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PHIL-2306-006 Introduction to Ethics
The systematic evaluation of classical and/or contemporary ethical theories concerning the good life, human conduct in society, morals and standards of value.
Student ResourcesStudent Resources Website
Notice to Students enrolled in an educational program for preparation of issuance of certain occupational licenses:
Students enrolled in an educational program in preparation for obtaining certain occupational licenses are potentially ineligible for such license if the student has been convicted of an offense. For further information, please contact:
You can also contact the Legal Clinic, or the faculty member in charge of the educational program that you seek to enroll in. The further information you will receive will include notification to you of your right to request a criminal history evaluation letter from the licensing authority in order to clarify your particular situation.
(3 sem hrs; 3 lec)
On Campus Course
Shafer-Landau, Russ, The Fundamentals of Ethics, Oxford University Press, 2015. ISBN: 978-0-19-999723-7
Shafer-Landau, Russ, The Ethical Life, Oxford University Press, 2015. ISBN: 978-0-19-999727-5
Your textbooks, syllabus, pen and paper.
Upon successful completion of this course, students will:
1. Read, analyze, and critique philosophical texts.
2. Define and appropriately use important terms such as relativism, virtue, duty, rights, utilitarianism, natural law, egoism, altruism, autonomy, and care ehics.
3. Demonstrate knowledge of major arguments and problems in ethics.
4. Present and discuss well-reasoned ethical positions in writing.
5. Apply ethical concepts and principles to address moral concerns.
6. Apply course material to various aspects of life.
7. Discuss ways of living responsibly in a world where people have diverse ethical beliefs.
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If you are an active staff or faculty member according to Human Resources, use "Exchange". All other students, use "AC Connect (Google) Email".
Students are expected to participate in the class regularly, which includes completing all scheduled assignments in a timely manner. Everyone begins the term with full credit for participation (40 points). You will lose points for having your phone out in class. Having your phone out in class will result in 4 points being taken off your participation grade. You will lose points for absences. Being absent, which includes arriving late or leaving early, will result in 4 points being taken off your participation grade. This class is only 75 minutes. If you can't be here for 75 minutes, then drop this class.
Policy Concerning Sensitive Subject Matter:
Syllabus Quiz: 5%
Exam 1: 20%
Exam 2: 25%
Grading Schema (percentage):
89.50 - 100 A
79.50 - 89.49 B
69.50 - 79.49 C
59.50 - 69.49 D
00.00 - 59.49 F
200 - 180 A
179 - 160 B
159 - 140 C
139 - 120 D
119 - 0 F
Students who have not attended by the census date will be dropped from the class.
Week 1 (3/21 - 3/24):
Read Introduction in The Fundamentals of Ethics
Read chapter 1: Hedonism: Its Powerful Appeal in The Fundamentals of Ethics
Read John Stuart Mill, Hedonism, in The Ethical Life
Syllabus Quiz due: 3/25
Week 2 (3/28 - 3/31):
Read chapter 2: Is Happiness All that Matters? in The Fundamentals of Ethics
Read Robert Nozick, The Experience Machine, in The Ethical Life
Week 3 (4/4 - 4/7):
Exam 1: 4/4
Read chapter 9: Consequentialism: It's Nature and Attractions in The Fundamentals of Ethics
Read chapters 10: Consequentialism: It's Difficulties in The Fundamentals of Ethics
No class on 4/7
Week 4 (4/11 - 4/14):
Read chapter 11: The Kantian Perspective: Fairness and Justice in The Fundamentals of Ethics
Read chapter 12: The Kantian Perspective: Autonomy and Respect in The Fundamentals of Ethics
Week 5 (4/18 - 4/21):
Paper due: 4/18
Read Judith Jarvis Thomson, A Defense of Abortion, in The Ethical Life
Read Don Marquis, Why Abortion is Immoral, in The Ethical Life
Week 6 (4/25 - 4/28):
Read Igor Primoratz, Justifying Legal Punishment, in The Ethical Life
Read Stephen Nathanson, An Eye for an Eye?, in The Ethical Life
No class on 4/28
Week 7 (5/2 - 5/5):
Listen to Lecture 15, Huemer, America's Unjust Drug War
Read Peter de Marneffe, Against the Legalization of Drugs, in The Ethical Life
Exam 2: 5/5
Week 8 (5/9 - 5/12):
03/18/22 2:58 PM
03/18/22 3:19 PM