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Philosophy 302: Ethics
Position Paper Topics

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~ ~ Topics and Due Dates for Fall, 2010~ ~
One point/day is deducted from paper grade for every day paper topic is not chosen after 28 September 2010. Five points/day are deducted for late papers posted after 11 November 2019. No late comments are accepted for credit after 23 November 2010. Your topic must be approved in advance.  Email 


Paper Topic

Paper Due
Nov. 11

Comments Due 
Nov. 18

1. What is the difference between a moral and a nonmoral issue?

Kendra Hunter

2. Should our conscience determine what actions are morally right and morally wrong?

Kelly Hammond  

3. Should reason alone be used to determine which actions are morally right and morally wrong?

Lindsay Parsells

4. Are there universal moral principles that are right for all persons at all times?

Jennifer Novembre  

5. Should we act morally solely because of divine will?

Stephen Deline  

6. Is acting morally necessary for happiness?

Sabrina Kelly


7. Should we act morally only because it is to the overall advantage to society?

Anne Beaudette


8. Can a clear distinction between instrumental good and intrinsic good be maintained?


9. Is pleasure an intrinsic good?


10. Is the fulfillment of desire an intrinsic good?


11. Is Benthamís hedonistic calculus practicable?


12. Is beauty an intrinsic good?


13. Is knowledge an intrinsic good?


14. Are moral qualities an intrinsic good?


15. Is "Socrates dissatisfied better than a pig satisfied"?


16. Is happiness just the sum of individual pleasures?

Kerry Cooper  

17. Is pleasure merely a side-product of activity?

Ashley King  

18. Does psychological egoism commit the fallacy of overgeneralization?


19. Is psychological egoism tautologous?


20. Are all human actions unconsciously and egoistically motivated?

Chance Reynolds  

21. Do people always do what they desire most?

Megan McDonnough


22. Can personal ethical egoism be refuted?


23. Can individual ethical egoism be refuted?


24. Can universal ethical egoism be refuted?


25. Can the distinction between a higher and a lower pleasure be maintained?


26. Can we always distinguish between the things in our control and the things outside our control, as the Stoics believe?


27. Can all persons be happy?

Joy Joseph  
27a. Some people cannot be happy. Marshall Gagne  

28. Are all moral qualities means between extremes?


29. What does it mean to realize your potential?

Layla Miranda  

30. Should all persons seek the dominant theme pattern of self-realization?


31. What is a maximally coherent system of mutually harmonious fulfillments?


32. Is ethics reducible to biology?


33. Is ethical egoism self-contradictory or merely inconsistent?


34. Is ethical egoism a complete theory?

35. In ethics, do the ends ever justify the means?    
36. Are some right actions not productive of the greatest happiness for the greatest number?    
37.  When ought one not do one's duty?    
38. Can religious ethics be consistent with philosophical ethics? Julia Riley  
39. Do self-realization ethics set up an impossible standard of behavior? Dana Hicks  
40. Distinguish carefully between the shared ideal of morals and the principles of ethics.    

41. Are the benefits worth the risk of taking performance enhancing  drugs for a competitive edge?

Ross Davis  


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