An ethics education experience: from ‘Silent Spring’ to ‘Reverence for life’ LAUD 483 Environment Philosophy and Ethics
Ethics Education in a Global Perspective
IAEE and the Center for Healthcare Ethics at Duquesne University
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LAUD 483 Environment, Philosophy and Ethics course has started as an elective course off er to Bilkent University students who are from Humanities, Engineering, Arts & Sciences in 2003, but mainly to students of the department as they are directly dealing with how to shape land. Th e main reason for opening an ethics elective course to all was to introduce students with some major issues related to environment and human attitude at an early stage, and make them able to understand, evaluate and how to act accordingly. -112- Ethics Education in a Global Perspective When thinking of exiting state of the world, the cities, environmental philosophy and environmental ethics inevitably becomes an essential part of university education, which will help young people to look, to question, to criticize and to analyze human-nature relationship from a diff erent perspective. Every student, in their very early years if becomes familiar with such ethical questioning, environmental concern and built a certain consciousness, responsibility and skills, then may be able to eliminate certain problems from the beginning. Recently, in times of many decision making processes individuals, corporations and governments have to deal with many disputes and dilemmas related to environmental issues and they are forced to pick one of the alternatives. Th ese are mostly ethical decisions given for the favor of other. Th ey are in need of experts and know how on this area of interest. And the society needs for someone to tell them what is “right” and what is “wrong”. Th e course aims to prepare students to act for the favor of “life” and equip them with right tools to deal with diffi cult decision-making processes concerning environmental issues. Th e course is based on student lead seminars and discussion lectures by the instructor, of which related environmental topics and issues, environmental philosophy, its historical progress are appraised through known articles of scientists and philosophers (from: Rachel Carson, Garret Hardin, E.F. Schumacher, Aldo Leopold, Arne Naess, Tom Regan, Peter Singer, Paul Taylor, to Albert Schweitzer) who all played a signifi cant role in the progress of environmental movement. Each seminar is also expected to advance the discussion with the life and attitude of the writer as an important attribute of ethics. Th e course tries to embrace students from a variety of disciplines to widen its perspective. Selected case studies local and/or global (such as: environmental pollution, global warming, land ethics, animal rights, endangered species), researched and presented by each student as a fi nal project at the end of the semester in connection with their area of interest and/or discipline which enriches the experience and exchange of knowledge in class.
- Work in Progress 293