Nature of Science & Technology Education
Science and technology is a topic that encompasses science, technology, and the interactions between the two. Science is a systematic enterprise that builds and organizes knowledge in the form of explanations and predictions about nature and the universe. In this extract from his presidential address to the British Association, delivered on August 30, Lord Jackson discusses the impact of the progress of science on. One might think that this is a defensible, and sufficiently emancipatory claim about the relation between scientific and technological knowledge. Yet many.
Privatization can be a way to deal with the tragedy of the commons. However, Kahrl suggests that the privatization of beaches on Long Islandin an attempt to combat overuse of Long Island beaches, made the residents of Long Island more susceptible to flood damage from Hurricane Sandy. The privatization of these beaches took away from the protection offered by the natural landscape.
Tidal lands that offer natural protection were drained and developed. This attempt to combat the tragedy of the commons by privatization was counter-productive. Privatization actually destroyed the public good of natural protection from the landscape. Modernity represents the political and social structures of the society, the sum of interpersonal discourse, and ultimately a snapshot of society's direction at a point in time.
Unfortunately conventional modernity is incapable of modeling alternative directions for further growth within our society. Also, this concept is ineffective at analyzing similar but unique modern societies such as those found in the diverse cultures of the developing world. Problems can be summarized into two elements: Previously, modernity carried a connotation of the current state of being modern, and its evolution through European colonialism.
The process of becoming "modern" is believed to occur in a linear, pre-determined way, and is seen by Philip Brey as a way of to interpret and evaluate social and cultural formations. This thought ties in with modernization theorythe thought that societies progress from "pre-modern" to "modern" societies.
Within the field of science and technology, there are two main lenses with which to view modernity. The first is as a way for society to quantify what it wants to move towards. In effect, we can discuss the notion of "alternative modernity" as described by Andrew Feenberg and which of these we would like to move towards.
Alternatively, modernity can be used to analyze the differences in interactions between cultures and individuals. From this perspective, alternative modernities exist simultaneously, based on differing cultural and societal expectations of how a society or an individual within society should function. Because of different types of interactions across different cultures, each culture will have a different modernity.
Pace of innovation[ edit ] See also: Pace of innovation Pace of Innovation is the speed at which technological innovation or advancement is occurring, with the most apparent instances being too slow or too rapid. Both these rates of innovation are extreme and therefore have effects on the people that get to use this technology.
No innovation without representation[ edit ] The neutrality of this section is disputed. Relevant discussion may be found on the talk page. Please do not remove this message until conditions to do so are met. August Main article: No innovation without representation "No innovation without representation" is a democratic ideal of ensuring that everyone involved gets a chance to be represented fairly in technological developments.
Langdon Winner states that groups and social interests likely to be affected by a particular kind of technological change ought to be represented at an early stage in defining exactly what that technology will be. It is the idea that relevant parties have a say in technological developments and are not left in the dark. Privileged positions of business and science The privileged positions of business and science refer to the unique authority that persons in these areas hold in economic, political, and technosocial affairs.
Businesses have strong decision-making abilities in the function of society, essentially choosing what technological innovations to develop. Scientists and technologists have valuable knowledge, ability to pursue the technological innovations they want. They proceed largely without public scrutiny and as if they had the consent of those potentially affected by their discoveries and creations. Legacy thinking[ edit ] Legacy thinking is defined as an inherited method of thinking imposed from an external source without objection by the individual, because it is already widely accepted by society.
Legacy thinking can impair the ability to drive technology for the betterment of society by blinding people to innovations that do not fit into their accepted model of how society works. By accepting ideas without questioning them, people often see all solutions that contradict these accepted ideas as impossible or impractical.
Legacy thinking tends to advantage the wealthy, who have the means to project their ideas on the public. It may be used by the wealthy as a vehicle to drive technology in their favor rather than for the greater good. Examining the role of citizen participation and representation in politics provides an excellent example of legacy thinking in society. The belief that one can spend money freely to gain influence has been popularized, leading to public acceptance of corporate lobbying.
As a result, a self-established role in politics has been cemented where the public does not exercise the power ensured to them by the Constitution to the fullest extent. This can become a barrier to political progress as corporations who have the capital to spend have the potential to wield great influence over policy. Additionally, an examination of net neutrality functions as a separate example of legacy thinking. Starting with dial-upthe internet has always been viewed as a private luxury good.
They use it in and out of life every day.
Since the American public is so dependent upon internet there is little for them to do. Legacy thinking has kept this pattern on track despite growing movements arguing that the internet should be considered a utility. Legacy thinking prevents progress because it was widely accepted by others before us through advertising that the internet is a luxury and not a utility. Due to pressure from grassroots movements the Federal Communications Commission FCC has redefined the requirements for broadband and internet in general as a utility.
