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Values- Values are the rules by which we make decisions about right and wrong,
should and shouldn't, good and bad. They also tell us which are more or less
important, which is useful when we have to trade off meeting one value over another. defines values as: n : beliefs of a person or social group in which they
have an emotional investment (either for or against something); "he has very
conservatives values"
Morals- Morals have a greater social element to values and tend to have a very
broad acceptance. Morals are far more about good and bad than other values. We
thus judge others more strongly on morals than values. A person can be described
as immoral, yet there is no word for them not following values. defines morals as: n : motivation based on ideas of right and wrong
Ethics- You can have professional ethics, but you seldom hear about professional
morals. Ethics tend to be codified into a formal system or set of rules which are
explicitly adopted by a group of people. Thus you have medical ethics. Ethics are
thus internally defined and adopted, whilst morals tend to be externally imposed on
other people. If you accuse someone of being unethical, it is equivalent of calling
them unprofessional and may well be taken as a significant insult and perceived
more personally than if you called them immoral (which of course they may also not
like). defines ethics as: A theory or a system of moral values: An ethic of
service is at war with a craving for gain"
The rules or standards governing the conduct of a person or the members of a
profession. Ethics of principled conviction asserts that intent is the most important
factor. If you have good principles, then you will act ethically. Ethics of responsibility
challenges this, saying that you must understand the consequences of your
decisions and actions and answer to these, not just your high-minded principles. The
medical maxim 'do no harm', for example, is based in the outcome-oriented ethics of

Values: its Meaning, Characteristics, Types, Importance!

Meaning: Generally, value has been taken to mean moral ideas, general conceptions
or orientations towards the world or sometimes simply interests, attitudes,
preferences, needs, sentiments and dispositions. But sociologists use this term in a
more precise sense to mean the generalised end which has the connotations of
rightness, goodness or inherent desirability.
These ends are regarded legitimate and binding by society. They define what is
important worthwhile and worth striving for. Sometimes, values have been
interpreted to mean such standards by means of which the ends of action are
selected. Thus, values are collective conceptions of what is considered good,
desirable, and proper or bad, undesirable, and improper in a culture.

Values may be specific, such as honouring ones parents or owning a home or they
may be more general, such as health, love and democracy. Truth prevails, love thy
neighbour as yourself, learning is good as ends itself are a few examples of general
values. Individual achievement, individual happiness and materialism are major
values of modern industrial society.
Value systems can be different from culture to culture. One may value
aggressiveness and deplores passivity, another the reverse, and a third gives little
attention to this dimension altogether, emphasising instead the virtue of sobriety over
emotionality, which may be quite unimportant in either of the other cultures. This
point has very aptly been explored and explained by Florence Kluchkhon (1949) in
her studies of five small communities (tribes) of the American south-west. One
society may value individual achievement (as in USA), another may emphasise
family unity and kin support (as in India). The values of hard work and individual
achievement are often associated with industrial capitalist societies.
The values of a culture may change, but most remain stable during one persons
lifetime. Socially shared, intensely felt values are a fundamental part of our lives.
Values are often emotionally charged because they stand for things we believe to be
worth defending. Often, this characteristic of values brings conflict between different
communities or societies or sometimes between different persons.
Most of our basic values are learnt early in life from family, friends, neighbourhood,
school, the mass print and visual media and other sources within society. These
values become part of our personalities. They are generally shared and reinforced
by those with whom we interact.
Values can be classified into two broad categories:
(1) Individual values: These are the values which are related with the development
of human personality or individual norms of recognition and protection of the human
personality such as honesty, loyalty, veracity and honour.
(2) Collective values: Values connected with the solidarity of the community or
collective norms of equality, justice, solidarity and sociableness are known as
collective values.

Values can also be categorised from the point of view their hierarchical
(1) Intrinsic values: These are the values which are related with goals of life. They
are sometimes known as ultimate and transcendent values. They determine the
schemata of human rights and duties and of human virtues. In the hierarchy of
values, they occupy the highest place and superior to all other values of life.
(2) Instrumental values: These values come after the intrinsic values in the scheme
of gradation of values. These values are means to achieve goals (intrinsic values) of
life. They are also known as incidental or proximate values.
Importance and functions of values:
Values are general principles to regulate our day-to-day behaviour. They not only
give direction to our behaviour but are also ideals and objectives in themselves.
Values deal not so much with what is, but with what ought to be; in other words, they
express moral imperatives. They are the expression of the ultimate ends, goals or
purposes of social action. Our values are the basis of our judgments about what is
desirable, beautiful, proper, correct, important, worthwhile and good as well as what
is undesirable, ugly, incorrect, improper and bad.
The main functions of values are as follows:
1. Values play an important role in the integration and fulfillment of mans basic
impulses and desires in a stable and consistent manner appropriate for his living.
2. They are generic experiences in social action made up of both individual and
social responses and attitudes.
3. They build up societies, integrate social relations.
4. They mould the ideal dimensions of personality and range and depth of culture.
5. They influence peoples behaviour and serve as criteria for evaluating the actions
of others.
6. They have a great role to play in the conduct of social life.
7. They help in creating norms to guide day-to-day behaviour.
Types of values
We can speak of universal values, because ever since human beings have lived in
community, they have had to establish principles to guide their behavior towards
others. In this sense, honesty, responsibility, truth, solidarity, cooperation, tolerance,
respect and peace, among others, are considered universal values.
However, in order to understand them better, it is useful to classify values according
to the following criteria:
Personal values: These are considered essential principles on which we build our
life and guide us to relate with other people. They are usually a blend of family
values and social-cultural values, together with our own individual ones, according to
our experiences.

