Throughout the year I have involved myself in a series of ethics center lectures and student meetings as an active member of the John Waterhouse Society at my school. The series of meetings, all of which I participated in the spirited debate and one of which I presented for, and the ethics lectures, those given by external speakers, explored the ethical conundrums faced daily in a modern society constantly on the edge of technological, societal, and possibly morally reprehensible, progress.
Yesterday, 16/10/19, marked the conclusion of our ethics center lectures, with only one student council meeting remaining for the school year. As such, I have decided to reflect on the aspects of the program that pertain to my development as an IB learner.
Due to the nature of the program, the C.A.S. learning outcomes six, seven and five have been met. Firstly, directing my attention to learning outcome six, the exploration of global issues has been an integral focus of each student presentation. This is because, in order to satisfy the goals of the program, a requirement of each student presentation is that it extrapolates issues or concepts from the real world and attempts to use contemporary philosophical and sociological principles to explore and evaluate them. For example, my presentation investigated the technological agricultural advancements of the 20th and 21st centuries. Many other topics, such as whether there is a morally preferable form of incarceration or an interpretation of the role of art in the modern world, have structured themselves similarly. Therefore, I would affirm that the program necessitates the actualization of learning outcome six.
Intertwined with this is learning outcome seven; the ability to recognize and consider the ethics of choices and actions. Since all identifiable issues were followed, firstly, by a demonstration of theory regarding the issues and, secondly, an affirmation from students of their own views, the consequences of choices and the awareness for the multiplicity of perspectives were regularly achieved. This was further exemplified during the ethics center lectures where external speakers concerned themselves with a variety of psychological philosophical and sociological issues and then sought to involve audience involvement in a question and answer segment following their talk. Not only did this demonstrated the possible differences between the audience members and the speaker, but also the distinctions found within the audience itself - representing an even wider set of views as many people, not just students, attended.
Lastly, the collaborative nature of each student lecture was vital for the continual engagement and success of the meetings. Firstly, presenting our topics in pairs meant that the work prior to the meeting could be evenly distributed. I found this a tool of great instrumental value as my partner greatly assisted in the work burden since at the time I had a busy schedule. However, beyond this, having such a diverse student body, as it was not open to only philosophy student but rather all year 11 students, meant that the inclusion of others raised the level of discussion as, not only did it highlighted the views of individuals with whom we mightn’t usually associate, but it also meant that the presentation topics were diverse and a multiplicity of interests were represented.