BLHV-350 Social Implications of Personal Technology
Spring for 2008-2009
Personal technologies are everywhere and are being used by increasingly. With personal computers, cell phones, PDAs, we have the ability to “stay connected” 24/7 in multiple ways that less than 10, and in some cases 5 and even 2, years ago we could not have imagined. Our ability to access information from anywhere at anytime no longer is a fantasy but rather has become the reality for many of us.
But what is the impact of this ubiquitous connectivity and access? What social, ethical, and psychological impact does it have on our relationships with and expectations of our family, our friends, our colleagues – ourselves? In what ways has it inextricably altered American culture as many of us know it?
This course will explore the social impact of the use of personal technologies. We will examine the concept of “impact” from different lenses -- how it impacts our personal and cultural values, how it transforms decision-making abilities within and outside organizations, how it empowers and challenges our communication skills. Students will gain insights that will inform not only their relationship to current technologies but for evolving ones as well. Students will also be exposed to techniques that they can use to become more mindful of their relationships with technology and to help others become more mindful whether in the work place or at home.
This course is for people who have an interest in the use and impact of personal technologies. An aptitude for the actual use of technology or programming skills is not required.