MCE5213 - Regulation and ethics in assisted reproductive technologies - 2017

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

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


Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences

Organisational Unit

Department of Obstetrics and Gynaecology


Dr Sally Catt

Unit guides


Monash Medical Centre

  • Second semester 2017 (Day)
  • Second semester 2017 (Online)


This unit examines the current legislation and regulations governing the clinical practice of Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) and related research, nationally and internationally. It describes the role of ethical frameworks and principles in health decision-making and analyses regulation in ART with respect to underlying moral and ethical principles. An introduction to ethical problem solving is presented. The major ethical issues raised by assisted reproductive technologies are examined and critically evaluated.


Upon successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:

  1. Recognise the role of ethics in health care and legal decision-making and apply ethical frameworks and principles when analysing conflicts and solving problems;
  2. Evaluate and compare the diverse and often conflicting views about current ART practices present in local and world communities,
  3. Apply an ethical framework when interpreting specific legal and ethical issues, such as gamete and embryo donation, embryo experimentation, surrogacy, cloning, stem cell research, genetic selection and manipulation;
  4. Recognise the social and ethical responsibilities as a health care professional and with regard to patient care
  5. Be able to describe the current major legislative and non-legislative schemes for regulating ART in Australia and have some knowledge of how the Australian situation compares with other countries;
  6. Argue for and against ethical concerns raised by current and future ART practices


  • Controversial ART case (2,000 words) (30%)
  • Reflection on ethical and legal ART issues (3,000 words, 40%) (hurdle)
  • Debate (30%)

Workload requirements

16 hours contact per week (lectures, tutorials, debates, self-directed study).

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

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

Additional information on this unit is available from the faculty at: