The Moral Compass

So far, so good. That is the morning report on Zoey. Paws crossed it stays that way.

Fun Fact! I teach an Ethics course. Sparkle helped, of course...

I love the class! It is so interesting to explore the many nuances and complexities of doing the "Right Thing;" learning how choices are rationalized is also super fascinating. Few criminals think they are doing something wrong, FYI -- there is almost always a rationalization. Just for fun -- Check out Criminal Thinking Errors in your spare time.

My mind has been on ethics and cheating over the past week, and the appropriate response of a trying-to-be-ethical human being in the face of unethical behavior.

Alas, it is Grading Season.

Although it is so much extra work/hassle and I hate making people upset, I don't ignore plagiarism. Sadly (in my mind), there is a lot of it.

I get why people overlook the small sins -- GEEZ, it is a pain to call someone out. But as the professor down the line, how I wish someone would have said something to the student(s) sooner. Ignored, cheating only gets worse as the person is reinforced with positive outcomes for poor choices. 

Did you know you can purchase essays online?  True Story. 

How I wish for his/her sake (and mine) that someone had cared enough to say, "WHOA" before it got to that.

Sometimes pointing out the unfortunate direction of the Moral Compass is actually the kindest and most ethical thing to do - and the hardest.

3 comments

by Terri Williams ... on Wed, 05/17/2017 - 11:32

Many years ago I took an Economics class as part of finishing my BA degree. Next to me sat a handsome fellow from Arabia. He had been sent to the US to become a civil engineer and be in charge of building dams and other serious projects. He wore a diamond ring that would choke a horse. He clearly was not interested in Economics and when it was time for finals, he did his level best to try to copy my answers. Fool! I was going to be happy with a high C in the class. I gave him a dirty look and turned my body the best I could to cover my paper. Not only do I not believe in cheating, but the thought of this fellow going home to papa with a degree in something as serious in civil engineering after cheating his way to graduation just terrified me. Don't people's lives depend on quality construction?
Yikes!

by Judy on Thu, 05/18/2017 - 08:43

I have a good friend who teaches English in the community college system. She recounts astounding stories to me every semester of students who have never, I mean never had to write a paper or for some the idea of an essay is new! And they have never even had the word "plagarism" defined for them. (Mary-Ann, think students taken right out of Robert Coles' classic book on children of poverty in Appalachia.) She is often their first encounter with the concepts of scholarship and academic integrity. I have been amazed. It's a slog getting folks to the next level, but one that is so necessary, not only for academic success but for good citizenship...to be able to sort out real news from the fake!

by CA Heidi on Thu, 05/18/2017 - 15:33

I loved college. I would still be there right now, if I could! SO many classes to take, ideas to explore . . . I can't get enough. I am like everyone, and sometimes the workload got to me, and I was stressed about managing a full time job, a family and school. But I was always proud of my assignments, and eager to get feedback from my professors. What a shame it is that people think that their own work will not be good enough, so they have to use someone else's? Laziness is always a possible culprit, but I think that if you are excited about what you are learning, you would not want anyone else to speak for you.

~H

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