6 discussions due in 48 hours




Differences in Ethics

Your assigned reading this week explains the importance of distinguishing between the types of ethics (e.g., mandatory, aspirational, principle, virtue). Understanding these differences is the foundation to ethical practice. The more professionals are anchored in an understanding of ethics and relevant applications, the more likely they will effectively apply their understanding to ethical dilemmas.

Discuss the differences between mandatory ethics and aspirational ethics.

· What are the differences between principle ethics and virtue ethics?

· Which type or types of ethics are represented in your profession?

You are encouraged to explore any applicable professional codes of conduct, i.e., American Psychological Association (APA) or American Correctional Association (ACA). Explain why you believe this is the case.

Your initial post should be at least 300 words in length. 

Cultural Diversity

Professionals in all areas from business to counseling commonly anticipate possible cultural differences with clients. At the same time, they inevitably encounter cultural differences with clients as well as with other professionals or with the views of organizations in which they work. These differences can compromise the services that clients receive unless effectively resolved.

For this discussion question, provide at least two examples from within your profession of situations in which the policies of real or fictitious organizations seem contrary to the best interests of a client due to cultural differences.

Discuss the implications of this for ethical practice. Your initial post should be at least 300 words in length. 


Privileged communication is a legal concept that prohibits the disclosure of confidential communications, while referring to confidentiality as the ethical responsibility of professionals to safeguard clients from unauthorized disclosures. This is one example of an important distinction that spans the legalities and ethical nature of professional practice. An understanding of these distinctions is not only characteristic of a responsible professional, but is also vital to the provision of ethically and legally accountable services in clients’ best interests.

Discuss the differences between confidentiality, privacy, and privileged communication, as well as the differences between the duty to warn and duty to protect. What would you think is the most important aspect of confidentiality as it relates to your profession?

Present a scenario in which you discuss some of your ideas in simple and clear language, as though you were having an actual discussion with a colleague who was in training. Then, discuss situations in which it is legally required that you breach confidentiality. Your initial post should be at least 300 words in length.

Ethics in Practice: Whistleblower – An Ethical Dilemma  

A whistleblower, by definition, is someone who brings an unethical, immoral, or illegal business practice to the public’s attention. Whistleblowers have a difficult time in doing this, and they often find their lives changed because of their actions. Sometimes they are shunned and receive death threats. It is common for the family members to feel the effects of a whistleblower’s behavior.

Dr. Jeffrey Wigand became one of the best-known whistleblowers after his experience was turned into a movie, The Insider. He proved that tobacco companies were deliberately boosting the nicotine content of cigarettes, making them more addictive and cancer causing. However, like other whistleblowers, he suffered from tremendous stress and received death threats and other forms of intimidation for doing the right thing.

How did Dr. Wigand show moral intelligence in this situation? Jeffrey Wigand put his economic future as well as coworkers and his family at risk to expose the tobacco companies. Would you have done the same thing?

Understanding Limits  

As the field of psychology and other disciplines has continued to expand, opportunities to engage in multiple professional activities have also increased. At the same time, this abundance of opportunities also presents ongoing challenges requiring an understanding of personal limits. To rise above these challenges, we as professionals need to understand their limits and apply this understanding to professional situations that we encounter.

Discuss the situations in which you believe you may now be or could be less competent, situations that could require you to make a professional referral. Discuss how you would make a referral and what you would say to your client. You can create a scenario of your choice with a client in which you need to make this referral. When discussing this scenario, address (1) the background and presentation of the client, (2) your working relationship with the client to date, and (3) why the referral is essential and ethically significant in this scenario. Using the Internet, research your professional code of ethics for examples related to conflicts and the need to refer your client or case out. Your initial post should be at least 300 words in length.

Systems and Professional Integrity

Ethics is a code of thinking and behavior governed by a combination of personal, moral, legal, and social standards of what is right. Although the definition of “right” varies with situations and cultures, its meaning in the context of a community work involves many guiding principles with which most community activists and service providers would probably agree. Above all else, do no harm. Hippocrates put this in words over 2,000 years ago, and it’s still Rule Number One.

You have volunteered to run a community violence-prevention program, working with kids who are gang members or gang hangers-on. The kids trust you, and sometimes tell you about some of their less-than-savory activities. The police also know you work with gang members and often ask you for information about kids. What are you obligated to tell them or to keep from them?

