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Cursus: 191612540
Ethics and Technology I
Cursus informatieRooster
Studiepunten (ECTS)5
Contactpersoondr. J.S. Hermann
dr. M. Behrensen
Contactpersoon van de cursus
dr. J.S. Hermann
dr. J.S. Hermann
AanmeldingsprocedureZelf aanmelden via OSIRIS Student
Inschrijven via OSIRISJa
This course is open only to students enrolled in the Master PSTS .
In case you, as a student from another master’s programme, would like to participate in this course, please contact the PSTS staff: or

This course connects to the final qualifications K1, K5, S1, S2, S3, S4 of the programme, according to the following learning objectives:
  1. Identify and analyse ethical problems in different areas of life.
  2. Engage in critical reasoning and argumentation about ethical issues, in particular in relation to technology.
  3. Understand and explain core ethical concepts, principles, arguments, and theories.
  4. Recognize different types of argumentation in ethical discourse.
  5. Systematically develop and defend (in writing) a theoretically informed position regarding an ethical issue related to technology.
  6. Reflect on the relationship between ethical theorising and living a good life.
  7. Analyse and critique ethical concepts, principles, arguments, and theories.
  8. Understand and explain the relevance of ethics for science & technology and vice versa.
Science and technology are ethically relevant because they co-shape the way we think of and pursue a good life. More specifically, science and technology can benefit and harm, support and undermine human values and norms, and enhance and diminish agency. This course introduces students to the concepts, principles, and theories in ethics, necessary for understanding the ethical significance of science and technology. First, we will reflect on the phenomenon of morality and how ‘ethical issues’ tend to be identified. Students will then be introduced to different traditions of ethical thought (deontology, consequentialism, virtue ethics, Confucian ethics, Ubuntu) as well as more recent ethical approaches (feminist ethics, care ethics, capabilities approach, pragmatist ethics) and consider the use of these theories in the context of a particular ethical issue related to technology. The concept of epistemic justice, the technological mediation of morality and the emerging technomoral change paradigm will also be addressed.

The following skills will be trained:
  • Reading skills (analytic & interpretative reading)
  • Argumentation skills (reconstructing and assessing (ethical) argumentation)
  • Writing skills (summarizing texts; developing a position and a line of argument, writing a brief essay)
  • Presentation skills (presenting the main argument of a text)

Teaching methods
Lectorials. Attendance is obligatory
One mid-term written exam (40% of the course grade).
One final research paper (60% of the grade).
All components (the exam and the research paper) need to be sufficient (5.5 or higher).
Participating study
Master Philosophy of Science, Technology and Soc.
Verplicht materiaal
Articles, the links to which will be posted on Canvas
Aanbevolen materiaal

Written exam & Research Paper

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