Family values: These are valued in a family and iare considered either good or bad.
These derive from the fundamental beliefs of the parents, who use them to educate
their children. They are the basic principles and guidelines of our initial behavior in
society, and are conveyed through our behaviors in the family, from the simplest to
the most complex.
Social-cultural values: These are the prevailing values of our society, which change
with time, and either coincide or not with our family or personal values. They
constitute a complex mix of different values, and at times they contradict one
another, or pose a dilemma.
For example, if work isnt valued socially as a means of personal fulfillment, then the
society is indirectly fostering anti-values like dishonesty, irresponsibility, or crime.
Another example of the dilemmas that social-cultural values may pose is when they
promote the idea that the end justifies the means. With this as a pretext, terrorists
and arbitrary rulers justify violence, intolerance, and lies while claiming that their true
goal is peace.
Material values: These values allow us to survive, and are related to our basic
needs as human beings, such as food and clothing and protection from the
environment. They are fundamental needs, part of the complex web that is created
between personal, family and social-cultural values. If exaggerated, material values
can be in contradiction with spiritual values.
Spiritual values: They refer to the importance we give to non-material aspects in
our lives. They are part of our human needs and allow us to feel fulfilled. They add
meaning and foundation to our life, as do religious beliefs.
Moral values: The attitudes and behaviors that a society considers essential for
coexistence, order, and general well being.

Ethics (or Moral Philosophy) is concerned with questions of how people ought to act,
and the search for a definition of right conduct (identified as the one causing the
greatest good) and the good life (in the sense of a life worth living or a life that is
satisfying or happy).
The word "ethics" is derived from the Greek "ethos" (meaning "custom" or "habit").
Ethics differs from morals and morality in that ethics denotes the theory of right
action and the greater good, while morals indicate their practice. Ethics is not limited
to specific acts and defined moral codes, but encompasses the whole of moral ideals
and behaviours, a person's philosophy of life (or Weltanschauung).
It asks questions like "How should people act?" (Normative or Prescriptive Ethics),
"What do people think is right?" (Descriptive Ethics), "How do we take moral
knowledge and put it into practice?" (Applied Ethics), and "What does 'right' even
mean?" (Meta-Ethics). See below for more discussion of these categories.
Ancient Greek Ethics
Socrates, as recorded in Plato's dialogues, is customarily regarded as the father of
Western ethics. He asserted that people will naturally do what is good provided that
they know what is right, and that that evil or bad actions are purely the result of
ignorance: "There is only one good, knowledge, and one evil, ignorance". He
equated knowledge and wisdom with self-awareness (meaning to be aware of every
fact relevant to a person's existence) and virtue and happiness. So, in essence, he
considered self-knowledge and self-awareness to be the essential good, because
the truly wise (i.e. self-aware) person will know what is right, do what is good, and
therefore be happy.
According to Aristotle, "Nature does nothing in vain", so it is only when a person acts
in accordance with their nature and thereby realizes their full potential, that they will
do good and therefore be content in life. He held that self-realization (the awareness
of one's nature and the development of one's talents) is the surest path to
happiness, which is the ultimate goal, all other things (such as civic life or wealth)
being merely means to an end. He encouraged moderation in all things, the
extremes being degraded and immoral, (e.g. courage is the moderate virtue between
the extremes of cowardice and recklessness), and held that Man should not simply
live, but live well with conduct governed by moderate virtue. Virtue, for Aristotle,
denotes doing the right thing to the right person at the right time to the proper extent
in the correct fashion and for the right reason - something of a tall order.
Cynicism is an ancient doctrine best exemplified by the Greek philosopher Diogenes
of Sinope, who lived in a tub on the streets of Athens. He taught that a life lived
according to Nature was better than one that conformed to convention, and that a
simple life is essential to virtue and happiness. As a moral teacher, Diogenes
emphasized detachment from many of those things conventionally considered

