Volume 15, Issue 2, Fall 2015
Azalea M. Hulbert
Better World Theatre
A Multi-disciplinary Approach to Teaching Ethics through the Arts
Better World Theatre is a unique arts-based ethics pedagogy introduced at Samford University that effectively and creatively provides students the opportunity to 1) identify and explore real-life ethical issues; 2) practice ethical deliberation and engage in structured and intentional moral discourse; and 3) develop and strengthen their own ethical values through the lens of professional identity. This pedagogy can be effectively applied in either a course-based or co-curricular context.
As there is to date no formal data on the effect of this particular pedagogy at Samford, this paper focuses on the anecdotal evidence that points to increased moral reasoning capacity in previous student participants, as well as on evidence in existing literature on the topic. It also examines the pedagogical structure, as well as variables that may impact its effectiveness, such as the maturity of student participants, their field of study, and the method of delivery (i.e., curricular or co-curricular).