Describe the history and evolution of the Web both as a social and technical communication system
Assess the role of the Web in economy, society, and culture
Debate controversial issues relating to the Web such as Net Neutrality
Reflect upon the impact of novel technologies such as the Semantic Web and the Internet of Things on the Web
Explore the role of governance in creating a fairer and more effective Web
You may already be an avid user of the Web, but this introduction to Web Science will help you better understand it as both a social and technical system – a global information infrastructure, built from the interactions of people and technologies.
This free online course is based on our experience of trying to understand how the Web has grown and changed through technical innovation, economics, politics and everyday use.
Explore the past and future of the Web
In Week 1, we’ll ask what would happen if the Web was switched off right now. We’ll use this question to explore the history of the Internet and find out why we’re so dependent on it today. You’ll have the opportunity to contribute to the course, by telling us how you use the Web in your part of the world.
In Week 2, we’ll look to the future, finding out how emerging trends – including big data, the semantic web and the Internet of Things – will change both the infrastructure of the Web and the ways in which we use it.
By following this course, you will have a greater understanding of the Web and begin to develop skills for the digital era – skills that are useful for everyday life and widely sought by the technology-driven employers of today.
Learn with well-known experts in Web Science
You’ll learn with well-known experts from the University of Southampton’s Web Science Institute, including lead educators, Professors Leslie Carr and Susan Halford, and contributors, Professors Dame Wendy Hall and Sir Nigel Shadbolt.
They will provide you with an understanding of the way that the technology of the Web interacts with our economy, society and culture. Other University of Southampton Web Science courses are an Introduction to Linked Data and the Semantic Web and The Power of Social Media.
Web Science: concept of both a social and technical system
Factors influencing the history of the Web
The Web around the world: global differences
Access to the web: universal access and net neutrality
Next steps for the web: the Semantic Web and the Internet of Things
The Web we want: suggestions for improving the existing Web
Web Science: where is research leading us?
This course is aimed at anyone who wishes to further their understanding of the way that the technology of the Web interacts with our economy, society and culture.