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You are here Trinity Electives > The EthicsLab: Responsible Action in the Real World


Why should I take this Trinity Elective?

We are constantly challenged by ethical dilemmas: about the future use of technology and artificial intelligence; about the possibilities of genetic and biomedical engineering; about the culture and behaviour of global financial institutions; about who decides who should pay for what; about the environment, about migration, about political leadership. Citizens of a democratic society need to make ethically informed decisions about these issues, and if you are interested in investigating current and future issues in ethics then this is the module for you.  The EthicsLab is an innovative way to explore ethical issues, where you will learn from professors in different subjects across the university, and engage with leading thinkers about how the major global challenges can be addressed.  We will debate the importance of values and their prioritization, ethical biases and blind-spots, intentions and consequences, and we will do this in a lab-environment where everyone will be involved in designing solutions for the ethical issues of the day. 

What will I learn?

  • You will understand the major ethical dilemmas and challenges of this age, and learn how these are debated and resolved (or not) in specialist and multidisciplinary environments;
  • You will develop the skills of ethical analysis and reflection, as these relate to your own field of study;
  • You will understand the different facets of ethical integrity as it is expressed in personal values and institutional cultures, and according to the different philosophical traditions of moral enquiry;
  • You will learn to successfully negotiate complex and multi-dimensional ethical environments via a multidisciplinary investigation in the EthicsLab.

What will I do?

  • You will participate in the innovative environment of the EthicsLab, analysing and debating the big ethical questions of the day with students and professors from across the university;
  • You will engage with specially-commissioned TED-style talks delivered online by leading thinkers;
  • You will engage with online discussions on TED-style talks, which will be moderated by the course coordinator and will involve leading ethics experts;
  • You will co-design solutions for the ethical challenges of the present and future, across many fields including technology, health, politics, education, law and business.

How will this be delivered?

  • 11 X 15 minute ‘TED-talk’ type lectures focussing on major ethical questions that cut across all fields and disciplines;
  • Online discussions moderated by the lecturers (11 hours incorporating TED-talks) Weekly 2-hour EthicsLab with group work, project work and collaborative learning (22 hours)
  • Independent study; (92 hours)

How will this be assessed?

  • Ethical scenario analysis – written project (60%)
  • Peer assessment of presentation of Ethical Scenario in the EthicsLab (20%)
  • Participation in EthicsLab (20%)

Who can take this Trinity Elective?

  • Any student eligible to take a Trinity Elective can select this Trinity Elective.

More Information (PDF 193KB)