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Dugan1989

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  1. Dugan1989

    Best option for Bioethics MA

    This has all been really helpful to hear. I talked to a couple professors last week who actually said the same thing, that a thesis isn't (usually) as important as it seems - or at least it isn't the only good option. Thank you again for your advice!!
  2. Hi all! I wrote this in the Philosophy forum but want to ask here too - I'm hoping you might have some advice/clarity/insight on a decision I'm trying to make. I'll try to make it brief (and hopefully coherent)! I'm applying to Bioethics + MSW programs at the University of Louisville (where those two are already an established dual degree program) and the University of Pittsburgh (which has both degrees but not integrated yet, so I'd do most of it separately). Both programs would take three years. If I were to qualify for in-state tuition (in either state), Louisville would be significantly less expensive. It also has an MSW specialization that's the only one of its kind and very much in line with my interests. The Bioethics program at Pitt is much more comprehensive - there is a two-part practicum (the opportunity to go on Grand Rounds, etc) as well as a thesis component. At UofL, other than the core coursework there is only a group capstone project. I could be mistaken but it seems like a much less rigorous program. I'm torn because I don't know yet exactly what I'll want to do after graduation. I definitely want to be able to do counseling/work one-on-one with patients and families, and I've read that as far as the MSW goes, the rank/prestige of the program isn't as important as the internship and actual work you've done. (Correct me if I'm wrong!) But I love research and writing, love bioethics, and I know I get burnt out on direct patient contact, so I really want to have those research-oriented options after I graduate. I don't think I see myself working in academia, but I would love to be able to serve on a bioethics committee or do consulting. If you have experience around this, essentially my question is how big a factor is the rank/prestige/rigor of the bioethics program? How do you see it weighing in in future social work and/or research-related positions? Also, if anyone has personal experience in either program at Louisville or Pitt, I'd love to hear!! Thank you SO, so much for any and all advice - it is so appreciated!
  3. Dugan1989

    Best option for Bioethics MA

    Thank you so much for your help! That makes a lot of sense, and I want to make sure I get to study under people who are trained in philosophy. Do you mind if I ask you, do you think a program that doesn't have a thesis component (but instead a capstone project - working on active solutions vs research/writing about them) would be strong enough if I wanted to focus on research (or even a PhD) in the future? Everything else about this program seems great and the people I've talked to have been awesome; I'm just not sure how to weigh that against a seemingly less-rigorous curriculum. Thank you again for your input!!
  4. Dugan1989

    Best option for Bioethics MA

    Thank you again for your time and your thoughts!! 😊
  5. Dugan1989

    Best option for Bioethics MA

    Thanks so much for your response!! I really appreciate it, and great to hear from someone who's familiar with Philosophy at Pitt. I'm surprised to hear there's not more overlap there. This may be unwise, but I don't feel too worried about that aspect because my focus is more on the practical side - getting to shadow physicians and really see the application of the theories is what excites me. It looks like only a couple of the UofL professors have PhDs in philosophy, too. Are you saying, though, that having less of a base in philosophy would be an impediment to future research positions? I checked out the social work forum a bit but will definitely keep looking! Thank you again!!
  6. Dugan1989

    Best option for Bioethics MA

    Hi all! I'm hoping you might have some advice/clarity/insight on a decision I'm trying to make. I'll try to make it brief (and hopefully coherent)! I'm applying to Bioethics + MSW programs at the University of Louisville (where those two are already an established dual degree program) and the University of Pittsburgh (which has both degrees but not integrated yet, so I'd do most of it separately). Both programs would take three years. If I were to qualify for in-state tuition (in either state), Louisville would be significantly less expensive. It also has an MSW specialization that's the only one of its kind and very much in line with my interests. The Bioethics program at Pitt is much more comprehensive - there is a two-part practicum (the opportunity to go on Grand Rounds, etc) as well as a thesis component. At UofL, other than the core coursework there is only a group capstone project. Maybe I'm wrong but it seems much less rigorous. I'm torn because I don't know yet exactly what I'll want to do after graduation. I definitely want to be able to do counseling/work one-on-one with patients and families, and I've read that as far as the MSW goes, the rank/prestige of the program isn't nearly as important as the internship and actual work you've done. But I love research and writing, love bioethics, and I know I get burnt out on direct patient contact, so I really want to have those research-oriented options after I graduate. I don't think I see myself working in academia, but I would love to be able to serve on a bioethics committee or do consulting. So essentially my question is, how big a factor is the rank/prestige of a Bioethics MA program? Say that after I graduated I really wanted to pursue the bioethics research/consulting route, would a less-intense (but also less expensive and already-established dual degree) program like UofL's count me out of those opportunities? Would it weaken my application to potential PhD programs? Thank you SO, so much for any advice. I'm feeling so stuck and just don't know how to weigh these options.
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