California State University Dominguez Hills - Department of Computer Science

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  CSC 301- 01 & 02            Computers and Society                Fall 2017




Major students in CSC (B.S.) and CTC (B.A.) may substitute this course for the General Education Area F2 Integrative Studies in the Natural Sciences requirement (3 units). Please contact the University Advisement Center to request the course substitution.

Last revised August 17, 2017

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Reminder: Please, no food no drinks in the classroom.

Proper attire required - please,  no tank-tops.

Course Description

Professor: Marek A. Suchenek, Ph.D.

Teaching Assistant: TBA

Classes meet: 

Section 01: TuTh 7:00 - 8:15 PM in SBS E122

Section 02: MoWe 11:30 AM - 12:45 PM in WH D176

Office hours: (subject to change)

August 21 - December 5, 2017, only, excluding holidays and recess

Obligatory texts:

Baase, S.: A Gift of Fire: Social, Legal, and Ethical Issues for Computers and the Internet, (4th ed. is required; the students may use 3rd edition, instead, at their own risk), Prentice Hall, 2012 (web info at:


and ), and

Suchenek, M.  A.: "On the Software Patenting Controversy"

The Constitution of the U.S.

Suchenek, M. A.: Computers and Society

ACM Code of Ethics

Additional reading will be assigned in class.


CSC101, or CSC111, or CSC115, or CSC 121, or CIS 270, or consent of instructor.

Prerequisites by topic: Familiarity with programming or IT.

Course description

This interdisciplinary course covers ethical, legal, psychological, economic, political, societal, and theoretical implications and limitations of the uses of digital computers. It focuses primarily on integration of students’ knowledge within these diverse areas.


To provide introduction to and exposition of complex societal issues related to and/or caused by computers and their rapid proliferation, with particular emphasis on ethical, legal, psychological, economic, political, and theoretical implications and limitations of the uses of digital computers, the Internet, and computer-based information technology.

Expected Outcomes

Upon completion of this course, the student will have a general understanding of complex societal issues related to and/or caused by computers and their rapid proliferation. The student will possess a basic knowledge of legal and ethical principles and codes that apply to these issues. Moreover, the student will acquire ability to research, analyze, and criticize positions and opinions about these issues. The knowledge learned in this course is supposed to provide a guidance in student's future professional endeavors. Other particular objectives are listed in the textbook at the beginning of each covered chapter (see Syllabus).


Class attendance is obligatory even if roll is not called. Those absent, disruptive, inappropriately behaving, or late may lose credit for attendance and miss assignments. It is student's sole responsibility to find out what was covered and assigned during the classes he/she missed.

Tests and Examination

Each covered chapter will conclude with a multiple-choice test. The date of each test will be announced one class in advance, so be prepared.

Each test requires one scantron form 882-E that you are required to purchase and bring with you to class.

The comprehensive final examination (multiple-choice) will cover the material discussed in class and assigned readings.


Presence and conduct: 10%

Tests: 40%

Final: 50%

Grading The following are the minimal requirements for any given letter grade.

A : 90%

A- : 85%

B+ : 80%

B : 75%

B- : 70%

C+ : 65%

C : 60%

C- : 55%

D+ : 50%

D : 45%

F : 0%

ADA statement

Students with disabilities, who believe they may need an academic adjustment in this class, are encouraged to contact Disabled Student Services as soon as possible to better ensure receipt of timely adjustments.

Classroom decorum

Student behavior in class is expected to be respectful and appropriate and not disruptive to the learning environment.

Inappropriate or disruptive behavior includes, but is not limited to, coming to class late, leaving class early, talking to other students or walking in front of the classroom while the professor is lecturing, talking on cell phones, texting or using Skype during class, being rude and disrespectful to the instructor or fellow students, reading non-class materials (newspaper, magazines, etc. on line or hard copy) while in class and sleeping.

Electronic devices not allowed in class:

Cellular telephones, CD players, radios, iPods, and similar devices are to be turned off while in class. No exceptions.

Dress code

Please, dress appropriately for a university class. Tank-tops are not allowed.

Academic Integrity

Students are reminded of the university policy with regard to scholastic honesty. In this class, submission for credit of any assignment, program, test, or examination that is not the student's original work or contains portions of someone else's work without being clearly and specifically identified as such, as well as cheating on tests or examination, are violations that will automatically yield zero credit for the submitted work and may also result in an F grade in the course or in university disciplinary action, or both.

CSUDH Academic Inegrity policies are listed in the Catalog. You are supposed to know what they are, including definitions of cheating, plagiarism, and dishonesty. A link below has been provided for your conveninece:

Here are links to additional materials on plagiarism. I strongly recommend that you familiarize yourself with these as well.

Student Academic Appeals Process

Authority and responsibility for assigning grades to students rests with the faculty. A grade appeal is permitted when a student can show clear evidence that a grade was contrary to procedures as specified in the course syllabus, was based on prejudice, was capricious, or was the result of computational or clerical error. The presumption is that the grades assigned are correct until there is a clear demonstration otherwise. The burden of proof is heavy, and it rests with the student who is appealing.





 Please, contact me right away if you have any questions.




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