23 discussion topics to propose class discussions
Debate allows us to see different perspectives on specific issues about which divergent opinions exist. It makes it possible for us to exchange points of view and build a more complete vision of reality. It also favors critical thinking, thanks among other aspects to the need to exercise certain mental flexibility and the use of persuasion and different discursive strategies in order to defend one's position.
That is why the gatherings and debates are such a valuable resource in education and training centers, both in schools and in institutes and universities.
But find a topic to discuss and talk about can be complicated . Therefore, in this article you can find a series of 23 discussion topics to propose class discussions.
- Related article: "The beneficial effects of philosophy on children"
Different topics to discuss in class
Below you will find a selection of topics of interest for discussion in class (trying to reach a conclusion) or to talk (basically share ideas in an informal way without pretending to reach a conclusion).
These subjects are designed for people with a maturational level corresponding to at least the secondary level and even at the university level, although many of them can be adjusted to the needs of other life stages such as infant, which corresponds to primary education.
1. The stigmatization of people with mental and neurological disorders
Mental health and the existence of alterations and disorders is a topic that is not usually discussed in society. Why there is so little talk about it, what someone with a disorder should feel, the social stigma that was involved in the past in a diagnosis and the way in which this prejudice still exists today, how it can affect them and how they are visualized by society These are some of the debate topics that are proposed. This is a topic of debate that includes a clear ethical component.
- Related article: "In defense of people with dementia: combat stigmas and prejudices"
2. The death penalty
A subject of debate something more typical than the previous one. The death penalty continues to be applied in many countries of the world. Some people consider it necessary and just, others little more than a crime committed in the search for revenge. Should it still be valid? Is your application ethical? Because some countries apply it and others do not? What happens if an innocent person is convicted?
3. Illegal immigration
Another issue of debate and typical gathering is that of illegal immigration. In this aspect you can argue and argue about what produces it , what should be done about it, how should it be regulated, the different measures that have been taken throughout history in this aspect, the risks and advantages that may result from the unregulated entry of people in the country or the treatment they receive? socially and legally gives illegal immigrants, for example.
For decades society has been moving forward in the search for tolerance and acceptance of differences interpersonal Little by little, it has been looking for and achieving the integration and equality of rights of different groups previously discriminated against (women, ethnic differences and races or the LGBT community). But we can ask ourselves: have we reached true equality or is there still a long way to go? Does the same thing happen in all parts of the world? This topic can be extended to different areas, such as women in the workplace, same-sex marriage or racism.
5. Partner and gender violence
Gender violence is an issue that, unfortunately, remains a relatively present element in society. What exactly it is and what it includes, where it comes from, its legal treatment, what role do education and society have in their prevention , how to detect it and what to do in case of doing it or how it could be avoided are topics that can allow to talk at length and share points of view.
- Related article: "The 7 types of gender violence (and characteristics)"
The right to dignified death and assisted suicide. The fact that a person or their relatives may decide to die in certain circumstances from which the person will not get out, such as irreversible coma or diseases that cause great pain and suffering. Its use to avoid the suffering of the patient, the ethics and / or legitimacy of said practice, who should make the decision in case the patient does not have and can not express his opinion and the limits that should be imposed on its use are highly controversial aspects even today.
7. Animal experimentation
Medicines, cosmetics and other elements must be tested before they can be marketed in order to check their effects. Traditionally, various animals have been used in the laboratory to verify these effects, and even if today we have synthetic skins to test elements such as cosmetics, other living beings continue to be used in experimentation and research. Is animal experimentation necessary? Is it carried out with ethics? What is the use if, in the end, they are tested on a type of being that does not share all our characteristics?
8. The evolution of technology
Technology advances at an incredible speed. What seemed impossible a few centuries ago can now be achieved with a simple click. Ask ourselves where we will come with it, discuss whether this evolution is always positive or hide a negative part or whether we should put some kind of brake or caution about it are issues to be discussed.
9. Ethics in daily life and at a professional level
Ethics and morals This topic is complex, but in spite of this it can adapt to different evolutionary levels. What is it and what is not admissible? Should we cause suffering to someone if, thanks to him, they could improve their situation or achieve a common good? Should everything be allowed? The end justifies the means? What aspects should be taken into account at professional level to exercise correctly? What limits should not be crossed? Is ethics proper? These and other aspects allow to realize gatherings and deep debates in which to emphasize values and beliefs.
10. The image in society
We are in a society in which the image is highly valued. The physical appearance and reputation of each You can score to a large extent how others see you and even how you see yourself. It can help us get a job or get closer to our dreamed partner, but it can also cause us great frustrations, insecurity and even generate various disorders. Discuss its importance and the changes that may have arisen over time regarding what is considered good image can be interesting.
