Bioethics Minor

The Bioethics Minor introduces you to the ethical issues surrounding medicine and biotechnology. You will explore questions like:

  • What rights and duties come with the role of health care provider?
  • Should the healthcare provider always disclose to a patient the full truth about his or her diagnosis?
  • What rights do persons have over their bodies?
  • How ought scarce health care resources be distributed?
  • Does everyone have a right to health care?

You will learn how to recognize the scope and force of an ethical conflict when it occurs, and ways to become more reflective and open-minded about differing moral views. It will provide you with the skills to clarify and defend your own principles and lobby for changes in regulations when there is a perceived need. This minor prepares you for fulfilling work in business, medicine, hospital administration, biotechnology, government, and law.

How to Declare

The Bioethics Minor does not require you to complete any prerequisite courses or have a minimum GPA prior to declaring.

To declare the Bioethics Minor, contact your major advisor or the philosophy advisor, Megan Theesfeld ( You can also declare the minor online.

Declare Now

Minor Requirements

The minor requires 18 units of eligible coursework, 9 units of which must be upper-level coursework (300-level or above courses).

Required Core (3 units)

Phil 321 Medical Ethics (3)

Core I (6 units)

Complete two of the following courses:

  • Phil 110 Logic and Critical Thinking
  • Phil 210 Moral Thinking
  • Phil 213 Contemporary Moral Problems
  • Phil 260 Ancient Philosophy
  • Phil 261 Medieval Philosophy
  • Phil 262 Early Modern Philosophy
  • Phil 263 From Hegel to Nietzsche: 19th Century Philosophy
  • Phil 264 20th Century Analytic Philosophy
  • Phil 344 Issues and Methods in Analytic Philosophy (spring)
  • Phil 348 The Moral Mind
  • Phil 410A or PHIL 410B History of Moral and Political Philosophy

Core II (6 units)

Complete two of the following courses:

  • Phil 241 Consciousness and Cognition
  • Phil 345 Philosophy and Psychiatry (3)
  • Phil 347 Neuroethics (3)
  • Phil 420 Philosophy of Science (3)
  • Phil 421 Philosophy of the Biological Sciences (3)
  • Phil 422 Advanced Medical Ethics (3)
  • Phil 434 Social and Political Philosophy (3)

Electives (3 units)

Complete one of the following courses:

  • CHS 309 Ethics Issues Common / Helping Professions
  • PHIL 323 Environmental Ethics
  • ANTH 325 Bodies in Motion: Intro to Medical Anthology
  • HIST 373 Politics of Health and Medicine in the Americas
  • CHS 401 Health Disparities in Society
  • PSIO 411 Scientific Methods and Professional Ethics
  • LAW 415 Healthcare Ethics (in development)
  • PHP 421 Introduction to Public Health Law and Ethics
  • ANTH 444 Introduction to Medical Anthropology
  • LAW 484B Aging and Social Justice
  • LAW 484C Technology and Aging

Upper-Level Requirement

At least 9 units (typically 3 courses) must be upper-division courses. Courses numbered 300 and above (e.g. PHIL 323, PSIO 411) are considered upper-division courses.

Double-Use of Courses

Up to 6 units (typically 2 courses) may count towards both the minor and Tier-2 General Education requirements. Other courses are subject to approval by the Philosophy Department and your major advisor. Contact your major advisor or Megan Theesfeld ( for more information.

GPA Minimum Requirement

Units used to satisfy the Bioethics Minor must achieve a GPA of 2.0 or above.

Residency Unit Requirement

At least 9 units of coursework (typically 3 courses) must be earned from the University of Arizona.