Hedonism posits that the principal ethic is maximizing pleasure and minimizing pain.
This may range from those advocating self-gratification regardless of the pain and
expense to others and with no thought for the future (Cyrenaic Hedonism), to those
who believe that the most ethical pursuit maximizes pleasure and happiness for the
most people. Somewhere in the middle of this continuum, Epicureanism observed
that indiscriminate indulgence sometimes result in negative consequences, such as
pain and fear, which are to be avoided.
The Stoic philosopher Epictetus posited that the greatest good was contentment,
serenity and peace of mind, which can be achieved by self-mastery over one's
desires and emotions, and freedom from material attachments. In particular, sex and
sexual desire are to be avoided as the greatest threat to the integrity and equilibrium
of a man's mind. According to Epictetus, difficult problems in life should not be
avoided, but rather embraced as spiritual exercises needed for the health of the
Pyrrho, the founding figure of Pyrrhonian Skepticism, taught that one cannot
rationally decide between what is good and what is bad although, generally
speaking, self-interest is the primary motive of human behaviour, and he was
disinclined to rely upon sincerity, virtue or Altruism as motivations.
Humanism, with its emphasis on the dignity and worth of all people and their ability
to determine right and wrong purely by appeal to universal human qualities
(especially rationality), can be traced back to Thales, Xenophanes of Colophon (570
- 480 B.C.), Anaxagoras, Pericles (c. 495 - 429 B.C.), Protagoras, Democritus and
the historian Thucydides (c. 460 - 375 B.C.). These early Greek thinkers were all
instrumental in the move away from a spiritual morality based on the supernatural,
and the development of a more humanistic freethought (the view that beliefs should
be formed on the basis of science and logic, and not be influenced by emotion,
authority, tradition or dogma).
Normative Ethics Normative Ethics (or Prescriptive Ethics) is the branch of ethics
concerned with establishing how things should or ought to be, how to value them,
which things are good or bad, and which actions are right or wrong. It attempts to
develop a set of rules governing human conduct, or a set of norms for action.
Normative ethical theories are usually split
Consequentialism, Deontology and Virtue Ethics:





Consequentialism (or Teleological Ethics) argues that the morality of an action

is contingent on the action's outcome or result. Thus, a morally right action is
one that produces a good outcome or consequence. Consequentialist
theories must consider questions like "What sort of consequences count as
good consequences?", "Who is the primary beneficiary of moral action?",
"How are the consequences judged and who judges them?"
Deontology is an approach to ethics that focuses on the rightness or
wrongness of actions themselves, as opposed to the rightness or wrongness
of the consequences of those actions. It argues that decisions should be

made considering the factors of one's duties and other's rights (the Greek
'deon' means 'obligation' or 'duty').
Virtue Ethics, focuses on the inherent character of a person rather than on the
nature or consequences of specific actions performed. The system identifies
virtues (those habits and behaviours that will allow a person to achieve
"eudaimonia", or well being or a good life), counsels practical wisdom to
resolve any conflicts between virtues, and claims that a lifetime of practising
these virtues leads to, or in effect constitutes, happiness and the good life..

Meta-Ethics Meta-Ethics is concerned primarily with the meaning of ethical

judgements, and seeks to understand the nature of ethical properties, statements,
attitudes, and judgements and how they may be supported or defended. A metaethical theory, unlike a normative ethical theory (see below), does not attempt to
evaluate specific choices as being better, worse, good, bad or evil; rather it tries to
define the essential meaning and nature of the problem being discussed. It concerns
itself with second order questions, specifically the semantics, epistemology and
ontology of ethics. The major meta-ethical views are commonly divided into two
camps: Moral Realism and Moral Anti-Realism:

Moral Realism: Moral Realism (or Moral Objectivism) holds that there are
objective moral values, so that evaluative statements are essentially factual
claims, which are either true or false, and that their truth or falsity are
independent of our beliefs, feelings or other attitudes towards the things
being evaluated. It is a cognitivist view in that it holds that ethical sentences
express valid propositions and are therefore truth-apt.
Moral Anti-Realism: Moral Anti-Realism holds that there are no objective
moral values, and comes in one of three forms, depending on whether
ethical statements are believed to be subjective claims (Ethical
Subjectivism), not genuine claims at all (Non-Cognitivism) or mistaken
objective claims (Moral Nihilism or Moral Skepticism):

Descriptive Ethics Descriptive Ethics is a value-free approach to ethics which

examines ethics from the perspective of observations of actual choices made by
moral agents in practice. It is the study of people's beliefs about morality, and implies
the existence of, rather than explicitly prescribing, theories of value or of conduct. It
is not designed to provide guidance to people in making moral decisions, nor is it
designed to evaluate the reasonableness of moral norms. It is more likely to be
investigated by those working in the fields of evolutionary biology, psychology,
sociology, history or anthropology, although information that comes from descriptive
ethics is also used in philosophical arguments. Descriptive Ethics is sometimes
referred to as Comparative Ethics because so much activity can involve comparing
ethical systems: comparing the ethics of the past to the present; comparing the
ethics of one society to another; and comparing the ethics which people claim to
follow with the actual rules of conduct which do describe their actions.
Applied Ethics Applied Ethics is a discipline of philosophy that attempts to apply
ethical theory to real-life situations. Strict, principle-based ethical approaches often
result in solutions to specific problems that are not universally acceptable or

impossible to implement. Applied Ethics is much more ready to include the insights
of psychology, sociology and other relevant areas of knowledge in its deliberations. It
is used in determining public policy. The following would be questions of Applied
Ethics: "Is getting an abortion immoral?", "Is euthanasia immoral?", "Is affirmative
action right or wrong?", "What are human rights, and how do we determine them?"
and "Do animals have rights as well?"
Some topics falling within the discipline include:

