Checking date: 30/05/2022

Course: 2022/2023

Knowledge Society
Study: Bachelor in Humanities (213)

Coordinating teacher: HERAS HERRERO, BEATRIZ DE LAS

Department assigned to the subject: Department of Humanities: Geography, Contemporary History and Art

Type: Electives
ECTS Credits: 6.0 ECTS


Requirements (Subjects that are assumed to be known)
No particular requirement
Science and technology are shaping today's society. The result is the emergence of a new way of installing human beings in the world and, consequently, of a new model of society. We are in a period of transition, which we call in different ways depending on the degree of commitment we wish to achieve: post-industrial society, information society, technological society, digital society¿. A transition that is leading to what is already being heralded as the knowledge society. The subject therefore studies a process of change, of profound change that is being experienced, and which, consequently, is not finished. This requires a dynamic view of the study and not a snapshot of the present moment. The subject should therefore provide the student with the ability to: - Observe and value the presence of science and technology in today's world and their proximity at all levels of social life. - Perceive the processes of change to which the different activities in society and, of course, individuals are subject. - To reflect on concepts that are indispensable for understanding change, such as crisis, innovation, risk, obsolescence, uncertainty, maladjustment, etc., and to assimilate them for use as instruments for analysing situations in today's world. - To practice a dynamic vision of social phenomena, however current they may be, which leads to analysing them bearing in mind that they have undergone a process of evolution up to now and that the future is present in the form of imbalances, of problems that will be generators of future events. - To represent an immediate scenario different from the current one in which knowledge constitutes the main wealth of a society and the main reorganiser of its structures. And at the same time the generator of new inequalities and dependencies between populations. - To open up to transdisciplinarity as a way of tackling the situations of complex societies. - Understanding that transitions are always diffuse both in their manifestations and in their boundaries, and thus developing a practice of analysis of change that is different from compartmentalisation. These skills also provide useful competences not only for the intellectual training needed to understand today's world, but also for professional activity, whatever it may be, as it provides an understanding of change, permanent innovation, the role of knowledge¿ and thus prepares for the challenges that every profession will face.
Skills and learning outcomes
Description of contents: programme
-An introductory part aimed at focusing the subject as a transdisciplinary study. The concept of transdisciplinarity and how it is reflected in the approach of the course. Accompanying it is an overview of the debate and the different interpretations being made on the subject. -A historical study of the process of the emergence of the new society. This leads to a search in industrial society for the symptoms, the beginnings, which herald the transformation, and then the development of the elements which are to become the axes of the transition to a new model. -A description of the characteristics of the knowledge society. To determine the features which, despite the short time that has elapsed - for the historical scales - are already to be found in the society that it points to and which allow it to be differentiated from the industrial society from which it has evolved. And special attention is paid to the transformations taking place in the economy, politics, culture and education. -An analysis of the challenges facing the knowledge society in the 21st century through the identification of its main current problems
Learning activities and methodology
The teaching methodology will include: (1) Lectures to expose: A) General lines that organise the treatment of the subject of the subject, so that the student obtains a coherent, discursive vision of its development. It constitutes the framework of the subject. B) The most recent contributions on any point dealt with in the subject. Oral transmission requires an attitude of reception, an effort on the part of the person receiving the information, which must be practised continuously. It is also possible to present with expressive intensity global visions of a subject, essential as a basis for articulating the particular studies that are achieved with the readings and the work on the educational platform. (2) These lectures are supplemented by further seminar sessions in order to develop through dialogue aspects that need to be discussed, expanded or explained in more detail. Training in oral communication is indispensable in today's world; seminar work makes it possible to speak clearly and precisely, and to listen carefully to the needs of the dialogue. Seminars make it possible to perceive the needs of the learner in terms of reinforcing explanations or extending what has already been said. (3) Continuous work on an educational platform containing: A) Multimedia material (recordings of previous lectures, conferences or other academic activities) related to the subject. B) Texts written by the teacher or published. C) Complementary documentation uploaded to the Web. D) Discussion forums. E) Wiki space for group work. There are parts of the content that are best achieved and assimilated through individual work. They are channelled through the screen space. Here the student has access to multimedia material that is difficult or impossible to obtain with such ease and ubiquity outside the Net. This accessibility is effective with continuous and intense personal work habits. Communication spaces such as forums and wiki help the development of written communication (concise, precise, correct and argued), debate and collaborative work. Special value is given to the wiki space: from a text written by the teacher, students incorporate (through hypertext links) contributions that expand or document this text. All these combined forms of communication, joint or individual work seek, in addition to reinforcing the general competences already mentioned: A) The development of the ability to observe the manifestations offered by the subject's objective of study: a changing world and towards a new way of settling the human being in this world. B) The development of the ability to reflect, to abstract from the data provided by this observation. C) The ability to construct a discourse and, therefore, the ability to communicate as a result of this reflection. (4) Reading the bibliography.
Assessment System
  • % end-of-term-examination 60
  • % of continuous assessment (assigments, laboratory, practicals...) 40
Calendar of Continuous assessment
Basic Bibliography
  • BELL, DANIEL. LEl advenimiento de la sociedad post-industrial. Un intento de pronosis social. Alianza. 2001
  • CASTELLS, MANUEL . La era de la información. Economía, Sociedad y Cultura. Alianza. 1996
  • DRUCKER, PETER F. . Landmarks of Tomorrow. Harper. 1959
  • EVERS. HANS-Dieter. Culturas Epistemológicas: Hacia una Nueva Sociología del Conocimiento. Universität Bielefeld. Fakultät für Soziologie. 2000
  • GIBBONS, MICHAEL; LIMOGES, CAMILLE; NOWOTNY, HELGA; SCHWARTZMAN, SIMON; SCOTT, PETER y TROW, MARTIN. The new production of knowledge. The dynamics of science and research in contemporary societies. London/Thousand Oaks/New Dehli. 1994
  • LANE, ROBERT E. . The Decline of Politics and Ideology in a Knowledgeable Society. American Sociological Review 21. 1966
Recursos electrónicosElectronic Resources *
Additional Bibliography
  • Antonio Rodríguez de las Heras. La red es un bosque. ALT. 2017
(*) Access to some electronic resources may be restricted to members of the university community and require validation through Campus Global. If you try to connect from outside of the University you will need to set up a VPN

The course syllabus may change due academic events or other reasons.