Bioethics Intensives

The Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics offers courses in Bioethics in June each year through the Berman Institute Bioethics Intensives (BI2) program. BI2 provides an engaging, non-degree learning opportunity open to anyone interested in exploring bioethics in an interactive short-course format. The courses focus on both theoretical and applied aspects of bioethics and are of practical value to medical, legal, and policy professionals; researchers; scholars; students and others. Prior coursework or experience in bioethics is not required.

Course participants engage with Berman Institute faculty from the Johns Hopkins University’s world-renowned schools of medicine, public health, nursing, and arts & sciences. BI2 faculty represent the Berman Institute’s five areas of focus: biomedical research and discovery, ethics of clinical practice, public health ethics and health policy, and global health ethics and research.


Registration is now open for the Summer (June 2015) program. Eligible JHU employees may use Tuition Remission to enroll.

Course Schedule
Course Descriptions
Tuition & Registration
Directions, Accommodations & Local Information


Three separate week-long courses are are offered during the weeks of June 1-5 and 15-19, 2015.  Participants may enroll in one or more courses, with multi-course discounts available. A certificate of completion will be issued for each completed course.

June 1 – 5 (M,T,W,Th,F)
9:00 am to 12:00 pm Foundations of Bioethics – Jeffrey Kahn PhD MPH; Gail Geller ScD MHS; Nancy Kass ScD; Jeremy Sugarman MD MPH MA; Margaret Moon MD MPH
1:00 pm to 4:00 pm Ethics of Human Subject Research: US and International Perspectives – Nancy Kass ScD; Holly Taylor PhD MPH
June 15 – 19 (M,T,W,Th,F)
9:00 am to 5:00 pm Prison Health – Leonard Rubenstein JD LLM; Gilbert Burnham MD PhD



Foundations of Bioethics
Course Faculty: Jeffrey Kahn PhD MPH; Gail Geller ScD MHS; Nancy Kass ScD; Jeremy Sugarman MD MPH MAMargaret Moon MD MPH

This course offers an introduction to the foundational approaches and issues in bioethics, including a discussion of the history of the field and the issues that led to its birth and growth. Sessions will be led by senior faculty of the Berman Institute, offering students the opportunity to gain from the experience of some of the most respected scholars in the field. Faculty will present foundational approaches and lead discussions of issues based on their disciplinary expertise and experience in the field. Course topics include theoretical approaches to bioethics, ethics and policy in public health, research ethics, ethics in genetics and science, and clinical ethics.


Ethics of Human Subject Research: US and International Perspectives
Course Faculty: Nancy Kass ScD; Holly Taylor PhD MPH

Course accreditation pending for full Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions human subject re-certification (100 points). 

The course provides an introduction to the ethics of human subject research and allows participants to apply what they learn to case examples from US and international settings. Ethical principles and a framework for analysis are introduced, followed by a review of key US and international regulations that guide the ethical conduct of research. Topics covered in lectures and moderated discussions include: informed consent for research participation; role and function of institutional review boards/ethics review committees; just selection of research subjects and duties of justice generally, and also when working in resource poor settings; and ethical aspects of study design. Registrants will participate in case discussions and will have the option to choose domestic or international cases for discussion.

The objective of this course is to increase participants’ awareness of and ability to reason through ethical issues that arise in the conduct of human subject research, both in the US and globally. This course is targeted to both an audience working primarily in the United States and an audience whose work is relevant to research in resource poor settings.


Prison Health
Course Faculty: Leonard Rubenstein JD LLM; Gilbert Burnham MD PhD, and Gabriel Eber, JD, MPH, CCHP

HIV_in_Indonesia_(10701270604) (1)This course provides public health, medical and nursing professionals with the tools needed to critically analyze and address the myriad clinical, policy and ethical issues in prison health care.

The course is global in scope, covering the health needs of prison populations through a focus on the organization of prison health care and multi-disciplinary challenges facing healthcare providers, both in the US and internationally.

The course includes a major emphasis on faculty-student interaction throughout the week.  Course topics include:

  • Prison health systems and management structures;
  • Communicable disease control, substance abuse and mental health treatment;
  • Health impacts of solitary confinement;
  • Health need of needs of female, youth and aging prison populations;

In each area and throughout the course ethical issues in prison practice will be discussed.

Guest faculty (both academic and non-academic) will join the course throughout the week, including:

  • Raed Abu Rabi, MD, Healthcare in Detention Coordinator, International Committee of the Red Cross, Geneva,
  • Donald Reeves, MD, Director of Psychiatry, University Correctional Healthcare, Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Forensic Psychiatry Training Director, University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey
  • Rachel Roth, PhD, writer and consultant based in Boston, Massachusetts, author of studies on women’s reproductive health in prisons
  • Homer Venters, MD, Assistant Commissioner for the Bureau of Correctional Health Services, New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Clinical Instructor, NYU School of Medicine

The course is offered in conjunction with the Health in Detention program of the International Committee of the Red Cross, which promotes sound health programs and medical ethics in detention facilities throughout the world.




Standard Course Rate: $1,300/course
Prison Health Course: $900 (new course offering discounted rate)
Current Student/Trainee/Fellow Rate: $800/course
PRIM&R Member Rate: $900/course

Registration: Please complete and return the course registration form (PDF). For all fields to work properly, you must save the file to your computer and open it using Adobe.

Tuition Remission for JHU Employees: Eligible JHU employees, retirees and their spouses/same sex domestic partners can use tuition remission to enroll in the intensive courses. To use tuition remission, please also download, complete, and submit a tuition remission form (linked below). Enrollment in Berman Institute intensive courses does not count towards (reduce) your annual tuition remission allotment. Visit the JHU tuition remission site for more information.
Faculty, Staff, and Retiree Tuition Remission Form
Spouse/Same-Sex Domestic Partner Tuition Remission Form

All completed forms should be emailed to or sent via mail to:
Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics
1809 Ashland Avenue
Deering Hall, Rm 211
Baltimore, MD 21205


Course Location:
Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics
Deering Hall
1809 Ashland Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland 21205 USA

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The Berman Institute of Bioethics is conveniently located on the east-baltimore medical campus of Johns Hopkins University near downtown Baltimore – one hour from Washington, DC; two hours from Philadelphia; and three hours from New York City. There are numerous reasonable travel options for participants from neighboring cities and states. We are a short taxi ride from BWI Airport, Baltimore’s Penn Station (train), the Baltimore Inner Harbor, the National Aquarium, as well as many museums and hotels.


The below-listed hotels are conveniently located and offer JHU discounted rates upon request. If you are interested in student dormitory accommodations on the JHU Homewood campus, please contact us as soon as possible.

Admiral Fell Inn
888 S. Broadway 
Baltimore, MD 21231

Days Inn Inner Harbor
100 Hopkins Place
Baltimore, MD 21201

Home2Suites by Hilton
8 East Pleasant St.
Baltimore, MD 21202

Inn at Henderson’s Wharf
1000 Fell St
Baltimore, MD 21231

Marriott Inner Harbor
110 S. Eutaw St
Baltimore, MD 21201

Marriott Courtyard
1000 Aliceanna Street
Baltimore, MD 21202

Local Attractions

Baltimore Farmers Markets
various locations throughout the city  

Baltimore Aquarium National Aquarium
501 E. Pratt Street
Baltimore, MD 21202

Maryland Science Center
601 Light Street
Baltimore, MD 21230

The Walters Art Museum
600 N. Charles Street
Baltimore, MD 21201

Fort McHenry Nat’l Monument
2400 E. Fort Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21230


Please email or call 410-614-5550 with any questions.

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