In this SATIS Revisited resource, students consider the ethical questions that arise from the conflicts between concern for animal welfare and the need to use animals in medical research.
The aim is to introduce the idea that the discussion of controversial issues relating to the conduct and application of science involves making decisions. In any situation, there is usually more than one choice available. Often, a course of action may seem like a good solution, but it may also have some undesirable outcomes.
In the activity students consider whether animals should be used for research by carrying out an analysis of the advantages and disadvantages (costs/benefits). During the discussion students are encouraged to decide whether the views expressed are based on evidence or opinion.
Research on the use of animals could be set as homework prior to the lesson. The activity would be suitable for use after students have completed work on human physiology, effects of drugs or disease. The approach in the activity could be used for other topics, for example IVF or genetic testing.
Contents of this unit:
Guidance for teachers
Animal research – right or wrong
• Activity sheet A – Statements
• Activity sheet B – Statements with tick boxes
• Role cards
HEALTH and SAFETY
Any use of a resource that includes a practical activity must include a risk assessment. Please note that collections may contain ARCHIVE resources, which were developed at a much earlier date. Since that time there have been significant changes in the rules and guidance affecting laboratory practical work. Further information is provided in our Health and Safety guidance.