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Derived copy of Rubrics for Exams and Group Projects in Ethics

Module by: William Frey. E-mail the author

Based on: Rubrics for Exams and Group Projects in Ethics by William Frey

Summary: This derived copy of "Rubrics for Exams and Group Projects in Ethics" has been created primarily for students in the course, "The Environment of the Organization." Students will be provided with rubrics to help them understand how group and individual work will be graded. It will also provide Jeopardy exercises designed to prepare them for course exams as well as to promote understanding of the cases and the concepts used in this course. Students who have lost their syllabi, will find copies of the most recent versions uploaded as a media file. This module is being developed as a part of an NSF-funded project, "Collaborative Development of Ethics Across the Curriculum Resources and Sharing of Best Practices," NSF SES 0551779.

Key to Links

  • The first link connects to the Ethics Bowl assignment for engineering and business students. It corresponds with the Ethics Bowl rubric displayed below.
  • The second link connects to the module on developing reports on computing socio-technical systems. It outlines an assignment where computing students carry out an analysis of the impact of a computing system on a given socio-technical system. A rubric to this activity used in computer ethics classes is provided below.
  • The third link to the Three Frameworks module corresponds to a rubric below that examines how well students deploy the frameworks on decision-making and problem-solving outlined by this module.
  • The final link to Computing Cases provides the reader with access to Chuck Huff's helpful advice on how to write and use rubrics in the context of teaching computer ethics.


This module provides a range of assessment and study materials used in classes in business, engineering and computer ethics. Rubrics will help you understand the standards that will be used to assess your writing in essay exams and group projects. They also help your instructor stay focused on the same set of standards when assessing the work of the class. Jeopardy exercises will help focus your study efforts and help you to identify your strengths and weaknesses as you prepare for class exams. A copy of the course syllabus has been included in case you lose the copy given to you in the first class. As the semester progresses, expect this module to change and eventually fulfill the function of serving as a portal to other modules and online materials relevant to this and other classes.

Revised Schedule for Fall 2011

Revised Schedule for Fall 2011

Media File: Revised Schedule_V2.pptx

Course Syllabi

Syllabus for Environments of the Organization

Media File: ADMI4016_F10.docx

Syllabus for Business, Society, and Government

Media File: GERE6055_F10.docx

Environment of the Organization Course Syllabus Spring 2011

Media File: ADMI4016_S11.docx

Environment of Organization Course Syllabus, Spring 2012, short version

Media File: ADMI4016_S12_short.docx

ADMI 4016 Syllabus Fall 2012 Short Form

Media File: ADMI4016_S12_short-3.docx

Environment of Organization Syllabus F2012--Long Form

Media File: ADMI4016_S12.docx

Environment of Organization Syllabus Spring 2013

Media File: ADMI4016_S13_short_2.docx

Environment of Organization Syllabus Fall 2013

Media File: ADMI4016_F13_short.docx

Environment of Organization Syllabus Spring 2014

Media File: ADMI4016_S14_short.docx

First Class: Student Survey


On a sheet of paper answer the following questions. You may write in English or Spanish.

  1. Your name
  2. Your area of academic concentration or major
  3. Reason for taking this course (besides that it may be required for your area)
  4. Have you studied (business) ethics at this university or another university as (a) a freestanding course, (b) an out-of-curriculum activity (student association), (c) a module, unit or activity integrated into some other course
  5. How would you define business ethics?
  6. What do you expect to learn in this course?
  7. How, at this point, would you rate your communication skills? Beginning, Intermediate, or Advanced?
  8. How would you rate your abilities in English regarding speaking, understanding, and writing? Beginning, Intermediate, or Advanced?
  9. Describe what has been your worst experience working in a group or team. Why was it bad, difficult, or unsatisfying?
  10. What is the best educational experience you have had in the past, i.e., the one from which you have learned the most or learned something that matters greatly to you?

Case Table and Information

Table Outlining Cases and Associated Concepts

Media File: Class Table.docx

ADEM Statement of Values

Presentation on Values and Contracts

Media File: Introduction to Social Contracts and the ADEM Values.pptx

Basic and Intermediate Moral Concepts: Summary Tables

These tables provide summaries of basic moral concepts and intermediate moral concepts. These summaries need to be completed by seeing the concept in a specific case. Basic moral concepts include right, duty, virtue, good, and responsibility. These cut across different practical disciplines in which ethics enters such as business, engineering, and computing. Intermediate moral concepts are specific to a given practical discipline. In the Environment of the Organization, you will study privacy, intellectual property, free speech, responsibility, safety, corporate social responsibility, and responsible dissent. Privacy will be introduced in Toysmart but continue on through Biomatrix, Therac, Hughes, and Drummond. Free Speech will be explored in terms of transferring information in Toysmart, defamation in Biomatrix, informed consent in Therac, and responsible dissent in Hughes. These tables provide summaries to get you started on the concepts but a full understanding requires you see them in the context of a specific case.

