LAW4642 - Issues in medical ethics and law - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

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



Not offered in 2017


This unit will cover a selected number of issues in medical law and ethics. Topics will include general issues that revolve around notions of autonomy, competency and compulsion as well as a number of contemporary bioethics issues such as organ transplantation, abortion and medical research.

In discussing these issues, students will be encouraged to think about the differences as well as the interplay between legal rules and ethical guidelines. The discussions will also include a consideration of the different approaches taken by different countries and students will be invited to think critically about the responses of different jurisdictions.


  1. To introduce students to a number of selected issues in medical law and ethics
  2. To help students to develop an understanding of the ways in which legal and ethical rules impact on such issues
  3. To encourage students to think critically about the role of law and ethics in the resolution of the issues identified.


Take-home examination (60%), written assignment (30%), class participation (10%).

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. The 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)