Socioinformatics (B.Sc./M.Sc.)

The Department of Computer Science offers Bachelor's/Master's Courses of Studies "Socioinformatics" since 2013.
Both courses of studies received accreditation from the ASIIN.

In recent years it has become increasingly obvious that software systems have the potential to make profound social changes. Examples of this are new means of communication on social network platforms such as Facebook, the software LiquidFeedback used by the Pirate Party of Germany (a political party in Germany) for its democratical decision-making process and also software which is predominantly used behind the scenes such as the smart programmes for buying and selling shares on the stock exchange at top speed, enabling share values to be destroyed within minutes.

Sozioinformatik It is already evident from these examples that not everyone will immediately like every computer-assisted information processing. Some software projects are doomed to failure from the outset, for example the idea of evaluating a person's creditworthiness by checking who their contacts are on social network platforms. After this research idea became public in 2012 there was so much resistance to it that the project was quickly abandoned by the people and institutes involved.

It is clear that software today is no longer a simple product but that it is embedded in a very specific social context. Human - organisation - society and software form a complex socio-technical system, bringing new research questions and areas of application with it.

In order to meet the growing demand for socialinformatics scientists, the Department of Computer Science in collaboration with the Departments of Business Studies and Economics and Social Sciences at the TU Kaiserslautern is offering the first bachelor and master degree course in Socioinformatics in Germany from the winter semester 2013/14.

The degree

Socioinformatics mainly deals with the analysis and modelling of the interaction between society and computer science, the co-evolution of social norms and processes and the supporting software. In order to understand this interaction the below subjects are covered in the bachelor and master degree courses Socialinformatics:

  • the essential basics of computer science,
  • methods from empirical social research and psychology,
  • economists' micro-economic and game theory models,
  • a profound ethical view in dialogue with philosophy,
  • last but not least a good understanding of legal situations.

In computer science the focus is on new models which should help to meet the specific challenges of social embedded software. Correspondingly the computer science part of the degree course includes in particular software engineering methods, lectures about information and communication systems, project management and web-based software systems (Web 2.0, internet security...). In order to integrate this extensive knowledge into one degree course, some other lectures such as advanced maths, theory of computer science and the technical basics of computers have been left out of this course.

Bachelor degree course

The bachelor degree course Socialinformatics is a three year university degree course where students gain fundamental specialist knowledge and skills related to the specification and evaluation of software systems and the realisation of software development projects with particular reference to social context. The social sciences, business studies and economics part of the bachelor degree course focuses on the areas sociology, computer science and society, basic economics and law. The education in computer science with social sciences, business studies and economics prepares students for the subsequent master degree course in Socialinformatics.
The course offers a university degree with job qualification and the qualification to do a further research-oriented degree course.

Due to the international orientation of the subject computer science some lectures towards the end of the bachelor degree course are offered in English.

The course plan provides information about aims, structure, duration, volume, organisation, exams and the planned study modules [more ...]
Module Handbook restricted to Modules which appear in the Studyplan of the Bachelor's Course of Studies "Social Computing" [more ...]
Durch ein paar notwendige Änderungen (insbesondere die neu gestalteten Rechtsvorlesungen) [more ...]
The steps towards your application and enrollment Bachelor´s course of study. [more ...]

Master degree course

The consecutive master degree course Socioinformatics is a two year university degree course which requires knowledge from the bachelor degree course Sozioinformatics.
Students doing this course in particular gain skills in the specification and empirical evaluation of software systems as well as the realisation of software development projects with particular reference to social context.

The degree course focuses on the communication and application of profound knowledge in areas of computer science, economics and social sciences. The computer science part of the course focuses on software engineering and intelligent systems. The social sciences part of the course concentrates on philosophy and psychology. The focus in economics is on business studies, e-business and start-up management.

Students are taught to research level in computer science areas. Students who graduate successfully with a master are qualified to do independent further training according to the level of research in the chosen areas. In addition they gain the skills to independently carry out scientific work. Graduates of this course qualify for demanding jobs in economics and can be admitted to do a PhD.

The course plan provides information about aims, structure, duration, volume, organisation, exams and the planned study modules [more ...]
Module Handbook restricted to Modules which appear in the Studyplan of the Consecutive Master's Course of Studies "Social Computing" [more ...]
The steps towards your application and enrollment Master's course of study. [more ...]

Any more questions?

If you are a social computer scientist who wants to form society with the help of computer science please contact us to arrange a consultation.

Course support and advice
Prof. Dr. Katharina Zweig
Gebäude 48, Raum 672
Sprechstunde nach Vereinbarung
Tel.: 0631/205-3346
E-Mail: zweig@cs.uni-kl.de

General degree support and advice

Dr. habil. Bernd Schürmann
Gebäude 48, Raum 373
Sprechstunde nach Vereinbarung
Tel.: 0631/205-2507
E-Mail: schuerma@cs.uni-kl.de

Further Informations

The professors of the department are assigned to 7 teaching areas of the Bachelor’s course of studies. [more ...]
Examination regulations [more ...]
Blog about Socialinformatics [more ...]