The Program in Bioethics is part of NYU's Center for Bioethics, based in the Faculty of Arts and Science with close ties with faculty members in clinical and environmental medicine, public and international health, environmental studies and law. In addition, there are visiting fellows who take part in faculty-student conferences and research groups. The program's principal academic aim is to broaden and conjoin the disciplines of medical ethics and environmental ethics. Although each field has proven especially productive in recent decades, there has been little cross-fertilization.
The primary focus of medical ethics has been the life and health of individual hospital patients and clinical research subjects, while environmental ethics has attended to nonhuman populations and their ecosystems. Recently, however, medical ethics has been expanding to include broader issues of environment-relevant public and global health and disease, while environmental ethics now includes health-relevant patterns of consumption, waste, and transportation. Hence, it is timely and mutually illuminating to see how far the standard principles, perspectives, concepts, and concerns in each field can be extended into the other, as well as to formulate new shared supplements.
Two core courses and six elective courses from a variety of departments and professional schools are required, as well as a practicum and master's essay. The practicum involves firsthand experience of New York committees, collective projects, and policy or advocacy groups addressing medical or environmental ethical issues. The master's essay is an ethical reflection on this practical experience.
Full-time students can complete the degree in a 12-month period, including summer session independent study. Part-time students may take as little as one course a semester.
New York University is a member of the Association of American Universities and is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.