LAW 2516 - Medical Law and Ethics
North Terrace Campus - Trimester 3 - 2020
General Course Information
Course Code LAW 2516 Course Medical Law and Ethics Coordinating Unit Adelaide Law School Term Trimester 3 Level Undergraduate Law (LLB) Location/s North Terrace Campus Units 3 Contact Intensive Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y Prerequisites LAW 1501 Incompatible LAW 2021 Restrictions Available to LLB and B.Criminology with B.Laws and BArts Advanced with B.Laws students only Course Description The course provides an introduction to ethics generally and more specifically to medical ethics, examining in particular the principle of autonomy, which informs much of medical law. The course then considers the general part of medical law governing the legal relationship between medical practitioners and their patients. It considers the legal implications of the provision of medical advice, diagnosis and treatment. Selected medico-legal issues over a human life are also examined. These may include reproductive technologies, foetal rights, research on human subjects, organ donation, the rights of the dying and the legal definition of death.
Course Coordinator: Dr Bernadette Richards
The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.
Course Learning Outcomes
This course is designed to introduce the complex interplay between ethics and the law in the context of medical care. Students will be introduced to philosophical concepts along with legal principles which combine to protect the patient, healthcare professionals, and broad societal interest in a functioning healthcare system. Students will critically assess the role of the law in the medical context and identify the nexus between ethics and the law.
On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:
- Analyse the advanced principles of medical law, undertake self-directed legal research at an advanced level and evaluate legal and ethical information.
- Apply principles of medical law and ethics to complex problems, critique the operation of law in the context of medical treatment from a policy perspective, either individually or as part of a team.
- Structure and sustain concise and cohesive written and oral arguments for a mixed audience.
- Conduct legal research and analysis both independently and cooperatively in an academic environment.
- Analyse the impact medical law from a policy perspective.
- Reflect on their abilities to effectively undertake work as a member of a team.
University Graduate Attributes
This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:
University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s) Deep discipline knowledge
- informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
- acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
- accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
1 Critical thinking and problem solving
- steeped in research methods and rigor
- based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
- demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
2 Teamwork and communication skills
- developed from, with, and via the SGDE
- honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
- encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
3 Career and leadership readiness
- technology savvy
- professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
- forward thinking and well informed
- tested and validated by work based experiences
4 Intercultural and ethical competency
- adept at operating in other cultures
- comfortable with different nationalities and social contexts
- Able to determine and contribute to desirable social outcomes
- demonstrated by study abroad or with an understanding of indigenous knowledges
5 Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
- a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
- open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
- able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
- B.Richards and J.Louise, Medical Law and Ethics: A Problem-Based Approach (reference only) (LexisNexis Butterworths, 2014)
- Materials available on MyUni
Online LearningAll course materials are available on MyUni and please remember to check your student email as all course-related announcements are communicated via email.
Learning & Teaching Activities
Learning & Teaching ModesThis course is taught intensively over four days, with one 2 hour 'debrief' session.
Monday 14th, Thursday 17th and Friday 18th September will be intensive classroom days with lectures, activities and discussion.
Wednesday 30th September is the compulsory attendance day, failure to attend will result in failure of the course. This is an interactive, interdisciplinary day at the Medical School. You will be consulted by Medical Students during simulation activities, you will need to research and advise on specific legal and ethical issues as they arise during consultations with patients. This activity provides the basis for two of the assessment tasks.
Thursday evening will be a 'debrief' session in which we will discuss the activity, what you learnt and your experiences.
The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.Students in this course are expected to attend every day of the course and to actively participate as the design of the course depends upong active engageement. Students will be given pre-reading and the expectation is that it will be completed. Please refer to Access Adelaide for your timetable and enrolment details.
Learning Activities SummaryThe teaching days will involve a mix of lectures and interactive seminar style sessions. The lectures will cover substantive law topics, these may include consent to treatment, capacity, regulation of medical professionals, organ donation, consent and the child, medical research and xenotransplantation.
The seminar activities will explore the intersection of the substantive law and ethical considerations. They will be interactive in nature and there is an expectation that all students will attend and participate. Topics may include: decision-making in a crisis, the ethics of organ donation, regulation of innovative treatment and protection of the vulnerable.
A comprehensive course topic list will be available at the commencement of the course.
Students must all attend and participate in the compulsory interdisciplinary day.
The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:
- Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
- Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
- Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
- Assessment must maintain academic standards.
