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Module Specifications

Archived Version 2020 - 2021

Module Title
Module Code

Online Module Resources

NFQ level 8 Credit Rating 5
Pre-requisite None
Co-requisite None
Compatibles None
Incompatibles None

This module will introduce students to the field of bioethics, supplying them with a critical understanding of the bioethical arguments, controversies and theories. Students will gain an understanding of key bioethical concerns and issues, as well as learning about the latest developments in bioethical discourse.

Learning Outcomes

1. comprehend central issues and themes in bioethics;
2. construct arguments using the conceptual tools of bioethics and apply these to contemporary issues;
3. understand the wider social, political and cultural significance of these issues and themes;
4. engage in critical analysis and interpretation of important philosophical texts;
5. distinguish the principal arguments in bioethics;
6. evaluate and independently assess key conceptual ideas and movements in bioethics;
7. communicate the meaning and evolution of bioethical concepts and debates and present their own arguments and ideas clearly in written form;
8. synthesize a range of relevant material into a coherent overview.

Workload Full-time hours per semester
Type Hours Description
Lecture20No Description
Lecture75Independent learning / CA preparation
Online activity30No Description
Total Workload: 125

All module information is indicative and subject to change. For further information,students are advised to refer to the University's Marks and Standards and Programme Specific Regulations at: http://www.dcu.ie/registry/examinations/index.shtml

Indicative Content and Learning Activities

Four Principles of Bioethics (Beauchamp & Childress)

Reproductive Technologies

Abortion & Personhood

Stem-Cell Research/Genetics

Withholding/withdrawing Treatment

Euthanasia & Physician-Assisted Suicide

Assessment Breakdown
Continuous Assessment% Examination Weight%
Course Work Breakdown
TypeDescription% of totalAssessment Date
Reassessment Requirement
Resit arrangements are explained by the following categories;
1 = A resit is available for all components of the module
2 = No resit is available for 100% continuous assessment module
3 = No resit is available for the continuous assessment component
Indicative Reading List

  • Beauchamp, T. L. and Childress, J. F.: 2013, The Principles of Biomedical Ethics, 7th, Oxford University Press, New York,
  • Caplan, Arthur L. and Arp, Robert (eds): 2014, Contemporary Debates in Bioethics, John Wiley & Sons, Chichester,
  • Kuhse, Helga and Singer, Peter (eds): 2016, Bioethics: An Anthology, Wiley Blackwell, Chichester,
  • Moskop, John C.: 2016, Ethics and Health Care: An Introduction, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge,
  • Scott, P. Anne (ed.): 2017, Key Concepts and Issues in Nursing Ethics, Springer,
  • Singer, Peter A. and Viens, A. M. (eds.): 2008, The Cambridge Textbook of Bioethics, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge,
Other Resources

Programme or List of Programmes