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Challenges, Choice, & Change: Experiences and Reflections from the First Semester of a Technology and Human Futures Course

ABSTRACT

Society’s rapidly increasing reliance on technology has created urgency for future leaders to understand these technologies’ potential impacts. News of technical and algorithmic concerns in society are frequent, highlighting the real impacts to real people.

Learners may approach computing in order to feel prepared for careers and life in modern society. These learners benefit from understanding the many ways technology may be part of their future careers, their lives, and the lives of others. Beyond this, many wish to use computing to solve problems - but complex societal problems may feel too overwhelming to solve. Greater understanding of the technologies involved and the ways humans, society, and technology interact may help learners feel more confident in exploring and navigating these problem spaces for better tomorrows.

This experience report describes the first semester of a new course developed to explore the intersection of technology and human futures. This course centered cultural competency themes alongside technologies and sectors to better understand not only how technology is applied in society, but how these factors can have different results across distinct identity facets.

The perspectives shared in this report include the instructor (author) and students - gathered through a survey co-designed with the students. The experience was overall positive for both students and instructor. Learner sentiments suggest that more course offerings like this are valuable by providing new and engaging material as well as new tools and considerations for their future careers.

 

Citation: 

Briana Bettin. 2023. Challenges, Choice, & Change: Experiences and Reflections from the First Semester of a Technology and Human Futures Course. In Proceedings of the 54th ACM Technical Symposium on Computer Science Education V. 1 (SIGCSE 2023). Association for Computing Machinery, New York, NY, USA, 235–241. https://doi.org/10.1145/3545945.3569872


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Computing, Publications, Students, Technology