Degree course: 
Corso di Second cycle degree in BIOMEDICAL SCIENCES
Academic year when starting the degree: 
Academic year in which the course will be held: 
Course type: 
Supplementary compulsory subjects
First Semester
Standard lectures hours: 
Detail of lecture’s hours: 
Lesson (32 hours)

To fully understand the topics addressed in the present course, students should possess basic notions of cellular biology, genetics, human anatomy, physiology and pathology.

Final Examination: 

The learning outcomes will be assessed by an oral interview on any topic se-lected from the syllabus.
Students will be faced with a set of four key questions that can be used to clarify an ethical problem. In all cases, students will need to ask the follow-ing:
What is the ethical question? What are the relevant facts? Who or what could be affected by the way the question gets resolved? What are the rele-vant ethical considerations?
A minimum requirement for passing the exam is having demonstrated that students know the main ethical theories and principles. The criteria that will guide the evaluation of the oral test are based not only on the adequacy of the answers to the questions asked, but also on the correct use of scientific and ethical terminology in the presentation of the topics.

Voto Finale

The aim of the course is to introduce bioethics, with particular reference to the main issues related to the three disciplinary areas of clinical ethics, re-search ethics and public ethics.
The course aims to provide a historical-methodological introduction of bio-ethics as a discipline. In particular, the different methodological approaches present in the literature and currently used within bioethical reasoning to face the so-called ethical dilemmas and moral disagreements will be pre-sented and discussed.
The course also deals with the three aforementioned sectors - clinical eth-ics, research ethics and public ethics - through the presentation of the main theoretical and applied issues addressed within these areas of investigation, and the treatment of selected case studies that allow to show how bioethics can become a useful tool for analyzing, if not solving, these issues.
Finally, the course will offer opportunity to evaluate the ethical and social impact of many topics proposed in the study path with reference to the dis-ciplinary area of research methodologies and communication and to the area of clinical and diagnostic disciplines.
At the end of the course, students should be able to:
• demonstrate familiarity with the major concepts and theoretical perspec-tives in ethics;
• recognize and critically analyze ethical concerns in biology, medicine and public health;
• distinguish ethical questions from scientific and legal questions and from questions of personal preference, custom, or habit;
• develop and use critical thinking skills to analyze information and situa-tions in order to respond and act ethically with regard to scientific research, practice, and technology;
• recognize that while there can usually be several answers or approaches to an ethical question, it is important to present a strong, well-reasoned ar-gument for one’s position. And then to develop the ability to justify an ethi-cal position;
• Enhance respectful dialogue among individuals with diverse perspectives.
At the end of the course, students should have also the theoretical compe-tences that will allow them to assess ethical reasoning in complex situations and ethical decision making in professional and research practice.

• Introduction to Bioethics and the aims of medicine
• Introduction to Clinical Ethics and Ethics consultation
• Biomedical Research and Vaccine
• Animal Ethics
• Research Integrity
• NeuroEthics
• Beginning of Life issues (PMA, Abortion, Embryo Stem Cells)
• End of Life issues (Euthanasia, Advanced Directives, Palliative Care)
• Organ Transplantation
• GenEthics and Human Enhancement
• Research Biobanks and Big Data
• Nanotechnology and NanoEthics
• Transcultural medicine
• Ethical issues in infectious diseases
• Bioethical Dilemmas in Emergency and Disaster Medicine
• Ethics in Health Services Management
• Privacy and Confidentiality

All the topics will be characterized by a common thread in reference to the recent world COVID-19 pandemic and the ethical questions it poses.

Slides, documents and scientific papers are supplied by the lecturer. All ma-terial can be find on e-learning platform, compatibly with the laws on copy-right.
Specific and current reference textbooks will be also recommended during each individual lesson.


The course consists of specialist lessons and Case Reports aimed at creating a direct interaction between students and teacher, in order to stir the stu-dents' interest concerning the topics of the course.
The case study method challenges students to engage the issues being dis-cussed and to participate actively in the deliberative process (participatory method with discussion, debate, questions). Lessons, case reports and the accompanying visual materials are the major source of information for the students, who are also encouraged to further investigate aspects of special interest, by referring to some recommended textbooks.

The teacher will carry out the lessons face to face, respecting the distance and other preventive measures, and at the same time, the distance learning will be guaranteed for those who cannot be present in the classroom. How-ever, this method could be modified based on further indications that may come from the University.