Introduction to Basic Ethics

Please choose ONE of the two perspectives (either Deontology or Utilitarianism) and use it to analyze the following case study. What would your chosen ethical model say to Nicole? What advice would it give her? Should she “stretch the truth” on her resume (according to your ethical model)? Why or why not?

Here is the case study:
Graduation is months away, and Nicole still doesn’t have a job. Thousands of dollars in college loans are backing up and payments are due soon. Furthermore, her mother was recently laid off, and her parents are in need of some supplemental income. Stress and pressure, then, is building as Nicole remains jobless.

Fortunately, she just received a request from a marketing firm to send in her resume. However, Nicole’s resume is not quite up to the standard that this job expects. She has had an internship in marketing before, even excelled in the subject at school, but she doesn’t have the proper list of real-world experience her employers will desire. When pondering the issue, she realizes that she could exaggerate her responsibilities from her internship. Although she was typically filing and making coffee, she could say that she “wrote” a report she had in truth transcribed. When she staffed the front desk, she could claim she was doing “client intake.” And even though she quit after a quarter due to boredom, she could say she worked there for six months.

Nicole believes she is competent and capable of doing the job well but is afraidthather futureemployers might not recognizethis based solely on her resume. Since she is buried in debt and her family is in need, is it ethical for Nicole to alter some facts on her resume?

*PLEASE remember that you are answering this question on the basis of a chosen ETHICAL MODEL (either Utilitarianism or Deontology) in your essay post and thus should not discuss your own personal opinion on this case study in 250 words

Teacher’s video:

After answering the question

Dear Expert REPLY to this Post. Ina Compare/Contrast response, dialogue withessay below about the two perspectives and their differing views on this case study. In what ways are they similar? How are they different?

With the argument of Deontology, it is NOT ethical for Nicole to alter some facts on her resume. Why? Because Deontology judges the morality of an action based on the action’s adherence to a rule or rules. Thus, since it is presumably against the rules of the company Nicole wishes to send a resume to to lie, and it is definitely frowned upon in society (and can be fraud depending on what you lie about and whom you lie to), it is safe to say Nicole would be going against Deontology to lie on her resume.

From Michael Boylan’s definition in the text (Page 171), “Deontology is a moral theory that emphasized one’s duty to do a particular action just because the action, itself, is inherently right and not through any other sorts of calculations — such as the consequences of the action.” From this, Nicole must tell the truth in her resume just because it is inherently right and not because it will give her the best consequence (she may not get hired for telling the truth), if she wishes to follow Deontology. Even though not getting hired by this company may have grave consequences for her (debt/stress) and her parents (need supplemental income), in order to follow Deontology she must emphasize the duty to do what is inherently right, and that is to give an honest, un-inflated resume. (Page 127) “.., deontology will recommend an action based upon principle.” And principle described by Michael Boylan is, “… justified through an understanding of the structure of action, the nature of reason, and the operation of will.” So, I believe that this means Nicole must understand the principle of her telling the truth means she isn’t cheating the company into thinking they are hiring a more qualified employee than they actually are. The reason she shouldn’t lie to the company is because it is wrong because she is fooling them into thinking she has the experience they are looking for when she does not. If Nicole followed a Deontology approach, she would indeed determine that giving an honest resume is what she needs to do, because it is the right thing to do based on principle. She would have to ignore the consequences she may perceive to have if she does not get hired by this particular company. That may be hard to do, but it is what she must do in order to follow a Deontology approach.

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