The Joint graduate Programme “Bioethics” (JGP) is the outcome of the joint academic effort of the Department of Philosophy and Social Studies, the Department of Medicine, Department of Biology and the Department of Sociology, of the University of Crete (UC), Greece. It is staffed by 20 faculty members from the above Departments and 20 from other Greek and European Universities and research institutions.
It has been in existence since the academic year 2003-2004. It is the only graduate Programme in Bioethics in Greece, and since its establishment it has been receiving EU funding.
The JGP offers Masters and Doctoral Degrees. Students with First Degrees from Greek or accredited foreign Universities are eligible to apply. Admission to the M.A. is based on undergraduate performance, a letter of intent (no less than 1.000 words), English language proficiency, letters of reference, and an oral exam/ interview. Admission to the Ph.D. depends on the successful completion of the MA in Bioethics, a written exam (applying to external candidates) and approval of thesis proposal. Students are required to complete the MA in four (minimum) to six (maximum) semesters and the Ph.D. in six (minimum) to twelve (maximum) semesters.
The M.A. programme consists of coursework and research. The curriculum is divided into two types of courses: Compulsory and Electives (24 credit units). Courses are normally taught by weekly seminar. Each course is examined by one or two term-papers, to be submitted at the end of the term in which the course is taught. Only occasionally, a written exam at the end of the term may be required. In addition, students have to successfully complete, under supervision, a Masters thesis (25.000-30.000 words), which attracts 6 credit units. The total number of credits constituting the programme is 30. Its structure is interdisciplinary. Emphasis is given on the philosophical foundations of Bioethics, the bio-medical scientific background as well as its sociological and political dimensions, while a significant part of students’ training focuses on methods of moral reasoning in medical decision- making and health care policy.
In addition, students are required to attend workshops, experts seminars and lectures conducted by internationally renowned scholars in the special fields of Bioethics.
At the PhD level, students are advised by individual members of staff. They complete a thesis under the supervision of a three-member committee, while a seven-member committee conducts their final public viva voce, in conformity with the standards laid down in the Greek law.
Since its setting up in 2003, the JGP has acquired international reputation and established collaboration with world- famous academics in Europe and USA.