Science, Technology, and Society MS

Major: Science, Technology, and Society
Degree Awarded: Master of Science (MS)
Calendar Type: Quarter
Minimum Required Credits: 45.0
Co-op Option: None
Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code: 30.1501
Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code:

About the Program

NOTE: Applications are currently being accepted for this low-residency program beginning with the 2025-2026 academic year. No students are being accepted for 2024-2025.

The Science, Technology, and Society (STS) program systemically investigates the social dimensions of science, technology, and medicine. Faculty from a range of disciplines contribute to a curriculum that features a broad set of perspectives, all grounded in a foundation of social theory, research methods, and writing and presentation skills. The STS program emphasizes three interrelated areas: environment and sustainability; health and medicine; and information, identities and networks. The STS Lab course is a unique feature of the curriculum—it prepares students to work as a team to address meaningful science- and technology-related topics. Working with a faculty advisor, graduate students develop an individualized plan of study that allows them to pursue their interests in depth. 

STS students are independent thinkers who are dedicated to understanding the intersections of society, science, medicine, and technology. While STS students vary widely in their professional and educational backgrounds and career ambitions, they share a common commitment to a critical approach to our world’s most pressing technoscientific challenges.

Prospective students for the MS in STS see this educational opportunity as a crucial factor in their skill development and career advancement. They are college graduates in engineering, the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences; professionals in businesses, city, and state government offices and area hospitals; and middle and high school teachers. Students can attend full- or part-time and complete all coursework in the evening.

Additional Information

For more information, please contact:

Kristene Unsworth, PhD
Director, Center for Science, Technology and Society

Additional information can be found on the MS in Science, Technology, and Society webpage.

Admission Requirements

Applicants to the program must meet the general requirements for admission to graduate studies at Drexel University.

Prospective students must also submit a 500-word essay explaining why they want to enter the program and some of the issues related to science, technology, and society that they would like to study. These statements are read carefully by the faculty screening committee to evaluate each applicant’s sense of purpose. Entering students typically begin during the fall quarter; however, students are able to start the program during any quarter.

Visit the Graduate Admissions website for more information about requirements and deadlines, as well as instructions for applying online.

Degree Requirements 

The program requires 45.0 credits of coursework. Required courses total 24.0 credits. Remaining credits are chosen from a list of electives.

Basic Requirements
SCTS 501Introduction to Science, Technology and Society3.0
SCTS 502Research Methods3.0
SCTS 503Advanced Research Methods3.0
SCTS 504Science, Technology & Society Theories3.0
Advanced Requirements
Ethics, Values, Identities, and Culture6.0
Select two of the following:
Public Health Ethics
Digital Power and Resistance
Contemporary Feminist Theory
Material Culture
Medical and Healthcare Ethics
Technology, Progress, and Determinism
The Biopolitics of Health
Medicine, Technology and Science
Global Subjects of Biocapital
Transnational Science, Technology & Capitalism
Science and Technology Policy3.0
Select one of the following:
Media and Communication Policy in a Digitized World
Information Policy and Ethics
Sustainability & Public Policy
Environmental Policy
Risk and Disaster Policy
Contemporary Stem Workforces:Organizations of Labor in Lab, Shop and Clinic
War and Technoscience
Science, Technology & Society Lab3.0
Select one of the following:
Special Topics in STS Lab
Mobilities Lab
Identity and Intersectionality Lab
Philadelphia in a Changing Climate Lab
Thesis and Electives *21.0
Master's Research
Suggested Electives **
History of Public Health
Contemporary Social Theory
Research Methods in Communication, Culture and Media
Seminar in Contemporary Theory
Media and Communication Policy in a Digitized World
Innovation Management
Methods of Policy Analysis
History and Systems
Historiography of Science
Politics of Life
STS Perspectives on Risk and Disaster
Theoretical and Sociological Aspects of Measurement
Advanced Topics in Philosophy of Science
Internship in Science, Technology and Society
Independent Study in Science, Technology and Society
Special Topics in Science Technology and Society
Total Credits45.0

Students who elect to pursue the Thesis option should complete 9.0 credits of SCTS 798 and select 12.0 credits from the list of suggested electives.


Additional electives may be taken from other schools and colleges in the University with approval from the Director of the MS in Science, Technology & Society program.

