BUS 4751


Provides an introduction to business ethics. Part philosophy and part business, the course covers a diverse range of topics including the important ethical theories of relativism, utilitarianism, and deontology, among others. The concepts of moral decision making and predicting moral judgments are also explored. Additional course topics include ethics in employment, corporate social responsibility, fair businesses practices, corporate governance, and legal compliance.


  1. Analyze the philosophical concept of ethics, its practical applicability to business, and its distinction from the law.
  2. Explore ethics in the context of relativism, psychological egoism, utilitarianism, deontology, virtue ethics, pragmatism, and Rawls’ original position theory.
  3. Examine the factors that influence employee issues, including the right to work, employment at will, due process and employee participation, health and safety issues, family responsibilities, and the right to privacy (including substance-abuse testing and credit and background checks).
  4. Explore the professional ethics and responsibilities of intermediaries, the responsibilities and loyalty of managers, and the responsibilities of employees to the community.
  5. Compare differentiation and discrimination, and examine issues involving diversity and discrimination, including the work environment of women, preferential policies, and diversity policies.
  6. Examine the role of leadership in corporate culture, leadership styles, and how they affect ethical decision making.
  7. Examine ethics as it applies to the environment, animal rights, and sustainability.
  8. Examine and compare four approaches to corporate social responsibility, including the economic, philanthropic, social web, and integrative models.
  9. Analyze the ethical considerations governing advertising, sales, marketing, product placement, and fair pricing as well as the responsibilities of the manufacturer, including product liability and accountability.
  10. Explore the role of corporate structure, corporate governance, and legal compliance.





* Disclaimer: Textbooks listed are based on the last open revision of the course. Prior revisions and future revisions may use different textbooks. To verify textbook information, view the course syllabus or contact Student Services at students@waldorf.edu