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Please Note:

This course does not fulfill the BYU Marriott School Core Management Requirement.  You must take the on-campus course to fulfill this requirement.”

Learning Outcomes

  1. Identify and address common ethical issues that arise for individuals, managers, and organizations.
  2. Use contemporary and classical frameworks to analyze and suggest resolutions to ethical dilemmas.
  3. Recognize how individual differences and cognitive barriers can influence ethical judgment.
  4. Identify key organizational tools, policies, systems, and laws that apply to managing ethical conduct specifically in a business environment.
  5. Identify and prioritize personal values and apply those to making ethical decisions.
  6. Explain how organizational and cultural variables can influence ethical conduct.
  7. Engage in logically sound thinking about moral dilemmas using the language of administrative ethics.

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There are no prerequisites for this course.

Course Materials

Trevino, Linda, and Katherine Nelson. Managing Business Ethics: Straight Talk about How to Do It Right. 6th ed. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, 2013 - 9781118582671

Sandel, Michael J. Justice: What’s the Right Thing to Do? New York: Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 2010.

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We will work to fulfill the objectives of the course in the following ways:

Submitted Assignments

Homework— 80 Points

Complete approximately 6–8 pages of written work.

Homework includes:

Chapter Discussion Questions— 70 Points

In lessons 2, 4, 7, 8, 9, 14 and 15 you will complete the chapter discussion questions. They will consist of about thirty-five 1–2-paragraph responses to chapter questions.

Lesson 1 and 16: Personal Code of Ethics— 50 Points

Complete 1 written page (submitted early in the course, revised, and submitted again at the end of the course).

This document may be brief but should represent an extremely high degree of introspection and refinement over the course of the semester. In its final draft, the document should be a polished statement of personal values that integrates concepts and ideas you have learned during the semester and that can guide your decision making as you face moral dilemmas and personal challenges in your future organizational and personal life. It should ultimately be a concise and evolving statement of the most important things you have learned about ethics. The document’s contents and form will be highly individualized. Thus, I provide few formatting or stylistic guidelines. Create a document that is meaningful to you.

Lesson 3: Personal Ethical Dilemma Analysis—100 Points

Complete 4–5 pages.

Briefly identify an ethical dilemma you have experienced. A work-related or organization-related dilemma is best, but any ethical dilemma will work. Then use the ethical frameworks (philosophical theories such as consequentialist, deontological, and virtue ethics) or the eight steps handout to analyze the ethical dilemma. Evaluate what you did based upon the theories or the steps. Think about the following kinds of questions (but do not try to answer all of them!): If you were aware of the issue as an ethical issue, what made you aware? What cognitive biases influenced your decision making in this situation? What did you learn from your analysis? Did using these frameworks raise new issues or considerations? What do you think now about what you did? Would you do things differently in the future? Why or why not?

Lesson 5: Ethical Dilemma Worksheet Responses—100 Points

Complete a worksheet for each dilemma. There will be 8 worksheets.

Lesson 7: Business Ethics Topic Paper—100 Points

Complete 4–5 pages.

The private sector is filled with unique and current ethics issues. Find a topic that is unique to this sector, outline the issues that make it an ethical concern, and then discuss the implications. Another angle would be to find a current issue that has timely ethical content, outline it, and then apply ethical theory.

Lesson 16: Organizational and Ethics Report/CSR Paper—100 Points

Complete 6–8 pages.

Begin by choosing a particular industry (retail, pharmaceuticals, energy, clothing, entertainment, telecommunications, auditing, automobile, chemicals, financial services, health care, consumer products, real estate, hospitality, agriculture, consulting, defense, food, among others). The paper should consist of two sections. The first will identify the types of involvement in corporate social responsibility. The second section will focus on ethics efforts within the industry—what issues face the industry and what people are doing about it. Finally, I strongly encourage you to get approval on your topic before you begin.

Personal Journal—200 Points

Complete about 10–20 paragraphs of self-reflection in addition to 6–9 pages of more guided or directed writing. You will submit this at the end of the course.

All written assignments should be typed in a .doc or .docx file with standard formatting (12 point, 1 inch margins).


Midterm Exam—100 Points

The midterm exam will consist of 35 multiple-choice questions and one essay question.

Final Exam—100 Points

The final exam will consist of 30 multiple choice and 2 essay questions.

