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Course Description

How can science help address the key challenges in our society?

How does society affect the way that science is conducted?

Do citizens have a strong enough understanding of science and its methods to answer questions like these?

In the Winter 2018 term, the School of Interdisciplinary Science is offering Science 2M03: Science for the Global Citizen, a new course designed to explore those questions and more. In this blended-learning course, students from all faculties will examine the links between science and the larger society through live guest lecturers and evidence-based online discussions.

This course is open to students enrolled in Level II or above in any program. No scientific background is needed, only an interest in becoming a more engaged and informed citizen. The new course will cover a broad range of contemporary scientific issues with significant political, economic, social, and health implications.

This year’s module topics include:

Module 1 - Ocean vs. Space Exploration
Module 2 - Antibiotic Resistance
Module 3 - GMOs and Dietary Choices
Module 4 - Artificial Intelligence
Module 5 - Students Select Module Topic

This course has been developed in collaboration with a team of instructors and developers from the School of Interdisciplinary Science (Science Librarian, Life Science and iSci instructors), science media specialists and student partners. Together, we will examine the basic scientific theories and concepts behind these topical scientific and societal issues, and highlight the application and interpretation of science in popular media and public policy.

After taking this course, students from all academic backgrounds will have a better understanding of how science is conducted, how knowledge changes, and how we can become better consumers of scientific information and more informed citizens.


This course is open to students in all faculties registered in level II or above; there are no prerequisite courses.


Dr. Kim Dej, Dr. Chad Harvey, Dr. Rosa da Silva, and Dr. Sarah Symons

Lecture Times

Monday & Wednesday 8:30 am - 9:20 am

Learning outcomes

In this course students will…

-Engage in constructive, evidence-based discourse on contemporary scientific topics (scientific communication).

-Gain comfort in interpreting scientific calculations and data (numeracy) used to support discussions.

-Develop familiarity with contemporary scientific issues, the concepts they are founded on, and the conceptual research behind them.

-Develop and practice the skill of communicating science in different formats: oral, written, graphic, or other in order to produce a document that is applicable within your field of study.

For more information about this course contact Jess Knox (
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) or Dr. Kim Dej (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).

Course Outline 



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General Sciences Building, Room 105
McMaster University
1280 Main Street West Hamilton ON L8N 3Z5