The Bioethics Secondary Emphasis will prepare students in Biology, Health Professions, and related areas, to resolve perplexing yet inescapable ethical dilemmas through the acquisition of essential conceptual and ethical frameworks.  


Take one of the following courses:

PL-105  Introduction to Logic

An analysis of practical reasoning skills, including a systematic approach to informal arguments and the meaning of everyday claims. Aristotelian logic, Venn Diagrams, propositional logic and symbolic logic are included.

4 CreditsH,WK-FR 

PL-208  Symbolic Logic

An introduction to the basics of first-order logic: the concept of artificial language, techniques for symbolizing ordinary languages and arguments, formal inference systems (either truth- free method or natural deduction), and other advanced topics in first-order logic. It has no prerequisites beyond high school algebra.

3 CreditsN,H,WK-FR 

Take one of the following courses:

PL-235 Ethics of Health Care

This course is a seminar-style course in 'professional ethics'. It will explore the various codes, value assumptions, and dilemmas faced by those who practice the health care professions. Specific topics (or dilemmas) will be determined by each class, based upon the specific POEs of the enrolled students. 

4 CreditsH,SW-ERPre-req or co-req: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109 

IC-292  Justice and Global Health

This course will introduce students to important contemporary debates about the nature of justice and global health from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. Topics covered include philosophical approaches to justice, prominent debates within global health around disparate health outcomes, and the impact of neoliberalism on public health systems.

4 CreditsIC 

Take one of the following courses:

PL-250  Science and Human Values

This course examines the reciprocal influence between science and social values, from the perspective of the humanities. It asks, " What good is science? " Through selected readings and discussion, students consider how everyday life is shaped by scientific innovation and technology, just as society provides a framework of cultural values for science. 

4 CreditsH,WK-HT,CTGESPrereq or coreq: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109 

PL-260  Philosophy of Science

Lays out some central philosophical problems raised by natural sciences. The possible topics to be discussed: Is science rational and objective? Does science really make progress? If so, in what sense? How to distinguish science from pseudoscience. Is science superior knowledge to other types? What is a good scientific explanation? Could we ever know about unobservable physical entities and events? Is it ever legitimate to regard a scientific theory as true? 

4 CreditsH,WK-HT,CTGESPrereq or coreq: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109 


Complete 7 credits from the following courses:

BI-270  Infectious Disease & Society

This course focuses primarily on the impact of ten human infectious diseases that have changed the world. Each disease is analyzed from five distinct perspectives: Clinical, Historical, Economic, Artistic, and Public Health. We also discuss genomics aspects of the infective organisms and of their human hosts. Pre- or co-requisite: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109


HS-313 Disease, Medicine & Empire

What can the study of the history of medicine tell us about the nature of rule and the politics of race in European empires? How did medical theoriesof disease and healing shape ideas about colonial environments, populations, bodies, and racialdifferences in the imaginations of European colonizers? How did medicine and science function as tools of colonial domination and as part of broader "civilizing" projects, and what were thelimits of such efforts at social control? Can the study of medical reforms and everyday life shed light on how colonial subjects conceptualized, challenged, and defined their own positions in thesocial order?

4 CreditsCA, I, H, SW-GE, CTGESPre- or Co-Requisite: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109.

HS-314 Medieval Medicine

Despite our popular understanding of the European middle ages as a dirty, disease-ridden, hopelessly backward period, the sources show us quite a different picture. Although a lack of understanding of the means of genetic change and the cause of viral and bacterial disease caused medieval people to understand the human body very differently than we do, that system was not without its logic and efficacy. This course will explore the human body and its diseases in the middle ages through a series of connected readings that introduce the body as a conceptual system and medieval science's attempts to understand it. We will then look at the growing field of genomic research as a way of understanding and comparing our modern systems of understanding the body.

4 CreditsH, CW, SW-GE,CTGESPre- or Co-Requisite: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109.

IC-203  Genomics, Ethics & Society

The purpose of this course will be to gain an understanding of the science behind the genome project and develop an understanding how ethical norms are established and challenged. Students will discuss and debate the potential implications of this new technology for them as individuals and for society in general. 

4 CreditsIC,CTGESPrerequisites: EN110 or EN109. 

PL-205  Ancient Philosophy

This course is a historical survey of ancient Greek philosophy which will cover representative figures (including the major pre-Socratics, Plato, Aristotle and important authors/movements from the Hellenistic period, such as Epicurus, Stoicism and Skepticism).

4 CreditsH,CW 

PL-270  Ethical Theory

This course will provide students with an introduction to important debates in contemporary ethical theory (including debates about the epistemic status of moral claims and moral relativism). It will also introduce students to important normative frameworks within contemporary ethics (such as virtue ethics, utilitarianism, deontology, Confucian ethics, feminist ethics, etc.). 

4 CreditsH,SW-ERPrerequisite: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109 

PL-304  Existentialism

Philosophers such as Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger and Sartre are studied as an introduction to existentialist thought. Theistic and atheistic types are considered, as is significance of existentialism as a contemporary philosophy. 

4 CreditsH,CW,WK-HTPrerequisite: FYC-101 or EN-110 or EN-109

RU-275  Medicine and Literature

This course uses literary and film depictions of doctors and scientists, and other professionals as a focus for in-depth discussion of the relationship between moral imagination, moral reasoning, and moral judgment and the role they can and should play in our lives as professionals, citizens, and people.


Secondary Emphasis Credit Total = 18

Six credits must be at the 300/400-level.  Any course exception must be approved by the advisor and/or department chair.