The Science & Ethics of Synthetic Biology

international intersectional course on Buzz Online

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Background

 

Buzz Online, this US-based educational organisation offers six-week project-based courses developed & taught by nationally-recognized youth. They foster a community of empowered students who learn through creating and experimenting.

 

SynthEthics is grateful for this fruitful collaboration with Buzz Online, bringing to life the “Science & Ethics of Synthetic Biology” international course with 60+ participants from the US, South Africa, India, Philippines, ages ranging from 11-19 years, and 10 instructors from Sweden, Hungary, Philippines, the US, India and Denmark - SynthEthics and invited iGEM members: from iGEM Lund and Copenhagen. 

Course Information

 

For the first time in history, mankind can alter the blueprint of life. However, with such great power comes great responsibilities and a need for thorough ethical considerations before acting. This course will teach you about synthetic biology, a growing subfield of bio-technology which brings together the tools of genetic manipulation with engineering principles, as well as the ethical implications progress in the field entails.

 

During the weeks, accomplished global youth leaders and young researchers representing the international initiative, SynthEthics will come along and guide the participants in the maze of new-era biotechnology. Synthetic biology is one of those fields where it is best to get things right the first time because it might be the only chance we get. /From Buzz Online/

Acquired Skills

Syllabus

• Soft skills: critical thinking, problem-framing and solving, analytical reasoning, adaptable intelligence, effective communication, collaboration

Hard skills: research process, ethical decision-making, information literacy, organization of arguments

Week 1: Introduction to Synthetic Biology

Central Topics

Week 2: Medicine and Gene-editing Technologies

Week 3: Agricultural Biotechnology and Ecology

Week 4: Neuroscience

Week 5: Artificial Intelligence and iGEM Teams

Week 6: Presentations, End of Course

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The presenters of the best two projects won the opportunity of being on the global youth scientific podcast, Drop the STEM: Kinjaal Nagindas, a university student in Microbiology with experience in Food Sciences and Biotechnology, and Brian Chen, a high school student from the US with interest in Agricultural Biotechnology. DTS gang members also accompanied the winners: Alice Cai, Founder of BuzzOnline and Erik Hartman, Founder of SynthEthics, hosted by Blanka Novák, Founder of SynthEthics and the podcast.

Podcast Episode

Recorded Classes

 

Week 1: Introduction to Synthetic Biology

Instructors: Erik Hartman and Blanka Novák

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Week 2: Medicine and Gene-editing Technologies

Instructors: Shaira Gozun and Bea Suavengco

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Week 3: Agricultural Biotechnology and Ecology

Instructors: Lester Sabadao and Aranyo Ray

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Week 4: Neuroscience

Instructor: Jay Iyer

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Week 5: Artificial Intelligence and iGEM Teams

Instructors: Arvid Larsson, Ignacio Pardo Casado and

Amr Ghazal; Hosts: Erik Hartman and Blanka Novák

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