are an integral part of all social institutions. Schools test children "scientifically", assigning them to classes based on "scientific" criteria, and teach employing ever developing computer and information technologies. Law courts have become increasingly dependant on expert witnesses from all scientific domains, striving to establish the "truth" behind the evidence. 
Religious leaders struggle to adapt to the latest scientific findings, which often contradicts traditional religious philosophies and edicts. Governments depend on scientists to help construct policy, while simultaneously interfering with their research priorities and funding. The significance of technology and science in our society manifests itself in art, as well in: movies (which depend on computers and technologies for special effects, photography, editing and sound), electronic music, science fiction, and many more. 

Why study in BIU's Science, Technology and Society Program? 

Because of the multidisciplinary perspective
The Program in Science, Technology and Society at Bar-Ilan invites you to partake in an intellectual adventure and discover new academic frontiers. Studies in the Program require literacy in both scientific and humanities subjects, as well as creativity, and incorporate a variety of different disciplines: history, philosophy, sociology, anthropology, literary criticism, cultural analysis, and exact sciences.  

Students of the Program will acquire tools essential for the understanding of technologies, sciences and medicine from a broad, critical perspective. Our critical academic approach celebrates current scientific and technological achievements, while at the same time considering the complex, multifaceted and transformative manners in which science, technology and society have developed historically and influence each other philosophically. 

Because of the Program's exclusivity
Bar-Ilan's Graduate Program in Science, Technology and Society is unique in Israeli academia. Here historians, philosophers, sociologists and scientists study the various interfaces and reciprocal influences of science, technology and society on a wide range of spectrums – philosophical, ethical, educational, political, scientific and artistic. Students in the Program hail from many different disciplines: computer sciences, literature, physics, history, biology, sociology, architecture, archaeology, philosophy, design, biotechnology, high-tech, and more.  

Because of the versatile curriculum
The courses on offer in the Program reflect its multidisciplinary range: ancient philosophy of science; Jewish, Christian and Islamic science in the Middle Ages; history of modern biology; history of the computer and computation, sociology of the internet; the history of medicine; women in science; politics and public policy in the digital age; Darwinism; science technology and society, altruism; art and science; knowledge and the state, and much more.  

Because of the intriguing theoretical research…
Among other things, faculty and students of the Program investigate questions such as: What does scientific rationality mean? Is there such a thing as scientific “truth”? What is the meaning of the words "nature" and "natural" in a world that increasingly relies on technologically-driven human empowerment and enhancement? How does the shift to online communication affect globalization, education and social realities? What is the role of esthetics in science and technology? How do environmental philosophies correspond and interact with religious thought? How have biological and social thought impacted upon each other? How do veiled ideologies infiltrate the core of scientific theories? And what lessons does history hold with regard to such questions? 

…and the practical science
Alongside the theoretical questions, the study of science and technology raises practical and ethical conundrums: Should scientists avoid human cloning at all costs? Are biological weapons legitimate? Should we stock seeds and crops? Should we pursue technologies that are harmful to the environment? Does "virtual" communication alter the meaning and understanding of the individual, the community, and nationality? What are the social repercussions of the theory of evolution, and of modern genetics? What are the political effects of the digital age? What are the environmental consequences of commercialized science? What role should "experts" play in society? And how can we inform ourselves about all such issues by looking into the past, while imagining the future?  

Students of the Program can obtain an MA or PhD in one of three different tracks: the MA with thesis track, the combined MA-PhD track, and the direct PhD track.

For more information about the Graduate Program in Science, Technology and Society, refer to the Program's website.
Last modified: 18/10/2015