Medical Ethics: the study of moral values and judgements as they apply to
medicine. Historically, Western medical ethics may be traced to guidelines on the
duty of physicians in antiquity, such as the Hippocratic Oath (at its simplest, "to
practice and prescribe to the best of my ability for the good of my patients, and to
try to avoid harming them"), and early rabbinic, Muslim and Christian teachings.
Six of the values that commonly apply to medical ethics discussions are:
Beneficence (a practitioner should act in the best interest of the patient, Nonmaleficence ("first, do no harm"), Autonomy (the patient has the right to refuse or
choose their treatment), Justice (concerning the distribution of scarce health
resources, and the decision of who gets what treatment), Dignity (both the patient
and the practitioner have the right to dignity), Honesty (truthfulness and respect
for the concept of informed consent).
Bioethics: concerns the ethical controversies brought about by advances in
biology and medicine. Public attention was drawn to these questions by abuses
of human subjects in biomedical experiments, especially during the Second
World War, but with recent advances in bio-technology, bioethics has become a
fast-growing academic and professional area of inquiry. Issues include
consideration of cloning, stem cell research, transplant trade, genetically modified
food, human genetic engineering, genomics, infertility treatment, etc, etc
Legal Ethics: an ethical code governing the conduct of people engaged in the
practice of law. Model rules usually address the client-lawyer relationship, duties
of a lawyer as advocate in adversary proceedings, dealings with persons other
than clients, law firms and associations, public service, advertising and
maintaining the integrity of the profession. Respect of client confidences, candour
toward the tribunal, truthfulness in statements to others, and professional
independence are some of the defining features of legal ethics.
Business Ethics: examines ethical principles and moral or ethical problems that
can arise in a business environment. This includes Corporate Social
Responsibility, a concept whereby organizations consider the interests of society
by taking responsibility for the impact of their activities on customers, employees,
shareholders, communities and the environment in all aspects of their operations,
over and above the statutory obligation to comply with legislation.
Environmental Ethics: considers the ethical relationship between human beings
and the natural environment. It addresses questions like "Should we continue to
clear cut forests for the sake of human consumption?", :Should we continue to
make gasoline powered vehicles, depleting fossil fuel resources while the
technology exists to create zero-emission vehicles?", :What environmental
obligations do we need to keep for future generations?", "Is it right for humans to

knowingly cause the extinction of a species for the (perceived or real)

convenience of humanity?"
Information Ethics: investigates the ethical issues arising from the development
and application of computers and information technologies. It is concerned with
issues like the privacy of information, whether artificial agents may be moral, how
one should behave in the infosphere, and ownership and copyright problems
arising from the creation, collection, recording, distribution, processing, etc, of
Media Ethics: deals with the specific ethical principles and standards of media in
general, including the ethical issues relating to journalism, advertising and
marketing, and entertainment media.

Ethics vs Values
Every person has certain set values and a certain code of ethics which are very
much valued. Some people who do not know the exact difference between values
and ethics often use the two words interchangeably. Though these two are different,
these two together form the basis for making decisions.
What are values? They are the basic beliefs that an individual thinks to be true.
Every individual has a set of values through which he looks at all things and also at
the world. It can be said that most of the people will never deviate from their values.
The values can be said to be the guiding principles in ones life. Value can be
defined as a bridge by which an individual makes a decision regarding good and
bad, right or wrong, and most important or less important.
Ethics is guidelines or rules that are set for a society or an organization rather than
for an individual. Ethics can be defined as a set of rules formulated by a country or a
company or some institutions. Ethics is mainly based on moral values. Ethics is not
that it is set for any particular society, but it is mainly based on virtues, rights, and
obligations. For example, the obligation to refrain from crimes, killings, and rape is an
ethical aspect. Ethics has also been built on loyalty, honesty, and compassion.
Values are very much personal while ethics is very much societal. One can also see
that values and ethics sometimes can be in conflict. Even if one has certain values,
he will not be able to entertain certain decisions based on the ethical codes. Though
abortion is considered to be legal, most people do not approve of it morally.
1. Values are the basic beliefs that an individual thinks to be true. Every individual
has a set of values through which he looks at all things and also at the world.
2. Ethics is guidelines or rules that are set for a society or an organization rather than
for an individual.
3. Values can be said to be the guiding principles in ones life. Value can be defined
as a bridge by which an individual makes a decision regarding good and bad, right or
wrong, and most important or less important.

