In this activity, students will debate topics in science and technology from the perspective of a stakeholder during a particular period in 20th century American history. While this structure was used for all three debates, this posting will draw from one debate in particular, the 1923 immigration committee role play.
Introduction/Background: Margo Seltzer's students in Introduction to Operating Systems work in groups to complete exercises. They work together individually, and then present their findings to the class.
This debate about whether judicial review is compatible with democracy is meant to get students thinking about what sort of ideal democracy is, and to see both its procedural and substantive components. Read more about Judicial Review and Democracy
For her sixth section, Kirstin Woody Scott prepared this activity based off of the HMS/BWH case study on Bangladesh Rural Advancement Committee and tuberculosis. This activity allowed students to discuss and present the knowledge of the case they had reviewed in lecture and tackle policy realities in global health. Students prepared oral arguments to take on the role of different stakeholders and defend their positions when faced with cuts to global health funding.
In Caroline Light's course, WGS1238: Consuming Passions, students participate in a simulation where each student acts out the persona of either an invented/fictional character or a real public figure. They then debate a question regarding globalization in order to develop critical thinking and contextual skills around the course's topic on agency in the global marketplace. Read more about Globalization Character Simulation
Professor Güven Güzeldere uses debates extensively in several of his courses, including Philosophy of Mind, Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence, and Philosophy of Religion. The debates consist of two teams of two or three students each, presenting and defending two opposing positions on a particular philosophical question (e.g., Can we attribute genuine emotions to robots or computational systems on the basis of affect-appropriate behaviors?).
In History of Science course "Brainwashing and Modern Techniques of Mind Control," students participate in a role play to debate the legality of torture and other types of coercive interrogation. Read more about Legality of Torture Debate
The purpose of this activity is for students to present a complicated academic debate within their own debate. Asher Orkaby assigned students to a position in the debate and had them prepare their arguments before class. The students were paired together and asked to debate JFK's performance during the Cuban Missile Crisis. They based their arguments on readings assigned for the week. After presenting their arguments, the students fielded questions from their classmates. Read more about Cuban Missile Crisis Debate