Introduction to Medical Science and Technology Studies

Course content

Science and technology studies (STS) is becoming increasingly influential and important in giving a broader understanding of medical research and practice. Medical STS is a multidisciplinary domain which investigates social, institutional, political and epistemological or knowledge aspects of science. Drawing upon ethnography, sociology, organisation studies, political and economic science, philosophy, and art STS questions assumptions about science and scientific method, about how knowledge is generated and distributed, and about how scientific knowledge is translated into social effects. We consider the way in which science, which often understands itself as striving for objective knowledge, is embedded in the complexity of institutional, technological, gendered, political actual social contexts. Throughout the course, we will draw upon examples from medical research and clinical practice in the public healthcare setting.


Full degree master in Public Health Science
Full degree bachelor in Public Health Science

Learning outcome

By the end of the course, students will:

Have an understanding of the main themes and topics in current STS.

Knowledge: Students will have an overview of the different disciplinary perspectives on science and technological studies, for example, the differences and overlaps between historical, sociological, anthropological and philosophical perspectives. They will also be able to explain the main analytical approaches and theoretical frameworks in STS.

Skills: Students will be expected to structure and analyse medically relevant social issues and to produce a reasoned argument concerning these topics. They will be expected to argue specific perspectives and discuss different viewpoints

Competence: Be able to develop further and apply specific perspectives  to cases in medical research and clinical application. Be able to engage critically with existing literature and analyses in discussion, written work and projects, offering an argument of their own.

Classes, possible field trips and reading assignments

Bsc students from Bsc in Public Health Science must have passed a minimum of 90 ECTS to be able to apply for this course as an elective course.

Type of assessment
Written assignment
Course paper and active participation
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
External censorship
Criteria for exam assessment

Students obtaining the highest grade will show evidence of:

Knowledge: Having an understanding of the analytical and theoretical perspectives introduced, as well as be able to explain and define the main concepts introduced during the course.

Skills: Ability to analyse, discuss and argue specific examples and cases in medical research, as well as evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the various approaches.

Competencies: Ability to engage critically and develop further, analyse arguments and put forward arguments of their own. 

  • Category
  • Hours
  • Class Instruction
  • 30
  • Exam
  • 40
  • Preparation
  • 205
  • English
  • 275