Dealing with Complexity


Create a SCRIPT for an informative 12-minute video or audio news segment on a contemporary social issue.

By successfully completing this assessment, you will demonstrate your proficiency in the following course competencies:

Competency 1: Explain the nature of ethical issues.

Explain the selected contemporary issue, with reference to practical instances.

Competency 3: Engage in ethical debate.

Describe the relevant contributions to the issue from at least two different academic disciplines.

Competency 4: Develop a position on a contemporary ethical issue.

Explain at least two distinct positions on the issue.

Defend one’s personal ethical position on the issue.

Competency 5: Communicate effectively in the context of personal and professional moral discourse.

Create a SCRIPT for a video or audio presentation that reports on a contemporary social issue from multiple perspectives

Making responsible decisions about major public issues is more complex than a direct application of theory. One source of this complexity is the value of looking at the issue through a variety of disciplinary modes of inquiry:

  • Psychology and sociology inform our views of individual and collective behavior.
  • Mathematics and the sciences remind us that human life is part of a larger world.
  • Literature and mythology encourage us to remember the power of good and evil.
  • Medicine points out that what we do affects the health of our bodies.
  • Communication and information technology help us learn to talk to each other.

As you think about the theme “dealing with complexity,” consider addressing the following questions:

  • Which disciplinary lenses will you apply to your issue, and what resources have you found?
  • Which of the alternative positions do you find more compelling, and why?
  • What concrete actions will you now take to implement your own solution for the problem?
  • How has our work together in this course changed the way you deal with ethical issues every day?

Assessment Overview

As the producer and correspondent of a television or radio news magazine (like 60 Minutes, VICE News, or All Things Considered), you have been assigned to deliver an informative 12-minute segment on one of the contemporary issues being covered in this course. Corporate policy requires that you consider insights from two or more academic disciplines for example: nursing and social work, or philosophical ethics, psychology, and biology. (Note: These are only examples; you are free to choose your own disciplines!) It also requires that you interview credible representatives of at least two distinct positions on the issue. You need not remain neutral on the issue; in fact, you are expected to state and defend your own position with clear reasoning in your own words.

You will choose which of the complex social issues to present here. The intended audience for your segment is an intelligent but perhaps uninformed public, so this is your opportunity to engage them in an issue that matters to you.

Assessment Instructions

The final script for your production should, of course, include APA-style citations and references.

You may submit the assessment itself in either of two formats:

Include the following concepts in this assessment:

  • Explain the selected issue you selected, with reference to practical instances.
  • Describe relevant contributions to the issue from at least two different academic disciplines.
  • Explain at least two distinct positions on the issue, considering each fairly.
  • Defend your own position on the issue clearly.
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