Program Overview

The Master of Health Science (MHSc) in Bioethics is offered by the Department of Public Health Sciences in collaboration with the Joint Centre for Bioethics. This professional master’s program is designed for health practitioners, researchers, and administrators.

The goal of the program is to develop students’ knowledge and skill competencies in bioethics education, research, and practice in order to strengthen ethics capacity in health organizations. The majority of MHSc graduates use their training to enhance their existing clinical/research/administrative role, for example through participating as a chair/co-chair of an ethics committee, a research ethics board member, or a contributor to bioethics education and scholarship. Some MHSc graduates pursue the role of a practising health-care ethicist in a health-care organization by completing a formal practice-based training program (for example, a fellowship) in clinical/organizational ethics.

The MHSc in Bioethics is conducted in a modular format and has no thesis requirement, allowing high-achieving professionals to earn a master’s degree without interrupting their careers. Students are exposed to the breadth of clinical, organizational, and research ethics issues facing our health system today, with a strong emphasis on interprofessional exchange and practical experience informed by theory (including a practicum component).

Students interested in an interdisciplinary research program may wish to consider the Collaborative Specialization in Bioethics.

Quick Facts

Domestic International
Application payment deadline MHSc:

Fall 2023 entry



Fall 2023 entry


Minimum admission average MHSc:

Mid-B in final year of bachelor’s


Mid-B in final year of bachelor’s

Are any standardized tests required/recommended? MHSc:




Master of Health Science

Admissions have been administratively suspended. See amendment made on September 9, 2022.

Program Description

The MHSc in Bioethics is a two-year, course-based program with no thesis requirement. It is conducted in modular format to allow high-achieving professionals to earn a master's degree without interrupting their careers. The program's interactive, problem-based learning approach provides students with knowledge and skills that can be applied to a variety of health, health care, and health research contexts. Expert faculty and guest lecturers help students bring theory and practice together to address real-world ethical challenges. Students interested in a research-stream program should consider the Collaborative Specialization in Bioethics.

Minimum Admission Requirements

  • Applicants are admitted under the General Regulations of the School of Graduate Studies. Applicants must also satisfy the Dalla Lana School’s additional admission requirements stated below.

  • Normally, an appropriate bachelor's degree and a recognized degree in one of the health sciences (e.g., MD, BScN, BScOT, BScPT, BSW) or equivalent with a minimum mid-B average in the final year. Applicants from other disciplines are considered on an individual basis.

  • The program favours individuals with outstanding academic credentials and demonstrated evidence of scholarly ability and personal maturity.

  • Potential that the applicant will provide significant bioethics leadership in his or her home institution or local community upon completion of the MHSc in Bioethics.

Program Requirements

  • This course-based program is offered in modular format in 24 two-day Thursday/Friday blocks from September to April, normally over two years; certain international students may complete all coursework in one academic year. The program does not include a distance-learning option.

  • A major paper of publishable quality on a topic of the student's choice.

  • Students must complete 8.5 full-course equivalents (FCEs), including a 1.0 FCE practicum as outlined below.

  • Courses as outlined below.

Program Length

5 sessions full-time (typical registration sequence: F/W/S/F/W)

Time Limit

3 years full-time

Required Courses

Courses are restricted to students officially enrolled in the MHSc in Bioethics and the Collaborative Specialization in Bioethics, except where noted.

Year 1
  • CHL3001Y Core Topics in Bioethics

  • CHL3003Y Empirical Approaches in Bioethics

  • CHL3005H Legal Approaches to Bioethics

  • HAD5771H Resource Allocation Ethics

  • PHL2146Y Topics in Bioethics

Year 2
  • CHL3002Y Teaching Bioethics

  • CHL3004Y Ethics and Health Institutions

  • CHL3006H Writing in Bioethics

  • CHL3008Y0 Applied Learning in Bioethics (practicum)

  • CHL3051H Research Ethics

  • CHL3052H0 Practical Bioethics (capstone course)

0 Course that may continue over a program. The course is graded when completed.