CSE 275 Homepage - Fall 2003
Social Aspects of Technology and Science

Notices and Warnings

Remember that your papers are due on 4 December!

Be sure to check this website frequently; important notices will be posted near the top of the homepage; homework and readings will be posted on their respective webpages, not given in class. You should reload pages frequently, because I may well be editing the same page that you are reading! All webpages are subject to frequent unannounced updates.

The lecture notes are an important part of the course, and are linked to the outline page; they will evolve as the course develops. However, the class notes are not a substitute for attending class or doing the readings - much more information is given on some topics in lectures and readings, and there will also be hardcopy handouts, guest speakers, diagrams drawn on the board, interactive discussions, and more in class. Also, the emphasis on topics in the notes may not reflect the importance of material. In short, all of lectures, notes, text, and other readings are necessary for this course.

Homework answers from different students with strongly overlapping content will be assigned a grade of zero, and there will be more drastic consequences for repeat offenders. You can talk with other students about how to approach homework problems, but you are not allowed to work together on solutions. See the Integrity of Scholarship Agreement (from Scott Baden) and UCSD's official policies on Plagiarism; see also the most recent amended policy (sorry, it's in MS Word). You are expected to abide by these rules; failure to do so can have very serious consequences.


This course explores issues on the interfaces among technology, science, and society, with a special focus on information technology and ethics. Topics include privacy, the internet and the web, spam, electronic commerce, chat rooms, ethics, requirements engineering, actor-network theory, Kuhn's theory of paradigms, post-modernism, neo-classical economics, ubiquitous computing, and more. See the course outline for details.

Prerequesites are CSE 9, 10 or 11, the ability to read basic works in the humanities, especially sociology, and the ability to write reasonable English. You will have to write short homework essays and a final paper. The course open to undergraduates with permission of the instructor.

Tuesday, Thursday, 9:30-10:50 am, Sequoia 148
Instructor Office Hours: Monday, 10 - 11 am, 3131 APM.

Required Book
Recommended Books All of these books should be on reserve at the Science and Engineering Library. We will not be using the recommended books very much in class, but some of them are likely to be relevant to your project.
Additional Information

Grades will be based on the last four items below, especially the last; the extent to which your class participation, your homework, and your project demonstrate your familiarity with, and ability to apply, significant ideas in the course, will be important in their evaluation.

  1. Course notes
  2. Reading assignments
  3. Homework assignments
  4. Class participation
  5. a short vocabulary quiz towards the end of the quarter
  6. Projects - these are due the last day of (this) class.

Other Resources
This is not a technical course in the usual sense, but it is intellectually rigorous; it will carefully explore significant issues on the interfaces among technology, society and ethics, drawing on a variety of rigorous theories. It is expected that you will learn to think clearly about how technical and non-technical aspects interact in the real world, especially regarding ethical issues, and that this will be helpful to you in your work and in your life after graduation.
To my courses homepage
To the homepage of the previous CSE 275
Maintained by Joseph Goguen
© 2000, 2001, 2003 Joseph Goguen, all rights reserved
Last modified: Thu Dec 2 10:02:30 PST 2004