The assignments main tasks and components are these:
Task 1) Choose a substantial issue currently in the news (or in the news in 2016-17)
that involves professional ethics or professional morality (preferably an issue from a professional area thats relevant to your professional interests)
Task 2) Write a Case-Study Brief in which you summarize the issues situation and participants, briefly identify the profession and professional/public servant for whom there is/are ethical issues in the case, briefly identify the issues specific ethical questions and broader ethical questions.
Task 3) Write a 600-1000 words (longer is okay) analysis of the case, its central ethical question, your response to this central ethical question, your defense of your response, and at least one objection (with reasons) to your response.
(Below are very specific directions for building your Short Paper Assignment)
Task 1) Appropriate selection of your papers for case study and analysis:
Choose a substantial issue currently in the news (or in the news in 2016-17) that involves professional ethics or professional morality in a medical setting.
Key tip: the essence of a good issue for an ethical case study is controversy.
Look for issues that involve or touch on professional ethical concerns weve studied so far: professionalism, ethical codes, professional duties/obligations, clients rights, client-professional relationship, truth, lying, deception, privacy, secrecy, confidentiality, and trust.
Good sources are 1) newspapers (New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, Albuquerque Journal, Santa Fe New Mexicanonline or hard copy in Zimmerman Library); 2) substantial news broadcasts (PBS Newshour, 60 Minutes, CNN Health, CNN Money); 3) news websites (e.g. theintercept, nytimes, qz.com, theweek) or websites for the television news above (cnn, moneycnn, 60 Minutes (60 Minutes runs a lot of stories related to ethics) 4) magazine websites (Time, Journal of the American Medical Association); and 5) Google or Bing searches, of course.
Any source thats shorter than three paragraphs (or shorter than 7 minutes of TV news time) is probably not going to yield you the detail you need.
A few more tips: dont choose an issue that has as its ethical concern the duty/obligation to support ones family; as a general rule, dont write on professional athletes or entertainment figures; make sure that the ethical/moral issue you choose is indeed a professional ethical or moral issue.
Task 2) Writing your Case Study Brief:
The narrative summary of your case (see Template below) should tell the story of the situation. Using the 5Ws may be helpful: tell What happened, Who is involved, When did it take place, Where did it take place, Why did it happen? (you might add, How did it happen? if relevant)
The narrative summary of your Case should be 300-500 words, more or less as suits you. (At the end of this assignment document is a simplified example of such a Case summary that Ive borrowed from a colleague, though its on the short side of length and not especially inspiring in the beauty of languageyou can do far better….)
Below your narrative summary, youll identify with brief statement or list the following information, each piece on its own line (shown in the Case Study Brief format at the end of this document)
2. Name the Profession and the Professional(s)/Public Servant(s) for whom
there is ethical/moral issue(s) in your Case.
3. Name what you take to be the central, specific Normative Ethical
Problem in your case. (Youll remember from earlier in the course that normative ethics is the study of ethical action, so a normative ethical problem asks or questions, in specific terms, about the action that should be taken. Question #2 of Case 4.4 (EAP 225) speaks such a problem, and as youll see in the Case 4.4 example, it may take several questions to express the aspects or dimensions of the central normative ethical problem of a case.
Task 3) Writing your Case Study Analysis
Problem. Your analysis should begin with what you take to be the central, specific Normative Ethical Problem in your casethe problem youve named for item #3 under your Case Study Brief above. So, in one or more paragraphs, identify and explain what you take to be the central, specific Normative Ethical Problem of your case. Your analysis might begin, The central ethical problem posed by this case is…..
Claimed Solution. Your next paragraph(s) should make a definite claim or proposal which aims to answer or solve the problem; that is, youll speak what you think one should do in the case of your Case and its central ethical problem. Your solution paragraph might begin, I take the best response to this problem to be….. or I shall argue that the best response to this problem is…..
Argument. The main of your Case Study Analysis should analyze/explain the key facts of your Case and defend your solution with explanation of your reasons/reasoning and/or evidence justifying your solution. Your reasoning should include discussion of at least one ethical viewpoint, position, or theory from at least one of course readings to date. Quotation from that source is recommended.
Opposition. Briefly state the strongest objection to your solution that you discern and briefly present an objectors possible defense for that objection.
Your Case Study Analysis should be 600-1000 words (longer is fine).