Learning Outcome 1

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nastoffethicspaper2     The first learning outcome students in the Communication discipline at Carroll University are expected to master is to be able to understand and apply central theories and principles of human communication that will facilitate effective communication in their professional and personal lives. I feel that both papers I wrote in my Communication Ethics course in the Spring 2011 semester demonstrate mastery of this learning outcome.

     The first essay applies five principles of ethical communication to a personal experience. The second applies the same principles to a real-world situation. For this paper, I chose to write about the lack of government transparency in Japan following the nuclear reactor meltdown caused by the devastating earthquake last March.

     Writing these papers required a great deal of critical thinking, as these principles proved that determining the most ethical decision about a situation isn’t as black and white as I always thought. But I applied the principles well, earning A’s for both of these papers.

     In the first paper, there were some distracting grammatical errors, especially pronoun antecedent disagreement, which I made a concerted effort to be more aware of in the second paper. But in terms of content, both papers demonstrate competence in applying these principles.

     On the first day of this course, the professor mentioned that the purpose of this course was to provide a safe place to think about ethics so that we will be better prepared when faced with situation out in the real world. The critical thinking skills developed through the writing of these papers is a clear indication that this purpose was fulfilled. I have no doubt that when faced with ethical dilemmas in my professional or personal life after college, these skills will give me an excellent framework to systematically analyze the situation to determine the most ethical solution rather than basing my decision on gut instinct and emotion as I did before this course.

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