OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma School of Science and Mathematics has announced a new course for its students entitled, “Language Arts: Ethics in STEM.” Part of the humanities curriculum, the required class for OSSM’s high school seniors will explore a variety of ethical issues that arise in STEM fields.

“Grappling with the ethical dimensions of STEM fields positions our students to be future leaders and responsible stewards of scientific knowledge,” said Brian Chance, professor of the ethics course. “There’s an important link between humanities and STEM, which is why many colleges and universities are establishing programs similar to ours.”

In creating this new offering, OSSM joins many institutions of higher education, including Harvard, MIT and Georgetown. In addition to teaching the course, Chance will work with faculty at Harvard and Northeastern University to develop content. According to Chance, topics will vary from year to year depending on the students’ areas of interest and trending issues.

“The class capitalizes on our students’ science and math interests while developing the skills traditionally associated with humanities classes,” continued Chance. “Ethical issues arising in the sciences are complex, and advancing solutions require collaboration, creativity, and a nuanced understanding of different, often conflicting, perspectives.”

The school’s goal is to prepare students for real-world situations when they enter the workforce. In addition to the ethics class, OSSM’s mentorship program provides students with relevant work experience by partnering with more than 60 academic institutions, businesses, nonprofit and government agencies in the Oklahoma City area.

“I really enjoy Ethics in STEM because it is extremely interesting and thought-provoking,” said Serena Jeffers, a senior at OSSM. “Dr. Chance is able to have the whole class discussing what we have read that week, and the questions he asks really make us think. Having the opportunity to take a class like this will be very beneficial, especially going into a STEM field.”

Nationally ranked as a top public high school in the United States, OSSM provides a college-level curriculum in science and math to juniors and seniors across the state. Created through legislative action in 1983, the two-year residential public high school also serves all Oklahoma schools and students through math contests, research, teacher training and professional development, and outreach activities.

For more information, call 405-521-6436 or visit www.ossm.edu.

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