The Medicinal Use of Marijuana
An Intimate Debate Case
Department of Biological Sciences
University at Buffalo
Political Science Department
University at Buffalo
Whether marijuana should be legalized for medicinal purposes has been contested for decades. The claims, counter-claims, issues, and judgments in this high profile controversy make it an excellent candidate for “intimate debate.” While similar to traditional debating formats and ground-rules, the method of intimate debate has important differences. There is no audience, each student argues each side of the issue seated across from their opponents in pairs, and the session concludes with opposing teams reaching consensus. The case is suitable for any course where medical issues and social issues of science are discussed and in any classroom setting, from high school to professional school programs such as nursing and pharmacy.
- Consider the medical evidence for and against the use of marijuana.
- Explore how social and political forces are involved in scientific/medical decisions.
- Evaluate arguments and marshal evidence for or against a position.
- Learn how to civilly discuss a controversial topic, looking at both sides of the question.
KeywordsMarijuana; cannabis; medical use of marijuana; medical marijuana; legalization of marijuana; substance use; drug use; drug abuse; War on Drugs
Topical AreasLegal issues, Policy issues, Scientific argumentation, Social issues
Educational LevelHigh school, Undergraduate lower division, Undergraduate upper division, Graduate, Professional (degree program), General public & informal education
Type / MethodsIntimate Debate
Subject HeadingsBiology (General) | Medicine (General) | Public Health | Nursing | Pharmacy / Pharmacology | Sociology | Botany / Plant Science |
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