If you are actively striving to do “good,” how far does that obligation take you? If there are issues affecting the community that have nothing to do directly with the one you’re concerned with, do you nonetheless have an obligation to become involved? What if you don’t really understand the whole situation, and your involvement may do as much harm as good—do you still have an ethical obligation to support or become active on the right side? What if your support or activism endangers or compromises your community intervention? Your initial post should be at least 300 words in length.

Required References

American Psychological Association. (2017). Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct, Including 2010 and 2016 Amendments [Web page]. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/ethics/code/ (Links to an external site.)

Anderson, A., Barenberg, L., & Tremblay, P. R. (2006). Professional ethics in interdisciplinary collaboratives: Zeal, paternalism and mandated reporting. Clinical Law Review, 13. 659-718.

Ashford University. (2019). Institutional Review Board (IRB) Handbook [PDF file]. Retrieved from http://wpc.6fdc.edgecastcdn.net/006FDC/Doctoral/Handbooks/IRB_Handbook.pdf (Links to an external site.)

Ashley, G. C., & Reiter-Palmon, R. (2012, September). Self-awareness and the evolution of leaders: The need for a better measure of self-awareness. Journal of Behavioral and Applied Management, 14(1), 2-17.

Annas, G. J. (2006, September 28). Hunger strikes at Guantanamo — Medical ethics and human rights in a “legal black hole.” New England Journal of Medicine, 355(13), 1377-1382.

Banks, S., Herrington, T., & Carter, K. (2017, June 15). Pathways to co-impact: action research and community organising (Links to an external site.). Educational Action Research, (25)4, 541-559. doi:10.1080/09650792.2017.1331859

Blanding, M. (2013, December 9). How Cultural Conflict Undermines Workplace Creativity [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.forbes.com/sites/hbsworkingknowledge/2013/12/09/how-cultural-conflict-undermines-workplace-creativity/#3cce89db214f (Links to an external site.)

Bokhari, M., Saadan, R., Pilus, A. M., Hassan, S. N. S., Jano, Z., Ishak, N. M., & Mahmud, Z. (2014, July 24). Contribution of awareness and understanding in legal and ethics towards the practice of confidentiality amongst counselors [PDF file]. Asian Social Science, 10(16), 144-151. https://doi.org/10.5539/ass.v10n16p144 (Links to an external site.)

Caldwell, C. (2009). Identity, self-awareness, and self-deception: Ethical implications for leaders and organizations. Journal of Business Ethics, 90, 393-406.

Christie, P., Kwon, I., Stoeberl, P., & Baumhart, R. (2003, September). A cross-cultural comparison of ethical attitudes of business managers: India, Korea and the United States. Journal of Business Ethics, 46(3), 263-287.

Eskridge, R. D., French, P. E., & McThomas, M. (2012). The International City/County Management Association Code of Ethics. Public Integrity, 14(2), 127-150.

Gaumnitz, B. R., & Lere, J. C. (2002, January). Contents of codes of ethics of professional business organizations in the United States. Journal of Business Ethics, 35(1), 35-49.

Hunter, S. T. (2012, April). (Un)ethical leadership and identity: What did we learn and where do we go from here? Journal of Business Ethics, 107(1), 79-87.

Johnson, W. B., Barnett, J. E., Elman, N. S., Forrest, L., & Kaslow, N. J. (2012, October). The competent community: Toward a vital reformulation of professional ethics. American Psychologist, 67(7), 557-566.

Joy, P., & McMunigal, K. C. (2017, Winter). When does monitoring defendants and their lawyers cross the line? [PDF file]. Criminal Justice, 31(4), 46-51. Retrieved from https://www.americanbar.org/content/dam/aba/publications/criminal_justice_magazine/v31/CJ_v031n04_McMUNIGAL.authcheckdam.pdf  (Links to an external site.)

Jungers, C. M., & Gregoire, J. (2016, July 1). Authenticity in ethical decision making: Reflections for professional counselors. The Journal of Humanistic Counseling, 55(2), 99-110. doi:10.1002/johc.12027

Kass, J. (2013). Helping or Hurting? The Ethics of Voluntourism [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.brandeis.edu/ethics/ethicalinquiry/2013/May.html (Links to an external site.)