In summary, your grade will be based on the following:

Assignment Points
Homework 80
Chapter Discussions 70
Personal Ethical Dilemma Assignment 100
Ethical Dilemma Worksheets 100
Business Ethics Topic Paper 100
Midterm Exam 100
Orgnizational Ethics Report/CSR Paper 100
Personal Code of Ethics 50
Personal Journal 200
Final Exam 100
TOTAL 1000

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Grade Scale

Grading Scale
A 100–93%
A− 92–90%
B+ 89–87%
B 86–83%
B− 82–80%
C+ 79–77%
C 76–73%
C− 72–70%
D+ 69–67%
D 66–63%
D− 62–60%
E (fail) 59% or below

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Copyright Notice

The materials used in connection with this online course are only for the use of students enrolled in this course for purposes associated with this course and may not be retained or further disseminated. Any copying or further dissemination of these materials may be subject to applicable U.S. Copyright Laws. For questions or more information, please visit the BYU Copyright Licensing Office website.

“Members of the BYU community who willfully disregard this Copyright Policy or the BYU Copyright Guidelines place themselves individually at risk of legal action and may incur personal liability for their conduct. The unauthorized use or distribution of copyrighted material, including unauthorized peer-to-peer file sharing, may subject individuals to civil and criminal liabilities, including actual and statutory damages, costs and fees of litigation, fines, and imprisonment

Violations of the Copyright Policy may result in university disciplinary action including termination of university enrollment or employment.” (Emphasis added. Excerpt taken from the BYU Copyright Policy)

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University Policy - Title IX Statement

Preventing & Responding to Sexual Misconduct

In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Brigham Young University prohibits unlawful sex discrimination against any participant in its education programs or activities. The university also prohibits sexual harassment—including sexual violence—committed by or against students, university employees, and visitors to campus. As outlined in university policy, sexual harassment, dating violence, domestic violence, sexual assault, and stalking are considered forms of "Sexual Misconduct" prohibited by the university.

University policy requires all university employees in a teaching, managerial, or supervisory role to report all incidents of Sexual Misconduct that come to their attention in any way, including but not limited to face-to-face conversations, a written class assignment or paper, class discussion, email, text, or social media post. Incidents of Sexual Misconduct should be reported to the Title IX Coordinator at t9coordinator@byu.edu or (801) 422-8692. Reports may also be submitted through EthicsPoint at https://titleix.byu.edu/report or 1-888-238-1062 (24-hours a day).

BYU offers confidential resources for those affected by Sexual Misconduct, including the university’s Victim Advocate, as well as a number of non-confidential resources and services that may be helpful. Additional information about Title IX, the university’s Sexual Misconduct Policy, reporting requirements, and resources can be found at http://titleix.byu.edu or by contacting the university’s Title IX Coordinator.

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Accessibility Notice

BYU is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere which reasonably accommodates persons with disabilities who are otherwise qualified to participate in BYU's programs and activities. In this spirit, BYU Independent Study aspires to improve web accessibility for users. While not required by law, the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 Levels A and AA provide a wide range of helpful recommendations to make Web content more accessible. BYU Independent Study strives to apply WCAG 2.0 recommendations where feasible, but may deviate from any recommendations that would result in an undue hardship to BYU Independent Study or alterations to program and course content and objectives. If you have questions about accessibility, or if you need to report problems with any accessibility features please see our Accessibilities and Accommodations Web Page.

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Course Policies

These policies are specific to this course. For additional information about general policies, please refer to Independent Study Course Policies page.


15 instructor-graded assignments; the assignments may not be resubmitted.


Mid-course Exam and Final Exam proctored, instructor-graded exams, no retakes, must pass the final in order to pass the course

Getting Help

Please use the help menu in this course to contact Independent Study or your instructor. You can find a list of free tutors available to BYU Independent Study students on the Free Tutoring Services website.

Note: The Harold B. Lee Library website provides a number of online resources and librarians are available via phone, chat, and email to answer questions about library-related issues.

Inappropriate Use of Course Content

All course materials (e.g., outlines, handouts, syllabi, exams, quizzes, media, lecture content, audio and video recordings, etc.) are proprietary. Students are prohibited from posting or selling any such course materials without the express written permission of BYU Independent Study. To do so is a violation of the Brigham Young University Honor Code.

Copyright © 2016 Brigham Young University. All rights reserved.

Published by the
Department of Independent Study
Division of Continuing Education
Brigham Young University
120 MORC
Provo, Utah 84602-1514