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Class case study: Ethics of genetically modified foods



Lower Secondary



Nature of Science
Living World

Nature of Technology
Technological Knowledge


This class case study provides an example of introducing ethical thinking into the classroom to explore a controversial issue in science. It shows how the ethical frameworks in the Ethics thinking tool and a range of classroom activities can be integrated to scaffold ethical thinking. In this example, year 9 students considered the ethics of genetically modified foods.

This case study formed part of the research prior to developing the Ethics thinking tool and, as such, uses ideas that informed the development of the tool and not the tool itself. The Ethics thinking tool provides additional support to help structure students’ thinking and decision-making using ethical frameworks.


To explore how genetic modification may impact on food production in the future and ethical issues associated with this. To introduce a range of ethical approaches that can be used to support ethical decision-making.


Genetically modified foods, future foods, ethics, using ethical frameworks.


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