Frequently Asked Questions


Q. I need a course with ethics content. What options are there?

A. Check with your departmental advisor, who can let you know of any specific requirements. In general, however, we have several options available. In Spring 2014:

  • STS 2413 D (2711), Engineering and Ethics, T/Th 2:00-3:15
  • PL 2143 A (1983), Ethics and Technology, T/Th 9:30–10:50
  • PL 2141 B (1984) Ethics and Technology, T/Th, 11:00-12:20


Q. What minors does the Department of Technology, Culture and Society offer?

A. Each degree program has a minor: Integrated Digital Media, Sustainable Urban Environments, and Science and Technology Studies.

It is also possible to get a minor in one of the subject areas offered by the department by taking a minimum of 15 credits in one field (such as English, history, philosophy, or psychology).

Q. What NYU minors are available to the School of Engineering students?

A. These are not administered by TCS. Cross-school minors that will be available starting in Fall 2012. More information is available at:

General Education

Q. I’m a non-TCS major.How many humanities and social sciences do I need to take to fulfill the humanities and social science General Education Requirement?

A. As an the School of Engineering student, you must take 26 credits of TCS courses consisting of the following:

  • Two First-Year Writing Courses (offered at the School of Engineering by the NYU Expository Writing Program):
    • EXPOS-UA 1 - Writing the Essay, Credits: 4.00
    • EXPOS-UA 2 - The Advance College Essay, Credits: 4.00
  • 16 additional credits of humanities and social science electives (see below for types of electives you must take).

Q. What electives do I need to take?

A. The 16 humanities and social science electives you take can be within a single cluster, or across multiple clusters. The list of electives spans three clusters: CAM, STS, SEG (visit the Cluster Requirements page to learn more about clusters). For optimal breadth experience, TCS encourages students to take electives across clusters, and/or across disciplines within a cluster. In addition to taking cluster courses, you must follow these requirements when selecting your electives:

  • At least 1 course must be a 3xxx or 4xxx level humanities or social science elective
  • At least 1 course must be a writing-intensive elective (if you enrolled before Fall 2009, you’re exempt from this requirement). Note: Writing-intensive electives are designated by "W" in the course schedule for that semester.

Q. I enrolled before Fall 2009. What requirements am I exempt from?

A. You:

  • do not have to satisfy the writing-intensive requirement
  • are not required to take HI2104-Modern World History

Q. I’ve partially completed my First-Year Writing Requirement and I enrolled before 2009. What do I do now?

A. Please contact the Expository Writing Program.

Q. Who can take a 1-credit course in the TCS department?

A. 1-credit courses are available only for students in a limited number of circumstances due to the conversion to 3-credit humanities and social science electives. In general, you are not eligible to take a 1-credit course in the TCS department if you came to Poly in the Fall 2009 semester or later or if you are a transfer student. Any humanities or social science course from TCS can have added to it an extra 1-credit component, just so long as the student requesting it has an unfavorable balance of 3- and 4-credit humanities and social science classes. To request permission to sign up for a 1-credit course, fill out our online form.

Q. I only need X number more of humanities and social science credits/courses to graduate. What should I register for?

A. I need…

4 more humanities/social science credits:
You can enroll in any 3-credit humanities or social science elective and, depending on the level of the class, also enroll in one of the following STS courses for 1 additional credit (the instructor of the 3-credit course will also be listed as the instructor of the 1-credit STS class and will assign you an extra credit's worth of work): STS2411-Special Topics in STS or STS3411-Special Topics in STS.

2 more credits:
Take a 3-credit TCS course

2 more 4-credit courses:
Take three, 3-credit courses, OR if necessary (but not optimally), you may register for two 3-credit courses and two 1-credit additions

3 more 4-credit courses:
Take four 3-credit courses

4 more 4-credit courses:
Take five 3-credit courses plus one 1-credit addition

Q. Where can I find a list of 3-credit courses and the 4-credit electives they replaced?

A. Follow this link to view a full list of replacement electives.

Q. Where can I find additional information about First-Year Writing Programs?

A. Please contact Richard Larson, available at 718-260-3299 or LC104A, about the Expository Writing Program at the School of Engineering.