The medical humanities minor is designed to give students an overview of the ways that the medical arts and sciences intersect and interact with various disciplines in the humanities, in such ways as art and medicine, bioethics, the history of medicine, literature and medicine, music and medicine, medicine in the performing arts, medicine and philosophy, and medicine and law. This minor can be combined with any major and minor. A minimum of 9 credits must be exclusive to the minor and cannot be counted toward any other majors/minors/certificate programs.
To study the medical humanities is to examine the intersection of human experience and expression with the practices and technologies of healthcare. We ask how issues of medicine and health inspire artists and thinkers; how culture and philosophy has shaped healthcare policies and practices; and how health affects social, political, and personal identities.
A minor in medical humanities equips students with a multi-disciplinary perspective of healthcare that:
In medical humanities classes, students will find themselves alongside others from a range of backgrounds, preparing for careers as nurses, doctors, hospital administrators, technicians, pharmaceutical professionals, writers, social workers, lawyers, and clergy. The merit of a medical humanities minor is that it provides rigorous preparation and experiences that are applicable to a wide variety of opportunities.
Students must complete 15 credits from the following courses, 9 credits of which must be at the 3000/4000 level:
HUMN 2200 - Introduction to Medical Humanities (3 credits)
This course provides students with an opportunity to explore the relationship between medicine, medical practice, and two or more disciplines within the humanities: the arts, philosophy, history, literature, and cultural studies. Students will assume an active role in discussions, presentations, and other aspects of the course.
HUMN 4100 - Death and Dying (3 credits)
A multidisciplinary examination of significant topics related to the process of dying and death, such as changing western attitudes toward death, problems and solutions that may arise for those experiencing the dying process (including the dying, family, and friends), the grieving process, and non-western approaches to death and dying. Prerequisites: one ARTS, HIST, HUMN, FILM, LITR, PHIL, or THEA course; and COMP 2000, COMP 2010, or COMP 2020 or COMP 2000H.
LITR 3500 - Literature and Medicine (3 credits)
This course explores the relationship between literary and historical texts and medical practice. Using critical perspectives from the humanities, the course examines such topics as the medical practitioner's role, medical themes in literature, and pathographies. Prerequisites: one LITR course; and COMP 2000, COMP 2010, or COMP 2020 or COMP 2000H or LITR 2010H or LITR 2011H or LITR 2020H or LITR 2021H or LITR 2030H or LITR 2031H.
PHIL 3180 - Biomedical Ethics (3 credits) OR PHIL 3180H - Biomedical Ethics Honors (3 credits)
PHIL 3180 - Biomedical Ethics (3 credits)
This course provides an introduction to moral reasoning through a philosophical examination of major problems in biomedical ethics, such as abortion, euthanasia, allocation of resources, medical experimentation, genetic engineering, confidentiality, among others. Students will be introduced to the idea that ethical problems are largely a matter of reason; that progress toward solutions can be gained through an application of normative ethical (philosophical) theory. Prerequisite: COMP 2000, COMP 2010 or COMP 2020 or COMP 2000H.
PHIL 3180H - Biomedical Ethics Honors (3 credits)
This course provides an introduction to moral reasoning through a philosophical examination of major problems in biomedical ethics, such as abortion, euthanasia, allocation of resources, medical experimentation, genetic engineering, confidentiality, among others. Students will be introduced to the idea that ethical problems are largely a matter of reason, that progress toward solutions can be gained through an application of normative ethical (philosophical) theory. Prerequisite: COMP 2000, COMP 2010, or COMP 2020 or COMP 2000H.
PHIL 3220 - Philosophy of Science (3 credits)
A study of the conceptual foundations of modern science. The course focuses on the philosophical analysis of scientific method and its basic concepts and assumptions. Prerequisite: COMP 2000, 2010, or 2020 or COMP 2000H.
SOCL 2030 - Medical Sociology (3 credits)
The course uses sociological concepts, perspectives and research methods to develop an understanding and awareness of how social, cultural, and behavioral factors influence health, illness and healthcare. Students will study the explanations and theories relating to the distribution of diseases among various population groups, the behaviors or actions taken by individuals to maintain, enhance or restore health or cope with illness, disease and disability. Prerequisite: SOCL 1020.
SPAN 3300 - Spanish for Health Professions (3 credits)
This course focuses on intermediate-level Spanish grammar and vocabulary designed to help current and future health care professionals communicate with Spanish-speaking patients and their families. Students will also learn about the cultural context for discussing medical issues in both Spain and Latin America. Prerequisite: SPAN 2210 or SPAN 2350 or a Spanish Challenge Exam score of 93 or higher.
HONR 1000N - Genetics and Genealogy (3 credits)
Through lecture, discussion, review of primary literature, case studies, videotapes and class presentations, this course will investigate the relationships among the studies of genetics, human evolution and genealogy. Students will be expected to extract their own DNA and analyze it for various molecular markers as well as create their family history tree and narrative which they will present in class. Satisfies general education requirements in Arts and Humanities. Prerequisite: Honors Students only.
HONR 2000U - The Idea of the Hospital (3 credits)
This course explores the hospital through a humanities perspective with an emphasis on literary, cultural, and historical documents. The course will also consider the role hospitals play as theme and background for literature and personal narratives. Satisfies general education requirements in Arts and Humanities. Prerequisite: Honors students only.
HONR 2000W - The Pathography: Patients' Stories of Illness (3 credits)
This course explores the experience of illness through patient narratives in fiction, biographies and autobiographies. These narratives, in turn, shed light on contemporary medical practice. The course will examine such themes as battle, journey, and rebirth in patients' narratives. Satisfies general education requirements in Arts and Humanities. Prerequisite: Honors students only.
HONR 1010B - The Healthy Woman: Mothers to Cyborgs (3 credits)
This course provides students with an opportunity to explore this question, “What defines a healthy woman,” from a humanities perspective. Course goals are to analyze the ways women’s health has been imagined and expressed in literary and cultural texts. Materials will emphasize how the myths, attitudes, and beliefs surrounding women’s health have evolved since the advent of modern medicine in 1800s America and Britain. Prerequisite: Honors students only.