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Published on October 9, 2007

Author: Irvette


Japanese Trials of the Bioethics Education Project:  Japanese Trials of the Bioethics Education Project Fumi Maekawa Darryl Macer University of Tsukuba Project Proceedings in Japan :  Project Proceedings in Japan Approach to SELHi Bioethics Education Network in Japan Class Trials in High Schools, and University of Tsukuba Japanese Translation of Text Approach to SELHi:  Approach to SELHi SELHi (Super English Language High School) 53 schools approved by MEXT 2003 (Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology) Contact to Schools in Kanto area No response Bioethics Education Network in Japan:  Bioethics Education Network in Japan Established in 1996 Meetings usually every two months (today is the 35th meeting of the Network) Approx. 100 members include teachers from Japanese high schools Most teach Biology or Social studies BEN Activities (I):  BEN Activities (I) Introduction to Bioethics Text Book Project Background Objective Participating Countries Topics in the Text Book Forms of Cooperation International Activities BEN Activities (II):  BEN Activities (II) Small Group Discussion Critical feedback on sample chapters Comments and suggestions on the topics Evaluation criteria Curriculum and time restraints Comments on Sample Chapters Critical Comments upon Chapters:  Critical Comments upon Chapters Length and difficulty of text Defining the appropriate level Gaps between students Accessibility vs. Learning content Balance between the acceptable volume of text and the volume needed for learning One page versions of chapters were produced Trials in Meikei High School:  Trials in Meikei High School Private school in Tsukuba Students from 13~18 years old Class tried on 2nd year high school students (16~17 years old) 2 EEC (Extended English Class); 10 students total Material used: Heart transplant Feedback from Meikei:  Feedback from Meikei Reason to chose Heart Transplant Link between previous classes Appropriate volume Topic interesting to students Observer notes Lively discussion Dependent on individual student Teacher’s guidance Trials in Kasumigaoka High School (I):  Trials in Kasumigaoka High School (I) Public school in Fukuoka; SELHi Class tried on 2nd year students (16~17 years old); English discussion class English major students; 40 in total, majority is female Material used: Fertility, Assisted Reproduction Trials in Kasumigaoka High School (II):  Trials in Kasumigaoka High School (II) Class tried on 1st year students (15~16 years old); Environmental class English major students; 40 in total, majority is female Material used: Sustainability Trials in Kasumigaoka High School (III):  Trials in Kasumigaoka High School (III) Combined double class for double period given in English by Darryl Macer. Students requested to write essay in English or Japanese. Material used: Introduction to Bioethics. Feedback from Kasumigaoka (I):  Feedback from Kasumigaoka (I) Reason to chose Assisted Reproduction Student interest in topic Timely news (surrogacy case in media) Observer notes Concrete aim of class Accumulation of different aspects to learn English (Reading, Writing, Listening and Discussion) Feedback from Kasumigaoka (II):  Feedback from Kasumigaoka (II) Reason to chose Sustainability Topic related to environmental education Different approach to environmental problems Observer notes Difficulty of context Indirect use of material; helpful? Feedback from Kasumigaoka (III):  Feedback from Kasumigaoka (III) In the coming year their school will fund a visit once a term of both of us to observe, test and explore ways to implement bioethics education. The principal of that school is an English teacher herself. Trials in University of Tsukuba:  Trials in University of Tsukuba Chapters were tried in: English classes of 3rd year undergraduate biology students English classes of 2nd year undergraduate biology students Bioethics/ Bioethics and Genes class for mainly undergraduate biology students Environmental Ethics class for graduate students majoring in environmental science Comparisons of written reports and evaluation reports is underway, between chapters and past materials. All chapters were tested at least once. Improvement Points (I):  Improvement Points (I) Project management Approaching Schools Little effect of general information announcements Individual personal contact is preferable May be better to refocus on contacts at higher level of authority Interest vs. Time constraints Maybe much interest, but too much burden to be involved? Improvement Points (II):  Improvement Points (II) Scope of Material English learning vs. Bioethics learning Page by page most applicable Further improvement Need clearer target (English Reading? Writing? Discussion?) Generally too much to cover in one English class Teacher’s Guidance and Materials needed Improvement Points (III):  Improvement Points (III) Follow up and after care What materials are more needed? How much direction do teachers want? Further contacting Developing contact by personal introductions Improvement Points (IV):  Improvement Points (IV) Observer limits Objectivity Comparison Limits Feedback report and audio/visual recording Different stand points between different observers Conclusions:  Conclusions Difficulty of English  Difficulty of Learning Japanese version under construction Give and take relationship of coordinator and cooperating teachers (schools) Acknowledgments:  Acknowledgments These trials were funded by a grant to Eubios Ethics Institute by Sasagawa Peace Foundation. We appreciate comments given from many persons to assist the evolution of the project and materials.

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