4. Ethics can be defined as set of rules formulated by a country or a company or

some institutions. Ethics is mainly based on the moral values.

Module 3
The ethics, morals, values distinction
It is impossible to talk of ethics without first considering some complementary and
related terms. The three terms: ethics, morals, values are easily confused. For the
purposes of this web site, they are defined as follows:
ethics describes a generally accepted set of moral principles
morals describes the goodness or badness or right or wrong of actions
values describes individual or personal standards of what is valuable or
Problems may arise where individuals allow their personal values to interfere with
their actions, thereby potentially bringing their actions into conflict with stated ethical
For example, a community worker may consider that it is in the best interests of their
client to breach the clients confidence, leading to a breach of a set standard of
confidentiality such as prescribed by a code of ethics, a code of conduct or a legal
obligation. The reason for the breach may have been value-based and thereby will
not satisfy proper and accepted standards for breaching confidence even though the
community worker thought it acceptable or even mandatory. This highlights how our
individual values can intrude into our professional lives and potentially cause us to
ignore ethical obligations and duties. In other words, our values may cause us to
ignore a code of ethics. This is an example of the conflict between worker's values
It may be possible that an organisation can have policies or procedures that conflict
with the rights of clients in a general way, the ethical or conduct requirements of their
workers or general principles of ethical practice. For example, an organisation that
operates from a particular philosophical or political basis such as one that is
operated by a church or local government authority may find that its institutional
values do not always accord with worker or client interests. This is the conflict
between institutional values and clients interests or institutional values and workers
What are Values? According to the dictionary, values are things that have an
intrinsic worth in usefulness or importance to the possessor, or principles,
standards, or qualities considered worthwhile or desirable. However, it is important
to note that, although we may tend to think of a value as something good, virtually all
values are morally relative neutral, really until they are qualified by asking, How
is it good? or Good to whom? The good can sometimes be just a matter of
opinion or taste, or driven by culture, religion, habit, circumstance, or environment,
etc. Again, almost all values are relative. The exception, of course, is the value of
life. Life is a universal, objective value. We might take this point for granted, but we

all have the life value, or we would not be alive. Life is also a dual value we value
our own life and the lives of others.

What are Morals? Moral values are relative values that protect life and are
respectful of the dual life value of self and others. The great moral values, such as
truth, freedom, charity, etc., have one thing in common. When they are functioning
correctly, they are life protecting or life enhancing for all. But they are still relative
values. Our relative moral values must be constantly examined to make sure that
they are always performing their life-protecting mission. Even the Marine Corps core
values of honor, courage and commitment require examination in this context.
Courage can become foolish martyrdom, commitment can become irrational
fanaticism, honor can become self-righteousness, conceit, and disrespect for others.
Our enemies have their own standard of honor, they have courage, and they are
surely committed. What sets us apart? Respect for the universal life value sets us
apart from our enemies.
What is Ethics? A person who knows the difference between right and wrong and
chooses right is moral. A person whose morality is reflected in his willingness to do
the right thing even if it is hard or dangerous is ethical. Ethics are moral values
in action. Being ethical id an imperative because morality protects life and is
respectful of others all others. It is a lifestyle that is consistent with mankinds
universal values as articulated by the American Founding Fathers human equality
and the inalienable right to life. As warriors it is our duty to be protectors and
defenders of the life value and to perform the unique and difficult mission of taking
the lives of those acting immorally (against life) when necessary to protect the lives
of innocent others.
The Importance of Moral Values in Our Life Essay

Positive moral values are important because they allow you to have an overall
feeling of peace and joy. Moral values can give meaning and purpose to your life.
You are able to direct your behavior towards beneficial and fulfilling activities.
When you live your life according to moral values that are based on honesty,
compassion, courage, modesty, and forgiveness, then you can also form positive
bonds with other people.
Incorporating the moral value of honesty in your life make you trustworthy. You will
have a clear conscience because you can respect yourself. The people that you
come into contact with will be able to count on you to be fair and sincere. Your
integrity will allow you to advance in both your personal and professional life. There
are more opportunities for you to fully experience life when you are an honest
In addition to honesty, you also need to incorporate the moral value of compassion
into your life. Compassion allows you to have sympathy for the misfortunes of other
people. It also motivates you to want to give them any type of assistance that you

can. Compassion results in your having feelings of mercy towards other people.
When you have compassion as a moral value people are more likely to put their trust
in you because you will be non-judgmental of their circumstances.
Thirdly, the moral value of courage gives you the determination to face anything that
impedes your progress through life. You will also be able to overcome any obstacles
because you wont let fear hold you back. Others will feel confident relying on you for
encouragement because you find solutions to whatever problems arise in your life.
When courage is one of your moral values, you can bravely face the world.
In life it is essential to your survival to have modesty especially in respect to courage.
Modesty allows you to realize what your limits are. It helps you to stay focused and
keeps you from becoming overconfident and reckless. People will feel comfortable
around you because you are humble and you dont try to belittle them.
Lastly, it is also important to incorporate the moral value of forgiveness in your life.
Forgiveness allows you to move past hurtful or damaging situations. It allows you to
abandon feelings of anger or resentment against others or yourself. You can be
emotionally healthy when you practice forgiveness because it keeps you from
holding onto pain and resentment.
In conclusion, moral values are extremely important for your overall well-being. Moral
values provide a structure for your life. Honesty makes you respectable.
Compassion makes you sympathetic to others. Courage gives you the bravery to
overcome lifes challenges. Modesty keeps you focused and humble. Forgiveness
allows you to be emotionally stable because you dont hold onto anger and
resentment. These attributes will allow you to live your life in a way that reduces your
stress levels. You will also have peace and harmony in your life. Moral values allow
you to live your life in a manner that you can be proud of. The bonds that you form
with others will also be more fulfilling because you live your life according to honesty,
compassion, courage, modesty and forgiveness.

Module 4
Making Ethical Decisions: Process
Ethical decision-making refers to the process of evaluating and choosing among
alternatives in a manner consistent with ethical principles. In making ethical
decisions, it is necessary to perceive and eliminate unethical options and select the
best ethical alternative.
The process of making ethical decisions requires:

Commitment: The desire to do the right thing regardless of the cost

Consciousness: The awareness to act consistently and apply moral

convictions to daily behavior

Competency: The ability to collect and evaluate information, develop

alternatives, and forsee potential consequences and risks

Good decisions are both ethical and effective:

Ethical decisions generate and sustain trust; demonstrate respect,

responsibility, fairness and caring; and are consistent with good citizenship.
These behaviors provide a foundation for making better decisions by setting
the ground rules for our behavior.

Effective decisions are effective if they accomplish what we want

accomplished and if they advance our purposes. A choice that produces
unintended and undesirable results is ineffective. The key to making effective
decisions is to think about choices in terms of their ability to accomplish our
most important goals. This means we have to understand the difference
between immediate and short-term goals and longer-range goals.

Making ethical choices requires the ability to make distinctions between competing
options. Here are seven steps to help you make better decisions:
1. Stop and think: This provides several benefits. It prevents rash decisions,
prepares us for more thoughtful discernment, and can allow us to mobilize our
2. Clarify goals: Before you choose, clarify your short-term and long-term aims.
Determine which of your many wants and "don't wants" affected by the
decision are the most important. The big danger is that decisions that fullfill

immediate wants and needs can prevent the achievement of our more
important life goals.
3. Determine facts: Be sure you have adequate information to support an
intelligent choice. To determine the facts, first resolve what you know, then
what you need to know. Be prepared for additional information and to verify
assumptions and other uncertain information. In addition:
o Consider the reliability and credibility of the people providing the facts.
o Consider the basis of the supposed facts. If the person giving you the
information says he or she personally heard or saw something,
evaluate that person in terms of honesty, accuracy, and memory.
4. Develop options: Once you know what you want to achieve and have made
your best judgment as to the relevant facts, make a list of actions you can
take to accomplish your goals. If it's an especially important decision, talk to
someone you trust so you can broaden your perspective and think of new
choices. If you can think of only one or two choices, you're probably not
thinking hard enough.
5. Consider consequences: Filter your choices to determine if any of your
options will violate any core ethical values, and then eliminate any unethical
options. Identify who will be affected by the decision and how the decision is
likely to affect them.
6. Choose: Make a decision. If the choice is not immediately clear, try:
o Talking to people whose judgment you respect.
o Think of a person of strong character that you know or know of, and
ask your self what they would do in your situation.
o If everyone found out about your decision, would you be proud and
o Follow the Golden Rule: treat others the way you want to be treated,
and keep your promises.
7. Monitor and modify: Ethical decision-makers monitor the effects of their
choices. If they are not producing the intended results, or are causing
additional unintended and undesirable results, they re-assess the situation
and make new decisions.

Module 5

What is the difference between personal and professional values?

Your personal values generally apply to situations and people that you deal with in
everyday life. They are based on society in some regard, but mainly on your
upbringing, moral and ethical beliefs and experiences.
A personal value system is a set of principles or ideals that drive and/or guide your
Your personal value system gives you structure and purpose by helping you
determine what is meaningful and important to you.
It helps you express who you are and what you stand for.
If you are unaware of, or become disconnected with your values, you end up making
choices out of impulse or instant gratification rather than on solid reasoning and
responsible decision-making.
personal value system
Your values define your character . They impact every aspect of your life including:

