updated 03/27/03 ees
|Honors 306G is designed to encourage an understanding of science and scientific inquiry by exploring the ethical and social issues that face scientists during the process of scientific investigation. Students are exposed to the interdisciplinary nature of contemporary scientific investigation and to the ethical dilemmas that can arise when scientific advances have ambiguous implications for improving the quality of life. The course encompasses topics from many scientific disciplines, including biology, medicine, physics, and computer science. The special themes for Spring 2003 include bioterrorism, environmental ethics, stem cell research, and human cloning. Class sessions emphasize student discussion and use case studies as a format for debate. Participation in this course will encourage the student to develop her/his own ethical views regarding science and technology, and will foster awareness of multiple perspectives on ethical issues in the sciences. This course fulfills General Education requirements. Students from outside the College of Arts and Sciences will receive credit for Viewing a Wider World.|
Ph. D. Stanford University
Associate Professor of Biology, NMSU
Research Interests: Neuroscience, Biophysics, Sensory Systems
|Office||Foster Hall 337D|
|Office hours:||Monday 12:15-1:15 pm and by appointment|
|Appointments||Sign up on sheet outside FH
OR make appointment for other times via email or phone
|Textbook Vendors||Textbooks can be obtained at the bookstore or online from vendors such as Amazon and ecampus or Best Book Buys.|
Earning your grade:
In class participation: (300 pts) Based on your contribution to class discussion, activities as session moderator, group leader, debate participant and evidence of preparedness for class. Two kinds of assignments will be important
- Presentations. each week , students will make brief presentations based on assigned readings
- Debates. Several times durig the semester, the class will divide into teams to debate controversial topics of interest to the students.
- How to prepare a paper for class discussion. To really appreciate an article or paper, you will need to read it at least twice. There are many aproaches and with time you will develop your own. Here is a suggested strategy:
- Be sure you can restate the keypoints made by the author as she/he has made them (first read). what part of the article is" factual"? opinion?
- what ethical dilemmas are raised?
- what new insights did you gain from this paper?
- what points or positions did you disagree with?
- what arguments or viewpoints did the author omitted?
- what did you think of the wriitng style?
- if you had one question you could ask the author in person, what would it be?
- rank the paper (1) excellent, worth my time and I gained a lot (2) average paper, some good points but some weaknesses (3) not a strong paper, wish I had gone rollerblading instead..
- Portfolio assignment: (300 pts) Students will be asked to prepare a portfolio during the course. The objective of this assignment is for students to explore their own values and ethics in the context of scientific issues that are raised by media articles, TV programs, science classes, lab exercises, research experiences etc. The portfolio wil be comprised of weekly class assignments, some mini-essays and a few "discovery" style essay letters. Details of the portfolio entries will be posted on the Portfolio web page and links to the assignments will be available from the syllabus and assignments schedule tables.Term paper (300 pts) You will be required to prepare a 10-15 page, typed, double-spaced, essay on a science ethics topic that you will chose from several themes suggested by the instructor or choose your own. The term paper must draw on sources available in our library or through interlibrary loan, and from the optional class readings. The term paper should be in the form of an argument paper. The appendix from Practical Companion to Ethics, Weston, 2001 provides instrcutions for how to prepare this kind of paper. Tthis type of paper must address a clearly identifiable and defined ethical issue that is presented as a statement. The paper should present opposing arguments, that is, arguments on both sides of a debate. It should conclude with a statement of your ethical views regarding the topic and the rationale for your thinking.
- Portfolio due dates: Feb 19 and Apr 9
TERM PAPER INSTRUCTIONS PAGE
Points for the term paper are earned as follows:Final Exam (100 points). Open book essay questions
Grade Scale:Late assignments. 10% of the total points will be deducted for each week the assignment is late. Assignments will not be accepted if handed in more than 2 weeks after the due date.A 90-100 %
B 80-89 %
C 70-79 %
D 60-69 %
F < 60 %
S (Satisfactory) requires a B-
Note: The grade scale may be curved at the end of the semester at the discretion of the instructor.
Attendance: Debate and discussion are essential components of this class, therefore, students are expected to attend all classes except for a documented university business, medical emergency etc. Documentation must be submitted if you are absent and it is best to inform the instructor in advance if possible if you will need to miss class.50 points will be deducted from your overall points for each unexcused absence.
Withdrawals: It is your responsibility to withdraw from the course. The instructor will not automatically drop you from the course for failure to attend class or to complete exams or assignments.
Incompletes, academic misconduct, and make-up work: Incompletes will be given only if a student has passed the first half of the course and is precluded from completing the course by a documented illness or family crisis. Make-ups of assignments for excused absences must be discussed with the instructor within one week of the due date of the assignment. There are no provisions for extra credit work. The penalty for plagiarism or other forms of academic misconduct (as defined in the Student Code of Conduct) is failure of the course: no exceptions.
Feb 5 Term paper sources and description 50 ptsOTHER:
Feb 19 Portfolio 1 125 pts
Mar 12 Term paper draft version 75 pts
Apr 16 Portfolio 2 125 pts
Apr 23 Term paper final version 125 pts
Apr 30 Term paper oral presentation 50 pts
Exam week: Term paper oral presentation 50 pts (cont'd)
Final exam Class will meet for two hours
GUIDELINES FOR CLASS DISCUSSION: During the semester, many opinions will be voiced in the class. You may strongly disagree with some of these, or you may find them amusing. Outbursts can be misinterpreted or counterproductive to meaningful and thoughtful debate. Therefore, it is important that you exercise self-discipline and self-control, and treat all members of the class with the courtesy that you are entitled to receive in turn. The key words are: respect and courtesy. Please turn off cell phones and beepers while in class. Thank you!
SYLLABUS MODIFICATION: The instructor reserves the right to modify this syllabus during the semester as considered necessary to enhance the quality of the instruction, to meet the needs of students in the class and to achieve course objectives. Any changes to the syllabus [or to the course schedule] will be announced in class and you are responsible for being aware of them.
STUDENTS WITH DISABILITIES: Additional information is available at http://www.nmsu.edu/~ssd/index.htmlXEROX and/or BACKUP all assignments before submitting them to the instructor. If you have or believe you have a disability and would benefit from any accommodations, you may wish to self-identify by contacting the Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD) Office located at Garcia Annex (phone: 646-6840). If you have already registered, please make sure that your instructor receives a copy of the accommodation memorandum from SSD within the first two weeks of classes. It is your responsibility to inform either your instructor or SSD representative in a timely manner if services/accommodations provided are not meeting your needs. If you have a condition which may affect your ability to exit safely from the premises in an emergency or which may cause an emergency during class, you are encouraged to discuss any concerns with the instructor and/or Ms. Jane Spinti, SSD Coordinator. Feel free to call Ms. Elva Telles (EEO/ADA and Employee Relations Director) at 646-3333 with any questions about the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and/or Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. All medical information will be treated confidentially.
SAVE xeroxes of all graded assignments and exams from this course at least until you have received your final grade.
HONORS COMPUTER CLUSTERis available for your use
HONORS DIRECTOR: The Honors Director is Dr. Nancy Baker. Her office is in the Honors building
and Financial Aid
Internship Programs.com http://www.internshipprograms.com/home.asp "The largest internship community on the Internet!"