Stevens Institute of Technology
College of Arts & Letters
Program in History

HSS 371: Computers & Society
Dr. Andrew L. Russell
email: arussell at stevens dot edu
Office Telephone: 201-216-5400
Office Hours: Tuesday 1.50-2.50 pm and by appointment
Office: Morton 329

FALL 2011
371 A: Wednesday 9.15-11.45 am
Classroom: Burchard 124
371 B: Tuesday 9.15-11.45 am
Classroom: Pierce 216

Link to Schedule, Reading List, and Assignments

Course Description and Goals

Winston Churchill once said "We shape our buildings; thereafter they shape us." The goal of this course is to apply Churchill's insight to understand the social aspects of computing. Topics will include the history of computers and the Internet, Internet governance, computing and social movements, online communities, ethical issues in computing, and policy debates over privacy, intellectual property, and the global digital divide.

Course and Program Objectives and Outcomes

Textbooks to purchase
(available at the campus store):

Jack Goldsmith and Tim Wu
Who Controls the Internet? Illusions of a Borderless World
Oxford University Press (2008)
ISBN: 0195340647

Writing and Communications Center:

The College of Arts & Letters maintains the Writing & Communications Center at Stevens in Morton 210. Their office hours are Monday-Friday, 11 am - 5 pm. You can stop in or make an appointment to get help with your papers, presentations, and all other work you do at Stevens. I have never had a student visit the WCC and come back with a lower grade on their assignment.

Honor Board Policies:

You should by now be familiar with The Honor System at the Stevens Institute of Technology. It is your responsibility to uphold the ideals set forth in the Honor System Constitution. Specific student responsibilities include:

If you ever have questions about how to interpret the Honor System in relation to your work in my class, please get in touch with me.

Students with disabilities:

If you require special accommodations due to a disability, or if you need individual arrangements should the building be evacuated, you must inform the office of Student Counseling and Psychological Services, Dr. Angelica M. Diaz-Martinez, Director, in the Howe Center, 7th floor (x5177), and complete the Faculty Contact Form. Once you have done so, you should ask to meet with me so that we can work out any special arrangements that may be necessary.

Grades and Course Policies

Attendance is mandatory. Any absences must be accounted for by notifying me before the start of class; otherwise I will need verification from an outside authority (i.e., doctor, coach, another professor) explaining why it was necessary for you to miss class. Cell phones should either be turned off or silenced. Students who use a laptop or phone in class without my permission will be marked as 50% absent for that week.

Grades will be based on the following criteria:

Percentages are approximate. I will determine final weights at the end of the course. I reserve the right to give pop quizzes.

Link to Schedule, Reading List, and Assignments