The thoughts, beliefs and even the perception of some concrete facts are frequently censored by different people and organisms. In some countries, tendencies and thoughts contrary to the power or interests of the population are censured and repressed openly.
In other places it is applied in a more concealed way, omitting part of reality or even modifying it. And it is not necessary that it occurs between different people: even oneself can censor part of one's own being or thought due to social pressure or the existence of beliefs and contrary thoughts. Does it have any kind of meaning or utility? Why is it carried out? How to avoid it? Are there limits on freedom of expression?
12. Climate change
Although today it does not seem as much in vogue as it was a few years ago, climate change and its existence has been a frequent topic in debates and discussions. What it is, how it affects us, the environment or the rest of the world, what should be done, who has the responsibility or aspects derived from the fight against it such as recycling or the use of fossil or natural fuels are aspects that allow us to reflect on the world in which we live.
13. The legalization of prostitution
Prostitution is illegal in many countries, being punishable by law. However, it is a type of activity with a high level of demand. The fact that it is illegal supposes a high level of insecurity for the people who dedicate themselves to it, besides that being a demanded activity facilitates the creation of mafias and networks of sexual exploitation that pretend to benefit from it. Whether or not it should be legal or that would imply such legalization for sex professionals, clients and society in general are aspects to be discussed.
14. Drugs in society
The consumption of psychoactive substances it is relatively common in today's society. Many of them cause severe addictions and harmful effects in both the short and long term. Some aspects to discuss can be the following: why are they consumed? What effects do they have? How is your consumption viewed socially?
15. Fidelity and infidelity in the couple
The couple is another of the big issues to debate. And within it, the maintenance of fidelity or its non-compliance is a subject that is widely debatable. What does it mean to be faithful? Is being unfaithful only having sex with third parties? Because some people are infidels and others are not? Is the human being unfaithful by nature? Would you forgive an infidelity? Would you commit one if you knew that no one was going to find out? What happens with open couples? How does an infidelity affect life as a couple? These and other questions are usually discussed in different gatherings.
- Related article: "Polyamory: what is it and what types of polyamorous relationships are there?"
16. Social stereotypes
Stereotypes are a set of predetermined ideas and beliefs regarding the characteristics of certain themes or groups. The stereotypes can lead us to prejudge others and maintain attitudes that imply unequal treatment undeserved, and because of this we sometimes act as if we knew who we do not know based on characteristics they have not demonstrated. Where they come from, because they are produced and how to fight them are aspects to be discussed.
17. Privacy and the right to privacy
With the presence of elements such as social networks or new technologies we can keep in touch with people from all over the world at any time and place. While this may be positive, on the other hand it also involves a loss of privacy by allowing our information to be shared with a large number of people. These people can reach judge our life both public and private and to cause us various types of damages, or even obtain benefits through the use of our information.
We are in a globalized world, which allows the communication and expression of feelings and ways of seeing the world. It is something that helps us share and understand each other better. However, it also causes different ethnic groups and peoples to see their cultural identity, traditions and customs eliminated and forgotten, being absorbed by an increasingly standardized society .
19. Employment today
Obtaining a job today can be complicated, as can be seen in the high number of unemployed. In addition, temporary hiring abounds, which in practice supposes a high level of insecurity regarding future economic possibilities and makes it difficult to establish future plans. The situation of the labor market today is a frequent reason for various gatherings.
It is a typical theme in different debates and gatherings. The fact of abortion and what it supposes, the decision making and the possible psychic effects that may have , the legal limitations to abort, until what stage of development of the fetus it is possible to do so, ethical aspects discussed in relation to this issue and how different sectors of society see the fact are aspects to be discussed.
21. Religion and spirituality
The spiritual and religious beliefs have been present in the human being since ancient times. Rites, traditions and ways of seeing the world have emerged from them and have been a frequent source of debate. The usefulness of religious beliefs , its use for different purposes, why some people believe and others do not and the effects that different religious confessions have had throughout history can give rise to intense debates.
22. Social pressure
Most people have ever done something they did not want simply because they expected it or because of social or group pressure. The opinion of others or what we think others think of us matters to a greater or lesser extent. Aspects to comment can be: Why? What do we do or what can we do if we are subject to pressure from society or the group? What is expected of us?
Opening an umbrella under cover, throwing salt or wine on the table, that you break a mirror, that you see a one-eyed or cross with a black cat have been for some people a sign of bad omen. Other people have small rituals or even talismans that are supposed to give good luck. Do these superstitions have any meaning? Where do they come from? Do we have any ?. These are questions that we can ask ourselves and that is an interesting topic of discussion and debate.