Sample Plan of Study

First Year
SCTS 5013.0Science & Technology Policy course3.0SCTS 5033.0VACATION
SCTS 5023.0Two Ethics, Valued, Identity & Culture courses6.0Science, Technology & Society Lab course3.0 
SCTS 5043.0 SCTS elective3.0 
 9 9 9 0
Second Year
SCTS electives9.0SCTS electives9.0  
 9 9  
Total Credits 45

Science, Technology and Society Faculty

Lloyd Ackert, PhD (Johns Hopkins University). Teaching Professor. History of science and technology; ecology; Russian science.
Jesse Ballenger, PhD (Case Western Reserve University). Clinical Professor. Healthcare, medicine and ethics; aging and neurodegenerative diseases; Science and Technology Studies.
Susan E. Bell, PhD (Brandeis University). Professor. Sociology of health and illness; global and transnational health; reproductive health, rights, and justice; experience of illness; narrative; visual sociology
Mary Ebeling, PhD (University of Surrey). Professor. Science and technology studies; emerging technologies and biocapital; media and democratic cultures; radical social movements; sociology of markets; political sociology; and ethnographic methodologies.
Christian Hunold, PhD (University of Pittsburgh) Associate Dean for Faculty Advancement. Professor. Environmental policy; comparative politics; urban wildlife; political theory.
Jordan Hyatt, PhD, JD (University of Pennsylvania, Villanova University School of Law) Director, Center for Public Policy. Associate Professor. Community corrections; drug treatment; homelessness; probation/parole; re-entry; risk assessment; sentencing.
Kelly Joyce, PhD (Boston College). Professor. Science, medicine and technology; aging and technology; qualitative social science methods; healthcare and medicine.
Anil Kalhan, MPPM, JD (Yale School of Management; Yale Law School). Professor. Immigration and citizenship law, constitutional law, comparative law and criminal law.
Alison Kenner, PhD (Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute). Associate Professor. Science, technology, and health; environmental health problems; cities and place; feminist theory; medical anthropology; digital humanities
Brent Luvaas, PhD (UCLA). Professor. Visual anthropology; photography; social media; digital culture; urban futures; United States and Southeast Asia.
Dali Ma, PhD (University of Chicago). Associate Professor. Social hierarchy; Social networks; Sociology of entrepreneurship; Sociology of transitional China
Amanda McMillan Lequieu, PhD (University of Wisconsin-Madison). Assistant Professor. Environmental sociology, political economy, place and space, rural-urban interface, qualitative and historical methodologies.
Gwen Ottinger, PhD (University of California, Berkeley). Professor. Social studies of science and technology, environmental justice, environmental political theory, citizen science, science and engineering ethics.
Flavia Padovani, PhD (University of Geneva). Associate Professor. History and philosophy of science, feminist epistemology, science and technology studies.
Sharrona Pearl, PhD (Harvard University). Associate Teaching Professor. Medical ethics; science studies; history of science and medicine; critical race, gender, and disability studies; media studies.
Elizabeth Polcha, PhD (Northeastern University). Assistant Professor. English and Digital Humanities. Black Atlantic Literature; digital humanities; early American studies; postcolonial and settler colonial studies; gender sexuality studies; environmental studies; history of science; history of the book.
Nic John Ramos, PhD (University of Southern California). Assistant Professor. African American History, history of Medicine, History of Psychiatry, urban History, 20th Century US History, History of Racial Capitalism, History of Sexuality
Jonathan Seitz, PhD (University of Wisconsin) Assistant Department Head, History. Teaching Professor. History of religion, science, medicine, witchcraft, early modern Europe, Italy.
Chloe Silverman, PhD (University of Pennsylvania) Director, Center for Science, Technology & Society. Associate Professor. Parent advocacy for autism, neurodiversity, and pollinator health research.
Andrew Frederick Smith, PhD (SUNY, Stony Brook). Associate Professor. Environmental philosophy/environmental humanities, food justice, climate justice, social and political philosophy, decolonization.
Kelly Underman, PhD (University of Illinois at Chicago). Associate Professor. Medical education, the social construction of bodies and emotions and the politics of scientific knowledge production.
Kristene Unsworth, PhD (University of Washington) Director, Center for Science, Technology, & Society. Assistant Teaching Professor. Intersections between information technology, people, and justice, information policy, ethics of data use, data analytics.
Asta Zelenkauskaite, PhD (Indiana University). Associate Professor. Social media; user-generated content; computer-mediated communication; interactivity; active audience analysis; mobile communication; gender and online identity; prosumer culture; internet of things; quantitative/qualitative research.

Emeritus Faculty

Robert J. Brulle, PhD (George Washington University). Professor Emeritus. Environmental policy and politics, critical theory, marine risk, social movements, environmental sociology.
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