Launching in fall 2020, the Data and Society minor builds on the sucess of Data Analytics in Student Hands (DASH), a co-curricular Honors College program focused on engaging undergradaute students in projects designed to use data to address community needs. The new minor combines critical thinking with real world engagement to create relevant skills for interpreting and understanding data science. Students will gain a basic understanding of data science approaches and how they impact humanities informed decision-making. The humanities emphasis allows students to see the broad social impact of data science, including how the new techniques are embedded in broader economic and political systems, while integration of basic data analytics techniques and a project-based curriculum engages the students in skills acquisition and exposes them to the best use of data science to address important challenges in today’s world.
A key feature of the Data and Society minor is a set of close partnerships across the University of Houston and local community with individuals and organizations working on responsive engagement projects. These partners provide a powerful context for learning about role data can play in understanding and shaping the world. As with all minors in the Honors College, the courses are grounded in cross-disciplinary approaches and open to all students, regardless of affiliation.