Syllabus for ETH-590



Successful business practice is firmly grounded in ethics. This course introduces students to foundational principles in ethics for business and life. Students will explore ethics from both theoretical and practical perspectives. Ethics for Managers provides the opportunity for students to critically analyze and evaluate their own views, as well as those of others, in order to develop solid approaches to challenging dilemmas. Significant debates and methodologies in business will be explored.



After completing this course, you should be able to:

CO1    Examine personal ethics and their relationship with ethical dilemmas in business.

CO2    Analyze the core premise(s) of ethics and relate ethical reasoning and ethical relativism to

individual and organizational conduct.  

CO3    Evaluate key ethical theories as well as historical perspectives on morality and human nature as they relate to business operations.

CO4    Hypothesize solutions to economic, corporate, and professional ethical dilemmas.

CO5    Appraise ethical challenges that affect business in a domestic, international, and global context.


You will need the following materials to complete your coursework. Some course materials may be free, open source, or available from other providers. You can access free or open-source materials by clicking the links provided below or in the module details documents. To purchase course materials, please visit the University's textbook supplier.

Required Textbook

ISBN-13: 978-1133049746


Ellwood, A., Gibney, A. & Kliot, J. (Producers), Gibney, A. (Director). (2005). Enron: The smartest guys in the room [Motion picture]. United States: Jigsaw Productions.

This film is widely available. You may want to explore services such as:

JustWatch (Web address: This is a free service that allows you to search across the most popular streaming, rental, and purchase services to find where a movie or television show is available The service will also tell you if it is available through subscription services.

This film may also be available at no charge from a public library.


Ethics for Managers is a three-credit, eight-week online course consisting of four modules. Modules include an overview, topics, study materials, and activities. Module titles are listed below.


For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete written assignments and attend one synchronous event. See below for details.

Consult the Course Calendar for assignment due dates.

Promoting Originality

One or more of your course activities may utilize a tool designed to promote original work and evaluate your submissions for plagiarism. More information about this tool is available in this document.

Discussion Forums

You are required to participate in six graded discussion forums. Discussion forums are on a variety of

topics associated with the courses modules. There is also an ungraded but required Introductions Forum in Module 1.

Synchronous Event

One synchronous event will be held during the first three weeks of the semester in Edison Live!, our virtual meeting space. (See the Course Calendar.) You will prepare to discuss the topic given for that event. To access the event, click the Collaboration Space link in the Edison Live! section of the course site a few minutes before the designated time. Use the following link for directions and helpful videos about how to use the Edison Live! tool in Moodle. Your mentor will work with the class to propose a time that works best and accommodates the majority.  

Written Assignments

You are required to complete four written assignments. The written assignments are on a variety of topics associated with the course modules.

Final Project

This project is intended to allow you the opportunity to analyze an ethical dilemma, evaluate ethical approaches, and create a strategy to address real-world circumstances.

You will evaluate the ethics of any legal or ethical issue in the news. Analyze the dilemma or issue. Thoroughly evaluate the appropriateness of applying at least two ethical frameworks reviewed in the course, and suggest an approach that might help to avoid such dilemmas/issues in the future.

Consult your Course Calendar for due dates.

See the Student Handbook for additional help regarding preparing and submitting assignments located within the General Information section of the course website.


Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:


















Below 73

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or higher on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., assignments, discussion postings, projects, etc.). Graduate students must maintain a B average overall to remain in good academic standing.


First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:


To ensure success in all your academic endeavors and coursework at Thomas Edison State University, familiarize yourself with all administrative and academic policies including those related to academic integrity, course late submissions, course extensions, and grading policies.

For more, see: