Professor Lawrence received a PhD from the Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology at the University of Toronto. Prior to coming to Ohio State, she taught in the departments of History and Anatomy and Cell Biology at the University of Iowa and in the department of History at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She has been active in the interdisciplinary group that has started a minor in medical humanities and a new MA in Medical Humanities and Social Sciences at OSU.
Professor Lawrence specializes in the history of medicine with specific research interests in privacy and research ethics (HIPAA, IRBs and the expansion of "human subjects" protections to the deceased) and the history of human dissection in medical education. Her most recent book is Privacy and the Past: Research, Law, Archives, Ethics (Rutgers University Press, 2017). She is currently working on a book-length project with Susan E. Lederer about access to cadavers in American medical education from 1880 to 1980, with a particular emphasis on the rise of whole-body donation. She has also worked on the history of Civil War medicine, contributing to a multi-disciplinary digital project, Civil War Washington. Her first book focused on the history of hospitals, medical education and the medical profession in 18th century London: Charitable Knowledge: Hospital Practitioners and Pupils in Eighteenth Century London (Cambridge University Press, 1996).