List the Issues
- Bioethical issues often interact with other, related issues.Creatas Images/Creatas/Getty Images
Write down a list of issues that you need or wish to assess. If you have one major issue in mind, think about related issues that may also arise due to the major issue, or along with it. For example, if you are debating the bioethics of paying people to participate in pharmaceutical drug trials, consider related, real-life issues such as animal testing, involuntary or semi-voluntary testing, testing carried out in impoverished countries with language barriers where informed consent may be more difficult to obtain, or cases where incomplete or limited testing led to negative effects later on. Your main issue may be inseparable from these types of related issues.
Make Flash Cards
- Use flash cards to summarize problems that will be discussed.Keith Brofsky/Photodisc/Getty Images
Make flash cards with the bioethical issue (or one of the related issues) on the front of the card, and distribute the cards to the participants in the game. Ask the participants to write down, anonymously, a problem or conflict that results from the issue. Once everyone is finished, collect the cards. If appropriate, the game leader may also wish to be a participant, since many of these issues are unresolved, and the goal of the game is to air and discuss different ideas and viewpoints.
Begin the Discussion
- You may not always find positive or clearcut solutions to bioethical issues.Photos.com/AbleStock.com/Getty Images
Pull a flash card from the pile, and read the back of the card. This begins the group discussion by introducing a problem to the group. Once the problem has been posed, ask the participants to think about possible resolutions to the problem. Resolutions may be good, bad or neither. They are merely possible outcomes that arise from the bioethical problem. Bioethics often involves tradeoffs, and choices between several outcomes with negative consequences, and it is important not to disguise this reality.
Compare Possible Resolutions
- It is important to consider all the different possible resolutions, since they may each have different consequences.Ablestock.com/AbleStock.com/Getty Images
Collect a running-list of proposed resolutions as you move through the flash cards. After finishing with the cards, summarize and read back these possible resolutions, and discuss their advantages and drawbacks. This will help conclude the game by focusing on realistic outcomes to the original issues. There may be no single right or wrong outcome. Instead, the discussion allows the group to consider a range of possibilities and viewpoints in an orderly manner, and to hear them compared with one another.