Law, Neuroethics & Brain Policies

Class Unique: 28673
Instructor: William J. Winslade, Ph.D., J.D., Ph.D., James Wade Rockwell Professor of Philosophy in Medicine, Institute for the Medical Humanities, University of Texas Medical Branch and Adjunct Professor of Philosophy, University of Texas at Austin This course will address recent legal and ethical issues concerning brain development and defects, brain functioning and brain imaging. Topics will include:
  • Brain defects before birth related to abortion
  • Mild, moderate and severe brain injury
  • Disease or defects in newborn infants, children and adults
  • Disorders of consciousness such as vegetative states and minimal consciousness
  • Recent controversies concerning sports injuries such as concussions
  • Brain injury or defect and behavior related to criminal responsibility, mitigation and the death penalty
  • Brain treatments such as psychotherapy, psychosurgery and deep brain stimulation
  • Brain therapy and drug enhancement
  • Brain loss such as dementia and Alzheimer's disease
  • Brain research with incompetent or impaired subjects
  • Brain death policies
Texts: Winslade, William J., Confronting Traumatic Brain Injury: Yale University Press, 1998. Illes, J., ed., Neuroethics: Defining the Issues in Theory, Practice and Policy: Oxford University Press, 2006. Case Law and other readings will be provided by the instructor. Course Requirement: Take-home examination with an 8-hour time limit.

Class Details

Meeting Days Time Location
Tuesday 10:30 am - 12:20 pm TNH 3.129
Evaluation Method Date Time Alpha Range Room
Take-home 5/13/10

Additional Information

Course Type


Winslade, William J Winslade, William J