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Students in the course, Senior Seminar (CM 4905), have developed the following scenarios for ethical thinking and reasoning.

Spring 2023

Students: Evan Forbes and Christian Paillet 

Animals: What are our Responsibilities for our pets?

One day you decide that you should take your dog (a German Shepherd) for a hike in the mountains of New Hampshire. You reach the end of the hike and the only way to go is the same way back to the beginning. As you begin your trek back you suddenly hear many howls and before you know it, a pack of  four coyotes jump onto the trail. You are presented with a few choices. You can either:

a) run away leaving your dog behind and fend for itself

b) try to pick up your dog or grab its leash to run away with the possibility of the coyotes chasing you

c) stay and fend/fight off the coyotes with your pup until they realize they cannot successfully attack you

As you are discerning which choice you will select, be able to describe which ethical lens you are using as you decide among the choices. Then, are there any other choices that you can think of that would be an appropriate from your own perspective?


Students: Delia Kelley, Hanna Lanoie, Eugene Nigro

What can you live with?: To Cheat or Not To Cheat

You are walking into class and are about to take an online exam. You overhear some of the other students in your class discussing how they got access to the answer sheet. They notice you listening and offer to email you the answer sheet as well. They do. As the test begins, you notice that lots of people in the class have the answer sheet open on their laptops. Do you:

1. Delete the email, you do not want to cheat and feel like you can do well enough taking it yourself even if you have to guess some answers.

2. Use the answer sheet, you haven’t studied enough and could use a good grade on the exam.

Explain your perspective and identify the ethical lens you used.


Students: Michael Sarette, Tyson Thomas, Charlie Scott

Survival of the Fittest: A Zombie Apocalypse Framework

You and your friend are survivors of a zombie apocalypse. You are part of a safe community with all the necessary amenities to survive, but only enough for the 20 or so people living there. You are out and about one day with your friend looking for things to gather when you run into a group of 5 people, clearly in need of help but having already survived this far on their own. Do you:

  1. Tell them about the community and add them to your group, meaning you would have to risk your lives to gather more supplies to cater to them?
  2. Lie to them and say you and your friend are on your own and let them go on their way?
  3. Tell them about the community and give them some of your supplies to survive but send them the opposite way?
  4. Kill them and take their supplies?

Explain your perspective and the ethical lens that you are using.

Students: Tyson Thomas

An Extended Family: Engage or Does Curiosity Kill the Cat?

You are sitting in your room with your roommate when you get a text from an unknown number. This number tells you that they are your 16-year-old brother, you share the same mother, and that they found out about you through one of your cousins. To your knowledge, though, you’ve only had 5 siblings your entire life so you don’t believe them and don’t respond immediately. Do you:

  • Confront your mom about it?
  • Respond and ask questions?
  • Ignore the text completely because you think it’s a fake number?

Explain your perspective through the ethical lens that you are using.


Students: Ethan Stratton, Stephen Wentworth, Megan Lawler

Finders Keepers?

You’re walking home from a party at night and you’ve had a little bit to drink. Campus is quiet, and a guy who’s name you don’t know, but you recognize from the party, is walking ahead of you. As he passes a light, you notice a $20 bill fall out of his pocket and fall to the ground undetected. You consider yourself a good person, but there’s no one around to notice and that 20 would pay for some fantastic drunk food. What do you do?

A: pocket the money because he won’t notice and act like nothing happened

B: take the money and run ahead to the guy and give it back

C: do nothing

Explain your perspective through the ethical lens that you are using.


Students: Olivia Croke and Larry Sliger

Sisters Share A Lot: That is What a Family is For

You are writing a paper for your English class and completely forgot about the assignment. The paper is due at midnight, and it is already 10pm. You mention you have the paper due to your siblings and your sister mentions she had the same assignment when she was in college, she offers you, her paper. You make sure to edit the paper, so it is a little different from her original one. You hand in the paper with confidence, later, your teacher pulls you aside and comments how the writing does not seem like yours and seems a little advanced and questions if it is your work. Do you?

  1. Lie and say it is your work and that you worked hard on this paper
  2. Tell the truth and say that you plagiarized your sisters’ paper as your own work
  3. Try to get the professor in trouble for questioning your work.

Explain your perspective through the appropriate ethical lens that you are using.



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