British Columbia Institute of

Important Notice: COVID-19 Institute response


LIBS 7020 - Bioethics

Liberal Studies Part-time Studies Course

School of Computing and Academic Studies

BCIT is planning for a substantial return to on-campus activity for the fall 2021 term as informed by BC Public Health Officer guidelines. Refer to each course listing for details.

Course Details

The course will introduce students to fundamental theories in normative ethics – including utilitarian theory, deontology (Kantian ethics), virtue ethics, and the ethic of care – and to competing theories of distributive justice. Students will be introduced to relevant methods of applied ethical reasoning, mainly in the context of bioethical issues arising in the areas of medicine, business, and the environment. Following the case study approach, weekly readings may include topics such as public immunization policy, clinical trials involving vulnerable populations, patent protection of genetic information, and the use of GM foods. Discussions will be organized to encourage ethically and factually well-informed debate of these and other topics emerging from weekly readings and viewings.


BCIT ENGL 1177, or 6 credits BCIT Communication at 1100-level or above, or 3 credits of a university/college first-year social science or humanities course.



This course isn't currently offered through BCIT Part-time Studies. Please check back next term or subscribe to receive email updates.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  • Identify types of statements (empirical, analytic, value) and the different roles they play in value arguments.
  • Distinguish normative ethics, meta-ethics, and practical ethics.
  • Apply methods of ethical reasoning, such as casuistry (reasoning by analogy) and principle testing.
  • Using relevant ethical theories from the course, develop and analyse arguments pertaining to issues in business ethics and bioethics.
  • In reports or essays, analyse ethically relevant information and identify the structure of ethical problems in bioethical and business case studies.
  • Explain the main tensions in business ethics regarding the moral duties of corporations.
  • Identify and analyse current and emerging ethical controversies in medicine, research, and healthcare.

Effective as of Spring/Summer 2016

Related Programs

LIBS 7020 is offered as a part of the following programs:

School of Health Sciences

  1. Honours in Biotechnology
    Full-time/Cooperative Education   Bachelor of Science


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English Language Proficiency

BCIT's Part-time Studies English Language Proficiency Standard is English 12 (or equivalency). Students who do not meet this requirement should upgrade their English skills prior to any future registration.

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Registration is currently open for the Fall 2021 term.

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