Instructor: A. Centivany
This course investigates the ethical aspects of contemporary information technology and work. Through lectures, readings, group and independent projects, students analyze and engage challenges ranging from privacy in big data, freedom of expression in social computing environments, national security, diversity and the digital divide, the nature of innovation, property, access and collaboration in an increasingly networked world, as well as the role of various professional codes of ethics. The course draws on cases from the fields of library and information science, education, politics, and international development, but above all it draws on experiences as a user, consumer, builder, and contributor to the global world of information. Through this course students learn key theories, methods, frameworks, laws, and institutions that govern, shape, and inform the contemporary world of information technology. Students will also learn core analytic, writing and presentation skills central to success in virtually all organizational settings. Above all, students will learn to critically and strategically engage with the worlds of information and technology, deciding what kind of information consumer, user, citizen, and professional to be.
This course is offered to MLIS and all FIMS thesis-based programs' students. Relevant to MLIS Program Content Area - Information Policy. MLIS students will need to request an exception to this PCA within their Program Content area at myFIMS.
Upon successful completion of readings, assignments, and class participation, students will be able to:
1. Understand and critically assess key ethics-related principles, concepts, theories, and/or philosophies (historical and/or contemporary, Western and/or non-Western, derived from philosophy, law, etc.) (PLLO 1, 2, 5);
2. Cultivate leadership potential by recognizing, analyzing, and considering strategies to address the complex nature of ethical issues in the information field (PLLO 2, 3, 5, 7, 9);
3. Apply ethical frameworks across multiple scales (e.g. self, group) and diverse contexts (e.g. geographic, cultural, institutional, and governmental) (PLLO 1, 2, 3, 5);
4. Understand how professional codes of ethics relate to ethical principles, concepts, issues, and/or philosophies underpinning the preservation and communication of information via emerging technologies (PLLO 1, 3, 5, 7);
5. Communicate ethical issues analysis clearly, concisely, and persuasively, using both written (e.g. case studies, briefs) and verbal (e.g. presentations) methods (PLLO 3, 5, 7, 9).