University of Wisconsin–Madison

Suggested Courses for Ethics Focus

Note: This list of courses is not definitive or comprehensive. It is a starting point to give students and certificate advisers examples of courses that would work well in the ISSuES certificate program. The inclusion of a course on this list does not guarantee ISSuES certificate students a spot in the course or that they have the necessary pre-requisites to enroll. ISSuES students must meet the enrollment requirements of the course as listed in the catalog or timetable. We encourage ISSuES students to work with their certificate advisers to find appropriate courses beyond those listed below

CNSR SCI 470 History of Consumer Movements in the United States. I; 3 cr. A survey of the historical interpretations and analyses of consumer activist efforts in the United States from the mid-nineteenth century to the late twentieth century. P: So st.

CNSR SCI 477 The Consumer and the Market. I, II; 3 cr (S-I). Analysis of the consumer’s market, consumer’s behavior, and government policies affecting the consumer in the American economy. P: Econ 101.

CNSR SCI 478 Consumer Information. II; 3 cr (S-I). Analysis of information available to consumers; evaluation of its sources and its quality. Examination of consumers’ and consumerists’ efforts to obtain information and to influence information sources. Evaluation of consumers’ performances in the marketplace under conditions of incomplete information. P: Cnsr Sci 477.

CNSR SCI 657 Consumer Behavior. I, II; 3 cr (S-A). Analyses from social and psychological perspectives. Motivation, perception, learning and attitude formation. Effects of social class, family structure, cultural backgrounds and reference groups. P: Intro course in econ & soc or psych or cons inst.

Envir 112 Environmental Studies: The Social Perspective. II; 3 cr (S-E). Importance of social factors in the generation and resolution of complex environmental problems with an interdisciplinary perspective. Comparison of specific communities in the more and less developed areas of the world. P: Open to Fr.

Envir 113 Environmental Studies: The Humanistic Perspective. I; 3 cr (H-E). Environmental problems as approached by philosophy, literature, fine arts, history of science, and anthropology. Reflections on the past and present situation of our species and its relationship to the rest of nature offer suggestions toward possible alternative values for future. P: Open to Fr.

Envir 126 Principles of Environmental Science. I, II; 4 cr (B-E). Basic principles that govern the operation of the man-made environment system, its structure, and changes in time. Basic concepts, cycles, feedback loops and interlocks. P: Open to Fr.

Envir 127 Physical Systems of the Environment. (Crosslisted with Geog) I, II; 5 cr (P-E). Climatic regimes, landforms, soils, waters and life forms at the earth’s surface in terms of energy-transforming processes, locational patterns, and changes through time. P: Open to Fr & not open to those with Geog 120, 123, 124, or 125 cr or ILS 132 cr.

Envir 339 Environmental Conservation. (Crosslisted with Geog) I, II, SS; 3-4 cr (S-I). Ecological and cultural background of conservation, problems of resource and environmental quality management, and pressing issues of population, food, energy, and pollution. P: So st.

Envir 375 Field Ecology Workshop. I, SS; 3 cr (B-I). Lecture labs wholly in field for intensive study of behavior of plants and animals and their relationship to environments and human impacts. Individual and group observations, measurements, interpretation, reports, typing personal experience with specifics to basic principles. P: Some basic biology & ecology recommended; cons inst.

Envir 460 American Environmental History. (Crosslisted with History, Geog) I or II or SS; 4 cr (Z-I). Survey of interactions among people and natural environments from before European colonization to present. Equal attention to problems of ecological change, human ideas, and uses of nature and history of conservation and environmental public policy. P: So st.

Envir 461 Environmental Systems Concepts. (Crosslisted with Botany, Forest) II; 3 cr (I-I). A general systems approach to environmental problems: a philosophical-conceptual framework and a quantitative methodology for dealing with critical environmental issues that cross the boundaries of traditional disciplines. The nature of general systems, concepts and laws; the role of perspective in identification of system properties; the structure and behavior of environmental and ecological systems. For students with strong interests in environmental problems. P: Envir St 126 and a course in biology, or enroll in envir st undergrad progm. Authorization may be required.

Envir 471 Introduction to Environmental Health. (Crosslisted with Pop Hlth) I; 3 cr (B-I). Impact of environmental problems on human health; biological hazards to human health from air and water pollution; radiation; pesticides; noise; problems related to food, occupation and environment of the work place; accidents. Physical and chemical factors involved. P: A course in biology; Jr st.

Envir 502 Air Pollution and Human Health. (Crosslisted with Pop Hlth) I; 3 cr (B-D). Toxicologic, controlled and epidemiologic studies on major air pollutants. Overview of study methods, lung physiology and pathology; air pollution sources, types, meteorology, sampling methods, controls and regulations. P: Jr st, a course in biology.

