This established MA course equips you with the skills to assess the ethical, legal, social and spiritual aspects of advances in medicine and related technologies.
- Graduates now serving on their national bioethics committees.
- Both current students and graduates published regularly in peer review journals.
- There are flexible full time, or two-three year part time options with a choice of on-site or blended distance learning available.
- Priority placed on building thriving learning communities between students and lecturers.
Why study Bioethics and Medical Law?
Whether you realise it or not bioethics is relevant to all our lives. Even if we never work in healthcare it touches us when we are most vulnerable - when we or those we care for are unwell.
Almost every day, it seems some new ethical dilemma appears in the news; whether to do with assisted dying, stem cell therapies or three-parent IVF, resource allocation, nanotechnologies, human cloning or health and climate change. Having a greater understanding of the issues involved can enable more in-depth public engagement.
Reflection on the ethical principles that underlie medical and allied practice is an important part of continuing career development for healthcare professionals.
Ethics and values are becoming central themes in many boardrooms and planning meetings across all sectors of life. From civic leadership to business, from politics to healthcare, new developments in medicine, biotech, genetics and other sciences are stretching traditional ethical understanding to the limit.
If you are working in any of these areas, or aspire to in the future, the MA in Bioethics and Medical Law is an excellent way to be equipped to play your part.
Many of our students study for the MA as a form of professional development and advancing their career prospects. The degree sharpens your ability to critically engage and contribute to the world around you: the study of a contemporary and universally relevant subject such as medical ethics and law is excellent preparation for any profession that requires graduates with high levels of human understanding, critical skills and knowledge of current affairs.
Why St Mary's?
At St Mary's our multidisciplinary team of ethics experts with backgrounds in law, medicine, philosophy and theology ensure that every student has a chance to gain a thorough understanding of the grounding of ethical principles and their application.
We place a high priority on building a learning community between students and lecturers, which allows for the exchange of ideas and perspectives to thrive.
Personal Tutors will support you throughout the degree, providing learning guidance that will assist you to make the best possible progress and help to map your career development.
The success of our students - in completing PhDs, getting papers published and advancing their careers in biomedical ethics and related fields - bears out the effectiveness of this approach.
The MA in Bioethics and Medical Law is offered both part-time (normally over two or three years) and full-time (over one year). This structure has the great benefit of flexibility, allowing you to switch between your initial decision to study for an MA, PGDip or PGCert.
Aims and outcomes
- To promote respect for human dignity and the life of human beings, as understood in the Hippocratic / Judeo-Christian tradition, through the provision of a thorough academic understanding of the major issues and competing schools of contemporary bioethics.
- To contribute significantly to St Mary's University’s mission to seek to develop the whole person and empower its community to have a positive impact on the world.
- To familiarise its students with the plurality of academic and practical approaches to bioethical issues and encourage them to study all approaches with academic rigour and sensitivity.
- To promote academic enquiry into Bioethics within a Hippocratic/Judeo- Christian context with awareness of the ecumenical and inter-faith significance of cooperation in matters of justice.
- To provide healthcare professionals and those who teach ethical subjects with the intellectual resources to reflect critically on the ethical issues of modern medicine.
- To develop as a centre for dialogue and reflection for those within the Catholic Church, those of other Christian traditions and of other faiths or none, in order to explore the theme of common humanity, and hence to promote the culture of life.