Department of Philosophy

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Ethics Minor

The Ethics minor at Penn State University is interdisciplinary and includes fields such as philosophy, communication, engineering, law, psychology, sociology, anthropology, public policy, international studies, and environmental studies. Students will have the opportunity to learn about various ethical perspectives and challenges that relate to research ethics, business ethics, bioethics, media ethics, and more.

How would an ethics minor benefit you?

Understanding ethical practices and increasing ethical knowledge is important to a successful life, both personally and professionally. An Ethics minor would enrich your life in general and add a very marketable component to your studies in particular. The curriculum is designed to provide students with training in ethical frameworks and methods to help ensure successful execution of both future professional duties and personal endeavors. Need an example? Take the case of the recent collapse of the stock market and global financial systems. There is much evidence to suggest that ethically inadequate business practices were at the root of this corporate calamity, which has negatively affected millions of people around the world. The Ethics minor is designed to help students understand the ethical issues involved in global situations such as this, as well as in personal decisions made in individuals lives.

For more information, please contact an adviser in the Philosophy Department: 
Mary Cameron or Emily Grosholz

Minor Requirements

Required Courses (6.0 credits)
PHIL 103 or 103W (GH)—Philosophy of Ethics (3 credits)
PHIL 119 (GH)—Philosophy of Business Ethics (3 credits)

Supporting Courses and Related Areas (12 credits)
400 level ethics related course (3 credits)
400 level ethics related course (3 credits) 
Additional Supporting ethics related course (3 credits)
Additional Supporting ethics related course (3 credits)

**The supporting courses must be selected from at least two different departments in consultation with an ethics minor adviser.**

How to Declare

To declare a minor in Ethics, you must first get the declaration form either from the Liberal Arts Undergraduate Studies website, from the Philosophy Department office or from the Liberal Arts Undergraduate Studies Office in 101 Sparks. Take the form to the Undergraduate Adviser for Philosophy. (You must see the Adviser personally, so don't leave the form with the staff assistant.) The adviser will discuss the requirements with you, and then both you and the Philosophy adviser will sign the form. Then you must take the form and have it signed by your adviser in your major field, and return the signed form to the staff assistant in the Philosophy office.