How did life emerge on Earth? How have life and Earth co-evolved through geological time? Is life elsewhere in the universe? Take a look through the 4-billion-year history of life on Earth through the lens of the modern Tree of Life.
How have advances in genetics affected society? What do we need to know to make ethical decisions about genetic technologies? This course includes the study of cloning, genetic enhancement, and ownership of genetic information. Course participants will acquire the tools to explore the ethics of modern genetics and learn how to integrate these issues into their classrooms.
Introduction and From Mendel to 1000 Genomes
You will explore the history of genetics and genomics, and be introduced to ways of thinking ethically about issues involving genetic technology. You will learn how ethical issues can be used to spark your students’ interest, and how to uncover students’ misconceptions.
Graded: Module 1 Quiz
DNA Fingerprinting, Cloning, and the Future
You will explore systems biology, stem cells, and cloning and the applications of these technologies. You will also learn about the ethics of cloning, which will be the basis for your written assignment, which opens this week.
Graded: Ethical Conflict Written Assignment
Graded: Module 2 Quiz
Genomics in Medicine
You will see how genetic information is being used to individualize medical treatments and take a video tour of the Sackler Institute for Comparative Genomics at the American Museum of Natural History. You will also apply the Science and Engineering practices from A Framework for K-12 Science Education and the Next Generation Science Education Standards in considering how to engage students in discussion about ethics.
Graded: Week 3 Quiz
Genomes, Agriculture, and Society
This week you will learn about the societal implications of genetically modified food, and discuss ways to incorporate this issue into your teaching.
Graded: Week 4 Quiz