University College for Interdisciplinary Learning

Science and the Modern World

Course Code

UCIL10221 (10 Credits)

UCIL10721 (20 Credits)

Course Details

Level: 1

Credits load: 10/20


What is science? And why does science have such authority in our society and culture? You don't have to be Einstein to find an answer! Using a variety of examples from past and present, this course unit explores the place of science in human affairs. By using a non-specialist vocabulary, it helps you to understand why we trust scientists and where that reliance comes from historically. It invites critical reflections on the methods scientific experts use and the influence they exercise in the modern world.


Summary of Learning Outcomes

Students will have an appreciation of the complexity of the modern sciences in the broad context of their historical development; understand a range of ways of thinking about the sciences and contemporary society and the relationships between them; be able to reflect critically on the role of the sciences in modern culture; develop their communication and group-working skills; in addition, the 20 credit unit will extend and develop their research and writing skills through an individual research project.



Both lecture and seminar content are assessed by:

10 credit unit (HSTM10221)

  1. 1,000-word essay (50% of overall mark)
  2. 1.5 hour exam (50% of overall mark)

20 credit unit (HSTM10721)

  1. 1,000-word essay (25% of overall mark)
  2. 1.5 hour exam (25% of overall mark)
  3. 3,000-word individual research project (50% of overall mark).


This course is only open to undergraduate students.

University College course units are available to take on programmes which have 'free choice' options available to them, (i.e. programmes which allow you, as part of the degree programme, to take a number of credits from subject areas outside of your home school). As these courses are credit bearing, you must enrol by following the standard procedure for your school when adding units outside of your home school.

If you are not sure whether you will be able to enrol in University College courses, please contact your School Undergraduate Office to find out whether these options are available for your degree programme.


Dr Simone Turchetti

Teaching and Learning Methods


1 - 12Mon15:00 - 17:00

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