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Semester 1 - Online
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Humans have always exploited their surroundings and engineered changes for survival and advancement. In recent years, advances have given rise to radically new biomedical technologies. This subject explores the biomedical advancements that have and will continue to shape the human species and the associated moral and political implications. The subject focuses on biomedical technologies/interventions by examining them through ethical, historical, philosophical and social science lenses. We will discuss and critically consider the potential impact and ramifications of such technologies on human life, culture and society. Examples of concepts and questions that could be explored are:
- What social inequities could arise from biomedical interventions?
- What might be the intended and unintended outcomes of our ability to engineer the human genome? For example, what are the implications of removing ‘defective’ genes?
- What are the ethical implications of taking the evolution of Homo sapiens into our own hands?
- Who should decide on the trajectory of human evolution, and on what basis?
- How can misuse of biomedical technologies be prevented?
- Should there be obstacles to the development of biomedical technologies that might improve human life?
Intended learning outcomes
On completion of this subject students should be able to:
- Identify concepts as they relate to biomedical advancements
- Describe disciplinary perspectives on the impacts of biomedical advancement on individuals and societies
- Communicate cogently, in a multimedia format, ideas, opinions and arguments on biomedical advancement on human life, culture and society
- Clearly communicate multi-disciplinary perspectives on biomedical advancements to audience of various disciplines.
Application of Knowledge and Skills
- Apply interdisciplinary knowledge to evaluate differing perspectives on biomedical advancements
- Critically evaluate complex issues relevant to the development of biomedical advancements explored in this subject
- Analyse an issue in biomedical advancement through at least two disciplinary lenses (ethical, historical, philosophical, social scientific, scientific) using methods from interdisciplinary research
- Examine the potential impacts of medical interventions on individuals and society
- Demonstrate skills to self-reflect and review understanding of key concepts.
- Recognise and evaluate value judgements on complex issues through an interdisciplinary perspective.
- Effectively communicate various aspects of a topic to a broad audience.
- Demonstrate skills to critically analyse personal view points, alternative ideas and views of peers
- Participate effectively as a member of a multidisciplinary team
- Provide constructive feedback on the work of peers.
Last updated: 8 November 2023