ATS1263 - Bioethics: Current controversies - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 1, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Monash Bioethics Centre


Professor Michael Selgelid

Unit guides



  • First semester 2017 (Day)


  • First semester 2017 (Day)


This unit investigates ethical issues raised by current and likely future developments in biotechnology and genetics. The unit examines ethical controversy surrounding the following topics, outlining the latest research in each case: genetic engineering and 'enhancement' of human traits; preimplantation and prenatal genetic diagnosis and selection; therapeutic and reproductive cloning; stem cell research; genetic modification of organisms; synthetic biology; and biological weapons.


On successfully completing this unit, students will have: a familiarity with contemporary and historical debates about new technologies in bioethics; skills that enable them to think critically about some key ethical issues raised by current and future developments in biotechnology and genetics; and the ability to make informed judgements about those ethical issues.


Within semester assessment: 65% + Exam: 35%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study

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