"[To] do this to
the right person, to the right extent, at the right time,
To enable students to engage in their professional work and to conduct themselves in a fair and ethical manner, the assigned readings and course project included in MPA 8300 challenge students to understand and to deal with the ethical theories and values conflicts that administrators typically encounter in public agencies as they negotiate ethical dilemmas. Successful completion of these readings and the course project will develop each student’s reasoning and analytical skills so that each student will be able to approach and resolve ethical dilemmas with ethical competence.
NOTE: All written work submitted for MPA 8300 must be completed in strict conformity with the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th edition) (2009). In these exercises, students are NOT required to include a Methods or Discussion section but may include the author's note if they desire.
MPA 8300 requires considerable in-class discussion on each student's part, especially reflection upon one’s background, experience, and knowledge as the reading assignments support, challenge, or extend these. It is imperative that each student comes to class well-prepared to discuss what one has read and reflected upon, to raise questions about what one may not understand, and to share one's insights concerning issues raised by the course texts and webpages.
Class participation will account for 20% of the final grade.
Statement of Leadership Ethics
Very early in the course, each student will write a three- to five- page preliminary statement concerning defining leadership ethics, that is, what one believes is the best way to live and to work as an ethical leader in a public agency. Topics can include (among others): a definition of leadership ethics; the importance of leadership ethics in public agencies; individual and organizational duties and responsibilities as well as how these relate to promoting the mission of a public service agency. An ethics survey taken early in the course will provide ideas for each student to formulate one's provisional statement of leadership ethics.
As the course progresses, each student should continuously edit and revise one’s provisional statement into a more comprehensive statement in light of the various ethical theories studied, cases posed, and conclusions reached. The source(s) of all ideas expressed in the Statement of Leadership Ethics must be appropriately cited and referenced to demonstrate one's conversancy with ethical theory.
Near the end of the course, each student will submit the final revision of this statement, a seven- to ten- page Statement of Leadership Ethics identifying one’s ethical stance as a public administrator. This revision will reflect various ethical theories, identify the strengths and limits of one’s ethical stance, as well as indicate some challenges this statement presents to the student in terms of leadership ethics and administrative responsibility. The final statement will integrate the course texts and class discussion with one's ethical stance.
The Statement of Ethics will account for 50% of the final grade (10% for the first Statement; 40% for the final Statement).
NOTE: Even though this is a "personal" Statement of Leadership Ethics, the topic is leadership ethics, not the student. First person is NOT to be used.
Code of Ethics Critique
This assignment requires each student to search for, acquire, and analyze a Code of Ethics from one's public agency and/or professional organization. In the analysis of this document, the student will survey the code, assess and discuss its positive and negative aspects based upon the ethical theories studied in class, as well as its effectiveness in guiding decision making in the public agency where the student works (the preferable context) or has worked. The student will also discuss how, as an ethical leader, s/he would use the code to introduce and build ethics into the agency’s decision-making process. This assignment should be no more than ten pages in length (placing the Code of Ethics in the Appendix). Furthermore, the source(s) of all ideas expressed in the Code of Ethics Critique must be appropriately cited and referenced to demonstrate one's conversancy with ethical theory.
Some general notes for the code of ethics critique include:
an overview of the code and its purpose;
The Code of Ethics Critique will account for 30% of the final grade.