Institutional Values and University Practices: Ethical Dilemmas in Higher Education (May 2023)

Course Description

Ethics is a crucial aspect of everyday life – ethical codes govern the actions of individuals, groups, organizations, and professions. Higher education institutions are expected to abide to the highest ethical standards; university administrators, among others, are expected to show commitment to sound ethical principles and practices. However, it is not always clear what the ethical behavior should be, as there are no ready-made rules and prescriptions for ethical behavior. Behaving ethically goes beyond strictly following institutional policies. Being ethical is about doing the right thing, but what is the right thing in any given situation is far from obvious. There are situations in which personal ethical considerations and institutional rules do not align, and sometimes what is considered ethical by one individual may not be regarded so by another. Ethics is not sorted out through scientific enquiry; it is a matter of philosophical investigation.

This course explores the concept of ethics from the perspective of higher education professionals. First, it provides a theoretical framework for defining ethical dilemmas and explaining why they are difficult to deal with. From here, it proceeds by examining ethical issues in relation with organizational, academic, and cultural practices in universities. More specifically, it will focus on:

1. Leadership (abuse of power, conflict of interest, etc.)

2. Organizational functions:

a. student services (recruitment, admissions, financial aid, wellbeing, etc.) and

b. fund raising

3. Academic misconduct (plagiarism, fake credentials, etc.),

4. Gender equality

5. Cultural competencies

Learning outcomes

By the end of the course the participants will be able to

· understand the complexities of ethical behavior;

· use the theoretical framework to understand the issues of the case studies discussed;

· apply ethical concepts to decision-making processes and actions in higher education;

· take steps towards improving ethical behavior in their own professional roles.


Course Information

This course is addressed to staff and faculty with managerial and leadership responsibilities at OSUN institutions. The successful completion of the course will grant participants 1 US credit (2 ECTS)- upon request- as part of the OSUN Professional Development Program for University Administrators.

Instructor: Dr. Monica Jitareanu (CEU)

Dates: 4 May - 30 May 2023 (Tuesdays and Thursdays from 14:30 Vienna time)

Application deadline: 24 April 2023 (late applications will be considered)

Schedule: please see course description

How to Apply

Please submit your application here.

For queries and more information, please reach out to: Dr. Pusa Nastase, Lead of the Global Professional Development Program at the Yehuda Elkana Center for Teaching, Learning, and Higher Education Research-