We use case studies to explore the origins of science as practiced and understood in our culture today. We discuss the historical roots and cultural contexts of ideas, methods and institutional structures, as well as of the public role and image of science.
We aim to develop analytical thinking skills, not merely knowledge of content. We focus especially on understanding and interpreting the contexts shaping science, in part through historical simulations. We also consider the role of histories in shaping public understanding of science and nature of science.
The course is structured on the principle that each student takes responsibility for his or her own learning, becomes engaged in the material, and chooses, to some degree, what s/he will learn.
[ You may also wish to consider the philosophy guiding the course design, written from an instructional perspective. ]