- students learn to reflect on how science works. |
- students have become aware of different philosophical positions w.r.t. the aims and methods of science, as well as the relation between reality and theory.
- students can use examples from the history of their discipline when teaching science.
- successful students can enroll for the course Science and the Public as a follow up.
Science teachers, journalists and popularizers have a double task of explaining the specific conceptual content of scientific theories and of conveying a general image of how science works. In both cases, science educators can and should profit from the field of history and philosophy of science (HPS). HPS studies the conceptual content, development and foundations of science. Its level of analysis differs from the “scientists’ perspective”, and thus affords critical distance. It differs from science popularization in the sense that it doesn’t aim to simplify the content and practice of science. Instead, it emphasizes uncertainty over certainty, diversity over uniformity. HPS is a valuable resource for science educators and communicators both because of the perspectives it offers and because its case studies provide ample material to draw on. |
Note: the content of this course focusses exclusively on science in the narrow sense of the word, i.e. natural science.