Chapter 3: The Nature of Technology
To recognise that confidence in correlational links is dependent on the size of the sample and its selection. Events with very low frequency are particularly difficult to explain causally. To recognise that eliminating causal factors for a correlational link is highly problematic. Rather that much scientific work relies on the identification of plausible mechanism between factors which are correlated.
To have a knowledge of different ways of expressing risk and an awareness of the uncertainties associated with risk measurement. That risk assessment is central to many of the decisions raised by science in contemporary society.
To recognise that whilst the application of science and technology has made substantial contributions to the quality of life of many people, there has been a set of unintended outcomes as well. That technology draws on science in seeking solutions to human problems.
However, a distinction should be drawn between what can be done and what should be done.
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Decisions about technical applications are subject, therefore, to a host of considerations such as technical feasibility, economic cost, environmental impact and ethical considerations.
That certain groups or individuals may hold views based on deeply held religious or political commitments and that the tensions between conflicting views must be recognised and addressed in considering any issue. Nature of Technology Humans likely have been carrying out technological problem solving at least as long as they have been developing science ideas about nature.
Early humans had to develop ways to protect themselves from the elements and from other living things, for example, likely before they thought about how phenomena — such as fire — worked. Indeed, in the history of technology, many inventions — such as those based on steam power e.
Despite the longer history of technology design, however, considerably more research has been conducted into the nature of science than on the nature of technology NoT. Nevertheless, some perspectives about NoT that seem reasonable include: Some of these are provided through the links at: This makes the study of NoT a complex, often changing and situational phenomenon. Given associations among NoST, STSE and Skills Education, there are aspects of technology that should be considered in terms of its relationship to science and science inquiry, on the one hand, and to societies and environments, on the other hand.
Considerations about relationships between fields of science and technology are discussed below, while the role of technology in STSE and Skills Education are discussed elsewhere; i. In popular culture, science often gets credit for various inventions — which suggests that science often is mistaken for technology.
People talk about 'computer science,' for example, when they really are referring to its hardware and software. Also, science often is portrayed in schools as a necessary precursor for technological innovation — by sequencing units in science courses from abstract e. Such a portrayal does not always reflect the history of science and technology. Technology often operates independently from science and is not, therefore, always an 'applied science.
This, in turn, tends to favour socio-culturally advantaged students, compromising the scientific literacy of most other students Bencze, b. For these and other reasons, many educators are recommending that science and technology be integrated or, at least, interrelated in schools e.
A good example of an integrated science and technology curriculum in theory, at least is that for elementary schools in Ontario MoET, At the same time, it should be pointed out that this analysis assumes significant differences between two fields that sometimes work together, may depend somewhat on one another or may operate quite separately.
Indeed, in addition to differences noted by Gardnerpeople identifying themselves as 'scientists' and 'technologists' often have different goals; with 'scientists' generally wanting to document and explain what exists, while 'technologists' want to change what exists Schauble et al. These goals often involve cause-effect relationships in different ways — goals that are elaborated Sci.
Based on constructivist learning theoryfor example, both science and technology use logic and often evidence to socially construct entities that are useful; e. Much technological development occurs in settings, such as government agencies, in which commercial concerns are minimal but national security concerns may lead to secrecy.
Because the connections between science and technology are so close in some fields, secrecy inevitably begins to restrict some of the free flow of information in science as well.
Some scientists and engineers are very uncomfortable with what they perceive as a compromise of the scientific ideal, and some refuse to work on projects that impose secrecy. Others, however, view the restrictions as appropriate. Occasionally, however, the use of some technology becomes an issue subject to public debate and possibly formal regulation. In such instances, the proposed solution may be to ban the burial of toxic wastes in community dumps, or to prohibit the use of leaded gasoline and asbestos insulation.
Rarely are technology-related issues simple and one-sided. Relevant technical facts alone, even when known and available which often they are notusually do not settle matters entirely in favor of one side or the other. The chances of reaching good personal or collective decisions about technology depend on having information that neither enthusiasts nor skeptics are always ready to volunteer. The long-term interests of society are best served, therefore, by having processes for ensuring that key questions concerning proposals to curtail or introduce technology are raised and that as much relevant knowledge as possible is brought to bear on them.
Considering these questions does not ensure that the best decision will always be made, but the failure to raise key questions will almost certainly result in poor decisions.
The key questions concerning any proposed new technology should include the following: What are alternative ways to accomplish the same ends? What advantages and disadvantages are there to the alternatives? What trade-offs would be necessary between positive and negative side effects of each? Who are the main beneficiaries?
Who will receive few or no benefits? Who will suffer as a result of the proposed new technology? How long will the benefits last? Will the technology have other applications? Whom will they benefit? What will the proposed new technology cost to build and operate?
How does that compare to the cost of alternatives? Will people other than the beneficiaries have to bear the costs? Who should underwrite the development costs of a proposed new technology? How will the costs change over time?