Online Masters of Arts in Bioethics

The MA in Bioethics is a fully online program offered through the College of Medicine’s Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanity. The 30-credit hour interdisciplinary program offers a broad exposure of the history, topics, and issues of bioethics, drawing on the strengths and expertise of our diverse faculty and OSU resources. This program is primarily intended as an advanced program to enhance other professional training and experience.

The MA program is an ideal fit for professionals in the fields of medicine, nursing, dentistry, social work, veterinary medicine, genetic counseling, public policy, and biotechnology as well as science researchers. Graduate and professional students in any bioethics-related fields are also welcome. Part-time and full-time program options are available. Most part-time students will likely complete the program in 2-3 years by taking four to five classes a year. Ambitious full-time students may complete the program in as little as three semesters.

MA in Bioethics at a glance:

  • 15 credit hours in core courses
  • 12 credit hours in electives
  • 3 credit hours of capstone (thesis or non-thesis project)

Total: 30 hours

Apply to Online Master of Arts in Bioethics

Application Requirements

OSU Graduate School Criteria

  • The equivalent of a four-year bachelor's or advanced degree from an accredited college or university, earned by the expected date of entry into your graduate program.
  • A minimum 3.0 cumulative GPA (on a 4.0 scale or equivalent) for the last bachelor's or advanced degree earned. Students who do not meet the GPA requirement should address it in their personal statement.
  • Additional English language testing requirements if applicable (International students, read about international admission.)

MA Bioethics Criteria

  • A personal statement expressing your interest in the program and describing how the MA in Bioethics will fit your career interests. Students who have a cGPA below 3.0 should address this in their personal statement.
  • Two (2) letters of recommendation from individuals who can speak to your ability to be successful in the program
  • Current résumé/CV
  • Academic transcripts (unofficial transcripts are acceptable for admissions review)
  • GRE scores are not required.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do you offer admission in all semesters?

  • We offer courses and allow admission in all semesters (Autumn-Spring-Summer) and welcome all students (resident/domestic/international). There is no difference between an onsite or online MA degree awarded from OSU.

How long does it normally take to complete the program?

  • Most students will take 4-6 semesters to complete the MA, though it can be completed in a little as a year (3 semester).

Are the courses offered asynchronously?

  • The program is entirely online and asynchronous (with the exception of one elective) to allow maximal flexibility for students. Though the courses are structured and there are deadlines for assignments, you will not be required to be online at specific times.

I applied. When will I know a decision?

  • Applications are reviewed by the Admissions Review Committee twice a month. Students can generally expect to know if they have been admitted within one month of applying.

Is it possible to work and pursue the MA at the same time?

  • Yes! We have many students who work part- or full-time while completing the MA in Bioethics. Our program is designed to accommodate work schedules through asynchronous courses and flexible curriculum paths. Our advisors will also work with you to develop a course plan that works best for you. We do not recommend that students who are pursuing the intensive, 1-year track work full-time.

Do you offer dual degrees?

  • We currently offer one dual degree with Slavic, East European and Eurasian Studies and are actively pursuing collaborations with other programs. Please see our Dual Degrees page for the most up-to-date information.

I don’t have a background in bioethics. Is this okay?

  • Yes! While a background in bioethics certainly helps, it is not a requirement. Our students come from a wide range of professional and academic backgrounds, as do our faculty. We welcome anyone with an interest in bioethics to apply.

Am I required to attend full time?

  • The Graduate School requires that students maintain continuous enrollment (Spring-Autumn) while in the program, but we do not require that you be full-time. Students must take 4 hours to be considered half-time and 8 hours to be considered full-time.

How much does the program cost? Is there financial aid?

  • Information on the University’s online tuition rate can be found here. Information about financial aid can be found here