Issues in Science

How should we decide who will get organ transplants when the need exceeds supply? Is it ethical for physicians to provide lethal doses of medication to the terminally ill?  Should parents be allowed to withhold medical treatment from children on religious grounds? These are the sorts of questions addressed in this discussion-based seminar that focuses on scientifically anchored ethical dilemmas. Students use the formal principles of bioethics to refine arguments. The course draws upon a wide variety of academic and popular media sources to examine how scientific research is changing our understanding of the world, and how society, in turn, is being transformed by scientific tools.
Past STEM research topics include:
  • The engineering of proteins to enhance pharmaceutical drug discover
  • Analysis of microbial communities to enhance fuel projection from biomass
  • Optimization of vaccines against the N. meningitis bacterium
  • The role of vitamin D in cancer prevention and treatment
  • The design of microfluidic devices to be used in metastatic cancer cell detection
  • The investigation of cellular complexity using magnetotactic bacteria
  • Effects of COVID-19 on fertility and birth outcomes
  • Pathogen tracking, disease modeling, and contact tracing
  • The impact of climate change on human health and the development of adaptive health strategies.

mens conscia recti

a mind aware of what is right