St. Louis, Missouri
June 18, 2000
June 18, 2000
June 21, 2000
5.671.1 - 5.671.7
Training Faculty for Ethics Across the Curriculum
Marilyn A. Dyrud Oregon Institute of Technology
Ethics has been an important topic for a number of years in many disciplines. With blatantly unethical and highly publicized situations occurring in major companies, it behooves us more than ever, as instructors, to make a conscious effort to integrate ethics into all of our courses, regardless of academic area or students’ level of achievement. Some instructors, however, may feel that they are not knowledgeable enough in the field of ethics to broach the subject in class, let alone deal with complex cases.
In 1996, Oregon Institute of Technology made its first formal foray into ethics across the curriculum, via a series of faculty seminars. I served as facilitator because I had undertaken special training in that area, specifically the NSF-funded “Ethics Across the Curriculum” workshop at the Center for the Study of Ethics in the Professions (CSEP) at Illinois Institute of Technology and three week-long summer seminars at the University of Montana, offered by the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics.
A cross-curricular approach seemed natural for a small school such as OIT. Only one stand- alone professional ethics course is available for students, and only the Civil Engineering Department requires it. Even though the course regularly fills, our students have little room in their crowded technical curricula for free electives, and so an across-the-curriculum approach would, we thought, appeal to expressed faculty desires to address ethics education.
Faculty training for ethics across the curriculum is not mandatory, since most do not teach ethics per se and primarily want to increase student awareness of thorny issues and situations they may encounter on the job. However, after my CSEP experience, I was convinced that training is desirable and definitely helpful for faculty who are interested in integrating ethics but have no formal education in the field.
The goal of OIT’s seminars was to equip faculty with enough information, resource materials, and skills to effectively integrate ethics education into technical classes, without sacrificing technical content. To date, more than 40 faculty, about one-third of OIT’s instructors, have participated, with a final series planned for 2000. This paper explains our efforts, focusing on the nuts and bolts of seminar development and implementation: securing funding, dealing with logistics, choosing faculty, conducting the series, and evaluating results.
Administrative support, both financial and psychological, is essential for the success of this type
Dyrud, M. (2000, June), Training Faculty For Ethics Across The Curriculum Paper presented at 2000 Annual Conference, St. Louis, Missouri. https://peer.asee.org/8780
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