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The Ethical Leader (11:607:385)

Spring 2018 Syllabus

School Requirement

This course will provide unspecified elective credit for all students at Rutgers for all schools. Check with your academic departments if satisfies specific credit (ethics) within their academic programs.

SEBS School Requirement

For SEBS Students: this course satisfies the Junior/Senior Colloquium (if following the old SEBS Core Requirements.) This course does not apply to the new SEBS Core.

For SEBS students in these academic majors (119 Biology, 374 EPIB, 017 Agriculture and Food Systems, and 776 Plant Science) this course satisfies the Ethics Requirement. (if following the old SEBS Core Requirements). This course does not apply to the new SEBS Core. If applies, for other academic majors must check with their academic departments



Course Description

3 Credits. Students explore the inextricable need for ethics within the realm of leadership in social science and history. Topics to be addressed include power and self-interest; how values influence leadership; leaders and followers; and leadership for the greatest good. Students will participate in dialogue relevant to current societal and historical situations in business, politics, history, etc and how individuals contribute to the moral fabric of our society.


Meeting the Ethical Challenges of Leadership, 6th Edition, Craig E. Johnson. 2018 Sage Publications. ISBN: 978-1-5063-2163-9 Available at the Barnes & Noble College Bookstore.

Required Readings

Each week in this online course will have required readings. These readings will be the basis for the assignments for the course. So it is essential that you complete all readings.

Each reading is in the course textbook. Meeting the Ethical Challenges of Leadership, 6th Edition, Craig E. Johnson.

It is essential that each enrolled student purchase the textbook. This textbook is available for purchase at Barnes and Noble bookstore in New Brunswick.

Program Learning Goals (PLG)/Assignment Used for Assessment

  • PLG: Analyze ethical leadership situations / Assignment Used for Assessment: Final Paper (Week 15)

Course Learning Objectives

As a result of this course you will:

  • Apply critical thinking skills to evaluate the subjects of leadership and ethics in social science and history
  • Develop a refined sense of morally significant issues from a leadership context
  • Develop an understanding of his or her capacity to respond to moral issues according to personal morals and values
  • Evaluate traits and characteristics of leaders by focusing on the ethics displayed by such leaders
  • Assess how organizations can create/are creating ethical environments beneficial to employees
  • Interpret and support the need for ethical leadership in this world

Basis for Grading

Each student will be assessed according to the following criteria: quality of work, timeliness in completing assignments, class participation, and effort and positive attitude. Students are expected to work independently, and to give credit the course textbook or all other research materials used.

  1. Icebreaker Exercise (5 points)
  2. Online Participation and Contribution to Threaded Discussions (6 Discussions - 50 pts each TD = 300 points)
  3. #1 Reflection: Hardship Paper (4–5 pages = 100 points)
  4. #2 Reflection: Ethical Dilemma Paper (2–3 pages = 100 points)
  5. #3 Reflection: Hoosiers Movie Paper (4–5 pages = 100 points)
  6. #4 Reflection: Lombardi Paper (3–4 pages = 100 points)
  7. 7 Quizzes (5 quizzes: 25 pts each & 2 quizzes: 10 pts each = 145 points)
  8. Final Exam Paper (1 Assignment: 6–7 pages = 150 points)

Each assignment has assigned point values. Accumulation of points will result in the following grade ranges for this course:

A = 90–1000 points
B = 800–899 points
C = 700–799 points
D = 600–699 points
F = below 600 points

Academic Integrity

As an academic community dedicated to the creation, dissemination, and application of knowledge, Rutgers University is committed to fostering an intellectual and ethical environment based on the principles of academic integrity. Academic integrity is essential to the success of the University's educational and research missions, and violations of academic integrity constitute serious offenses against the entire academic community. This academic integrity policy is designed to guide students as they prepare assignments, take examinations, and perform the work necessary to complete their degree requirements. Students are required to adhere to the professional standards outlined in the Rutgers University policies on academic integrity.

Class Attendance and Participation Policy

Due to the nature of this online course, attendance will not be taken in the traditional sense for the online course sessions. However, each student is expected to participate in all of the online activities of the course.

