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Program aims to strengthen campus ethics curriculum


March 28, 2008

A search has begun to recruit 12 Lincoln PolyTech teaching fellows as part of a two-year program to redesign and build an ethics curriculum at ASU’s Polytechnic campus. Recruitment of the first cohort of six fellows is under way this spring semester, and another six will be recruited in spring 2009.

The project, led by the Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics with the help of the School of Applied Arts and Sciences, advances the ASU Polytechnic campus core curriculum efforts to ensure all students meet competency standards in eight core areas, including ethics.

The goals of the program are to encourage students to incorporate ethical considerations into their decision-making, and to produce graduates that meet ethical standards in any industry.

The Lincoln Center has committed $52,000 to launch the PolyTech Teaching Fellows program, while the School of Applied Arts and Sciences at the Polytechnic campus has contributed $16,000.

“The project will help faculty at the Polytechnic campus develop new courses or course modules that explicitly include coverage of ethics in the course content,” says program director Joseph Herkert, who is also a Lincoln associate professor of ethics and technology. “This, in turn, will better prepare our students for thinking about and acting on ethical issues and problems they might encounter during their careers.”

Selected fellows must be willing to develop a new course or revise an existing one, with the goal of incorporating significant ethics content.

They will be responsible for teaching the course, making course materials available through the Web and participating in faculty ethics curriculum seminars. Each fellow will receive a stipend of $4,000.

“Each year, six teaching fellows will be selected from the pool of applicants to attend our biweekly seminars,” Herkert says. “All Polytechnic campus teaching faculty are eligible to apply. In the fall, a selected Lincoln Professor, invited guest speaker or senior fellow will lead each seminar. The focus in the fall will be on incorporating ethics content into the curriculum. During the spring, the fellows will meet to discuss and critique the ethics courses and modules they are developing.”

The PolyTech Teaching Fellows program is scheduled to begin this fall semester. The deadline to apply for a fellowship post is April 7.

Interested faculty members should contact Herkert at (480) 727-1548 or joseph.herkert@asu.edu.