The Master of Science in Medical Ethics (MSME) provides rigorous methodological and conceptual training in bioethics for scholars who aim to become academic bioethicists. Although there are many bioethics-related masters-level graduate programs in the United States, none of these programs is designed to train the physician-scientist or other scholars aspiring to bioethics faculty positions in academic medical centers and universities. There is a desperate need for a pipeline for outstanding junior faculty in the field of medical ethics. The Penn MSME will be one of only a very limited number of training programs for aspiring bioethics scholars, none of which are degree-granting, further enhancing Penn’s position as a global leader in medical ethics.
The core fellowship experience will consist of:
1. Mentored research: Working with one or more faculty mentors, Fellows will be expected to conduct original research that will lead to the publication of a minimum of 2 manuscripts in top-tier peer-reviewed journals.
2. Master of Science in Medical Ethics: Fellows will undertake a 2-year program of study that will lead to a Master of Science in Medical Ethics (MSME) degree. Coursework will include core topics in medical ethics (4 courses), a grounding in empirical research methods (4 courses), as well research-related electives.
3. Department seminars: Fellows will participate in and lead regular department seminars, including sessions devoted to works-in-progress, presentations by department and affiliated faculty as well as by invited scholars, and journal clubs devoted to critical analysis of conceptual and empirical articles in bioethics.
4. Ethics committee, consultation, and institutional review board experience: Consistent with their interests, Fellows will join an ethics committee and/or an institutional review board at a Penn-affiliated hospital and will participate in consultations, protocol reviews and other committee activities.
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