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Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine
Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities

Northwestern Clinical Bioethics Scholars Program

The Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities offers a two-year scholars program that provides advanced training in the theory of bioethics and its application to clinical medicine.

The program includes the following curricular components:

  • Attend 10 Core Didactics/Workshops
  • Attend 12 Specialty Didactics/Workshops
  • Complete Asynchronous Learning
  • Participate in Practical Experience
  • Develop a Scholarly Project
  • Develop a Portfolio of Scholarly Activities

The curriculum provides a broad understanding of clinical bioethics across the following six subcompetencies:

  • Patient care
  • Medical knowledge
  • Practice based learning and improvement
  • System based practice
  • Interpersonal skills and communications
  • Professionalism

Program Objectives:

  • Understand the moral, philosophical, and historical basis of bioethics
  • Understand the basic principles of bioethics
  • Identify ethical features of a clinical encounter and develop critical skills necessary to evaluate ethical claims
  • Address ethical challenges and conflicts through defending a particular position on an ethical issue
  • Develop awareness of ethical issues that may occur across subspecialties
  • Develop scholarly products that allow the learner to increase their understanding of the ethical challenges in their own subspecialty


Candidates must be affiliated with an academic department, school, or college at Northwestern University or another academic medical center; or a healthcare professional in the Northwestern Medicine organization.

Faculty from non-healthcare fields are welcome to participate if the area of Bioethics can be applied to their primary area of study (e.g. medical anthropology, environmental/health issues, health journalism).



There will be no tuition requirements for scholars who enroll in the program during the 2019-2020 academic year.


Apply to Join

Applications are now closed for joining the program in 2019-2020. A brief online application, a statement of purpose, a statement of experience, an updated CV, and a brief interview are required for consideration. Applications to join in Fall 2020 will be accepted starting in Spring 2020 with a deadline in Summer 2020. Please watch for announcements or check back here for specific dates.


Important Dates (2020)

  • Applications open: June 1, 2020
  • Applications close: TBA
  • Decision communicated: TBA
  • First seminar session: TBA

Program Director

Kelly N Michelson, MD, MPH
Professor of Pediatrics
Julia and David Uihlein Professor in Bioethics and Medical Humanities
Director, Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities


Assistant Program Director

Angira Patel, MD, MPH
Associate Professor, Pediatrics-Cardiology and Medical Education
Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine 

Program Coordinator

Myria Knox


Core Faculty

View the full list