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Education Programs

The Center for Bioethics provides leadership and opportunities for students, community members and IU School of Medicine faculty and staff to gain practical and theoretical knowledge of bioethics. Training and educating translational researchers and their teams by helping them identify ethical challenges and address them—or get help—to be as innovative and effective as possible in their research work.

NIH Ethical Requirements

In recognition of the need for translational researchers to commit themselves to ethical conduct of research, the NIH requires trainees to receive education in the responsible conduct of research (RCR). The Bioethics and Subject Advocacy Program provides responsible-conduct-of-research training for NIH trainees in a number of settings at IU School of Medicine and other schools at IU, IUPUI, and to Indiana CTSI members. Available courses in responsible conduct of research are listed below.

  • GRDM G504: Introduction to Research Ethics (2-3 credits)

    Offered each fall term, the GRDM G504 course satisfies the didactic portion of the NIH requirement for responsible conduct of research training. The course covers historical development of concern with ethics in science as well as practical information needed by students working in science today. Featuring both lecture and discussion components, this course is team-taught by faculty members of the Bioethics and Subject Advocacy Program (BSAP) of the Indiana CTSI. Students have the option of taking the course for either two or three credits. G504 is cross listed with MHHS 504.

  • GRDM G505: Research Ethics (1 credit)

    The purpose of this course is to provide students with a formal setting to learn about the basic rules and acceptable standards required for anyone conducting scientific research. The course helps students obtain knowledge and develop skills for identifying and dealing with potential ethical problems in the research laboratory. This course is designed for all beginning graduate students working in the life sciences or related fields and other researchers who require basic training in the responsible conduct of research.

  • GRDM G506: Responsible Conduct of Translational Research (1 credit) 

    This one-credit course provides a basic introduction to responsible conduct of research related to translational research and fulfills the NIH requirements for instruction in responsible conduct of research for trainees and students in this area.  GRDM 506 focuses on topics in translational and precision health research, fitting the focus of many CTSI trainees. Students in this class develop an interest in and a positive attitude toward lifelong learning in matters of scientific integrity and the responsible conduct of research or other profession.

  • 93ZP700: Medical Ethics and Professionalism

    This annual month-long elective seeks to provide mature medical students and palliative care fellows with an overview of major medical ethics and in-depth exploration of foundational issues. In this seminar-style course, students first discuss basic ethical principles and theories; ethics at end of life, including hospice and palliative care; conscience-sensitive medical ethics; and the intersection of law, medicine, and ethics before moving on to topics on genetics, research professionalism, public health, health care reform, and more. Students also attend a monthly hospital ethics committee meeting and an ethics consult meeting, with the course culminating in presentations on topics of their choosing.

Responsible Conduct of Research Training for K-series Grants

Bioethics and Subject Advocacy Program faculty help applicants for K-series grants formulate and then carry out extended training in responsible conduct of research that spans the period of the award. Email Peter H. Schwartz, MD, PhD, to discuss designing RCR training for your K grant.

Masters in Philosophy, IUPUI

The IUPUI School of Liberal Arts offers an M.A. degree in philosophy with a concentration on bioethics. Leveraging the strength of a major research university located with state-of-the-art medical facilities, the program offers courses in clinical ethics, bioethics and law, research ethics, and ethical theory more broadly. Explore the curriculum for the bioethics concentration in the M.A. program.

Certificate in Medical Ethics, Fairbanks Center for Medical Ethics

This one-year certificate in medical ethics offers students the opportunity to participate in ethics consults at IU Health hospitals while engaging in didactic study with multiple faculty members of the Center for Bioethics.