What's in a name? Updating history of technology course titles

Jonathan Coopersmith's picture

I want to update the titles of my history of technology classes to attract a wider audience.  Currently I teach History of Technology in America and History of Technology & Engineering in Western Civilization.

Any thoughts on these titles or better ideas?  Do I need the "History of"? 

History of Technology in America

History of Technology, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship in America

History of Technology and Innovation in America

 

History of Technology in the World since 1450

History of Technology and Innovation in the World since 1450

 

Many thanks.

Jonathan Coopersmith, Department of HIstory, Texas A&M University, j-coopersmith@tamu.edu

 

What about "Technology in America: A History"?

Here are some suggestions:

Technology in American Culture {or} Technology in American History

Technology, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship in American Culture {or} Technology, Innovation, and Entrepreneurship in American History

Technology and Innovation in American Culture {or} Technology and Innovation in American History

Technology in the World since 1450

Technology and Innovation in the World since 1450

Perhaps drop "History" form your course title, since your catalog system's course numbering already indicates it is a history course, right? That allows more room in your title for the course theme. For example, "Modern American Technology and Culture" (which is still a little long, but . . . )
Kevin.

Another good option -- thank you!

Total side note for those who teach liberal arts students rather than "STEM" students (I've done both), Don't worry about the "history" part....but never put "technology" in the title if you want enrollment (The students you get will be from departments like "Basket Weaving" that decide to give their students "Science" credit for your course.)

Adding anchor points would be one way to spice it up a bit. E.g.:

"American Technology from the Flint Lock to TikTok"
"Technology on the American Continent from Kayaks to Cloning"

"Global Technology from the Printing Press to CRISPR"
"Technology and Society from the Loom to Zoom"

You can probably drop in more appropriate and/or snappier anchors, but in the movie playing in my head, that's the sort of thing that causes a student browsing the online catalogue to stop and read the course description.

Another strategy might be to reference big philosophical themes, e.g.:

"Technology and American Identity"
"Global Technology and the Human Condition, 1450–2020"

Mike Geselowitz is onto something. Our colleagues teaching business history have had success labeling their courses as "HIstory of Capitalism."