SO220 Ethical Iss. in Social Sci.

for F1M 2009

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SO 220 Ethical Iss. in Social Sci.


F1M 2009 CH


Andrews, Claude ("Tweetybird")


Senior Adjunct Faculty


B. A., M. Div., M. ed., Ph. D. work ("ABD")
For other information, location, and particulars, Tweetybird has a brief bio-sketch for those requesting it.

Office Location

Home office:  147 Hoop Pole Creek Drive, Atlantic Beach, NC

Office Hours

Office hours may be individually arranged in terms of time and place as needed.

Daytime Phone

252-407-1485 (This is a "blind" pager--you may leave a very brief message or dial in number with area code.)  Since Tweetybird is subject to be anywhere within (and out of) the state, the pager is the best way to contact him for fast contact--or either the e-mail addresses.  If you do not wish him to return your call at "all hours," let him know of your own time frame.  He does not have a "land-based" phone.


Semester Dates

Fall I, (08/17/2009-10/11/2009)

Class Days


Class Time

4:45 - 7:15 PM  (16:45-19:15)


An introductory social science class (i.e., SO141, PS101, CJ100, or SW205).

Credit Hours


ALL REQUIRED (the final six are tiny pocket guides at $4-6 each)

Israel & Hay  Research Ethics for Social Scientists, (2006). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.  ISBN-13:  9781412903905

Paul & Elder The Miniature Guide to Critical Thinking: Concepts and Tools, 2004, Dillon Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.  ISBN:  0944583105

Paul & Elder The Miniature Guide to Analytic Thinking, 2003, Dillion Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.  ISBN: 0944583199

Paul & Elder The Miniature Guide to Taking Charge of the Human Mind, 2002, The Miniature Guide to Taking Charge of the Human Mind, Dillon Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.  ISBN:  0944583148

Paul & Elder The Miniature Guide to Scientific Thinking, 2003, Dillon Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.  ISBN:  0944583180

Paul & Elder The Thinker's Guide to Ethical Reasoning, 2003, Dillon Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.  ISBN:  0944583172

Paul & Elder The Thinker's Guide to Critical & Creative Thinking, 2004, Dillon Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking, Dillon Beach, CA: Foundation for Critical Thinking.  ISBN:  0944583261

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Additional Resources:

  The Marine Warrior Library has computers, printers, copying, internet access, and a fair amount of good reference material, including some psychology and sociology journals--plus it IS on-base.
  Additional resources, web sites,  and readings will be cited as we proceed through the class.  Remember that for this and all social science courses the APA reference style is to be used (note--there are some excellent resources available at the home page of Park Psychology Departemt as well as at the MacAfee Meemorial Library).

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
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Course Description:

SO 220 Ethical Issues in Social Sciences: Considers the moral and ethical consequences of conducting social science research. Disseminating the results, and implementing practices and policies based on those findings. Critically examines those questions and choices rising at each stage of the research process, and the results of those choices on relevant parties. 3:0:3 Prerequisite: and introductory social science course (i.e., SO 141, PS101)

Educational Philosophy:

     The educational philosophy Tweetybird uses in this course is one of class interactivity using the stimulus materials as found in our texts, the material on-line, and also reviewing case studies involving professional ethical issues in the social sciences.  We will be using the basic ethical foundations of professional associations as well as our own ethical underpinnings.  Our learning experience is not only individual, but also group oriented.  Everyone is expected to contribute to the class and has the opportunity to learn from each other.  The student will not be "graded" upon his/her opinion, if well developed, but how well the student developes it using professional ethical standards.  There is a LOT of reading for this class--so please keep up the reading between classes and keep up with the work on parkonline.  Remember the "mini-semester" philosophy--each class is the equivalancy of a regular one-hour class meeting three times per week for one full semester.  Another further note:  given Tweetybird's professional background in public and private practice and consultations with many public and private organizations and individuals, he has many varied experiences and "war stories" that illustrate many of the ethical issues that are germane to making professional ethical decisions.  Given the issues of professional and legal confidentiality as well as HIPAA laws, the illustrations he uses have been heavily disguised to protect anonymity and confidentiality.  The illustrations may have the feel of "reality" because the situatons are based on "real life." 

  Instructor Learning Outcomes

  1. Describe the historical development of ethical standards in social research and applications.
  2. Explain relevant national and international standards for ethical social research and applications.
  3. Articulate the major ethical concerns for each stage of the research cycle.
  4. Evaluate the major ethical questions in implementing policies based on social research and applications.
  5. Demonstrate how to ethically choose and further develop other ethical issues as they arise.
Class Assessment:
Core Assessment:
Essay: (max. 2500 words, plus tables and figures) Students will be provided with two extended case studies and will write an essay comparing and critically evaluating their ethical challenges and the strategies used to minimize or guard against harmful results.  The essay must address the following issues:
1.    What ethical principles are at issue in each case?  Provide and justify specific examples.
2.    What strategies were used to insure the standards of ethical research?
3.    Were those strategies successful?  How and why?
4.    What alternate strategies might also have been used to achieve the same or better results?
5.    Which case study represents a better implementation of research ethics?  How and why?
Your essay will consist of a careful, point-by-point contrast of the two cases.  It should link the cases to commonly held standards of research ethics and discuss the extent to which those were followed.  You should discuss the ethical, practical, and political consequences of these cases for the researchers, participants, and the social groups represented therein.  And you should connect these cases to other examples of social research and implementation we have discussed.

Class Assessment:
Points    Assignment
200    Core Assessment (20%)
150    Comprehensive Final Examination (15%)
100    Complete Investigator Education Program (10%)

50    UA1: My Biases
50    UA2: Taking Sides
50    UA3: Literature Critique
50    UA4: Literature Search
50    UA5: Ethical Code Analysis
50    UA6: Ethical Issues Vignettes
50    UA7: Ethical Application
200    Participation (25 x 8)


 Point Range
 Letter Grade
 >= 900
 800 - 899
 700 - 799
 600 -699
 < 600

Late Submission of Course Materials:

     This course is a timely related course in terms of time sequences--thus it is vital that the work be completed in a timely manner.  The student will need to print a "hard-copy" documenting the completion of the Investigator Educatin Program as listed in the assignments in order to receive proper credit.  If material is submited late, 50 points from total is subtracted for each class late.  The student needs to plan ahead and let Tweetybird know if for some reason he/she will be absent--and Tweetybird may be willing to work with the student to resolve the issue. 

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

     Proper educational decorum is to be observed at all times in the classroom setting.  A more extensive explanation of the rules of conduct as well as a "hard-copy" will be reviewed and disributed in the first class.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

 1  1A Ethical Thinking: Problems & Principles
 "Taking Charge" & "Critical Thinking"
 2  1B Ethical Thinking: Analysis & Critique
 "Analytical Thinking" & "Critical & Creative"
 3  2A Ethical Building: Responsible Science
 "Ethical Reasoning" & "Scientific Thinking"
 4  2B Ethical Building: Community of Science
 Israel & Hay, Ch. 1 & web resources
 5  3A Ethical Research: Principles & Codes
 Israel & Hay, Ch. 2-4 & web resources
 6  3B Ethical Research: Consent, Confidentiality & Harm
Israel & Hay, Ch. 5-7
 7  4A Ethical Communication
 Israel & Hay, Ch. 8 & 9
 8  4B Ethical Application
 web resources
 UA8, CA, Final

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2008-2009 Undergraduate Catalog Page 87

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2009-2010 Undergraduate Catalog Page 92

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2009-2010 Undergraduate Catalog Page 95

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: .


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Last Updated:8/12/2009 8:37:10 AM