Socioscientific issues have proved to be excellent tools for fostering the development of higher-order thinking skills that lead to superior socioscientific reasoning and decision making. This educational construct, with a focus on a local coastal environmental situation, was incorporated into a science class of high school biology students in Puerto Rico to assess relevant content knowledge and enable socioscientific reasoning. We describe how socioscientific reasoning was introduced, implemented, and assessed and the influence it had on students during a four-week in-depth exploration on the topic.

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