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The Latin term a priori describes the origin of knowledge developed rationally, and the term a posteriori describes knowledge developed through observation and experience. What is an example of ethics is best described as discovered in an a priori manner?

ETHC-445 (Principles of Ethics) Final Exam Answers

Taken August 2017

Page One

This exam covers all 14 TCO’s.

For each of the following multiple choice questions, please select the Philosophy (and/or Philosopher) which best goes with each description below.\

Question 1.1. (TCOs 2, 4, 5, 6) The idea that the assisted suicide of terminally ill patients should be always prohibited reflects what type of ethics? (Points : 5)
Aristotle’s Doctrine of the Mean
Kant’s Categorical Imperative in the 1st Formulation)
Hobbes’ concept of the State of Nature
Thomas Aquinas’ concept of Natural Law
Bentham’s principle of pleasure and pain

Question 2.2. (TCOs 1, 2, 7) What is the moral ideal of prudence? (Points : 5)
Taking a traditional approach to problematic situations
Choosing behavior judiciously by consulting experience
Taking care to slow down decision making
Avoiding risks
Resisting impulsiveness

Question 3.3. (TCOs 1, 2) One of the common errors in Ethics is that of the double standard. Double standard consists of what? (Points : 5)
Discriminating in the application of ethical criteria based on our own preferences
Setting aside ethical criteria in special cases
Taking steps to avoid condemnation of others
Using one set of criteria for judging cases concerning ourselves and another for all others
Suspending judgment when concerned that the consequences would be too severe

Question 4.4. (TCO 2) Prescriptive language is commonly used in ethics for what reason? (Points : 5)
To indicate what is prohibited or impossible
To indicate that one choice is better than others
To show what actions are legal
To convey requirements and obligations
To indicate that there are really no choices available

Question 5.5. (TCOs 7, 8) Ethics that teaches us what we should do in our own self-interest is taught through which style of ethics? (Points : 5)
Rousseau’s social constructionism
Rand’s objectivism
Aristotle’s politics
Contemporary care-based ethics
Plato’s “Ring of Gyges” example

Question 6.6. (TCOs 2, 4, 9) John Locke, as a Social Contract theorist, is said to have been the most influential person who was not actually present at the table when what document was written? (Points : 5)
The Articles of Confederation
The Declaration of Independence
The Magna Carta
The Constitution
The Treaty of Westphalia

Question 7.7. (TCOs 3, 6) Agricultural biofuels are not properly a renewable source of energy in the environmental ethics debate. Which of the following also is not a renewable source of energy? (Points : 5)
Windmill turbines
Hydroelectric power
Tidal flow generators
Biomass waste systems
Solar cells

Question 8.8. (TCOs 3, 6, 7) The notion that the only thing good without qualification is a good will is attributed to whom? (Points : 5)
St. Thomas Aquinas
Socrates
John Locke
Immanuel Kant
Oliver Cromwell

Question 9.9. (TCOs 8, 9) John Stuart Mill’s theory of Utilitarianism is the most common form of ethics in use today. It is used so commonly because it belongs to which of the Primary Schools of Ethics? (Points : 5)
Care-based
Ends-based
Economy-based
Law-based
Efficiency-based

Question 10.10. (TCOs 3, 6, 7) Syllogisms in formal deductive logic are called “valid” when: (Points : 5)
the correct form of the syllogism style is used.
the premise statements are true.
the syllogism is first determined to be “sound.”
the verbs are written in present tense.
the conclusion proceeds from the premises.

Question 11.11. (TCOs 1, 2) Different from normal problem solving, dilemmas are different in what aspect? (Points : 5)
Problems are much more complicated
When one choice is chosen, the opportunity for the others is lost
Problems are much more urgent
Problems are so much more real and less theoretical
Problems usually involve not honoring our own virtues

Question 12.12. (TCOs 1, 2, 7) Where did Thomas Aquinas say that conscience originates? (Points : 5)
Through the hard work of reasoning
Direct gift from God in all cultures through natural law
An a priori source
By observing the objects and actions of the world
An empirical response of guilt for past actions

Question 13.13. (TCOs 2, 8) The single criterion for making decisions in objectivist ethics is what? (Points : 5)
Professional development
Personal self-interest
The physical environment
Financial gain
The close group of family and friends who will be impacted

Question 14.14. (TCOs 1, 2, 5) The Social Contract theorist whose troubled childhood was most clearly reflected in his theories was who? (Points : 5)
Thomas Aquinas
Thomas Jefferson
Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Thomas Hobbes
John Locke

Question 15.15. (TCOs 3, 6, 7) “Act only according to that maxim…” begins what famous formulation of deontological ethics? (Points : 5)
The Nicomachean Ethics
The Social Contract
The Principle of Utility
The Hypocratic Oath
The Categorical Imperative

Question 16.16. (TCOs 2, 7, 8) Aristotle’s Ethics of Virtue have found modern application for business and industry through what practice? (Points : 5)
Resolution models applications
Goals and objectives
Core values of organizations
Business models
Professional codes of discipline

Question 17.17. (TCOs 2, 8) Professional codes of conduct serve what function for business and industry? (Points : 5)
Allow businesses to avoid training professional staffers
Enable transfer of valued employees across state lines
Enable contracting of temporary employees
Specify continuing education needs and requirements
Providing assurance of the professional qualifications of members

Question 18.18. (TCOs 2, 7) Aristotle’s Ethical Doctrine of the Mean measured personal virtues on a scale that included the virtue itself, the excess of it, and the deficiency of it.
If the virtue is GENEROSITY, and the excess is WASTEFULNESS, what is the deficiency?

