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GWS.406: Feminist Technoscience Studies

Department: Sociology NCF Level: FHEQ/QCF/NQF7//RQF7
Study Level: Postgraduate (Masters level) Credit Points: 20
Start Date: 20-05-2019 End Date: 31-05-2019
Available for Online Enrolment?: Y Enrolment Restriction: Fully available to all students
Module Convenor: Professor LA Suchman

Syllabus Rules and Pre-requisites

  • The student must take the following modules:

Curriculum Design: Outline Syllabus


    This module offers an advanced introduction to feminist technoscience studies, with a particular focus on theoretical and empirical developments and debates. By engaging students with feminist research on technoscience, it will ask what counts as ‘science’ and ‘technology’, how they are imagined and practiced, and how scientific and technological knowledges are produced, circulated, and deployed.  


    Theoretical debates will be introduced and investigated through specific empirical topics. These topics will be chosen each year to reflect the particular expertise of tutors. The teaching format will involve a combination of lectures, text workshops (working closely with key texts), and practice-based workshops (working with empirical materials). The rationale behind this is to combine theory and empirical work. In addition, the course will include a public lecture by and a master class with, a guest speaker invited for one of the CGWS/CSS annual research events.


    As explained above, the module would be structured as a 4-day, 25-hour module. A typical outline would include one introductory session followed by eight 3-hour sessions, each devoted to one key theme. For example:




    Day 1: Introduction

    Day 1 session 1: Theme 1 – text workshop

    Day 1 session 2: Theme 1 – practice-based workshop

    Day 2 session 3: Theme 2 – text workshop

    Day 2 session 4:  Theme 2 – practice-based workshop

    Day 3 session 5: Theme 3 – text workshop

    Day 3 session 6: Theme 3 – practice-based workshop

    Day 4 session 7: Theme 4 – master class with guest speaker

    Day 4 session 8: Theme 4 – public lecture by an invited speaker


    Themes would be chosen from (but are not restricted to) the following list:

    ·         feminism encounters biotechnology;

    ·         feminism and the non-human;

    ·         bodies, cyborgs and prostheses;

    ·         genomics, kinship and kinds;

    ·         virtual and affective technologies.
    The 25 contact hours comprise of a one-hour introduction session as well as the 24 hours teaching outlined in other sections.

Curriculum Design: Pre-requisites/Co-requisites/Exclusions

  • None

Curriculum Design: Single, Combined or Consortial Schemes to which the Module Contributes

    FASS RTP: This module will be introduced as a FASS RTP module (as well as a standard MA optional module; see schemes below) available to students across the Faculty. It will be available as a credit-bearing course for PhD and MA students, as well as a non-credit-bearing course for auditing MA and PhD students.
    MA in Gender and Women’s Studies; MA in Sociology; MA Science, Technology and Nature
  • 100% Essay(s)

Assessment: Details of Assessment

  • One 5,000-word essay critically engaging with one of the debates in the module. This format requires students to explore a topic through an extended, in-depth analysis.

Educational Aims: Subject Specific: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • Aims:

    -To encourage reflection about key issues in contemporary technoscience and about recent controversies pertaining to technoscientific developments

    - To introduce students to the key approaches and ideas in feminist technoscience studies  

    - To familiarise students with critical feminist debates about technoscientific knowledge and practices

    - To familiarise students with crucial feminist debates addressing  the culture and politics of sciences

    -To facilitate students’ analysis and critical use of key ideas and concepts relevant to their own research interests

    -To train students in a range of methods useful in  analysing technoscientific issues

Educational Aims: General: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  •  Aims:

    - To facilitate students’ development of skills in interpreting complex theoretical concepts

    - To facilitate students’ development of skills of summarising and evaluating arguments

    - To enable students to synthesise and compare arguments, as well as to work with abstract conceptualisation.


    - To develop skills in applying theoretical concepts and arguments to concrete examples.


    - To develop students’ skills in communicating information, ideas, interpretations, arguments, principles or theories with confidence and clarity.

Learning Outcomes: Subject Specific: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • On successful completion of this module students will be able to...

    - analyse and critically use key ideas and concepts in relation to topics or themes relevant to technoscience studies


    - identify and assess the contribution of feminist technoscience studies within the humanities and social sciences


    - consider the ethical, political and epistemological dimensions of diverse  research practices and modes of knowledge production.

Learning Outcomes: General: Knowledge, Understanding and Skills

  • On successful completion of this module students will be able to...


    - demonstrate skills in interpreting and applying complex theoretical concepts-

    - demonstrate skills in summarising and evaluating arguments

    - demonstrate skills in synthesising and comparing arguments, and skills in abstract conceptualisation


    - apply these concepts and arguments to concrete examples


    - demonstrate skills in communicating information, ideas, interpretations, arguments, principles or theories with confidence and clarity

Contact Information

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