(M223) CAPITALIZING ON ART.
Laprise, Shari1, Winrich, Charles1, 1 Babson College, Babson Park, MA
ABSTRACT- A new advanced science elective entitled "Making Babies" will be offered in the summer 2005 session at Babson College. This course focuses on the physiology of reproduction and the scientific advancements of assisted reproductive technologies (ART), with an emphasis on the ethical, legal, environmental, and commercial consequences ART has on society today. In developing the curriculum for this course at Babson, a small business college, the objectives were: 1) to present topics in reproductive science and technology appropriate for non-science majors; 2) to use the humanities and popular media images to introduce and discuss the science and applications of ART; and 3) to incorporate ideas of the commercialization of ART in order to build on and relate to the business education background of the students, as well as to create an awareness of the importance of science to a business education. To address the first objective, basic concepts of human and mammalian reproduction will be presented with the aid of educational videos and online animations. To introduce the scientific principles underlying ART, movie clips will be shown to highlight the false scientific information put forth through popular culture. For example, movies such as "Jurassic Park", "Multiplicity", and "GATTACA" will be critiqued for realism. In addition, the motivation(s) that inspire a villain and/or protagonist will be discussed and compared to society's motivation and desire for various applications of ART, including cloning, treatment of human infertility, maintenance of endangered species populations, preimplantation diagnosis, and stem cell research. Lastly, the commercialization of ART will be explored through topics such as fertility tourism, the economic benefits of saving threatened and endangered species, and the possibilities of cloning for profit.
KEY WORDS: assisted reproductive technologies, commercial, education