UPEI’s Social Studies of Science is an interdisciplinary minor whose primary purpose is to reconsider science from the perspective of the humanities. Students enrolled in the minor examine science through the lens of anthropology, history, gender, sociology, philosophy and culture. This includes assessing how science was and is practiced, how science shapes and is shaped by the professionals who practice it, how science is represented in the media and other public arenas, and how various technosciences blur the boundaries between nature and society.

The Social Studies of Science minor is especially well suited to Arts students who wish to evaluate the powerful role of science in society, and to Science students who wish to explore more thoroughly how their field of study relates to the broader societal concerns about science. Social Studies of Science minors learn to think critically and creatively about how we define science, the multiple roles of science in society, and how science has become such a convincing way of understanding the world. This program strengthens students’ capacity to pursue careers in public policy, the health sciences, engineering, science journalism, and law.

Declaring a Minor

Current students can declare a minor in this program through their myUPEI account.

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Course Structure

Note: Current UPEI students should refer to Student Planning in myUPEI and the UPEI Academic Calendar governing their entry year, and speak to an academic advisor about course requirements. The course structure presented for this program is a recommended, unofficial progression for prospective students.

The minor’s structure consists of 21 semester hours of credit as follows:

a) taking EITHER SSS/History 2220 ‘Science and Society in Historical Perspective’ OR SSS/SocAnth 2660 ‘Science, Culture, and Society’ as a mandatory core course in the program;
b) taking at least one additional SSS course at the 2000-level, with SSS 2220 or SSS 2660 as the prerequisite;
c) taking at least two 3000-level courses, with SSS 2220 or SSS 2660 as the prerequisite;
d) taking at least two 4000-level courses, with at least one 3000-level SSS course as the prerequisite;
e) the remaining course at the 2000- 3000-, or 4000- level.

Below is a preliminary list of courses instructors/departments have agreed to cross list into the minor. (Some additional courses are still in the process of being developed).

  • DSJS 4120 - Theories of the Body
  • SOC 4120 - Sociology of Health
  • SOC/ANTH 2660 - Science, Culture, and Society
  • PHIL 2030 - Environmental Philosophy
  • PHIL 2040 - Bio-medical Ethics
  • PHIL 3010 - Philosophy of Science
  • PHIL 3630 - Philosophy of Biology
  • HIST 2220 - Science and Society in Historical Perspective
  • HIST 3110 - Science, Magic, Witchcraft, and the Occult in Premodern Europe
  • HIST 3330 - Health Care and North American Society in Historical Perspective
  • HIST 4340 - Madness and Society
  • ENG 2240 - Science Fiction
  • ANTH 4010 - Medical Anthropology
  • ANTH 4030 - Cybercultures

Additional courses not on the above list may be applied to the minor with permission of the Program Co-ordinator and the course instructor.

SDU Main Building
SDU Main Building
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High School Graduates

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Successful completion of Grade 12 examinations in a University Preparatory Program with an overall average of at least 70% (75% for Quebec Secondary V students) in the following subjects:

  • English;
  • one Social Studies or Language;
  • any 3 other academic courses. Grade 12 math recommended.
    Note: Grade 12 Math is a prerequisite for some 1st year Arts courses.

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