bioethics

Bryan Ness bryan.ness at bbs.puc.edu
Mon Jan 31 01:10:00 EST 1994


Eric Anderson wrote:

GA>raised.  However, as I noted I was surprised at the number of people (PhDs a
GA>students) who had not, did not, and were not doing so.  Do you find that to
GA>the case where you are as well?  Do you have a program - course work,
GA>seminars, whatever - that deals with these issues on a regular basis?  If so
GA>how does it work?  If not do you think you should, do you think this is
GA>something that we should be working to institute at our universities and
GA>companies?  Should we be focusing on ethical training for graduate students,
GA>or include post-docs and professors as well?

GA>Obviously I think it is important, but I am curious to hear how you feel abo
GA>it.

As one of the ones behind the student posts I think I should
comment briefly.  We have an undergraduate course in bioethics on
our campus, but it is merely an elective course, so many students
don't end up taking it.  In my introductory biology course I am
having my students discuss a number of controversial topics in
biology, the first of these, as you've noted, was on human embryo
cloning.  I am amazed to see that many of my students have only a
limited understanding of the issues.  You'll notice by some of
the posts that they are not always very good at expressing their
views clearly.  I am hoping that as they interact to some extent
with others on Internet that they will put some more critical
thought into these issues.  I think a clear understanding of
ethical issues is paramount in the biological sciences.  If we
don't take some of these questions seriously we will begin to
lose credibility with the general public.

Bryan Ness
Assistant Professor of Biology
Pacific Union College
bness at bbs.puc.edu

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