Principles of Biomedical Sciences Comes to GHS

New Course On the Biomedical Field Takes Students By Storm

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Principles of Biomedical Sciences Comes to GHS

Liana Boulles, Copy editor

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Principles of Biomedical Science (PBS) is a new course offered at Griffith High School, taught by science teacher Joylyn Ichiyama, that seeks to educate students interested in the biomedical field and prepare them for college. Students learn about the vast heterogeneity of biomedical professions, the inner workings of the healthcare system, forensics, and how they can attain careers in the medical field. Topics covered include crime investigation, surgery, emergency response, and legal problems involving healthcare. So far, there are three hours for the class composed of approximately ninety students.

“Graduation pathways have changed,” said Ichiyama. “We have quite a few students that are seeking futures in the medical field. This class helps expose students to different methods and techniques that will help them fulfill requirements in those fields. It is very hands on; students work independently to grow their knowledge in the biomedical field.”

Currently, students are solving a fictional mystery to understand how the medical field comes into play with crime investigation and forensics. A woman named Anna Garcia was found dead in her home. Ichiyama constructed a crime scene in her back room, complete fake blood splatters, hair, fingerprints, and other clues. More information about Garcia’s personal life and medical history surfaces, providing both clarity and confusion as to how the woman died. Students analyze the information and research the possibilities through interactive laboratory tests and activities, which range from DNA testing to studying autopsy procedures. Theories about the circumstances surrounding Garcia’s death are continually altered and/or disproven.

“I think the class is about forming your own opinions on the class and changing them as you gain more evidence and learn more about the various fields in biomedical sciences,” said junior Sarah Thomas. “I’ve gotten way too invested in the case, and I’ve been bouncing my ideas off other kids. I want to come to the conclusion knowing that one of my theories, however changed, is correct. It’s super interesting but also frustrating.”

According to Ichiyama, the fictional Anna Garcia case is only a taste of what the course has to offer. “Different biomedical professionals will be visiting the class to talk about their experiences in different fields! We get to dissect a pig heart and work with the same equipment that professionals are working with. We will be watching a live open-heart surgery and be able to ask questions. I am hoping to take my students to the medical museum in Chicago.”

The course seems to have received a positive reception among students, as crime investigation and the medical field are popular interests thanks to shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Sherlock. Principles of Biomedical Sciences offers direct exposure to the detailed processes it takes to become part of the biomedical field, whether the educational requirements or the daily responsibilities of a professional, that serves students not only in high school but for the rest of their professional lives. “I don’t know if I’ll go into the field, but I really am glad that I’ll have this knowledge,” said Thomas.

   Ichiyama shares a likewise sentiment, stating, “I am hoping for this class to grow and to add other classes to the biomedical program.”