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Course content

This degree uses specially designed online teaching materials to give you an in-depth understanding of professional ethics, and what they mean for practitioners in the biomedical and healthcare sectors.

You’ll learn about the ethical issues that arise across medicine and healthcare practice, but you’ll also have the opportunity to specialise in areas that interest you or suit your career aspirations. You’ll take modules on topics such as ethical issues at the beginning and end of life, autonomy and psychiatry, professional issues and allocating medical resources fairly, and focus on a topic of your choice to complete an independent dissertation.

We’re constantly developing the course and consulting with professionals working in the field, so it’s informed by the most recent developments in practice. But you’ll be guided by active researchers with expertise in teaching ethics across medical disciplines, giving you the chance to engage with the latest academic arguments and debates.

The programme is designed for people who’ve never studied ethics or medical ethics, although we do also have applicants who have studied philosophy before. If you’re interested in thinking about key ethical issues in a reasoned and independent way, you’ll be able to explore big questions in the biomedical and healthcare spheres with the support of the Interdisciplinary Ethics Applied Centre (IDEA).

This course is also available to study part-time and/or on campus. You could also choose to study for PGDip qualification, where you’ll study fewer modules overall.

Course structure

COMPULSORY MODULES

  • Introduction to Ethics: Reasons, Motivation, Obligations and Happiness 15 credits
  • Health Care Ethics: Dissertation 60 credits
  • Ethical Issues at the Beginning of Life (Online)15 credits
  • Ethical Issues at the End of Life (Online)15 credits
  • Conscience, Codes and Professional Issues (Online)15 credits
  • Autonomy, Rationality, and Psychiatric Issues (Online)15 credits
  • Distributive Justice and Scarce Medical Resources (Online)15 credits
  • Current Developments in Health Care Ethics (Online)30 credits

For more information on typical modules, read Biomedical and Healthcare Ethics MA in the course catalogue

Learning and teaching

There are no lectures or seminars on this programme. Instead you’ll use the University’s Virtual Learning Environment to access interactive course materials and participate in collaborative activities online. This allows you to share your experiences and insights with students from a variety of backgrounds to discover new perspectives on ethical issues. Our tutors respond to queries by email as well as contributing to the online discussion groups.

Read more about Online Distance Learning.

Assessment

You’ll still be assessed using essays, but we use a range of other methods to make the most of online learning. You’ll complete shorter written assignments and group projects, and you’ll also be assessed on the contributions you make to group discussions.

Career opportunities

A postgraduate qualification in biomedical and healthcare ethics can improve your confidence in handling workplace decisions that have ethical implications. It will also allow you to improve your transferable skills such as research, analysis and oral and written communication.

Many of our graduates continue with their research, whether in academic appointments at universities, PhD studies or as researchers for other organisations such as the King’s Fund. Others have gone into healthcare management, joined research or clinical ethics committees or gone on to teach medical or healthcare ethics at medical schools part-time.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.


Visit the Biomedical and Health Care Ethics (Distance Learning) MA page on the University of Leeds website for more details!

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