Students are expected to log in and complete the online assignments. Attendance in the online sessions in determined by thorough, thoughtful and relevant contributions made in the weekly assignments including threaded discussions, papers and quizzes as outlined in the Course Outline below. It is expected that students will contribute 2 entries to each Threaded Discussion as stated with specific dates in the course links.

The course proceeds with the assumption that students have thoughtfully read and reviewed the assigned materials. Weekly course reading assignments and online class slideshows will clarify, elaborate, and demonstrate the major concepts of the course. Students are responsible for completion of all assigned readings, materials discussed, and assignments on or before the assigned due date.

See Course Policies/Student Information for additional information about participating in this course.

Ethical Leader Course Outline

Assignments: See Course Weekly Links for More Details

Week 1

  1. Course Shell Overview
  2. Introductions Icebreaker

Week 2

  1. Chapter 1: The Leader's Light or Shadow
  2. Chapter 1 Slideshow
  3. #1 Threaded Discussion: Discussion of Leader's Shadows (Power, Privilege, Mismanaged Information, Inconsistency, Misplaced and Broken Loyalties, and Irresponsibility)
  4. Extra Credit Practice Quiz

Week 3

  1. Read Chapter 2: Stepping Out of the Shadows
  2. Chapter 2 Slideshow
  3. #2 Threaded Discussion: Daricis Narvaez Ethical Skills: Ethical Sensitivity, Ethical Judgement, Ethical Focus, Ethical Action
  4. #1 Quiz (Chapters 1 & 2)

Week 4

  1. Chapter 3: The Leader's Character
  2. Chapter 3 Slideshow
  3. #3 Threaded Discussion: Leader's Virtues (Courage, Temperance, Wisdom and Prudence, Justice, Optimism, Integrity, Humility, Reverence, and Compassion).

Week 5

  1. Chapter 4: Combating Evil
  2. Chapter 4 Slideshow
  3. #2 Quiz (Chapter 3 & 4)
  4. #1 Reflection: Hardship Paper

Week 6

  1. Chapter 5: General Ethical Perspectives
  2. Chapter 5 Slideshow
  3. #4 Threaded Discussion: Common Good Ethical Issue

Week 7

  1. Chapter 6: Ethical Decision Making and Behavior
  2. Chapter 6 Slideshow
  3. #3 Quiz (Chapter 5 & 6)
  4. #2 Reflection: Ethical Dilemma Paper

Week 8

  1. Chapter 7: Exercising Ethical Influence
  2. Chapter 7 Slideshow
  3. #4 Quiz (Chapter 7 Only)

Week 9

  1. Chapter 8: Normative Leadership Theories
  2. Chapter 8 Slideshow
  3. #5Quiz (Chapter 8 Only)
  4. ##3 Reflection: Hoosiers Movie

Week 10

  1. Chapter 9: Building an Ethical Small Group
  2. Chapter 9 Slideshow
  3. #5 Threaded Discussion: Productive Conflict

Week 11

  1. Chapter 10: Creating an Ethical Organizational Climate
  2. Chapter 10 Slideshow
  3. #4 Reflection: Vince Lombardi Paper
  4. #6 Quiz (Chapters 9 & 10)

Week 12

  1. Chapter 11: Meeting the Ethical Challenges of Leadership in the Global Society
  2. Chapter 11 Slideshow
  3. Begin to prepare Final Exam Paper. Explore your topic area.

Week 13

  1. Chapter 12: Ethical Crisis Leadership
  2. Chapter 12 Slideshow
  3. #7 Quiz (Chapter 11 & 12)
  4. Extra Credit: Muhammad Ali

Week 14 - Third Wednesday Class Meeting

  1. #6 Threaded Discussion: Ethical Leadership Rap-Up: Your level of Awareness of Ethics and Leadership. Your Reflections and New Insights - Entire Course.

Week 15

  1. Final Exam Paper: Ethical Case Study


Dr. Joseph Ventola, Ed.D.
109 Martin Hall, G. H. Cook Campus

Office Hours: The instructor is available by email. Additionally, the instructor can be contacted by phone. In=office meetings can be arranged by appointment.