Reflection: Rigor Controversies in Genetics - Presentations and Panel Discussion - Section 3: Panel Discussion


You may be asking yourself, why conduct a panel discussion at all? The students already presented and we should be moving on. However, I feel that stopping at presentations leaves students with a sense of incompleteness - "OK, we presented, but when are we going to actually have a conversation where I can try to move others to my point of view?"

By having a panel discussion I am preparing the students to become active participants in large conversations. This activity not only increases buy-in into the classroom, but it also allows students to practice respectful scientific discussions. The panel is not about having opinions, it is about having the evidence to support them. This activity increases rigor by upping the depth and complexity of the discussion - students need to be prepared not only with answers to pre-determined questions, but also for any question raised by their answers. It also puts the students in a situation that is more akin to what they might experience in "real-life". Preparing slides for a classroom presentation is a valuable skill.  Actually going beyond that takes the students down a more complex thinking path to a situation they might actually encounter in the workforce, where they have to be prepared to discuss a solution to a problem or offer an educated opinion that is based on evidence.

  Beyond Presentations
  Rigor: Beyond Presentations
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Controversies in Genetics - Presentations and Panel Discussion

Unit 6: Genetics
Lesson 14 of 14

Objective: SWBAT apply their knowledge of genetics and discuss the issues that arise from the application of modern biotechnology.

Big Idea: Difficult ethical issues can occur when using information obtained through modern biotechnology.

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