(Points : 5)

Carefulness
There is no deficiency
Being broke (having no money)
Stinginess
Moderation

Question 19.19. (TCOs 8, 9) The Ethical Resolution Models practiced during Week 6 provide people in conflict with greater opportunity to consider the consequences of their actions. What type of ethics is this? (Points : 5)
Deontological
Care-based
Social Contract
Aristotelian
Utilitarian

Question 20.20. (TCOs 1, 2) The Latin term a priori describes the origin of knowledge developed rationally, and the term a posteriori describes knowledge developed through observation and experience. What is an example of ethics is best described as discovered in an a priori manner? (Points : 5)
Utilitarian ethics
Objectivist ethics
Deontological ethics
Political ethics
Scientific ethics

Page 2

Question 1. 1. (TCOs 1, 2, 3, 7) In support of TCO #7 and in the Week 7 discussions, you developed and placed into the threaded discussions your personalized ethics statement of what has become important to you in the practice of ethics as you have practiced ethics during the course. Your first task in this question is to briefly present that personalized statement in just a few sentences before continuing with the question. Much of the rest of the exam will involve your working with that personalized statement through brief applications and cases.

Use your ethical philosophy to solve the following ethical situation. Explain how your philosophy helped you make your decision.

Given the continuing threat that nuclear weapons pose for humanity and the global environment, is it ever ethically acceptable for scientists to engage in research and development work on such weapons?

Discuss the conditions, if any, under which it would be acceptable.

Explain and defend your position, and then explain how your ethical philosophy helped you or affected how you answered this question.

Question 2. 2. (TCOs 1, 2, 7) Analyze the following ethical situation using YOUR ethical philosophy. Read the situation and then in your answer, explain why this is an ethical situation, what the “issues” are, and how an “ethical” person would resolve them. Explain how YOUR ethical philosophy statement has helped you read a conclusion about how to resolve or analyze this situation.

Construction companies must usually engage in competitive bidding for their contracts. This practice demands that they anticipate every material and labor cost months and even years ahead and commit themselves to complete a project for a specified amount of money. A mistake in calculating or a failure to anticipate a significant increase in prices can bankrupt a company.

Consider the situation of the combination of the unexpected increase in lumber prices due to the war in Iraq and Afghanistan with multiple hurricanes in the United States in the past few years.

  1. Would it be ethical for a company who had won a bid for a construction job before the increase in lumber prices, to use substandard materials in order to offset the increase in lumber prices after the fact?

  2. Would it be ethical for a customer to hold the contractor to the original bid after unplanned and unprecedented lumber price increases occur, knowing it will cause the contractor to go bankrupt, or do the job at a huge loss?

  3. How would your answer to #2 change if your customer was Donald Trump or a community pantry feeding program for the homeless. Explain.

  4. (TCOs 3, 4) How do you feel John Stuart Mill would have solved the above ethical situation differently or the same as you did using your philosophy? Please explain the reasons for the similarities or differences. (Points : 40)

Question 4. 4. (TCOs 1, 2, 4, 9) A first-term junior senator has placed a bill before the Senate that promises to correct tax inequities that affect thousands of workers. However, the bill is being held up in committee. The senior senator who serves as Sub-Committee Chairperson is responsible. The senator, however, has learned of a secret scandal in the Chairperson’s personal life. The junior senator visits the Chairperson and tells him that unless the bill is released from committee, he will divulge the scandal to the press. The Chairperson then releases the bill from committee and it is passed—and becomes law.

Identify and tell what ethical philosophy the senior and junior senators are using, if any.

Now, use your ethical philosophy to analyze the situation. Explain how, using your philosophy, you would have solved this situation either the same way as the characters in the situation did, or differently. Why?

Question 5. 5. (TCOs 5, 6) You are a new employee in a company which creates computer chips for cellular telephones. Your previous employer created similar chips for PDA’s, and 4 weeks after you are hired you are approached by your new boss in a confidential, private meeting. She explains to you that you were hired because of your work on the PDA chips. She wants to know how much of the technology you are aware of from the prior employer which you could apply to your new project on the phone chip.

As a matter of fact, the technology is very similar, and you know that you could quickly and easily apply what you know from the previous project to this one. However, you feel uneasy about giving out that information from your past job. For one thing, you’re pretty sure it was secret information, although you don’t know for sure. However, your last job ended badly as they laid off 20% of the workforce without warning (including you), simply because the owner of the company decided to downsize sell off part of the company to pay for his daughter’s $200,000 wedding.

Your boss watches you as you are thinking through your decision and says, “You know. If this project goes through successfully, a large raise and promotion will be coming your way.” Will you tell your new employer the technology secret? Why or why not? Explain what ethical analysis you used to come to this conclusion.

Question 6. 6. (TCOs 6, 8) Analyze your answer above using at least 3 questions from the Laura Nash ethical dilemma resolution model. Show your steps. (Points : 40)

 

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