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Biomedical Ethics

This course develops students’ critical thinking about dilemmas in medicine and health care policy, such as those that arise around allocation of scarce resources, criteria for organ transplants, informed consent, experimentation on human subjects, AIDS research, embryo research and selective termination of pregnancy, euthanasia, and physician-assisted suicide. Through such cases the course introduces methods in moral reasoning, rights-based reasoning, decision-making under uncertainty, and utilitarianism in classic and contemporary normative reasoning. This course will take an approach towards biomedical ethics that is heavily informed by empirical ethics and situation-based approached to ethical considerations of bio-medicine and technology. Dr. Mark Robinson University of Massachusetts Boston View Syllabus

Science & Popular Movements

Science & Popular Movements This class focuses on the ways that different kinds of social movements have engaged science and technology. It focuses on examples from environmentalism and medical research to find examples of “popular science” where scientists and non-scientists interact in surprising ways: 1) where non-scientists challenge scientists’ authority and knowledge, 2) where scientists act like a social movement, and 3) where scientists and regular people work together, sometimes cooperatively and sometimes competitively, to generate knowledge. Dr. Aaron Panofsky University of California Los Angeles

Problems of Identity at the Biology-Society Interface

This course will explore the entanglement of biological and social concepts in knowledge about racial and ethnic variation among human populations. The course compares the population genetics understanding of population variation and groupings to the sociological and anthropological conception of the social construction of race and ethnicity. Dr. Aaron Panofsky University of California Los Angeles Syllabus