Moral Medicine: Questions in Bioethics at the Cutting Edge

Course Description

In this course, you will develop an understanding of both biological concepts as well as the philosophical debates underlying difficult questions stemming from new discoveries in medicine. We will explore and debate 5 major topics in bioethics:

• Reproductive Medicine
• The New Genetics
• Infectious Diseases
• Allocation of Medical Resources
• Death and Dying

These topics touch on many fundamental ethical questions: the right to privacy, what cost we are willing to bear for scientific progress, whether we should pursue perfection and how we create an equal and just society.

Classes will be interactive, with the curriculum consisting of presentations, class discussion, multimedia, and group projects. You will read both scientific and philosophical articles, watch relevant videos, and read excerpts from literature and journalism. Bioethics case studies will allow students to analyze, research, and critique, along with formal debates. The classroom will be a safe place where you can exercise your debating skills and learn to constructively engage with differing opinions.

By the end of this course, you will be able to:
• assess and analyze bio-ethical issues and make recommendations and moral arguments
• understand multiple biological concepts and processes
• develop robust moral arguments by stating clear positions and providing compelling justification
• communicate via the written word and verbal presentations
• read scientific papers and understand emerging scientific concepts with a value proposition in mind
• hone critical thinking skills, learning to engage charitably in a discussion about moral issues and how to critically consume moral arguments.

This course will provide a foundation for subsequent philosophy, social ethics, and biomedical ethics courses by familiarizing you with multiple philosophers, discussing their theories, and developing and articulating one's own perspective.


There are no educational prerequisites for this course, but a strong interest in biology and ethics is required.


One Section Available to Choose From:

Online sections of Pre-College courses are offered in one of the following modalities: Asynchronous, Mostly asynchronous, or Blended. Please review full information regarding the experience here.

Dates: July 11, 2022 - July 15, 2022
Duration: 1 Weeks
Meeting Times: M-F 12:15P-3:05P
Status: Closed
Format: On-Campus
Instructor(s): Aisling Dugan
Course Number: 10071