Ethical reasoning education and its assessment have served as a catalyst for faculty, staff, and student scholarly work.


Teaching Ethical Reasoning: Program Design and Initial Outcomes of Ethical Reasoning in Action, a University-wide Ethical Reasoning Program, by G. Fletcher Linder, Allison Ames, William Hawk, Lori Pyle, Keston Fulcher, and Christian Early, details JMU's approach to ethical reasoning education and assessment. The article is published in the Fall 2020 issue of the journal of the Society for Ethics Across the Curriculum, Teaching Ethics. DOI: 10.5840/tej202081174

Kara M. Kavanagh, Associate Professor of Early, Elementary, and Reading Education at JMU, authored a book chapter, Bridging Social Justice-Oriented Theories to Practice in Teacher Education Utilizing Ethical Reasoning in Action and Case-Based Teaching, in Clausen, C. K., & Logan, S. R. (2020). Integrating Social Justice Education in Teacher Preparation Programs. IGI Global. DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-5098-4 

Laura Leduc, Professor and Head, Department of Management, and Matt Rutherford, Professor of Management, with help from student research assistant Leigh Mulligan, published Can Ethics Be Taught? Examining the Impact of Distributed Ethical Training and Individual Characteristics on Ethical Decision Making in the Academy of Management Learning & Education journal (published online M. The article explores using JMU’s 8 Key Questions ethical reasoning strategy as an existing model to examine whether such ethical reasoning training is effective, and what factors might influence outcomes. The three-part approach finds that exposure to ethical training of the type provided at JMU is “significantly related” to improvements in ethical reasoning, and takes into account personal values and personality traits that may also influence the outcome. Here is the short conclusion: JMU’s 8KQ ethical reasoning training works! DOI:10.5465/amle.2018.0157

Anna Lehnen (Duke University) and Lori Pyle (JMU) co-authored a chapter, “Ethical and Moral Reasoning Development Across Campus” that weaves student and moral development theory (Perry, Kohlberg, and Gillgan) with practice (developing ethical reasoning skills). The chapter is in: Branch, K., Hart-Steffes, J., & Wilson, C. (2019). Applying student development theories holistically: Exemplar programming in higher education. Routledge, Taylor & Francis Group, and features JMU's Ethical Reasoning in Action program. 

Ames, A., Smith, K.L., Sanchez, E.R.H., Pyle, L., Ball, T., & Hawk, W.J. (2017). Impact and persistence of ethical reasoning education on student learning: results from a module-based ethical reasoning educational program. International Journal of Ethics Education, 2(1), pp. 77-96.  DOI: 10.1007/s40889-016-0031-x  

Smith, K., Fulcher, K. & Sanchez, E.H. Ethical Reasoning in Action: Validity Evidence for the Ethical Reasoning Identification Test (ERIT). J Bus Ethics 144, 417–436 (2017). DOI: 10.1007/s10551-015-2841-8

Mary Gowan, former Kenneth R. Bartee Endowed Professor for the College of Business at JMU, co-authored "Crossing Disciplinary Boundaries with Civic Literacy" with Margaret Salazar-Porzio, curator at the National Museum of American History at the Smithsonian Institution. Published in the Summer 2015 edition of Peer Review, an online and print periodical published by the Association of American Colleges and Universities.

The Forum magazine, a member magazine published by the European Association for International Education, included Lori Pyle's article, "Ethical reasoning education: An international responsibility," in its winter 2014 issue.


March, 2020. Bill Hawk gave the keynote address, “Adopt a Theory, Use Principles, Obey a Code, Nurture Virtues, Obey Divine Authority, Create a Task Force, Follow the Leader, Analyze Costs & Benefits, Design a Nudge, Flip a Coin, Take a Poll, Phone a Friend, Consult a Magic 8 Ball, Go with your Gut, or Ask the Right Questions? A Practical ‘Decision Science’ Approach to Ethical Decision Making” for the Washington and Lee University Roger Mudd Center for Ethics undergraduate ethics conference. 

February, 2020. Christian Early presented “Growth Attenuation and Parental Decision Making: An 8KQ Ethical Reasoning Approach" at the Association of Practical and Professional Ethics annual conference in Atlanta, Georgia. 

October, 2019. At the annual conference for the Society for Ethics across the Curriculum hosted by Villanova University, Christian Early presented “Teaching Ethical Reasoning Through the Eight Key Questions.”

March, 2019. Christian Early presented “Teaching Ethical Reasoning in Light of Decision Science: The Eight Key Question Reasoning Strategy” to attendees at the Association of Practical and Professional Ethics annual conference in Baltimore, Maryland. 

December, 2015. Then ERiA associate chair, Lori Pyle, presented “Moving from Spectator Ethics to Agent Ethics” during the Annual Meeting of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges in Houston, Texas.

November 2015. Department of Health Sciences faculty members Kristi Lewis and Andy Peachey presented "Assessing ethical reasoning among pre-professional health students" at the American Public Health Association Annual Meeting.

October 2015. MC faculty fellow Holly McCartney and Kara Kavanagh (incoming faculty fellow) from the College of Education presented "Ethical Reasoning and Social Justice Case Studies: Illuminating Privilege, Power, and Educational Inequities in Early Childhood and Elementary Education" at the Reconceptualizing Early Childhood Education conference in Dublin, Ireland.

September 2015. Kristen Smith, Courtney Sanders, and Keston Fulcher presented their paper, How do higher education faculty members use assessment results to improve student learning? at the annual conference of the Northeastern Educational Research Association in Trumbull, CT.

March 2015. MC Student Affairs fellow, Shelly Laurenzo, presented "It's Complicated: Introducing Ethical Reasoning to College Students" at the March 2015 ACPA College Student Educators International annual meeting.

December 2014. Holly McCartney presented "It’s More than Just Doing the Right Thing: Pre-service Early Childhood Teachers Construct Understandings of Ethics, Ethical Reasoning, and How to Solve Ethical Dilemmas in the Classroom" at the annual conference of the Association for Construtivist Teaching in Charleston, SC.

November 2014. Bill Hawk, professor of philosophy and MC chair, presented a session at the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners Annual Fraud Conference in New Orleans, LA, entitled “How Ethical Reasoning Can Prevent or Mitigate Fraud.”

2014. Kristen Smith, Bo Bashkov, and Keston Fulcher presented their paper, Assessing attitudes toward ethical reasoning: Examining the factor structure of the survey of ethical reasoning, at the NERA annual conference in Trumbull, CT.

October 2013. Doctoral student Kristen Smith presented her master's thesis, Developing the test of ethical reasoning via classical test theory analysis and Benson's validation framework, at the annual conference of the Northeastern Educational Research Association in Rocky Hill, CT. At the same conference, Keston Fulcher and Kristen presented their paper, Introduction to an ethical reasoning framework and assessment instruments.

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