University Homepage
DRPS Homepage
DRPS Search
DRPS Contact
DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Law : Law

Postgraduate Course: Fundamental Issues in Medical Jurisprudence (LAWS11328)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Law CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course serves as a foundation for critical analytical engagement with the core features of the discipline of medical jurisprudence, being the relationship between law and ethics in the provision of healthcare, the influence of human rights on medical practice, the importance of consent, confidentiality and medical negligence in shaping the contours of the doctor/patient relationship, as well as issues at the start and end of life, such as assisted reproduction and assisted dying. Where appropriate, comparative legal analysis will further inform discussion and debate.

The core aims of the course are:

- To foster a critical understanding of the principal elements of medical jurisprudence
- To develop a critical appreciation of the principal theories, principles and concepts that inform the relationship between medical ethics and medical law
- To support students to demonstrate originality and creativity in the application of their knowledge, understanding of the law to address current issues facing healthcare professionals and medical lawyers in everyday aspects of medicine
- To encourage development of original and creative responses to problems and issues thrown up by medical practice for law and ethics, especially where the current legal response is wanting or absent
- To equip students to deal with complex ethical and professional issues and to make informed judgements on issues not addressed by current professional and/or ethical codes or practices.

Course description Indicative teaching programme:
1. Medical law, medical ethics and human rights
2. Consent: capable persons
3. Consent: incapable persons
4. Medical negligence
5. Medical confidentiality
6. Assisted reproduction: control of fertility
7. Assisted reproduction: IVF
8. Mental Health
9. Public Health
10. Research and Experimentation
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2017/18, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  25
Course Start Semester 1
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 176 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 20% of the course will be assessed as a law reform exercise of 2,000 words to be released in Week 4 of term and submitted in Week 10.

80% of the course will be assessed through a final essay, normally one from a choice of three, and one choice will be an open option for each student to choose his or her own title. This will be released at the end of the course to encourage attendance throughout the semester and to ensure that as wide a range of topics are covered as possible.
Feedback An opportunity for students to obtain feedback in advance of the summative assessment will be provided.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. A deep understanding of the fundamental elements of medical jurisprudence and an understanding of the interaction between ethics, law and professional guidance in informing and shaping contemporary medical practice.
  2. The ability to analyse critically medico-legal scenarios, drawing on ethical schools of thought and professional standards as necessary, in order to demonstrate original and creative applications of knowledge and understanding with respect to the scenarios under scrutiny.
  3. The facility to conduct independent study and research to a high level that demonstrates knowledge, understanding and appreciation of the importance of interaction between law, ethics and professional guidance in the shaping of medical law and associated policies.
  4. The ability to engage critically in a group scenario on issues of contemporary medico-legal relevance, drawing on a range of ethical, legal and professional sources and to justify robustly any positions taken or defended.
  5. The ability to manage time effectively, preparing for deep engagement in class, to conduct research for assignments to the requisite level and to demonstrate improvement over the course of the module.
Reading List
The core text for this course is the textbook written by the course organiser, Professor Graeme Laurie. The text is: Law and Medical Ethics, ninth edition, OUP, 2013 (with JK Mason). The provides the foundational material for the entirety of the course. Multiple copies are available in the library.

Additional texts (all available in the library include):

Brazier, M and Cave, E, Medicine, Patients and the Law (5th ed, 2011).
Jackson, E. (2009, Second Edition) Medical Law: Text, Cases and Materials Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Grubb, A et al (eds) Principles of Medical Law (3ed, 2010) Oxford University Press.
Montgomery, J Health Care Law (3rd edn, 2010) Oxford University Press.
Pattinson, S.D. Medical Law and Ethics (Third Edition, 2011) London: Sweet & Maxwell.
Jackson, E. Law and the Regulation of Medicines (2012) Oxford: Hart Publishing
Hervey, K H and McHale, J V Health Law and the European Union (2004) Cambridge University Press.
Campbell, A. Bioethics: The Basics (2013) London: Routledge.
Hope, T, Savulescu, J and Hendrick, J Medical Ethics and Law (2nd edn, 2008) Churchill Livingstone: Edinburgh.
Beauchamp, T L and Childress, J F Principles of Biomedical Ethics (5th ed., 2001) Oxford University Press.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsMedical law; ethics,medical jurisprudence; healthcare;
Course organiserMiss Nayha Sethi
Course secretaryMr David Morris
Tel: (0131 6)50 2010
Help & Information
Search DPTs and Courses
Degree Programmes
Browse DPTs
Humanities and Social Science
Science and Engineering
Medicine and Veterinary Medicine
Other Information
Combined Course Timetable
Important Information