Course Work


The list of courses included is not all-inclusive. The student, research advisor/mentor, and co-directors will design a program tailored to the student's interests, goals and background.

INDE 212               Medical Humanities and the Arts (2 units)

PEDS 251a            Medical Ethics I (2 units)

Course Descriptions

(6 units required with an Application, 12 units are required without an Application.)

INDE 212
Medical Humanities and the Arts

The interdisciplinary field of medical humanities: the use of the arts and humanities to examine medicine in personal, social, and cultural contexts. Topics include the doctor/patient relationship, the patient perspective, the meaning of doctoring, and the meaning of illness. Sources include visual and performing arts, film, and literary genres such as poetry, fiction, and scholarly writing. Designed for medical students in the Biomedical Ethics and Medical Humanities Scholarly Concentration, but all students are welcome.

PEDS 251 Biomedical Ethics

The field of bioethics including theoretical approaches to bioethical problems. Contemporary controversies and clinical cases. Issues include: genetics and stem cell research; rationing; ethical issues in care at the end of life; organ transplantation issues. Values that arise in different situations and clinical encounters.

Choose from courses listed below (can take multiple areas) and/or undertake directed study with any faculty member associated with the Biomedical Ethics and Medical Humanities concentration (4-8 units depending upon combining with Application).

For student projects that will utilize qualitative methodologies such as surveys and in-depth interviews, you are encouraged to take advantage of the course offerings listed below under Qualitative Methods.

Sample Elective Courses

Biomedical Ethics Focus

  • HRP 211 Advanced Issues in Health Law and Policy: Ethical, Legal and Social Issues in the Genetics Revolution
  • HRP 209 Medicine and the Law
  • Genetics 208 Ethical Issues for Geneticists
  • GSBGEN 522 Ethical Issues in the Biotech Industry 
  • Ethics in Society 7 Medical Ethics
  • Ethics in Society 170 Ethical Theory
  • Philosophy 278 Margins of Agency
  • Human Biology 2,3,4S Bioethics (1-2 units each)
  • Human Biology 121 Ethical Issues in the Neurosciences
  • Law 649 Advanced Issues in Health Law and Policy: Genetics and Law
  • INDE/Genetics 238 Current Concepts and Dilemmas in Genetic Testing

History Focus

  • Inde 226 History of Medicine Online
  • STS 121A A History of Vision: Between Art and Science 
  • History 264 The History of Women and Medicine in the U.S. (5 units)
  • History 203/303D The History of Artificial Life 
  • History 13 The Emergence of Modern Medicine 
  • History 33A The Rise of Scientific Medicine

Literary/Visual/Performing Arts Focus

  • Comp Lit 229 Literature of Global Health
  • Inde 211 Creative Writing for Medical Students
  • Inde 214 Stanford Medical Student Journal (note: must work on student journal H&P)
  • Human Biology 167 The Art of Vision
  • Human Biology 175 Health Care as seen through Medical History, Literature and the Arts
  • Human Biology 75S Novels and Theatre of Illness 
  • English 170 Introduction to Literary Theory & Critical Methods 
  • Comp Lit 202 Comparative Fictions of Ethnicity 
  • STS 121A A History of Vision: Between Art and Science
  • STS 121B Deceptions: Perspectives from Science, Technology and Art 
  • SURG 242 Art and Anatomy Studio
  • Human Biology 116 Eye and Implications of Vision
  • Art and Art History 162/362 Cyborgs and Synthetic Humans

Social and Cultural Medicine Focus (includes Ethnicity/ Gender/ Medical Anthropology/ Language/ Linguistics/ Communication)

  • Fammed 210 The Healer's Art.
  • Law 560 Mental Health Law: Forensics
  • Med 213 Compassion Cultivation for the Physician-in-Training
  • Med 224 Ethnicity and Medicine Lecture Series 
  • Med 226 Building Our Humanity: Culture, Emotions and Medicine
  • Med 228 Physicians and Social Responsibility
  • Med 261 A,B,C Medicine in a Multi-Cultural Global Society
  • Sociology 141A Social Class, Race/Ethnicity, Health 
  • Sociology 135/235 Seminar in Women's Health: Women and Disabilities 
  • STS 155 (CASA 132) Science, Technology and Gender
  • Anthropological Sciences 170 Medical Anthropology
  • Anthropological Sciences 270 Advanced Medical Anthropology
  • Anthropological Sciences 210 Examining Ethnographies (5 units)
  • Anthropological Sciences 275 Anthropology of Death and Dying 
  • Anthropological Sciences 176A/276A Anthropological Perspectives on Child Welfare 
  • Anthropological Sciences 177 Health and Healing in South Asia
  • Anthropological Sciences 180/280 Introduction to Anthropological Genetics
  • Certificate in medical anthropology "Cultures, Minds and Medicines," includes: Anthro 176/276
  • CASA 82/282 Medical Anthropology
  • CASA 140/240 An Archaeology of Death 
  • CASA 354
  • CASA 358 Current Visions in Medical Anthropology 
  • CASA 359 Approaches to the Body 
  • Medicine 246 Interpersonal Communication
  • Linguistics 146 Language and Gender 
  • Human Biology 118 Human Diversity: A Linguistic Perspective
  • HRP 280, 281, 282 Spanish I, II, III for Medical Students
  • INDE 252 Medicine & Horsemanship: A model for doctor-patient relationships

Qualitative Methods

  • Education 200A Introduction to Data Analysis and Interpretation (usually autumn and winter terms)
  • Education 200B Qualitative Research Methods (usually fall and winter terms)
  • MED 147/247 Methods in Community Assessment, Evaluation, and Research (usually spring term)
  • Qualitative Methods Seminar (SCBE; email for details)