Debates on tech-related moral dilemas usign ethical theories to teach engineering ethics
Document typeConference report
PublisherUniversitat Politècnica de Catalunya
Rights accessOpen Access
Except where otherwise noted, content on this work is licensed under a Creative Commons license : Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International
A significant number of universities where engineering is taught acknowledge the influence on society and the environment of the scientific and technological practice, as well as the ethical problems it presents, and the need to provide their students with courses covering this as a subject. The accelerated pace of innovation in these fields amplifies the issue. Computer Engineering schools are no exception. So, the IEEE/ACM Computer Science Curriculum 2013, identifies social issues and professional practice as key knowledge areas that computer undergraduate students must learn. Students should be knowledgeable about the interplay of ethical issues, technical problems, and aesthetic values that play an important part in the development of computing systems. The authors have taught for many years an optional course about the social, and environmental aspects of ICT as well as ethics. In this paper, the authors propose an approach to study ethics in Computer engineering schools. The approach consists in providing students with general ethic frameworks to reason about moral dilemmas as well as providing the basics of deontology. The lessons are complemented with case studies where technology is a key factor. Students are assigned roles to work on the cases and in the end, a discussion is done in the classroom. After the lessons, the authors have observed that students are able to understand and use the tools provided by the teachers to reason about moral dilemmas.
CitationCasany Guerrero, M.J.; Alier Forment, M. Debates on tech-related moral dilemas usign ethical theories to teach engineering ethics. A: SEFI 50th Annual conference of The European Society for Engineering Education. "Towards a new future in engineering education, new scenarios that European alliances of tech universities open up". Barcelona: Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, 2022, p. 171-178. DOI 10.5821/conference-9788412322262.1364.