This course explores public-policy issues on critical and often controversial questions in science (cap-and-trade, global warming, LEDs as lighting sources, biofuels, spectrum allocation), medicine (embryonic stem-cell research, national health care, genetic therapy, workplace risks of nanotechnology), and technology (off-shore drilling, biotechnology, clean coal, nuclear energy, “smart” power). Students select areas for specialization and are required to submit a white paper on one of these major issues. The report is based on library research and face-to-face interviews with experts in the field. As students draft sections of their white papers, they submit them for class discussion and meet periodically with the instructor to review their progress.
Prerequisites: Completion of first year writing requirements. Co-requisites: None. Notes: Satisfies a HuSS Elective.