Spotlight on ethics: Neuroethics of brain-computer interfaces

You’re a biomedical engineer working for a company that develops Brain-computer interfaces (BCI) for specialised applications. You have designed a BCI that can measure brain activity non-invasively and assess the job-related proficiency of a person. What are the physical, ethical, and social difficulties that could result from the use of devices that have the ability to directly access the brain and decipher some of its psychological content such as thoughts, beliefs, and emotions?

This is one of the questions posed in our Engineering Ethics Toolkit case study Neuroethics of brain-computer interfaces.

We’ve provided this and other case studies – which include classroom activities and additional resources – for you to use and adapt in your teaching. We also have a growing library of guidance articles available to support you in your teaching, and an interactive Ethics Explorer to get you started.

If you would like to give feedback on this or any other Engineering Ethics resource, or submit your own content, you can do so here. We also have a newly created community of practice that you can join, where we hope that educators will support each other, and share their success stories of teaching engineering ethics. You can join our Ethics Ambassadors community here.

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