personal and work behaviors

your interactions with family, friends and co-workers
your decision-making processes
the direction you take in life.
This is why it is so important to know what you value, why you value it and what
precedence it takes in your life.
Four Categories of a Personal Value System
Personal Values - Personal values are those traits we see as worth aspiring to, and
that define our character.
Spiritual Values - The values that connect us to a higher power and give us a sense
of purpose beyond our material existence.
Family Values - To love and care for those we are close to; our children, our parents,
other family members, and our friends.
Career Values - The best use and expression of our talents and skills for the
purposes of contributing to society and for monetary compensation.
Professional values can have some overlap with your personal values however
these are more reliant on rules and regulations that must be adhered to within your
role, industry or society in general. They are more closely related to your business
dealings as opposed to your personal interactions.
Personal values-Empathy, honesty, courage, commitment
Empathy is the experience of understanding another person's condition from their
perspective. You place yourself in their shoes and feel what they are feeling.
Empathy is known to increase prosocial (helping) behaviors. While American culture
might be socializing people into becoming more individualistic rather than empathic,
research has uncovered the existence of "mirror neurons," which react to emotions
expressed by others and then reproduce them.
Empathy is the ability to not only detect what others feel but also to experience that
emotion yourself. This can be both a bane and a boon. If you can read another
person's emotions then you can both avoid making a faux pas and also utilize their
state to move them in another direction. When people are in emotional states their
ability to decide is often significantly impaired. Thus you cannot expect aroused
people to make rational choices at this time. Empathy is a bane if you end up
experiencing all the bad feelings of everyone around you. This is one of the
problems that therapists and other carers have to handle.
It has many benefits
The value of empathy comes not from understanding the other person's feelings, but
what you do as a result of this.

Empathy connects people together - When you empathize with me, my sense of
identity is connected to yours. As a result, I feel greater in some way and less alone.
I may well, as a result, also start to empathize more with you.
In a therapeutic situation, having someone else really understand how you feel can
be a blessed relief, as people with emotional problems often feel very much alone in
their different-ness from other people. The non-judgmental quality can also be very
Empathy heals- Therapeutically, it can be a very healing experience for someone to
empathize with you. When someone effectively says 'I care for you', it also says 'I
can do that, I can care for myself.'
Empathy builds trust - Empathy displayed can be surprising and confusing. When
not expected, it can initially cause suspicion, but when sustained it is difficult not to
appreciate the concern. Empathy thus quickly leads to trust.
Empathy closes the loop - Consider what would happens if you had no idea what the
other person felt about your communications to them. You might say something, they
hated it, and you continued as if they understood and agreed. Not much persuasion
happening there! The more you can empathize, the more you can get immediate
feedback on what they are experiencing of your communications with them. And as a
consequence, you can change what you are saying and doing to get them to feel
what you want them to feel.

Honesty- To live by truth does require courage. Not everyone will agree with us. But
commitment to truth enhances life. Genuine integrity and dedication to truth can
inspire others to trust us. It can open surprising and unexpected opportunities for us
in life.Practicing honesty can significantly reduce fear in life. When we are honest we
eliminate the fear that someone will find out the truth of what we have
done.Adherence to truth builds self respect and gives us a solid standard to live by.
The value of honesty cannot be overstated. Every time someone lies, alarm bells
arent going to go off and that persons nose isnt going to get larger (like
Pinocchios), but something definitely happens. The liar may suspect that the only
reason the customer said, yes to his proposal, the only way she dodged the blame,
and the only reason the recipient of the lie thought highly of him or her was due to
the lie itself. The question remains: Even though they fooled someone else, how do
liars feel about themselves? The obvious truth is that they thought they didnt
deserve the outcome or else they would have told the truth in the first place. They
may explain away the lie by telling themselves that everybody does it or that the lie
fell in a gray area. But I must ask you, is that any way to live your life?
When you stand for honesty, you believe in yourself and everything you represent.
When you stand for honesty, everything you say carries the voice of credibility. But,
when youre dishonest, your soiled reputation will do the speaking for you.
There are several things you can do to demonstrate honesty:

Think before you speak.

Say what you mean and mean what you say.
Bend over backward to communicate in an open and honest fashion.
Simplify your statements so that everyone clearly understands your message.
Tell it like it is, rather than sugarcoating it.
Present both sides of each issue to engender objectivity.
If you have a personal bias or a conflict of interest, make it known.
Tell people the rationale behind your decisions so that your intent is
If something is misinterpreted, quickly correct the record.
Dont shoot the messenger when someone tells you the truth. Thank them for
their honesty and treat the information provided as a gift.
Willingly accept responsibility by admitting a mistake or an error in judgment
in a timely fashion.
Hold people accountable when their words do not match their actions.
Never compromise your integrity and reputation by associating yourself with
people whose standards of integrity you mistrust.

