About the Program

The interdisciplinary curricular concentration in Bioethics (BIOE) is unique at Puget Sound, and rare among liberal arts colleges. This program of study encompasses work in the fields of biology, natural science, neuroscience, religion, philosophy, literature, sociology, psychology, politics, economics, and business. It enables students to study topics at the intersection of the life sciences and the humanities (broadly conceived) such as: regenerative medicine and human stem cell research, global health, race, culture, gender and health care, global warming, human and animal experimentation, genetic screening and gene therapy, human population growth, genetics, embryology, reproduction, death and dying, disability studies, neuroscience, and human/animal psychology. The Emphasis prepares students for analyzing and understanding the ethical, moral, and cultural and historical dimensions of problems at the nexus of these and related topics. Faculty are drawn from several disciplines and departments: Together they provide the unique cross-disciplinary perspective that is the hallmark of this concentration.

The Bioethics Emphasis at Puget Sound helps students to analyze, understand, and integrate the challenging issues facing the health professions and society as a result of advances in medicine, health and science. It affords students the opportunity to synthesize humanistic and scientific approaches in the study of Bioethics. In keeping with its interdisciplinary nature the Emphasis in Bioethics, through its design and course work, highlights the following University of Puget Sound curricular goals: An understanding of the interrelationship of knowledge; familiarity with diverse fields of knowledge; the ability to think logically and analytically; the ability to communicate clearly and effectively, both orally and in writing; informed appreciation of self and others as part of a broader humanity in the world environment; an acknowledged set of personal values.

The interdisciplinary emphasis program in Bioethics helps to prepare students for a broad range of future careers, or for advanced study in medicine and the health professions, the sciences, research, teaching, law, journalism, public policy, hospital chaplaincy, biotechnology, social work, clinical ethics consultation, genetic counseling, and Master's programs in Bioethics.

Bioethics Emphasis Faculty

Faculty members come together from several disciplines and departments to provide a unique cross-disciplinary perspective that is the hallmark of this concentration. The Bioethics Advisory Committee/Bioethics Emphasis faculty includes:

  • Suzanne Holland, John B. Magee Professor of Science and Values; Department of Religion; Director, Bioethics Emphasis 
  • Lisa Johnson, School of Business and Leadership
  • Kristin Johnson, Department of Science, Technology, and Society
  • Jung Kim, Department of Exercise Science
  • Benjamin Lewin, Department of Sociology and Anthropology
  • Siddharth Ramakrishnan, Department of Biology and Neuroscience Program
  • Ariela Tubert, Department of Philosophy

How to Declare the Bioethics Emphasis

In order to sign up for the Bioethics Emphasis students should complete the declaration form and deliver it to Academic Advising in Howarth 114.