Envir 513 Environment and Health in Global Perspective. (Crosslisted with Med Hist, Hist Sci) II; 3 cr (Z-A). Explores the historical relationships between environmental change and human health from the 17th through the 20th century. Topics include colonialism and disease, medical geography, urban pollution and reform, workplace hazards, environmental risk, and the anti-toxics and environmental justice movements. P: Jr st.

Envir 575 Assessment of Environmental Impact. (Crosslisted with Soil Sci) Even yrs.; II; 3 cr (P-I). Overview of methods for collecting and analyzing information about environmental impacts on agricultural and natural resources, including monitoring the physical environment and relating impacts to people and society. P: Jr st. Authorization may be required.

Hist Sci 133 Biology & Society. (Crosslisted with Med Hist) 3 cr.; Z (either Humanities or Social Science), E. From medical advancements to environmental crises and global food shortages, biology and the life sciences are implicated in some of the most pressing social issues of our time. This course explores events in the history of biology from the mid twentieth century to today, and examines how developments in this scientific field have shaped and are shaped by society. The course investigates the origins of the institutions, technologies, and styles of practice that characterize contemporary biology;  areas of biology that have raised controversies about regulation, governance, and public participation; asks how biological facts and theories have been and continue to be used as a source for understanding ourselves. This course will help students in the sciences, social sciences, or humanities to develop the analytic and writing skills needed to confront complex social issues involving the life sciences. P: None, Open to Fr.

Hist Sci 180 Freshman Honors Seminar: History of Science, Technology and Medicine. I or II; 3 cr (H-E). Introduction to the history of science, technology and medicine through in-depth examination of a specific theme or topic. P: Open to Fr only or with cons inst.

Hist Sci 201 The Origins of Scientific Thought. I, II; 3 cr (H-E). Emergence of scientific method and scientific modes of thought out of ancient philosophical and religious traditions; the impact of ancient science on medieval Christendom; the origins and development of the Copernican-Newtonian world view. P: Open to Fr. Not open to stdts who have taken ILS 201 or Hist Sci 323, except by cons inst.

Hist Sci 202 The Making of Modern Science. II; 3 cr (H-E). Major trends and developments in the sciences from the 17th century to the early 20th century. Emphasis on those with broad cultural and social implications. P: Not open to stdts who have had Hist of Sci 204. Open to Fr.

Hist Sci 203 Science in the Twentieth Century: A Historical Overview. I; 3 cr (Z-E). Major themes in the physical and biological sciences from 1890 to the present, with attention to conceptual development, interaction of science and society, philosophical issues, and personalities in science. P: Open to Fr.

Hist Sci 222 Technology and Social Change in History. I or II; 3 cr (H-I). Topics in the history of technology of interest to students in engineering and physical sciences. Themes include the social basis of technical change, the impact of technology on everyday life, and ethical issues in technology in the last two centuries. P: Open to Fr.

Hist Sci 275 Science, Medicine, and Race: A History. (Crosslisted with Med Hist, Afroamer) Alt yrs.; I; 3 cr (e-Z-E). Surveys the medical and scientific constructions of categories of race, placing the development of racial theories in a broad social and political context. The course will pay particular attention to the importance of racial science in slavery and colonialism. P: Open to Fr.

Hist Sci 331 Science, Medicine and Religion. 331 (Crosslisted with Med Hist, Relig St) Irr.; 3-4 cr (H-D). Science, medicine and religion from antiquity to the present, with emphasis on Western civilization. P: Jr st and cons inst.

Hist Sci 337 History of Technology. I or II; 3 cr (H-A). A survey of Western technology within its social and cultural context during the past 1000 years. Topics include technology in European expansion, the industrial revolution, and the rise of the United States as a technological superpower. P: Jr st or cons inst. Grads must enroll concurrently in Hist Sci 637.

Hist Sci 339 Technology and Its Critics Since World War II. I or II; 3 cr (Z-A). Examines expert and popular criticism of technology from World War II to the present. Topics include atomic fallout, consumer society, Ralph Nader’s critique of auto safety, environmentalism, the movement against nuclear power, critics in the counterculture, and appropriate technology. P: Jr st or cons inst. Grad stdts must enroll concurrently in Hist Sci 639.

Hist Sci 394 Science in America. (Crosslisted with History, Med Hist) Irr.; 3 cr (H-D). From the colonial period to the present; emphasis on the development of scientific institutions and the influence of science on American life. P: Jr st or cons inst.

Hist Sci 411 History of American Technology. (Crosslisted with History) I or II or SS; 3-4 cr (S-I). Survey of the history of American technology focusing on changing technologies of production and distribution from the colonial period to the near-present. P: So st.

