With more than 2.8 billion social media users worldwide digital media, social media platforms and the networks established in these platforms shape and impact our social world. This means that digital media has an influence on the issues that traditional sociological studies have been focusing on so far like; labour, stratification, violence, race, class, gender as well as culture and education. By focusing on the sociological as well as cultural aspects of these new modes of digital communication, this course aims to understand how the core sociological questions are being transformed/effected by emerging technologies around the globe in general and in Norway in specific. To understand the social, psychological and cultural implications of digital media we will study governments, institutions, individuals as well as groups and their use of digital technologies.
Course description for study year 2021-2022. Please note that changes may occur.
Upon completion of the course, students are expected to have acquired knowledge of
What digital culture, cyberculture means;
The impact of digital in everyday life;
The new forms of public life - citizenship and surveillance;
Network culture and traditional demographic factors (gender / race / class).
In this course, the students will obtain
Ability to discuss different perspectives on digital culture and society,
Ability to think sociologically the relationships between digital culture and society
In this course, the students will develop an understanding of digitalisation, internet and their impact on our everyday lives - information management, privacy and identity, cyber terrorism and bullying - as well as government use of social media and its implications - surveillance, control and propaganda.
The subject of digital culture and society deals with issues raised by classical sociological theory and methodology by studying institutions (ie governments, ministries), peoples (ie individuals) and groups (ie feminist activists, environmentalists). By focusing on cultural and sociological impacts of new / digital / social media the course is also in line with UN Sustainable development goals 1 (no poverty), 3 (good health and well-being), 4 (quality education), 5 (gender equality), 8 (decent work and economic growth), 9 (industry, innovation and infrastructure), 10 (reduced inequalities), 11 (sustainable cities and communities), 15 (life on land) and 16 (peace, justice and institutions) . This course draws a link between these listed UN Sustainable goals and digital culture by looking at its interaction through: 1) gender and new media; 2) democracy, surveillance and privacy on social media networks; 3) poverty, stratification and social media through a critical lens.
Required prerequisite knowledge
Form of assessment
A - F
Group Projects:In this course the students are expected to complete a group project where teams of 2-3 students study the overreaching questions addressed in this course. The students are expected to demonstrate the following points presented below:
• Demonstrate critical thinking in developing the ideas and your research questions.
• Practice doing social science research.
• Understand the impact of digital technologies on our everyday lives.
In summary teams are expected to cover a topic related to digital culture and its impact on our society and everyday lives , and you are free to use materials like songs, videos, digital media resources, newspaper article analyzes to make your project interesting. Presentation:The two weeks of class will be devoted to public presentations of your final products. The group projects can be in audio, video, power point or ideally some combination of all these. (Do take advantage of your group members' collective skills!). Your presentation should be substantive and focus on one aspect of Digital Culture and Society but should also be engaging and creative and fun! It's ideal if it's something you'd enjoy preparing and presenting and learning about it and also something you'd want to read, watch, or listen to if someone else presented it! If you choose to do a video or prepare a pamphlet you should also be able to show and explain why have chosen to do it. Also: i) You should be able to position your presentation within the general content of the course, ii) What is your critical question within Digital Culture and Society you are asking?iii) What is interesting about your research?Group projects are a good way to learn about the course through the process you conduct the research. It will allow you to think about the course in general and what you would like to focus on specific. As it involves collaboration and teamwork, the exchange of ideas with your team members will help you think about things in a different way!The goal of this group project is to give you an opportunity to demonstrate some of the basic ideas at the Digital Culture and Society Course and apply them to some contemporary features of the social world. Group projects are an excellent way to absorb the topics discussed in the course through the process you conduct the research. It will allow you to think about the course in general and what you would like to focus on specific. As it involves collaboration and teamwork, the exchange of ideas with your team members will help you think about things in a different way!- This is a compulsory work to get registered for the examination.A written exam: 4 days. AF.
This can be about a deeper exploration of something covered in class, or not covered but you are curious to discover. Students will work on this question in groups and will present their paper to the class. In this project, as long as they cover a topic related to digital media. Students are free to use materials like songs, videos, digital media resources, news-paper article analyzes to make your project interesting. This is a compulsory work to get registered for the examination.
The format of the course is organized as a series of lecture seminars, guest lectures as well as group work and presentations. Active student participation and class discussions are important tools for achieving individual skills for becoming social scientists who can critique and question everyday life events.