University of Amsterdam - Human Society and Technology Bachelor
The Institute of Interdisciplinary Studies of the University of Amsterdam is developing a new bachelor program: Digital Innovations and social change (DISC). This program will educate a new generation of experts on the interface of Humanities and Technology Studies, specifically Information and Data Science related technologies. TheRockGroup was involved from the first exploration on the outline of this new programme and helps shaping the curriculum of this innovative program.
As technology has become part of all aspects of our individual lives and society at large there is a need for professionals that understand both Technology and its impacts on us. Where traditional programs educate people specialising, this bachelor will educate true interdisciplinary thinkers. With a strong basis in social sciences and a clear understanding and skill set in the information technologies, the DISC alumni will form a new generation of professionals that can ensure that technology works for us.
In the bachelor students will learn to understand and work with technology. They will also study its societal impacts and in a ‘change-maker’ track will learn how to influence technology and technology application processes in organizations and society at large. This makes them of great value for governments, civil society organizations and companies to develop and implement technologies that benefit humanity. While at the same time being able to critically assess and act against any undesirable (side) effects that the application of technology might have on individuals and communities. Depending on their choice for advanced studies after they graduate they might specialise in almost anything. Where they use their understanding of the human, society, technology interaction to their own and our collective advantage.
TheRockGroup started in close collaboration with UvA colleagues to explore the contours of this new bachelor program. In a multi-year collaboration we conducted work from dozens of expert interviews, organizing and guiding a curriculum committee, realising internal support (financial and otherwise) on Faculty and University Board level, curriculum design, didactic innovations. At the moment we are still involved in the role of didactic expert and are specifically contributing to the change-maker learning track.
The program is expected to start in September 2022.