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A very big adventure: using the internet to enable multi-institutional collaboration in teaching computer ethics
Griffin, Joe
Teaching and learning in any subject can sometimes become mundane but in order that our students are motivated it is sometimes necessary to use an approach which makes the process a very big adventure. Over the past three years studies have taken place with students from the University of Limerick in Ireland and students from two other universities in England and the USA in the teaching of Professional Issues in Software Engineering PISE (Griffin, 2001, Griffin et al 2000a and 2000b). PISE focuses on the legal, ethical and social aspects of computing. The ethical strand of this module, which aims to develop moral reasoning in the learners, has in the author's experience often proved to be the most difficult for students to grasp and consequently has had a de-motivating effect on some learners. To deal with this situation the author decided to investigate methods by which students might be motivated and therefore gain more from their learning experiences and develop their moral reasoning abilities. The method adopted has been the use of virtual learning groups using internet based asynchronous communication tools to enable learners who would otherwise physically be unable to meet to come together in cyberspace and discuss moral issues relating to computer systems. This paper describes two cycles of the study, the results obtained, lessons learned and a proposal for a multi-cultural approach to be used in future studies. Analysis of the development of moral reasoning by pre- and post testing students using Moral Judgment Test (MJT) (Lind, 2001) is provided. The results of this research will be of value for both academic and practitioners in the area of computer ethics and moral reasoning.
Keyword(s): teaching computer ethics; software engineering; moral reasoning
Publication Date:
2004
Type: Conference item
Peer-Reviewed: No
Language(s): English
Institution: University of Limerick
Citation(s): Proceedings of the International Association for Computing and Philoosphy (IACAP);
First Indexed: 2012-11-07 05:26:35 Last Updated: 2015-11-04 05:39:09