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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences : Philosophy

Postgraduate Course: Applied Ethics MSc (PHIL11105)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Philosophy, Psychology and Language Sciences CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityAvailable to all students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryThis course will consider the application of ethical theory to cases, imagined and real, especially in relation to bioethics and the emergence of new technologies.

Shared with undergraduate course Applied Ethics PHIL10017

For courses co-taught with undergraduate students and with no remaining undergraduate spaces left, a maximum of 8 MSc students can join the course. Priority will be given to MSc students who wish to take the course for credit on a first come first served basis after matriculation.
Course description This course will consider the application of ethical theory to cases, imagined and real. Special emphasis will be given to the issue of humanity and its relations to the ideas of human dignity and genetic enhancement. The first part of the course will begin with topics that have received considerable philosophical debate, such as abortion and euthanasia. From these we will move toward contemporary issues, e.g. future challenges arising from the application of technology to medical science. Overall we will be concerned to understand the role that applied ethics can play in meeting these challenges. Similarly we will be seeking to understand the limits of applied ethics and philosophy, more generally, in these arenas, especially in contrast to the considerations that may apply in making social policies.

The course will not be discussing the following topics which often feature in applied ethics courses: engineering, environmental, legal, medical, healthcare, information, political ethics or animal rights.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Information for Visiting Students
High Demand Course? Yes
Course Delivery Information
Not being delivered
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. become familiar with key debates in bioethics including abortion and euthanasia
  2. understand the relationship between normative theory, metaethical theory, and the idea of applied ethics.
  3. grasp the doing/allowing distinction often used in applied ethics
  4. relate debates in applied ethics to other areas of moral philosophy and ethical theory, as well as law and social policy
  5. assess the roles of difficult concepts like freedom, dignity and autonomy in bioethics.
Reading List
We will work from assorted articles, reading one or two each week. These vary as new topics emerge.

The full details will be in the course guide on LEARN.
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Close reading.
Selective note taking.
Critical interpretation.
Developing an argument.
Written communication.
Oral debate.
KeywordsPhilosophy,Ethics,Morality,Ethical Theory
Course organiserDr David Levy
Tel: (0131 6)50 9943
Course secretaryMs Becky Verdon
Tel: (0131 6)50 3860
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