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Health Care Ethics and Law MSc: Manchester

The Centre for Social Ethics and Policy at the University of Manchester is one of world's leading centres for the study of medical ethics and medical law.  The Intercalated MSc programme is designed to provide medical students with an opportunity to study in depth the moral and legal issues that they will face as medics or researchers, and which they possibly do already face as students.  Students will, through carefully-designed lectures, discussions, and papers from visiting speakers, be introduced to the full range of ethico-legal controversies as they apply to medicine, and be encouraged to use the conceptual tools they will acquire to formulate solutions to those controversies and contribute to ongoing debates.  Students will also be required to complete a dissertation of 12,000-15,000 words on a topic of their choice; this gives an opportunity to define and defend a precise and sophisticated position in respect of a given problem - and it is not unknown for past intercalating students to use their dissertations as the basis for papers that appear in international peer-reviewed journals.

The intercalated degree will be useful in career terms.  Intercalating in ethics and law offers specific advantages: notably, it demonstrates an ability to think in an inter-disciplinary way, and to be able to deal with a number of conceptual challenges.  Additionally, students who have studied ethics and law can expect to find themselves better equipped than they otherwise would have been to solve ethico-legal dilemmas that they might meet on the ward or - more importantly, perhaps - simply to spot them.  Increasingly, too, medical researchers have to demonstrate compliance with certain ethical demands, and so an intercalated degree in ethics and law ought to be useful when it comes to planning research.  Finally, studying with us should reflect interests and concerns that most people have anyway, whether they know it or not.  After all: deciding to be a medic in the first place involves deciding on what would be good to do and why - and if that's not ethics, nothing is!

On completion of the programme, students should have a comprehensive understanding of the mechanics of medical ethics and medical law and a full conceptual toolkit that can be applied to both disciplines.  They should be able to apply the concepts they have learned to real-world situations, both familiar and unforeseen; be able to identify the ethically and legally problematic aspects of practice; and be able to suggest ways to minimise, solve, or avoid those problems.  They will also, through the dissertation element of the programme, have refined the ability to make and sustain a prolonged and sophisticated argument on a topic of interest.
Module details
The intercalated MSc has 6 taught modules and a dissertation module, plus a number of unassessed but compulsory components.

Three of the assessed taught modules will be compulsory; three will be optional (although the range of available modules will vary according to staff availability).

Compulsory Modules:

Philosophical Bioethics (30 credits)
Medico-Legal Problems (30 credits)
Ethico-Legal Problems in Healthcare Practice (15 credits)
Dissertation (60 credits)

In addition, a range of optional modules will be made available,  each of which will have a value of 15 credits.  Subject to alteration, we would expect these to cover such topics (amongst others) as Children, Medicine & The Law; Medicine, Law & Society; Mental Health Law & Policy; Research ethics; Ethics & Genetics; and Rights.

See here for further information