The ethical examination of stem cell research involves many questions: how do we deal with human embryonic stem cells in research? When does an embryo apply as a human being? NEW: Are we allowed to modify embryos genetically? What are rights of subjects in clinical trials - and what does that have to do with me? What are unchecked therapies? Which laws for stem cell research are there? And how do national legislation and an innovative research landscape relate to each other?
NEW 2020: We have supplemented the topics ethics and therapy with new and current cases.

Materials and tasks for the lesson Ethics

In this lesson, the students develop the legal and ethical foundations of stem cell research. Like participants of a scientific conference, they prepare a discussion (panel), a poster and a pitch (pitch). Topics are the own opinion finding, the legal bases, as well as the proband right.
The teaching units can also be used in digital lessons.

Download entire lesson material Download PDF

Ethical positionsDownload PDF

Four positions on the moral attitude as to when an embryo could be regarded as a human being read more ...

Legal basis Download PDF

From the Embryo Protection Act to the Stem Cell Law - Legal Foundations of Stem Cell Research in Germany read more ...

Patient's rights Download PDF

The rights of patients in medical research read more ...

Disease models Download PDF

Reprogrammed cells as a model for disease research read more ...

NEW: Ethics of germline therapy: CRISPR babies Download PDF

Is it acceptable to genetically modify embryos? With molecular "gene scissors" it is nowadays in principle possible to specifically alter the genetic material of an embryo. Do these interventions make sense? How should they be evaluated ethically? read more ...

Stages of development  Download PDF

Overview of the developmental phases and skills of a human embryo in a graphic.

Excercise Sheet Download PDF

Task Panel: Prepare a panel on the following question: When will an embryo be worth living for?

Task Poster: You work in two groups. A group designs a poster on "Legal framework for stem cell research in Germany". The other group designs a poster on "Patient's Protection: Questions Patients Should Ask."

Task Pitch: You work in two groups. A group prepares a pitch for a research project. The project aims to capture induced pluripotent stem cells for disease models. The other group are conference participants. They examine the project on three levels: feasibility, utility and ethics.

The lesson series is structured like a scientific conference - the pupils assume the role of a scientist. They develop the research knowledge and present it in the different formats of a conference.

Panel is called a panel discussion at scientific conferences. Experts exchange their positions on a specific topic in these discussions.

Posters are used at conferences to present research projects and results. Often there is a template for their design that conference participants use for the presentation.

A pitch is a short advertising presentation of a project. Scientists are pitching research projects to find supporters for their research projects.

Commentary for the teacher Download PDF

Graphic: Development of the embryo Download EPSDownload JPG


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