Please note that the application deadlines for Winter 2023 are as follows:

  • All International applicants: July 15, 2022
  • All Canadian applicants: September 1, 2022



For information, contact the Graduate Program Director:

  • Jennifer Fishman – jennifer.fishman [at]

About Bioethics

The Biomedical Ethics Unit was established in 1996 with the aim of supporting scholarly research, clinical services, teaching, and public outreach. Members of the unit have backgrounds in law, sociology, molecular genetics, history, medicine, and philosophy. We offer a master's degree specialization in biomedical ethics for selected master's students in the Division of Experimental Medicine, the Department of Family Medicine, Department of Human Genetics, Department of Philosophy, School of Religious Studies, and Faculty of Law.

Master's Specialization in Bioethics

The Master's Specialization in Bioethics is sponsored by the:

  • Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Division of Experimental Medicine, Department of Human Genetics, Department of Family Medicine;
  • Faculty of Law; and
  • Faculty of Arts, Department of Philosophy, School of Religious Studies.

Students receive an M.A., LL.M., or M.Sc. degree in the discipline chosen with a specialization in Bioethics.

Some applicants are mid-career professionals currently working as physicians, nurses, social workers, other health care providers, or lawyers. Other applicants have recently completed their undergraduate degrees in science, philosophy, law, religious studies, or other disciplines, and wish to pursue specialized master's level training in bioethics before enrolling in doctoral level studies or entering the workplace.

Students pursuing the master's degree specialization normally take two semesters of courses before beginning their master's thesis. Courses offered include Bioethics Theory, Public Health Ethics and Policy, Research Ethics, and a Practicum that includes placement in a clinical or research setting. Research and writing the thesis normally takes one year. Students must also comply with the course and thesis requirements of their home disciplines.

Taken from Programs, Courses and University Regulations 2022-2023 (last updated Mar. 3, 2022).

Bioethics Admission Requirements and Application Procedures

Admission Requirements

M.D. degree, professional training in a health science, or bachelor's degree in the sciences, social sciences, law, philosophy, or religious studies. Other students may be considered on an individual basis.

Enrolment is limited to 12 students.

Application Procedures

McGill’s online application form for graduate program candidates is available at

See University Regulations and Resources > Graduate > Graduate Admissions and Application Procedures > Application Procedures for detailed application procedures.

Applications for the Master’s Specialization in Bioethics are made initially through the Faculties of Law, Medicine and Health Sciences (Division of Experimental Medicine, Department of Human Genetics, Department of Family Medicine), and Arts (Department of Philosophy, School of Religious Studies).

Applicants must satisfy the admission criteria for their chosen discipline and those of the Bioethics Unit, which administers the program and teaches the core courses; see

Applicants must be accepted by the appropriate Faculty, the Bioethics Graduate Studies Advisory Committee, and Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies.

Application Dates and Deadlines

Deadlines coincide with those of the chosen base discipline. Applicants must verify all deadlines and documentation requirements well in advance on the appropriate McGill departmental website; please consult the list at

Note: Applications for Winter or Summer term admission will not be considered.
Taken from Programs, Courses and University Regulations 2022-2023 (last updated Feb. 7, 2022).
Back to top