MS-1: Ethics, Law, & Professionalism

August 24, 2022-December 14, 2022
14 sessions

Course Director
Julie Childers, MD
Associate Professor
Department of Medicine

Course Description

Structures in society and in the profession that serve to enhance care and to protect both patients and physicians are the focus of this course.

Course Goals:

  1. To understand the relevance of law and ethics in the practice of medicine.
  2. To develop the skills of moral reasoning that are relevant to the care of patients in a professional manner.
  3. To recognize the conflicts of interest that may impair the professional behavior of physicians in dealing with their patients.
  4. To recognize the potential for conflict between the goals, beliefs, and values of physicians and patients.
  5. To develop strategies for reducing these conflicts in order to provide effective, compassionate, ethical and professional care.

Educational Methods

  • Small group sessions
  • VpSim and modules
  • Classroom discussion
  • Lectures


Evaluation for this course is based on participation in web-based case vignettes, performances on multiple choice quizzes, completion of an essay analyzing a case, participation in problem-based learning sessions, and a final multiple-choice examination.

Grading: Students are required to pass this course to pass the Patient, Physician, and Society Block, Section 1. Grading for the block is Satisfactory or Unsatisfactory.

Faculty Note

The Course Director, Dr. Joseph Yanta, is the recipient of the Outstanding Early Career Educator Award. Dr. Ankur Doshi is the recipient of the Donald S. Fraley Award for Medical Student Mentoring. In addition, Jason Chang, MD received the Outstanding Mini-Elective Award. Robert Arnold, MD; Melissa McNeil, MD; and Ankur Doshi, MD are members of the UPSOM Academy of Master Educators.