Discussion: Individual And Situational Factors In Ethical Decision-Making

In this Discussion, you will examine how morals, values, and situational factors influence ethical decision making. Morals refer to the ability to distinguish “right” from “wrong.” What is deemed “right” often is a matter of perspective and moral maturity. A value is “an enduring belief that a specific mode of conduct or end-state of existence is personally or socially preferable to an opposite or converse mode of conduct or end-state of existence” (Rokeach, 1973, p. 5). While there is a greater chance of individuals with strong morals and values behaving ethically, certain situational factors, such as the degree to which an organization emphasizes ethical behavior, may steer one’s decision into unethical territory. Often, individual and situational factors that influence ethical decision making occur on a subconscious level; therefore, it is important to increase your awareness as to how these factors affect decision making.

Rokeach, M. (1973). The nature of human values. New York: The Free Press.

To prepare for this Discussion:

  • Read the Introduction in The Ethical Practice of Consulting Psychology, Chapter 8 in the APA Handbook of Ethics in Psychology, and Chapter 2 in the Sage Handbook. Focus on common ethical dilemmas in the practice of I/O psychology.
  • Read APA’s Ethical Principles of Psychologists and Code of Conduct (hereafter referred to as the APA Ethics Code). Identify ethical standards that are applicable to the practice of I/O psychology.
  • Read Chapter 1 and Appendix A in the text, Business Ethics: An Ethical Decision-Making Approach and the journal articles in this week’s Learning Resources. Consider the role of morals, values, and situational in ethical decision making and the practice of I/O psychology.
  • Identify one ethical dilemma related to the practice of I/O psychology. Then identify the ethical standards that apply to the dilemma.
  • Reflect on how an I/O psychology practitioner’s morals (i.e., moral character or competencies) and values might influence his or her ethical decision making in response to the dilemma. In addition, consider how situational factors may influence the practitioner’s ethical decision making.

By Day 3

Post a response to the following:

Briefly describe one ethical dilemma that could occur in the practice of I/O psychology. Then identify at least one ethical standard that applies to the dilemma. Finally, explain how morals, values, and situational factors might influence an I/O psychology practitioner’s decision making in response to the dilemma. Use specific examples to illustrate your explanation.