Hist Sci 538 Science in the Twentieth Century: Historical Themes and Issues. Irr.; 3 cr (H-I). Major themes in the physical and biological sciences from 1890 to the present, with attention to conceptual development, interaction of science and society, philosophical issues, and personalities in science. P: Hist of sci grad or undergrad majors only. Jr st or cons inst. Not open to stdts who have had Hist Sci 203

Med Hist 559 Topics in Ethics and History of Medicine. Irr.; 3 cr (H-D). A survey of ethical and social issues in medical ethics and history of medicine. Cooperating faculty may be drawn from philosophy, law, medical ethics, history, political science, public health, economics, education, and communication, as well as medicine and the biological sciences. P: Cons inst; enrollment may be limited depending on topic and approach.

Med Hist 560 Task Force in Bioethics Policy. Irr.; 3 cr (S-A). Simulated public policy task force, charged to address the ethical, legal, social and public policy challenges posed by a major topic in contemporary bioethics. Significant individual and group writing required. P: Prerequisites may vary according to topic. Jr or Sr st and cons inst based on relevant prior coursework.

Philos 220 Philosophy and the Sciences. Irr.; 3-4 cr (Z-I). Is science value-free? What distinguishes it from pseudo-science, religion, and technology? Philosophical problems of explanation, rationality, knowledge, paradigms, moral issues of research and philosophical consequences of scientific theories. P: So st.

Philos 241 Introductory Ethics. I, II, SS; 3-4 cr (Z-I). Nature of moral problems and of ethical theory, varieties of moral skepticism, practical ethics and the evaluation of social institutions. P: So st.

Philos 341 Contemporary Moral Issues. I or II or SS; 3-4 cr (Z-I). A philosophical study of some of the major moral issue in contemporary society, such as those concerning abortion, euthanasia, punishment, property, politics, sex, nuclear disarmament, and world hunger. P: So st or cons inst.

Philos 441 Environmental Ethics. (Crosslisted with Envir St) I or II or SS; 3-4 cr (Z-A). Adequacy of ethical theories in handling such wrongs as harm to the land, to posterity, to endangered species, and to the ecosystem itself. Exploration of the view that not all moral wrongs involve harm to humans. Inquiry into the notion of the quality of life and the ethics of the “lifeboat” situation. P: 3 cr philos or envir studies, or Grad st in IES.

Philos 503 Theory of Knowledge. I or II; 3 cr (Z-A). A survey of problems concerning the nature, sources, and limits of human knowledge, including such topics as scepticism, the concept of knowledge, sensory perception, evidence, justified belief, induction. P: Philos 101, 103, 201, or cons inst; & Jr st.

Philos 520 Philosophy of the Natural Sciences. I or II; 3 cr (Z-A). Nature and functions of science; the logic of scientific method; clarification of such concepts as cause, law, theory, probability, determinism, teleology. P: Jr st & 3 crs in philos or cons inst.

Philos 523 Philosophical Problems of the Biological Sciences. (3 cr. H-A) Problems raised by genetics, evolutionary theory, and taxonomy: patterns of explanatory force and dispensability of teleology; objectivity of taxonomy. P: 3 cr of philos or 3 cr in a biological science.

Philos 541 Modern Ethical Theories. Irr.; 3 cr (Z-A). Ethical theories and problems as discussed in the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries. P: Jr st & 3 cr in philos or cons inst.

Philos 554 Philosophy of the Artificial Sciences. Alt yrs.; 3 cr (Z-A). Examination of issues surrounding artificial intelligence and artificial life; discussion of the natures of mind and life; evaluation of competing computational paradigms for modeling mind; analysis of contributions artificial sciences can make to psychology and biology. P: Jr st, 3 cr of philos or cons inst.

Philos 558 Ethical Issues in Health Care. (Crosslisted with Med Hist) II; 3 cr (H-I). Ethical issues apparently created by new biomedical technologies, such as genetic screening, prenatal diagnosis, prolongation of life, treatment of severe birth defects, in vitro fertilization, behavior modification, psychosurgery, and transplantation. P: Jr st or cons inst.

Philos 565 The Ethics of Modern Biotechnology. (Crosslisted with Med Hist, Agronomy, C&E Soc) I or II; 3-4 cr (H-I). Study of ethical issues arising from the application of modern biotechnology to microorganisms, crops, and non-human animals. Readings cover moral theory, technology studies, political philosophy, the science used in biotechnology, and current regulations governing its use. P: Jr st & cons inst.

Soil Sci 101 Forum on the Environment. (Crosslisted with Envir St) II; 1-2 cr (W-E). Lectures and discussions about environmental issues. Historical and contemporary environmental impacts of humans on the biosphere. Global futures: population, technology, societal values, resources and prospects for sustainable management. P: Open to Fr.