Assessment Task Weighting Due Task Type Length Redeemable Learning Outcome Participation 5% Ongoing Individual N 2,3,4,5,6 Legal Brief 15% 7th October Individual 1,000words N 1,2,5 Report 10% 7th October Individual 1,000words N 2,3,4,6 Research Paper 70% 14th October Individual 4,500 words N 1,2,4
Assessment Related RequirementsWednesday 30th September is a compulsory attendance day, all students will be involved in a practical activity with Medical Students. This day is crucial to the achievement of course learning outcomes and forms the basis for two of the assessment pieces. Attendance is non-negotiable.
Students are expected to attend and activelt participate as the course is designed to be an immersive, active learning experience.
A major research paper on a topic of your choosing. Topics must be approved by 30th September 2019.
Length: 4,500 words
Due: 2pm, Thursday 14th October
This is a legal overview of one of the issues addressed during the practical day with Medical Students. You will be given specific guidance on content.
Length: 1,000 words
Due: 2pm, Thursday 7th October
This is a short piece containing personal reflection/report of involvement on the practical day.
Length: 1,000 words
Due: 2pm, Thursday 7th October
All students must attend and participate in the practical day, Wednesday 30th September. Non-attendance will result in failure of the course.
Consistent with Law School policy, the primary communication mechanism for this course will be through placing announcements on MyUni. It is essential that students regularly check the announcements page for information. It is your responsibility to check MyUni regularly to ensure you have the most recent information. Any urgent information (such as unexpected cancellation of classes due to illness) will be sent to you by email as well as placed on MyUni.
Assignments are expected to be referenced appropriately in accordance with the Australian Guide to Legal Citation.
RETURN OF ASSIGNMENTS AND FEEDBACK
Feedback on the reasearch essay will be returned to students via the Turnitin portal. A marking rubric for the essay assignment( which indicates the matters the examiner will look for in the submitted essays) will be provided to all students in Week 1. Students will be notified by email when assignments can be retrieved from the Turnitin portal.
Late Submission Penalties
When an assessment is submitted after the due date, without an extension, 5% of the total mark possible will be deducted for every 24 hours or part thereof that it is late, including each day on a weekend and public holidays. For example, an essay that is submitted after the due date and time but within the first 24 hour period, and that has been graded at 63%, will have 5% deducted, for a final grade of 58%. An essay that is more than 24 hours late will lose 10%, etc.
Word Length Penalties
5% of the total mark possible for a written assessment will be deducted for every 100 words (or part thereof) by which it exceeds a stipulated word limit. For example, a 3,000 word essay graded at 63% will have 5% deducted if it is between 3,001 and
3,100 words long for a final mark of 58%. If the essay is between 3,101 and 3,200 words long, 10% will be deducted for a final mark of 53%, etc. Word limits include all words in the text, in headings, in quotations, but exclude citations in footnotes.
Any separate cover page, table of contents, bibliography or list of sources is excluded from the word limit. If the word limit is misstated, this may be regarded as academic dishonesty.
Word counts do not include footnotes, headings or cover page information. Quotations are included in the word count.
Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:
M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme) Grade Mark Description FNS Fail No Submission F 1-49 Fail P 50-64 Pass C 65-74 Credit D 75-84 Distinction HD 85-100 High Distinction CN Continuing NFE No Formal Examination RP Result Pending
Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.
Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.
Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.
Finality of Assessment Grades
Students are advised that Course Coordinators will not enter into negotiations of any kind with any student regarding changes to their grades. It is irrelevant, in any given circumstance, that only a minimal number of additional marks are required to inflate a student’s grade for any individual assessment item or course as a whole. Pursuant to the University’s Assessment for Coursework Programs Policyand the Adelaide Law School Assessment Policies and Procedures, grades may only be varied through the appropriate channels for academic review (such as an official re-mark).
ModerationIn accordance with the University’s Assessment for Coursework Programs Policy, course coordinators ‘ensure that appropriate marking guidelines and cross-marking moderation processes across markers are in place’ in each course. Procedures adopted by Adelaide Law School to ensure consistency of marking in courses with multiple markers include:
- assurance of the qualifications of markers, and their knowledge of the content covered in each course;
- detailed marking guidelines and assessment rubrics to assist in the marking of items of assessment;
- sharing of example marked assessments at various grade bands across markers;
- reviewing of selected marked assessments from each marker by the course coordinator;
- comparison of the marks and their distribution across markers;
- automatic double-marking of all interim assessment receiving a fail grade, and of final assessments where a student’s overall result is a fail grade;
- the availability of re-marking of assessments in accordance with Adelaide Law School’s Assessment Policies and Procedures.
