What is Ethics Anyway? - Science and Ethics 11

Monday, October 26, 2020 - By: Tommy M, Privett ‘23

There is a defined period every fateful ABC day where room R301, or as it is known, ‘The Coliseum’, pays homage to a new Caesar: the effervescent emperor of morals himself, Mr Ron Neufeld, of Science and Ethics 11.

Every year, a select group of students embarks on this adventure. Although it is a senior course, it is offered as a tenth-grade elective and this year it is filled with 17 eager grade ten students.

Science and Ethics 11 is a course based on the world around us. Science and technology define our environment, while ethics shape our world view and delineate the constructs of right and wrong. The focus of the course is to encourage students to create independent, rational and knowledgeable critical thought. Those competencies are achieved through the study of bioethics, current ethical challenges, societal examples requiring critical thinking, and the use and understanding of reason and logic.

It differs from most tenth-grade electives: in this class there may be no right answers, nor any wrong answers. It allows students to foster an ability to consider every possible outlook when deliberating on a problem; however, if you state something that isn’t followed by immediate evidence, Mr Neufeld will shut down your point before you finish your statement.

In unit one, the course has covered the basics of critical thinking. This includes the study of claims being subjective (subject to opinion) or objective (subject to fact), the origin and basis of moral knowledge, as well as arguments, altruism and the different kinds of bias.

A normal day in Science and Ethics 11 begins with Mr Neufeld ogling over his technology “cart of destiny”. After a 15 minute description of his wonderful gift to society, Mr Neufeld will then begin his interactive lecture with a recap of the previous lesson. From there, anything can happen, from a whole class lecture to a 30-minute brain game, no class is ever dull. Jaxon M, Rogers ‘23 remarked that his favourite part about the course is how “wild and entertaining” every class can be.
This course is very helpful for students as they move into the world of medicine or biology. Jacob H, Privett ‘22 stated that Science and Ethics 11 helped him discover an interest in biology: “The bioethics section of the course fueled my curiosity in biology, which is now something I hope to continue to study throughout my post-secondary education.”

Science and Ethics 11 is sure to proceed with gladiator thrills this year and these fortunate students can grip their seats for the ride.

Tommy M, Privett ‘23

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