Master's Degree Program

The Department's highly successful Master of Arts program in Bioethics and Medical Humanities emphasizes the multi- and interdisciplinary nature of the field. Since 1995, it has provided advanced training in bioethics for students and professionals who will encounter bioethical issues in the course of their primary careers.

Eileen Anderson-Fye EdD is Director of the MA in Bioethics and Medical Humanities program. She will highlight many aspects of our program including the clinical experience and international programs.

Bioethics and Medical Humanities MA students/colleagues have the opportunity to work closely with department faculty in their specialty areas while completing the MA degree in only one year (full-time).

Highlights of the program include:

  • Nationally- and internationally-renowned multidisciplinary faculty with backgrounds in medicine, nursing, philosophy, law, religious studies, anthropology, sociology, public health, and history.
  • Outstanding dual-degree programs with Medicine, Nursing, Social Work, Law, Public Health, and Genetics.
  • Unique clinical experience with clinical ethics practicum opportunities at three major academic medical centers (University Hospitals’ Cleveland Medical Center, MetroHealth Medical Center, The Cleveland Clinic Foundation) and the Hospice of Western Reserve.
  • Research ethics track designed to explore ethical issues in research in depth through course work, direct observation, and working with research regulatory professionals.
  • The Medicine, Society, and Culture track provides students with a unique, interdisciplinary approach to exploring fundamental questions involving concepts of illness and well-being--and, in turn, how understanding of these terms varies across communities, countries, cultures, professions, and more.  Students will examine the implications of social constructs involving health for patients, caregivers, policymakers, and others, with a specific emphasis on how more sophisticated and thoughtful consideration of these issues can contribute to enhanced experiences and outcomes.  This one-year program is well-suited for such individuals as post-baccalaureate students considering further study or work in health-related disciplines, practicing physicians, nurses, social workers, and public policy leaders.  The Medicine, Society, and Culture track will enroll its first class in Fall 2016. Click here for more information about the track.
  • International bioethics programs. Different cultures understand and address ethical issues in medicine and the life sciences in unique ways. Gaining an appreciation for this international diversity is critical in today’s world, and can be both illuminating and challenging.
  • Wide array of department electives drawing from the entire University curriculum.

What do our students say about the program?

John is a full-time master's student at Case Western Reserve University. He's doing this program to help himself become a better doctor once he graduates.


While working toward his MA in Bioethics and Medical Humanities, TJ discovers different perspectives the faculty of Case Western Reserve University offer. Coming into the program as a psychology undergrad, he quickly learns that it is not as science-intensive as he expected.


Karen is doing her MA in Bioethics and Medical Humanities at Case Western Reserve University. See how the program helped her enhance her understanding of ethical issues within a hospital setting.