Technology, Science and Society (TeSS)

TeSS is a new certificate study programme at BTU

It is the acronym for Technology, Science, and Society, the programme is rooted in the academic field of Science and Technology Studies (STS).
The study programme prepares students for the deliberative processes in society about a responsible and sustainable use of science and technology in our knowledge societies. It fosters critical reflexive thinking and deepens the understanding of the historical, political and ethical dimensions of technical objects, infrastructures and fabrication. Students work in a highly international and interdisciplinary environment, they learn techniques for lifelong learning, and build a community of practice. These competences are confirmed with a Diploma of Advanced Studies (DAS) and a certificate “Technology in Society”.

What are the requirements?

The program is a part-time certificate program that requires at least a first professional degree (usually a bachelor's degree). It is also possible to complete the certificate program during or after a master's/diploma program. In addition, you can also complete the program during your bachelor's degree after consultation. Das Zertifikat erhalten Sie dann, sobald Sie Ihr Bachelor-Studium abgeschlossen haben.

How to enroll?

This is a different procedure than enrolling as a regular student. You conclude a so-called study contract with BTU. To do so, please contact Viola Bernhard at ZWW .
The entire certificate program lasts (at least) 2 semesters (36 ECTS). You must take only two compulsory modules, all others are elective modules. 
There are costs of 280€.
Important note: The modules listed in the TeSS module catalog can be credited twice, first for the certificate program and also for the degree program in which you are enrolled (if the module is approved there).

More information can also be found on the ZWW website. 
You are welcome to ask further questions via e-mail to (adiminstrative) or to Prof. Schwarz (contents and structure)

Additional Information 

TeSS and “STS”
STS is an acronym for „Science and Technology Studies“, which is a relatively new academic field. Historically, it is rooted in a critical move of historians, sociologists, and philosophers in the 1960s (Cold War, environmental catastrophies, globalization phenomena) that became interested in the relationship between scientific knowledge, technological systems, and society. Today, it is a field that copes with many different mathods and research questions which can be assigned to basically two work areas: one is asking for the impacts and control of science and technology, and deals with risks and benefits, with governance questions and technological decisionmaking. The other one is interested in questions about the theory and practice of scientific knowledge, what makes scientific facts credible, what is the specifity of scientific practice, how to distinguish science from parascience or magic and why should we do that, what will change when "open science" or participatory formats of scientific practice become increasingly important? 
STS seeks to overcome the disciplinary divisions, particularly between the so-called two cultures that is of the humanities (interpretive inquiry) and the natural sciences (rational analysis). Accordingly, STS teaching enables interdisciplinary experiences, it seeks at a cross-disciplinary integration, it promotes civic engagement, and is commited to critical thinking.

"STS research, teaching, and outreach offer citizens of modern, high-tech societies the resources with which to evaluate—analytically, esthetically, and ethically—the benefits and the risks, the perils and the promises, of notable advances in science and technology.“ 
to be continued wtith other statements from other universities

Students about TeSS

Daria Solopova (student Environmental and Research Management ERM)

When I checked the list of modules, I decided that this program was made for me, so interesting it seemed to me. I have already completed some of the modules listed during my master's program and I was satisfied with them. The most important thing for me in learning is the literature going on and the teachers' interest in what they teach. I also like the fact that the TeSS modules are very diverse and will thus attract people from various fields.  At the same time, this program still has its own specifics and that's also great because I can meet people with the same interests and find new friends.

 Mohamed Mostafa (student Heritage Conservation and Site Management HCMS):

TeSS brings together three critical poles; science, technology, and society. It profoundly explores a relatively new societal aspect which is the societal system's proposed changes under the continuous domination of technology, highlighting the pressing need to know and apply new forms of scientific practices to ensure participation and civic engagement. In an environment of academic neutrality, the researcher will be encouraged and given the complete freedom to come up with answers to whether these changes are going to be in favour of society or not, to what extent it is, and what can be done then, which encourages the critical thinking.