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101. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Nhung T. Nguyen, M. Tom Basuray, Donald Kopka, Donald McCulloh Moral Awareness in Business Ethics Education: An Empirical Investigation
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In this study, a U.S. Mid-Atlantic university’s business ethics education program was assessed as part of the assurance of learning assessment using a sample of one hundred and thirty upper level undergraduate business students. Across three moral dilemmas, i.e., Accounting, Finance and Human Resource Management, Jones’ (1991) issue contingent ethical decision-making model received considerable support. Both moral awareness and moral judgment were found to be related to moral intent. A focus in moral awareness in business ethics curriculum was recommended as a result of lying being viewed as acceptable by a majority of respondents in the Human Resource Management scenario. Implications for business ethics education were discussed.
102. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Edward R. Balotsky Just How Much Does Business Ethics Education Influence Practitioner Attitudes? An Empirical Investigation of a Multi-Level Ethical Learning Model
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The impact of business ethics education on socially responsible practitioner behavior is not a new concern. A sizable extant literature base questions pedagogies used and outcomes achieved by the few early studies done in this area. Ensuing research has not produced definitive answers; measurement, methodological, and generalizability issues are prevalent due to the fragmented nature of most work. Given little pre-existing structure, an empirically-based model is needed which both sheds more awareness on the ethics education-business conduct relationship and quantifies the degree of change that the education caused. This study operationalizes a multi-level ethical learning model. Using a survey administered at the start and end of an MBA ethics course,subsequent exploratory factor analysis, a matched t-test of pre and post-course mean scores, and an effect size calculation utilizing the Cohen’s d statistic, the existence of varying degrees of change in ethical outlook after formal ethics education is supported. Model enhancements and the potential for longitudinally following ethical learning from the classroom to the workplace are discussed.
103. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Aditya Simha, Josh P. Armstrong, Joseph F. Albert Attitudes and Behaviors of Academic Dishonesty and Cheating—Do Ethics Education and Ethics Training Affect Either Attitudes or Behaviors?
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Academic dishonesty and cheating by students has become endemic in higher education. In this article, we conducted a study on undergraduate business students (n = 162) to examine the impact of business ethics education and ethics training on student attitudes towards academic dishonesty as well as their cheating behaviors. We found that business ethics education in conjunction with business ethics training had a positive impact on students’ attitudes towardsacademic dishonesty and cheating; however there was no significant impact of either business ethics education or training on actual cheating behaviors. In our discussion we suggest some implications of our findings, and make some suggestions about future research directions.
104. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Shireenjit Johl, Beverley Jackling, Grace Wong Ethical Decision-Making of Accounting Students: Evidence from an Australian Setting
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This study investigates accounting students’ ethical decision-making judgments and behavioral intentions. The Multidimensional Ethics Scale (MES) was used to measure the extent to which a hypothetical behavior was consistent with three moral criteria (Moral Equity, Relativism and Contractualism). The study specifically tests the differences in ethical decision-making between students who have been exposed to a dedicated ethics unit of study compared with students who have not studied ethics. The influences of culture and gender on students’ ethical decision-making are also addressed in the study. Ethical decision-making was assessed via three case studies describing moral dilemmas that an individual, business or professional person might face. The results provide support for the MES and the value added from incorporating a dedicated ethical decision-making unit in the accounting curriculum. The results also support prior evidence of gender bias and the impact of cultural differences on ethical decision-making.
105. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Marc A. Cohen Empathy in Business Ethics Education
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This paper addresses the tactical question of how we ought to proceed in teachingbusiness ethics, taking as a starting point that business ethics should be concerned with cooperative,mutually beneficial outcomes, and in particular with fostering behavior that contributes to thoseoutcomes. This paper suggests that focus on moral reasoning as a tactical outcome—as a way ofachieving behavior in support of cooperative outcomes—is misplaced. Instead, we ought to focuson cultivating empathetic experiences. Intuitively, the problem we need to address in business ethicsis not that our students (and that we ourselves) sometimes reason poorly, or that moral decisionmakingis subject to characteristic kinds of errors. The problem is that our students (and—again—we ourselves) do not always care enough, we do not modify our behavior consistently enough.
106. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Dennis Wittmer Agoricus: A Platonic Exploration of the “Good” Businessperson
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This is written as a dialogue with the central question, “What constitutes the essence of a ‘good’ businessperson?” Written in the form of a Platonic dialogue, this is an imaginary exchange between Socrates and Agoricus, the fictitious son of a well-respected businessperson of Athens at a time of unethical business practice. Various qualities are entertained in terms of defining a successful and good businessperson, including producing quality products at low prices, effectivesales techniques, creativity and innovation, respectful treatment of the customer, business “know-how” (e.g. accounting), contributing to the community welfare, as well as being honest and trustworthy. Eventually the discussion winds its way to a kind of care and concern for customer welfare and satisfaction, leaving the initial question partially answered, while raising another question related to the proper way of teaching business. Connections to classical and contemporary business readings are made throughout the dialogue by the use of footnotes. The dialogue could be used with various graduate and undergraduate audiences, and it can be used in various ways, including class discussion regarding whether business should be conceived as a profession and whether ethical conduct lies at the heart of business. This only adopts the format of a Platonic dialogue for purposes of exploring the question. However, the dialogue does not claim to representthe ideas or position that Socrates or Plato might take on the question at hand.
107. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Robert D. Perkins Leading an Ethical Corporate Culture? Apply Seven Lessons from the U.S. Marines
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The United States Marine Corps (USMC) trains 40,000 recruits in ethical conduct each year. The Marines operate under highly stressful conditions and are perceived as moral exemplars. This study investigates their recruit training practices at Parris Island, SC and suggests applications consistent with ethical and psychological research that offer potential for building ethical corporate cultures and improving ethical behavior. The lessons were: 1) select values that fit the business, 2) use organizational-derived “hero stories”, 3) socialize members with conviction and repetition, 4) utilize line leaders to conduct the training to provide specific guidelines for behavior, 5) closely monitor and reward ethical behavior, 6) add emotional control to the cognitive training, and 7) train with realistic business simulations. The seven lessons from the USMC can help business leaders earn a reputation for trustworthy leadership, a vital corporate asset.
108. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Michelle M. Fleig-Palmer, Kay A. Hodge, Janet L. Lear Teaching Ethical Reasoning Using Venn Diagrams
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Concern about high-profile ethical lapses by business managers has led to an increasing emphasis on ethics instruction in business schools. Various pedagogical methods are used to expose business students to real-world ethical dilemmas, yet students may not readily grasp the linkages between ethical theories and dilemmas to identify possible ethical solutions. Venn diagrams are a valuable instructional tool in business ethics classes when used with other teaching methodologies such as case studies. We describe how the use of Venn diagrams assists students in visualizing the key points of and the connections between ethical theories and dilemmas to shed light on possible ethical solutions. Examples of teaching exercises are provided along with ideas for future research in the use of Venn diagrams in activating moral imagination and improving ethical reasoning. Overall, positive student reactions to the introduction of Venn diagrams in business ethics classrooms support the use of this methodology.
109. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Christopher Michaelson Cantor Fitzgerald and September 11
110. Journal of Business Ethics Education: Volume > 9
Yusuf M. Sidani, Jon Thornberry A Problem-Based Learning Approach to Business Ethics Education
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There are several challenges associated with traditional business ethics education. While case studies have been used extensively in ethics education, such use can be complemented by using Problem Based Learning (PBL). PBL represents a pedagogy employing more collaborative tools that involve students more extensively in the learning process. A well-designed teaching approach based on PBL can have significant positive impact on students’ learning. This paper supplies a representative teaching interaction based on PBL, and discusses the implications of its structure. Introducing PBL is challenging and comes with significant costs as faculty members have to be trained, roles have to be exchanged, powers have to be relinquished, and learning materials have tobe written. We conclude that PBL is suitable for an ethics course as most ethical situations require introspection, reflection, discovery, and concern for other viewpoints, all of which can be facilitated in a PBL environment.