Networks 1 - The Network Society

Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

Course Description

  • Course Name

    Networks 1 - The Network Society

  • Host University

    Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam

  • Location

    Amsterdam, The Netherlands

  • Area of Study

    Social Media, Sociology

  • Language Level

    Taught In English

  • Course Level Recommendations


    ISA offers course level recommendations in an effort to facilitate the determination of course levels by credential evaluators.We advice each institution to have their own credentials evaluator make the final decision regrading course levels.

    Hours & Credits

  • ECTS Credits

  • Recommended U.S. Semester Credits
  • Recommended U.S. Quarter Units
  • Overview

    Students who have successfully completed the course "The network society" will have achieved the following learning outcomes:

    A. Knowledge and understanding
    Students will have basic knowledge and understanding of:
    - the concept of the ‘information age,’ the ‘network society’ and how the two are related
    - the concept of ‘social network’
    - the social, political, economic and cultural changes that occur with the spread of networked, digital information and communications technologies
    - major social scientific theories explaining these changes, and the empirical evidence underlying these theories

    B. Applying knowledge and understanding
    Students will have the ability to:
    - give a theoretical explanation of change in specific social domains in relation to the network society, and discuss empirical support for this explanation

    C. Making judgments
    Students will have the ability to:
    - distinguish opinions on the development and the social and political consequences of the network society from scientifically supported research outcomes and theoretical statements.

    D. Learning skills
    Students will be able to:
    - develop a standpoint based on scientific reasoning (theoretical reasoning, empirical support);
    - use scientific knowledge on networks in a verbal debate

    The idea of a "network society" points to a form of society whose social structure is made up of networks powered by technologies. It is seen as typical of the information age, and it summarizes major changes in the way people and groups organize, as well as the most important structures of modern society. These changes affect all levels of society; individual, organizational and societal, and many authors characterize the rise of the network society as revolutionary. Strong opinions exist on the good or bad outcomes of these changes for society of parts of society, and on the desirability of interventions to mitigate such outcomes.

    In this course we explore the meaning of the network society in domains such as economy, law, politics, education, and personal life. We discuss theories explaining any changes that may be occurring, and research that puts these theories to the test. On the basis of this discussion, we explore possibilities and desirability of interventions. The material draws on a wide range of social scientific disciplines, such as communication science, political science, sociology, and anthropology.

    lectures, working groups, in-class assignments

    Written and/or oral examination

    Bachelor students in the Social Sciences (Administrative Science and Organization, Cultural Anthropology, Communication Scinece, Political Science, Sociology)

Course Disclaimer

Courses and course hours of instruction are subject to change.

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