Basic Moral Concepts for Business

Media File: BMC_V3.docx

Intermediate Moral Concepts for Business

Media File: IMC_V2.docx

Rubrics Used in Connexions Modules Published by Author

Ethical Theory Rubric

This first rubric assesses essays that seek to integrate ethical theory into problem solving. It looks at a rights based approach consistent with deontology, a consequentialist approach consistent with utilitarianism, and virtue ethics. The overall context is a question presenting a decision scenario followed by possible solutions. The point of the essay is to evaluate a solution in terms of a given ethical theory.

Figure 1: This rubric breaks down the assessment of an essay designed to integrate the ethical theories of deontology, utilitarianism, and virtue into a decision-making scenario.
Ethical Theory Integration Rubric
Media File: EE_Midterm_S05_Rubric.doc

Decision-Making / Problem-Solving Rubric

This next rubric assess essays that integrate ethical considerations into decision making by means of three tests, reversibility, harm/beneficence, and public identification. The tests can be used as guides in designing ethical solutions or they can be used to evaluate decision alternatives to the problem raised in an ethics case or scenario. Each theory partially encapsulates an ethical approach: reversibility encapsulates deontology, harm/beneficence utilitarianism, and public identification virtue ethics. The rubric provides students with pitfalls associated with using each test and also assesses their set up of the test, i.e., how well they build a context for analysis.

Figure 2: Attached is a rubric in MSWord that assesses essays that seek to integrate ethical considerations into decision-making by means of the ethics tests of reversibility, harm/beneficence, and public identification.
Integrating Ethics into Decision-Making through Ethics Tests
Media File: CE_Rubric_S06.doc

Ethics Bowl Follow-Up Exercise Rubric

Student teams in Engineering Ethics at UPRM compete in two Ethics Bowls where they are required to make a decision or defend an ethical stance evoked by a case study. Following the Ethics Bowl, each group is responsible for preparing an in-depth case analysis on one of the two cases they debated in the competition. The following rubric identifies ten components of this assignment, assigns points to each, and provides feedback on what is less than adequate, adequate, and exceptional. This rubric has been used for several years to evaluate these group projects

Figure 3: This rubric will be used to assess a final, group written, in-depth case analysis. It includes the three frameworks referenced in the supplemental link provided above.
In-Depth Case Analysis Rubric
Media File: EE_FinalRubric_S06.doc

Rubric for Good Computing / Social Impact Statements Reports

This rubric provides assessment criteria for the Good Computing Report activity that is based on the Social Impact Statement Analysis described by Chuck Huff at (See link) Students take a major computing system, construct the socio-technical system which forms its context, and look for potential problems that stem from value mismatches between the computing system and its surrounding socio-technical context. The rubric characterizes less than adequate, adequate, and exceptional student Good Computing Reports.

Figure 4: This figure provides the rubric used to assess Good Computing Reports in Computer Ethics classes.
Good Computing Report Rubric
Media File: CE_FinalRubric_S06.doc

Computing Cases provides a description of a Social Impact Statement report that is closely related to the Good Computing Report. Value material can be accessed by looking at the components of a Socio-Technical System and how to construct a Socio-Technical System Analysis.

Figure 5: Clicking on this link will open the rubric for the business ethics midterm exam for spring 2008.
Business Ethics Midterm Rubric Spring 2008
Media File: Midterm Rubric Spring 2008.doc

Insert paragraph text here.

Study Materials for Environments of Organization

This section provides models for those who would find the Jeopardy game format useful for helping students learn concepts in business ethics and the environments of the organization. It incorporates material from modules in the Business Course and from Business Ethics and Society, a textbook written by Anne Lawrence and James Weber and published by McGraw-Hill. Thanks to for the Jeopardy template.

Jeopardy: Business Concepts and Frameworks

Media File: Jeopardy1Template.pptx

Jeopardy: New Game for First Exam, Spring 2011

Media File: Jeopardy_V1a.pptx

Media File: Jeopardy2.pptx

Privacy, Property, Free Speech, Responsibility

Media File: Jeopardy_3.pptx

Jeopardy for EO Second Exam

Media File: Jeopardy4a.pptx

Jeopardy 5

Media File: Jeopardy5.pptx

Jeopardy 6

Media File: Jeopardy6.pptx


Media File: Jeopardy7.pptx

Jeopardy on Responsibility

Media File: Jeopardy_Responsibility.pptx

Revised Jeopardies for ADMI 4016, Fall 2011 to Present

Jeopardy for Problem Solving

Media File: Jeopardy Problem Solving.pptx

Jeopardy for Toysmart, Privacy, Property, and Informed Consent

Media File: Jeopardy IMC Test 1.pptx

Jeopardy and Gilbane Gold

Media File: Jeopardy and Gilbane Gold.pptx

More Jeopardies: Beginning Fall 2012

Jeopardy on Syllabus as Contract, Mountain Terrorist Exercise, and Values-Based Decision-Making

Media File: Jeopardy1_F12.pptx

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