The dilemma of ethics in engineering education

Science and Engineering Ethics 10 (2):343-351 (2004)
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This paper briefly summarizes current thinking in engineering ethics education, argues that much of that ethical instruction runs the risk of being only superficially effective, and explores some of the underlying systemic barriers within academia that contribute to this result. This is not to criticize or discourage efforts to improve ethics instruction. Rather it is to point to some more fundamental problems that still must be addressed in order to realize the full potential of enhanced ethics instruction. Issues discussed will include: intellectual engagement versus emotional engagement; the gravitational pull of curricular structures; the nature of engineering faculty; and the “engineer-ization” of ethics.



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