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This week, you will consider how utilitarianism applies to a controversy, dilemma, event, or scenario selected by your instructor. It is a chance for you to discuss together the ethical issues and questions that it raises, your own response to those, and whether that aligns with or does not align with a utilitarian approach. The aim is not to simply assert your own view or to denigrate other views, but to identify, evaluate, and discuss the moral reasoning involved in addressing the chosen issue.

Your posts should remain focused on the ethical considerations, and at some point in your contribution you must specifically address the way a utilitarian would approach this issue by explaining and evaluating that approach.

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PHI208 ETHICAL AND MORAL REASONING WEEK 2 – DISCUSSION 2 ASHFORD UNIVERSITY

Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses. Refer to the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric under the Settings icon above for guidance on how your discussion will be evaluated.

Week 2 Symposium [WLOs: 2, 3] [CLOs: 3, 4, 5]<

If you are having trouble starting this video, please access it here (Links to an external site.).

Video transcript can be accessed here. Preview the document.

In the Ancient Greek world (the world of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, often regarded as the birthplace of philosophy) a “symposium” was a banquet held after a meal, an “after party” of sorts that usually included drinking, dancing, recitals, and engaging conversations on the topics of the day.

For our purposes in this course, the Symposium discussions will not involve dancing, recitals, or a banquet, but they will provide food for thought on current ethical issues and direct application of the ethical theory discussed in each of these weeks.

It is almost impossible these days to turn on the news or log onto social media without encountering a controversy that cries out for ethical discussion. For these Symposium discussions, your instructor will choose a topic of current ethical interest and a resource associated with it for you to read or watch. Your task is to consider how the ethical theory of the week might be used to examine, understand, or evaluate the issue.

This week, you will consider how utilitarianism applies to a controversy, dilemma, event, or scenario selected by your instructor. It is a chance for you to discuss together the ethical issues and questions that it raises, your own response to those, and whether that aligns with or does not align with a utilitarian approach. The aim is not to simply assert your own view or to denigrate other views, but to identify, evaluate, and discuss the moral reasoning involved in addressing the chosen issue.

Your posts should remain focused on the ethical considerations, and at some point in your contribution you must specifically address the way a utilitarian would approach this issue by explaining and evaluating that approach.

If you have a position, you should strive to provide reasons in defense of that position.

When responding to peers, you should strive to first understand the reasons they are offering before challenging or critiquing those reasons. One good way of doing this is by summarizing their argument before offering a critique or evaluation.

You must post on at least two separate days, must include at least one substantial reply to a peer or to your instructor, and your posts should add up to at least 400 words.

Your instructor may include additional requirements, so be sure to pay attention to the prompt.

This discussion will be assessed on a 10-point scale and is worth 3% of your final grade.

ReplyReply to Week 2 – Discussion 2

The goal of our symposia in this class is DISCUSSION. It will be interesting to allow our class material to inform and guide our discussions of the material in these videos, and indeed it is fascinating how well they correlate!

Remember … I DON’T seek to avoid controversy in my classes. If you disagree with the videos, or someone else, let’s talk about it respectfully and passionately. THIS is what symposia are all about.

Full disclosure … I am a member of Jonathan Haidt’s HETERODOX ACADEMY, and I endorse his vision of the university quite closely. Nevertheless, I want to hear dissenting voices and viewpoints, to respect them and engage them in honest and passionate discussion – THIS, to me, is the central role of the university in our society.

The moral roots of liberals and conservatives – Jonathan Haidt (Links to an external site.)

The moral roots of liberals and conservatives – Jonathan Haidt

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