This book was written by undergraduate students at Clemson University in STS 1010, an introductory class to the topic of science and technology in society. The content of this book aims to educate undergraduate students about the history of STS as well as show how science and technology affects society in both positive and negative ways and show how the wants and needs of society influences the developments in science and technology over time. The topics span from the ancient world all the way to the modern world.
This book was created not just for this class, but its intended use is to be read, used and edited by other STS classes. We all know how ridiculously expensive textbooks are, and oftentimes, the textbook is not even that informative or does not help that much with the class. This is exactly why we made this book. We wanted to create a textbook that could be accessed by everyone for free and actually contain heavily researched information from reliable sources. Also, the students all chose their topics themselves and showed great interest in learning about their topic and sharing their knowledge with other students in similar classes.
One of our hopes is that this book does not become set in stone. Just like science and technology, change is necessary and nothing is definitive. Our hope is that further STS classes will read this book and learn a lot from it and find what they like about the book, but we also want them to add onto the book and make edits to our chapters. We are all extremely proud in the work we put into this book to make it happen, but we also realize that there is much more to add to the conservation about STS that we could not possibly cover as one class.
Students in these classes come from all majors and all grades. Most, if not all of the students are first-time authors with little to no experience about publishing a piece of work, and throughout this class, students learned about the details of the publication process, including how to find and use primary and secondary sources, how to find images that are available to be used for a published piece of work, how to design a book, and how to incorporate images into a written text.
The following is an overview of the contributions to the textbook:
- Fall 2019 – Original text drafted – students selected a topic and wrote a chapter as individuals or teams. An introduction and conclusion was also written.
- Spring 2020 – Students formed groups to write introductions to each of the time periods in the textbook.
- Summer 2021 – Students conducted research on ways to include the voices that may have been missing from the textbook. These students did not write portions of the textbook, but they provided information for the next semester’s group of students.
- Fall 2021 – Students either wrote new chapters or added to existing chapters to ensure that missing voices were included in the textbook.
More exciting adventures are to come!
Professor Grant & The Students of her STS courses