Spring 2024  |  PA 5890 Section 002: Topics in Foreign Policy and International Affairs -- Ethics Conversations for Global Professionals (65479)

Class Component:
1 Credit
Repeat Credit Limit:
15 Credits
Grading Basis:
Student Option
Instructor Consent:
No Special Consent Required
Instruction Mode:
In Person
Class Attributes:
Online Course
Topics Course
Enrollment Requirements:
Grad or Masters or Law
Times and Locations:
Regular Academic Session
01/16/2024 - 04/29/2024
Mon 11:15AM - 12:05PM
UMTC, West Bank
Hubert H Humphrey Center 184
Enrollment Status:
Open (12 of 36 seats filled)
Also Offered:
Course Catalog Description:
Selected topics.
Class Notes:
Title: Ethics Conversations for Global Professionals. http://classinfo.umn.edu/?dlevison+PA5890+Spring2024
Class Description:

This is a one-credit, full-semester class, held in-person to facilitate small group conversations.

Gaining experience as a global professional is often fraught with small daily challenges. Many of these have ethical dimensions. In a culture new to them, people may make choices without the time to sit down and think, "Does this choice go against my understanding of what is ethical?" And "How can I be a good guest in this place where I am now living?"

This class provides an opportunity to think through some small and large personal dilemmas. It will not provide answers, but it will provide space for conversations about ethical aspects of different choices. To begin to understand the ramifications of an action or choice, one needs to ask thoughtful questions.

What question(s) should you be asking? Is there a larger issue that needs to be acknowledged? What are the underlying assumptions? How can you explain your own perspective? What would convince you to change your perspective?

Note: The professor is not an expert in ethics. Like others in international development, Deborah Levison has confronted ethical issues in the course of doing field research and using the results of field research. Her area of expertise, child work/child labor, is a site of many conversations regarding ethics.

Who Should Take This Class?:
This course was designed with Global Policy (MPP), MDP and MHR masters students in mind. Others are also welcome. It provides a place to have conversations and debates about ethical dilemmas - particularly regarding social and economic situations -
that may be faced by policy-focused professionals in global contexts.
Learning Objectives:
Students will learn to think critically about minor and major dilemmas that come up in the course of living and working outside of their home country, particularly in the Global South. They will learn to pose clarifying questions and identify their own ethical frameworks that can guide their future decisions.

Approximate grading basis:

50% posted discussion questions
50% attendance, classroom participation, and respectful behavior during conversations.
Exam Format:
No exams.
Class Format:
-- Each week, students will finish a reading (often only 2-3 pages) or podcast or video by Friday 6 pm.

-- Each week, students will post one proposed discussion question - or one set of closely-related questions - by Friday 6 pm. The instructor will use those to come up with questions for small groups to discuss in class.

-- In class, students will break into small groups as soon as they come into the room, and start discussing the selected question(s), which will be on a hand-out.

-- Partway through, we may switch to a full-class discussion.

-- In the last few minutes, the instructor or someone else will summarize any conclusions we may have reached.

-- After class, students may earn extra credit by posting additional thoughts on that week's topic (by Friday 6 pm).

Most weeks will involve a short reading or podcast/video. In a few weeks, there will be an article-length reading or longer podcast/video.

No projects, no group work outside of class, no final exam.
Past Syllabi:
http://classinfo.umn.edu/syllabi/dlevison_PA5890_Spring2023.pdf (Spring 2023)
Instructor Supplied Information Last Updated:
4 January 2023

ClassInfo Links - Spring 2024 Public Affairs Classes Taught by Deborah Levison

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