Biomedical Debate

Biomedical Debate

Standards & Objectives

Learning objectives: 

Learning Objective: 

The goal of this activity is to develop a student’s understanding of the controversy that exists between the rights of patients/clients and the rights of the society as a whole when it comes to the community’s right to know about dangerous mental health clients or persons with communicable disease living in the community. This activity facilitates discussion of this controversy by providing students the opportunity to research and present both sides of the argument through debate while practicing the skills necessary to become proficient in the Common Core State Standards for Literacy in Technical Subjects. Discussions in class, reading, researching, and writing exercises are coordinated in class to help students construct a technical meaning of their research in a way that “sticks.”


Essential and guiding questions: 

Discussion Questions:

Questions to consider may include but are not limited to:

  • What are the rights and responsibilities of an individual with a dangerous mental health condition or a communicable disease?
  • What are the rights and responsibilities of the society or community in which an individual with a dangerous mental health condition or a communicable disease lives?
  • As a member of the community, what can you do to advocate for the individual? For the community?
  • As a future healthcare provider, what do you see as the responsibility of the Public Health Department in this case?

Unit Variations

Blooms taxonomy level: 
Differentiation suggestions: 

Scaffolding and support for students with special needs, English language learners, and struggling readers:

Consider pre-teaching synonyms of difficult vocabulary words. Lower-level readers and ELL students can still be challenged without being overloaded with difficulty. This strategy can also be used to differentiate for stronger readers by introducing new, and more challenging, vocabulary. Struggling readers would also benefit from visual aids to illustrate many of the ideas presented. Pictures, diagrams, and charts alongside the text will go far to aid students as they dissect the articles.


Helpful Hints


Social, ethnic, racial, religious, and gender bias is best determined at the local level where educators have in-depth knowledge of the culture and values of the community in which students live. TDOE asks local districts to review these materials for social, ethnic, racial, religious, and gender bias before use in local schools.