Martin, W. (2013, March). Beyond the Hippocratic Oath: Developing codes of conduct in healthcare organizations. OD Practitioner, 45(2), 26-30.

Ravishankar, L. (2003, February 4). Encouraging Internal Whistleblowing in Organizations [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/focus-areas/business-ethics/resources/encouraging-internal-whistleblowing/ (Links to an external site.) (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., Moberg, D., Meyer, M. J., Shanks, T., McLean, M. R., DeCosse, D., … & Hanson, K. O. (2009, May). A Framework for Ethical Decision Making [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/a-framework-for-ethical-decision-making/ (Links to an external site.)

Verges, A. (2010). Integrating contextual issues in ethical decision making. Ethics & Behavior, 20(6), 497-507. doi:10.1080/10508422.2010.521451

Weber, Z. (2004). Working towards culturally sensitive ethical practice in a multicultural society. Journal of Practice Teaching 5(3), 40-54. Retrieved from http://journals.whitingbirch.net/index.php/JPTS/article/download/314/346 (Links to an external site.)

Wigand, J. (n.d.) Inside the Tobacco Deal [Web page]. Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/settlement/timelines/wigand.html (Links to an external site.)

Recommended References

Associated Press. (2006, October 20) Mark Hodler; Exposed Scandal in Selection of Olympics’ Host Cities [Web page]. Retrieved from http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/10/19/AR2006101901725.html (Links to an external site.)

BBC News. (2014, January 17). Edward Snowden: Leaks that exposed US spy programme [Web page]. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-23123964 (Links to an external site.)

Ellsberg, D. (n.d.). Daniel Ellsberg’s Website [Web page]. Retrieved from http://www.ellsberg.net/bio

Ethics & Compliance Initiative. (n.d.). Ethics & Compliance Initiative (ECI) [Web page]. Retrieved from http://www.ethics.org/home (Links to an external site.)

Government Accountability Project. (n.d.). What is a whistleblower? [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.whistleblower.org/what-is-a-whistleblower/ (Links to an external site.) 

Harvard Business School. (n.d.). HBS Working Knowledge: Business Research for Business Leaders [Web page]. Retrieved from http://hbswk.hbs.edu (Links to an external site.)

Markkula Center for Applied Ethics. (2014, August 1).  Calculating Consequences: The Utilitarian Approach to Ethics [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/calculating-consequences-the-utilitarian-approach/ (Links to an external site.)

Markkula Center for Applied Ethics. (n.d.) An Approach to Ethical Decision-Making [Web page]. Retrieved from http://www.ee.scu.edu/eefac/healy/approach.html (Links to an external site.)

O’Connor, J. D. (2005, July). “I’m the Guy They Called Deep Throat” [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.vanityfair.com/news/politics/2005/07/deepthroat200507 (Links to an external site.)

Santa Clara University. (n.d.). Markkula Center for Applied Ethics [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ (Links to an external site.)

Shanks, T. S. J. (1995, January 1).  Everyday Ethics [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/everyday-ethics/ (Links to an external site.)

Shanks, T. S. J. (2015, August 19).  How Did I Live Today? [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/how-did-i-live-today/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (1987, January 1). Can Ethics Be Taught? [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/can-ethics-be-taught/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (1988, December 1).  Conscience and Authority [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/conscience-and-authority/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (1988, January 1).  Consistency and Ethics [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/consistency-and-ethics/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (1988, January 1).  Ethics and Virtue [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/ethics-and-virtue/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (1991, July 1).  Who Counts? [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/who-counts/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (1992, August 1).  Ethical Relativism [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/ethical-relativism/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (2014, August 1).  Justice and Fairness [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/justice-and-fairness/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (2014, August 2). The Common Good [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/the-common-good/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (2014, August 8). Rights [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/rights/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (2015, August 1).  Thinking Ethically [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/thinking-ethically/ (Links to an external site.)

Velasquez, M., André, C., Shanks, T. S. J., & Meyer, M. J. (2015, August 18).  What is Ethics? [Web page]. Retrieved from https://www.scu.edu/ethics/ethics-resources/ethical-decision-making/what-is-ethics/  (Links to an external site.)

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