San Antonio, Texas
June 10, 2012
June 10, 2012
June 13, 2012
25.965.1 - 25.965.14
Nanotechnology: Teaching Ethical and Social Implications in a STS CourseSociety is at the threshold of a revolution that will transform the ways in which materials andproducts are created. How will this revolution develop? The opportunities that will develop inthe future will depend significantly upon the ways in which a number of challenges are met. Aswe design systems on a nanoscale, we develop the capability to redesign the structure of allmaterials -- natural and synthetic along with rethinking the new possibilities of the reconstructionof any and all materials. Such a change in our design power represents tremendous social andethical questions. In order to enable our future leadership to make decisions for sustainableethical, economic nanotechnological development, it is imperative that we educate allnanotechnology stakeholders about the short-term and long-term benefits, limitations and risks ofnanotechnology. The social implications of nanotechnology encompass so many fundamentalareas such as ethics, privacy, environment, and security.This paper describes the teaching methodologies used to teach the ethical and social implicationsof nanotechnology in a “Technology, Society, and Society (STS)” capstone course. There areessentially four objectives to this course: (1) developing a strong understanding of local andglobal forces and issues which affect people and societies, (2) guiding local/global societies toappropriate use of technology, (3) alerting societies to technological risks and failures, and (4)developing informed and encompassing personal decision-making and leadership and providingways to solve problems in a technological world. It is anticipated that that by teaching about theethical and social implications of nanotechnology, educators can further promote in studentseverywhere, the future reality and urgency of technological social leadership to appropriately andresponsibly help to develop our global community.
Khan, A. S., & Agajanian, A. (2012, June), Nanotechnology: Teaching Ethical and Social Issues in a STS course Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. https://peer.asee.org/21722
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