Approval of Results by Board of ExaminersStudents are reminded that all assessment results are subject to approval (and possible moderation/change) by the Law School’s Board of Examiners. Assessment results at the University are not scaled. Under the Assessment for Coursework Programs Policy, students are assessed ‘by reference to their performance against pre-determined criteria and standards … and not by ranking against the performance of the student cohort in the course’. However, under that same policy, the Board of Examiners (as the relevant Assessment Review Committee for courses at Adelaide Law School) is required to ‘ensure comparability of standards and consistency’ in assessment. On occasions, the Board of Examiners will form the view that some moderation is required to ensure the comparability of standards and consistency across courses and years, and accordingly provide fairness to all law students. All assessment results are therefore subject to approval (and possible change) until confirmed by the Board of Examiners and posted on Access Adelaide at the end of each semester.
The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.
SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.As a result of some student feedback there is now a combination of options for assessment with less of an emphasis on groupwork. In 2012 there was an electronic tutorial requirement but unfortunately the prgoramme that was used did not work and will not be used in 2013. For those who choose the online tutorial option they will be run through MyUni which is more stable and reliable.
The University Writing Centre provides academic learning and language development services and resources for local, international, undergraduate and postgraduate coursework students enrolled at the University of Adelaide.
- Academic Support with Maths
- Academic Support with writing and speaking skills
- Student Life Counselling Support - Personal counselling for issues affecting study
- International Student Support
- AUU Student Care - Advocacy, confidential counselling, welfare support and advice
- Students with a Disability - Alternative academic arrangements
- Reasonable Adjustments to Teaching & Assessment for Students with a Disability Policy
The centre offers practical advice and strategies for students to master reading, writing, note-taking, time management, oral presentation skills, referencing techniques and exam preparation for success at university through seminars, workshops and individual consultations.
Lex Salus ProgramLex Salus (law and wellbeing) is an initiative of the Adelaide Law School aimed at destigmatising mental health issues; promoting physical, mental and emotional wellness; building a strong community of staff and students; and celebrating diversity within the school. It also seeks to promote wellness within the legal profession, through the involvement of the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of South Australia, the Honourable Chris Kourakis, as the official Patron of the program.
Students can participate in the Lex Salus program by attending barbecue lunches, pancake breakfasts, knitting and crochet circles, seminars, guest speakers, conferences and other activities. Our Facebook page, website and regular all-student emails promote upcoming events, and have tips and information on wellness.
Our Lex Salus YouTube channel also includes videos on topics like managing stress, and interviews with LGBTQ lawyers and their supporters which celebrate diversity and individuality. Students who commit to 10 hours of volunteering with Lex Salus in one year can have their service recognised on their academic transcript and through a thank you morning tea with the Chief Justice and law school staff.
Student Life Counselling SupportThe University’s Student Life Counselling Support service provides free and confidential service to all enrolled students. We encourage you to contact the Student Life Counselling Support service on 8313 5663 to make an appointment to deal with any issues that may be affecting your study and life.
Policies & Guidelines
This section contains links to relevant assessment-related policies and guidelines - all university policies.
- Academic Credit Arrangement Policy
- Academic Honesty Policy
- Academic Progress by Coursework Students Policy
- Assessment for Coursework Programs
- Copyright Compliance Policy
- Coursework Academic Programs Policy
- Elder Conservatorium of Music Noise Management Plan
- Intellectual Property Policy
- IT Acceptable Use and Security Policy
- Modified Arrangements for Coursework Assessment
- Student Experience of Learning and Teaching Policy
- Student Grievance Resolution Process
Academic HonestyAcademic dishonesty is a serious act of academic misconduct. All students must be familiar with the University’s Academic Honesty Policy.
Academic dishonesty is a serious matter and is treated as such by the Law School and the University. Academic dishonesty (which goes beyond plagiarism) can be a ground for a refusal by the Supreme Court of South Australia to admit a person to practice as a legal practitioner in South Australia.
Academic honesty is an essential aspect of ethical and honest behaviour, which is central to the practice of the law and an understanding of what it is to be a lawyer.
Students are reminded that in order to maintain the academic integrity of all programs and courses, the university has a zero-tolerance approach to students offering money or significant value goods or services to any staff member who is involved in their teaching or assessment. Students offering lecturers or tutors or professional staff anything more than a small token of appreciation is totally unacceptable, in any circumstances. Staff members are obliged to report all such incidents to their supervisor/manager, who will refer them for action under the university's student’s disciplinary procedures.
The University of Adelaide is committed to regular reviews of the courses and programs it offers to students. The University of Adelaide therefore reserves the right to discontinue or vary programs and courses without notice. Please read the important information contained in the disclaimer.