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Ethics Of Clinical Research (Module)

Module description

This module aims to provide an introduction to the foundations of clinical research ethics. The first half of the course introduces students to fundamental concepts and key frameworks used in research ethics. The second half of the course puts these concepts and frameworks to work by discussing current topics in clinical research ethics, such as genetic research and biobanking or international research. The closing session invites students to reflect on the extent to which clinical research ethics is “exceptional”, compared to how we reason about ethics in other areas of life, as some commentators have claimed.   

On successful completion of the module, students will:
  • Demonstrate a critical understanding of fundamental concepts and key frameworks in clinical research ethics;
  • Be familiar with, and able to critically appraise, current topics in clinical research ethics; and
  • Be able to act as independent and critical learners who manage their own requirements for continuing academic and professional development.

General Readings:

  • Emanuel EJ, Grady C, Crouch RA, Lie R, Miller F, Wendler D (Eds.): The Oxford Textbook of Clinical Research Ethics. Oxford University Press 2008.
  • Fisher J: Medical Research For Hire: The Political Economy of Pharmaceutical Trials. Rutgers University Press 2008.
  • Kimmelman J: Gene Transfer and the Ethics of First-in-Human Research: Lost in Translation. Cambridge University Press 2009.
  • Klitzman RL: The Ethics Police? The Struggle to Make Human Research Safe. Oxford University Press 2015.
  • Hawkins JS, Emanuel EJ (Eds.): Exploitation and Developing Countries: The Ethics of Clinical Research. Princeton University Press 2008.
  • Wertheimer A: Rethinking the Ethics of Clinical Research: Widening the Lens. Oxford University Press 2010.


Staff information

Dr Annette Rid

Teaching pattern

Lectures, seminars and individual study.

Module assessment - more information

Written summative assessment: one x 3,000-word essay (100 % total grade)

Key information

Module code 7SSHM615

Credit level 7

Assessment coursework

Credit value 15

Semester summer session 1

Study abroad module Yes