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ONC8008 : Ethical Dimensions of Cancer/Palliative Care (E-learning)

  • Offered for Year: 2024/25
  • Module Leader(s): Mx Jan Deckers
  • Lecturer: Dr Thomas Chadwick
  • Owning School: Pharmacy
  • Teaching Location: Off Campus

Your programme is made up of credits, the total differs on programme to programme.

Semester 2 Credit Value: 10
ECTS Credits: 5.0
European Credit Transfer System


The module provides an introduction to health care ethics, with a particular focus on the issues raised in the treatment and care of patients with cancer and those receiving palliative care. The module aims to facilitate a comprehensive understanding of the ethical issues raised in oncology and palliative care.

Outline Of Syllabus

This module will cover the following topics:
- An introduction to health care ethics
– Law, ethics and professionalism
– Disclosure of information
– Confidentiality, truth telling and errors
– Consent
– Ethical issues in research
– End-of-life issues- decision making for those who are incapacitated
– End-of-life issues - futility
– End-of-life issues - withholding and withdrawing treatment
– End-of-life issues – physician-assisted suicide euthanasia
– Complementary and alternative therapies
– Resource allocation

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion120:0020:00Independent assessment preparation
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading111:0011:00Supplemental reading
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading124:0048:00Online content
Guided Independent StudyReflective learning activity101:0010:00Via Reflective Journal
Guided Independent StudyOnline Discussion111:0011:00Online discussion, via Discussion boards
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

The design of the on-line materials encourages students to explore and deepen their understanding of the ethical issues which arise from the provision of cancer/palliative care. The on-line asynchronous discussions focus on issues raised through the completion of weekly activities, reading and reflection. The outcomes of these discussions will not only facilitate networking but also allow students to relate the information to their own experiences and issues in contemporary clinical practice.

Formative feedback via peer feedback in online discussion sessions and module leader feedback following on-line drop-in sessions and reading of draft essays allows students to monitor their understanding against the learning outcomes.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M902000 Words
Portfolio2M10Participation in collaborative e-learning activities throughout the module.
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The summative essay encourages critical application of the relevant ethical frameworks and professional guidance to a relevant example or scenario from clinical practice.

The participation grade rewards the student's engagement with the collaborative activities.

If a student fails the participation assessment and needs to undertake a re-sit, the student will have to
complete a different form of assessment. The student will be asked to look at 3 participation activities as identified by the module leader/team and submit a 750 word written summary (approx. 250 words per

Reading Lists