Ethics

Additional Information

TEACHING ETHICS THROUGHOUT THE CURRICULUM

Case 41. Confidentiality, Technology and Teaching

Situation

Professor Harry Gregorian is the advisor for a large undergraduate program. He has been receiving persistent demands on e-mail from a student who has been placed on academic probation. The student is quite belligerent about his probationary status. Professor Gregorian suspects from past meetings that the student is trying to "work the system" to get around college requirements. He gives the student a stern response on e-mail, suggesting that he should take time to reassess his skills and interests and return to college only after he has met the probationary requirements. The student bounces this e-mail to the Chancellor, the Ombudsperson and the Dean claiming "harsh treatment" and unsympathetic advising in the department as a major reason for his difficulties in the program. 

Questions

  1. What are the ethics of providing advising over electronic mail?
  2. How do issues of confidentiality enter into a "private" conversations on a university owned system? Are students obligated to keep e-mail confidential?

Reflect on the above questions and form your own answers before clicking the discussion key to review the commentary provided with this case.

 

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