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Master of Bioethics and Health Law (MBHL)

Course Description

The Master of Bioethics and Health Law (MBHL) degree is an interdisciplinary postgraduate programme which consists in writing a research dissertation under supervision and completing papers worth an additional 105 points from a schedule of papers. The degree may be awarded with distinction or credit. The degree draws on the resources of both ethical and legal theory, and attends to bioethical problems arising from the increasing use of technology in medicine and changes in the resourcing and delivery of health care.

Schedule of Papers

BITC 401 Theories of Biomedical Ethics
BITC 403 Issues in Law, Ethics and Medicine
LAWS 547 Law and Medicine

At least one of:
LAWS 511 Family Law
LAWS 528 Law and Emerging Technologies
LAWS 548 Law and Psychiatry

And any of LAWS 511, LAWS 528, LAWS 548 and the following papers to make a total of least 120 points:
BITC 404 Ethics and Health Care
BITC 405 Bioethics in Clinical Practice
BITC 406 Health Research Ethics
BITC 407 Advanced Health Research Ethics
BITC 410, BITC 411, BITC 412 Special Topics
Other approved LAWS papers

BITC 890 MBHL Dissertation

Structure of the Programme

The programme of study shall consist of:
-Papers from the schedule to a value of 120 points.
-A dissertation.

A candidate who has completed the requirements for the Postgraduate Diploma in Bioethics and Health Law shall be exempted from those papers in the programme for the degree which have been previously passed for the diploma, in which case the programme will normally consist of the dissertation only. The Bioethics Board of Studies may in special circumstances approve the inclusion in the programme of papers worth up to 30 points which are not listed in the schedule.

A candidate who has previously completed two or more papers listed in the schedule for another completed postgraduate diploma or honours degree or equivalent qualification may be exempted from a paper or papers up to a value of 30 points. Law graduates who have passed LAWS 311, LAWS 428, LAWS 448, or LAWS 477 shall be required to take at least 30 points of LAWS papers from the schedule, or to take 30 points of other approved comparable papers.

A candidate transferring credits for Law papers from another university shall be required to complete at least one of LAWS 547, or LAWS 548. The programme of study, the topic of the dissertation and the proposed supervisors shall be submitted to the Bioethics Board of Studies for its approval in accordance with established procedures for Division of Health Sciences postgraduate programmes.

Visit the Master of Bioethics and Health Law (MBHL) page on the University of Otago website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Admission to the programme will be subject to the approval of the Director of the Bioethics Centre following consultation with the Bioethics Board of Studies. Every applicant shall possess a postgraduate diploma, or be a graduate with honours or of a four-year undergraduate programme in a relevant discipline. A candidate shall usually have completed the Postgraduate Diploma in Bioethics and Health Law (PGDipBHL) or an equivalent qualification, and shall have achieved an average across all papers of at least B+. All applicants must present evidence of ability for advanced level academic study.

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