The value of moral courage-Courage is a highly admired virtue. Most often we

associate the word with physical prowess or bravery. But there's another form of
valour that's much more important because it comes up more often. It's called moral
courage - the willingness to face not physical danger but emotional pain,
disapproval, financial insecurity, or uncertainty rather than compromise an ethical
Moral courage is essential not only for a virtuous life, but a happy one. Without
courage, we have no control over our lives. Our fears corrode our spirit and confine
us like a barbed wire fence. That's why they say a coward dies a thousand deaths, a
brave man but one.
Integrity is essential to self-esteem and the admiration of others. It requires us to put
our comforts, possessions, friendships, and even jobs at risk in the defence of
deeply held principles.
It takes moral fortitude to be honest at the risk of ridicule, rejection, or retaliation or
when doing so may jeopardize our income or career. It takes boldness to be
accountable and own up to mistakes when doing so may get us in trouble. It takes
backbone to stand tough with our kids when doing so may cost us their affection.
Mark Twain said, 'Courage is not the absence of fear but the resistance of fear, the
mastery of fear.' To paraphrase President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the enemy is not

what we fear; it is fear itself. If our insecurities and anxieties cause us to lose
confidence in the power of virtue, we will lose something very precious.
People with moral courage rarely get medals, but it is the best marker of true
character and a virtue others can be proud of.

Commitment is a serious, long-term promise you make and keep with yourself and
others to fully dedicate yourself to your task, training and/or team, even when, and
especially when times are tough. Further, commitment means not only promising to
do something, but much more importantly, actually investing the necessary effort and
actions to make it happen.
Professional Values-Work ethics, respect for others
Work ethics - The belief that work has a moral benefit and an inherent ability to
strengthen character. Work ethic is a value based on hard work and diligence.
Capitalists believe in the requirement of hard work and its ability to enhance
character. In the context of class conflict, Marxists view the cultural ingrainment of
this value as a means to delude the working class into creating more wealth for the
upper class. In the Soviet Union, work ethic was seen as an ideal to strive for.
Five Characteristics of a Good Work Ethic While some individuals try to get by
doing as little work as possible, others possess a dedication that leads them to give it
their all every day. People who possess a strong work ethic embody certain
principles that guide their work behavior, leading them to produce high-quality work
consistently and without the prodding that some individuals require to stay on track.

Reliability- If individuals with a good work ethic say they are going to attend a
work function or arrive at a certain time, they do, as they value punctuality.
Individuals with a strong work ethic often want to appear dependable, showing
their employers that they are workers to whom they can turn. Because of this,
they put effort into portraying -- and proving -- this dependability by being reliable
and performing consistently.
Dedication- Those with a good work ethic are dedicated to their jobs and will do
anything they can to ensure that they perform well. Often this dedication leads
them to change jobs less frequently, as they become committed to the positions
in which they work and are not eager to abandon these posts. They also often put
in extra hours beyond what is expected, making it easy for their employers to see
that they are workers who go beyond the rest of the workforce and truly dedicate
themselves to their positions.
Productivity- Because they work at a consistently fast pace, individuals with a
good work ethic are often highly productive. They commonly get large amounts of
work done more quickly than others who lack their work ethic, as they don't quit
until they've completed the tasks with which they were presented. This high level
of productivity is also due, at least in part, to the fact that these individuals want
to appear to be strong workers. The more productive they are, the more
beneficial to the company they appear to those managing them.

Cooperation-Cooperative work can be highly beneficial in the business

environment, something that individuals with a strong work ethic know well.
Because they recognize the usefulness of cooperative practices -- such as
teamwork -- they often put an extensive amount of effort into working well with
others. These individuals commonly respect their bosses enough to work with
any individuals with whom they are paired in a productive and polite manner,
even if they do not enjoy working with the individuals in question.
Character-Those with a good work ethic often also possess generally strong
character. This means they are self-disciplined, pushing themselves to complete
work tasks instead of requiring others to intervene. They are also often very
honest and trustworthy, as they view these traits as befitting the high-quality
employees they seek to become. To demonstrate their strong character, these
workers embody these positive traits daily, likely distinguishing themselves from
the rest.

Its role in personality development

Character building- A New Self awareness

improving certain good or useful traits in a person's character, esp selfreliance, endurance, and courage" "
Trustworthiness- I think ``true blue`` Be honest Dont deceive, cheat, or steal
Be reliable do what you say youll do Have the courage to do the right thing
Build a good reputation Be loyal stand by your family, friends, and country.
Fairness - Play by the rules Take turns and share Be open-minded; listen to
others Dont take advantage of others Dont blame others carelessly Treat all
people fairly.
Respect- Treat others with respect; follow the Golden Rule Be tolerant and
accepting of differences Use good manners, not bad language Be considerate
of the feelings of others Dont threaten, hit or hurt anyone Deal peacefully with
anger, insults, and disagreements
Responsibility- Do what you are supposed to do Plan ahead Be diligent
Persevere Do your best Use self-control Be self-disciplined Think before
you act Be accountable for your words, actions, and attitudes Set a good
example for others
Caring- Be kind Be compassionate and show you care Express gratitude
Forgive others Help people in need Be charitable and altruistic

Citizenship- Do your share to make your school and community better

Cooperate Get involved in community affairs Stay informed; vote Be a good
neighbor Obey laws and rules Respect authority Protect the environment