Thomas Cornell Headshot

Thomas Cornell

Professor
Department of Science, Technology, and Society
College of Liberal Arts

585-475-6029
Office Location

Thomas Cornell

Professor
Department of Science, Technology, and Society
College of Liberal Arts

Education

BA, Rhodes College; MS, Georgia Institute of Technology; Ph.D., Johns Hopkins University

Bio

B.A. Physics, Rhodes College
M.S. Physics, Georgia Institute of Technology
Ph.D. History of Science, Johns Hopkins University

Research Interests: particle accelerators (e.g., cyclotrons and Van de Graaff generators) in the 1930s; the history of the physical sciences in the U. S. since the Civil War; and the role of science and technology in American society

Courses: Science, Technology and Values; The Natural Sciences in Western History; Technology in American History; Face of the Land

585-475-6029

Currently Teaching

STSO-346
3 Credits
This course explores the development of technology in American history, from the time of first contact between Europeans and Native Americans to the present. It emphasizes, for different periods in American history: the technological contributions of individuals or distinctive groups, the main features of important technological systems, and the way technology shaped--and was shaped by--the social, economic, and political institutions of the time.)
STSO-140
3 Credits
This course explores the concepts and effects of science and technology on society, analyzes the relationship between science and technology, examines how each has come to play a major role today, and looks at how science and technology have affected and been affected by our values. This course also considers the environmental aspects of science and technology. Science and technology are often assumed to be value free, yet people, guided by individual and societal values, develop the science and technology. In turn, the choices people make among the opportunities provided by science and technology are guided by their individual values.
STSO-321
3 Credits
Based on field trips and critical readings, this course explores how the land around us has been shaped and reshaped through a variety of geological forces and historical developments. By considering the natural landforms of the United States (and other countries, as appropriate), students see how the nature of land has determined its value. As technological innovations occur, old relationships with the land have been altered. Thus the course offers students a historical approach to the relationship of technology and society, as evidence by the landscape. The seminar format for this course will also advance students' writing, speaking, and research skills.
STSO-445
3 Credits
This course explores the development of the natural sciences in Western history, from ancient times to the present. It emphasizes how astronomy, physics, chemistry, and biology have changed over time, and it seeks to place those changes in their social, economic, cultural, and religious contexts.