Wednesday, June 14, 2017

General Ethics Assignment Template

Here is a template for a general ethics course assignment:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/13SvigkeQcgk9bMHaJMuh6j4gtkIaWCCfC3D1ZqMxPuI/edit?usp=sharing

Your name
Your email
Date
Class


Topic of Assignment: _____________
The typical assignment in this class will involve working through at least five arguments on a moral issue, using this process below. This process must be done for each argument:

  1. Is this a controversial topic or issue? If yes, excellent. If no, is there a controversial topic or issue that’s related?

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  1. What are the relevant facts about the topic? What’s the relevant information about the issue?


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  1. What are the various moral conclusions one might hold on that topic?
    1. Doing this is wrong.
    2. Doing this is not wrong. (Not wrong = morally permissible.)
    3. Doing this is morally obligatory = wrong to not do; impermissible to do).
      1. MORE PRECISE CONCLUSIONS: All? Some? (which?)
      2. Sometimes wrong? Always permissible? Sometimes obligatory?

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  1. What reasons or premises are or can be given for these conclusions? What’s “the why”? (“Why think that?”) (“What do you mean?”)


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  1. How do you make the argument logically valid, meaning make the complete pattern of reasoning explicit? What (if any) premises need to be added?


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  1. Is the argument sound or not (sound = logically valid with true premises)? Are the premises true? Are there any counterexamples that show that a general premise is false?

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This project can be done in a number of ways:
  1. Papers or reports of varying lengths and for differing purposes.
    1. Letter to editor
    2. Critical responses paper or commentary of some kind… (This could also be done as a talk, a presentation, in person or in video or audio).
  2. Youtube talk; oral presentation; video lecture.
  3. Lead a discussion or give a talk to a real audience, report on what happened
  4. Narrated powerpoint
  5. Create a blog / webpage on a topic
  6. A debate! Report on what happened.
  7. An interview project: Random people; people you know; go to some organization.
  8. A scientific poster..
  9. You could find some kind of person or organization that does some morally significant activity and go meet with them and report back.
  10. What else?