Engineering Ethics: Evaluating Popular Inventions

Type of Resource



Students analyze an assortment of popular inventions to determine whom they are intended to benefit, who has access to them, who might be harmed by them, and who is profiting by them. Then they re-imagine the devices in a way that they believe would do more good for humanity. During the first 90-minute class period, they evaluate and discuss designs in small groups and as a class, examining their decision-making criteria. Collectively, they decide upon a definition of "ethical" that they use goi

Performance Expectations

HS-ETS1-1   Analyze a major global challenge to specify qualitative and quantitative criteria and constraints for solutions that account for societal needs and wants.

HS-ETS1-3   Evaluate a solution to a complex real-world problem based on prioritized criteria and trade-offs that account for a range of constraints, including cost, safety, reliability, and aesthetics as well as possible social, cultural, and environmental impacts.