Biomedical Ethics – PHIL 380

CG • Section 8WK • 11/08/2019 to 04/16/2020 • Modified 03/28/2022

Course Description

A survey of the major ethical issues that are currently facing the life and medical sciences. Topics will cover ethical issues concerning life and death, clinical and health care, and medical research. Emphasis will be placed on providing guidelines in making critical ethical decisions, especially for those planning careers in the medical field.

For information regarding prerequisites for this course, please refer to the Academic Course Catalog.


In recent years, traditional models and values have come under question in the medical and life sciences. With the progress in medical technology, the increasing emphasis on patient rights, and the growing acceptance of ethical relativism, moral values and decisions have become vague and confusing. This course will help students, especially those planning careers in the medical field, to steer more clearly through the moral fog they will encounter as they make difficult medical/ethical decisions.

Course Assignment

Textbook readings, additional readings and lecture presentations

Course Requirements Checklist

After reading the Course Syllabus and Student Expectations, the student will complete the related checklist found in the Course Overview.

Discussions (4)

Discussions are collaborative learning experiences. Therefore, the student is required to submit a thread in response to the provided prompt for each discussion. Each thread must be at least 400 words and demonstrate course-related knowledge. In addition to the thread, the student is required to reply to 1 classmate’s thread. Each reply must be at least 250 words.

Response Paper Assignments (4)

For each Response Paper Assignment, the student will write a thoughtful, well-reasoned response to the provided case. Each Response Paper Assignment must be at least 500 words and follow any current academic format (APA, MLA, Turabian).

Personal Code of Ethics Assignments (6)

The student will complete 6 sections for a Personal Code of Ethics. These 6 sections are Preamble, Beginning of Life, End of Life, Procreative Technology, Genetic Ethics, and Clinical Ethics. Each section must be at least 250 words. The student will revise each section according to the instructor’s feedback and then combine these sections for the Personal Code of Ethics: Final  Submission Assignment. The Personal Code of Ethics: Final Submission Assignment must be least 1,500 words. All parts of the Personal Code of Ethics Assignment must follow any current academic format (APA, MLA, Turabian).

Quizzes (8)

Each quiz will cover the Learn material for the assigned Module: Week. Each quiz will be open-book/open-notes, contain 15 multiple-choice and true/false questions, and have a 1-hour time limit.