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Office: Haberlin 308
Office Hours: Wed 1:30 - 3:00 p.m., Thurs 10:00 a.m. - noon
Mon, Wed, Fri, 10:00 - 10:50 a.m.
The increasing use of computers raises questions that require us to re-examine how we
think about a variety of ethical issues. The ease with which computers can be used to
gather information affects the ability of individuals to maintain their privacy.
The ease of copying and distributing digital files (such as music and movies) affects
artists' ability to maintain ownership of their own work (their intellectual property).
We will discuss philosophical approaches to deciding how best to deal with a variety of
issues related to computer use such as privacy, intellectual property, security,
accountability, the digital divide, hacking and viruses. In addition, students will
continue to learn about how computers work, from circuits to networks.
There is one required textbook in this class.
1. Computer Ethics, Fourth Edition, by Deborah Johnson.
In addition, other readings will be assigned throughout the semester.
There will be several quizzes during the ethics of computing sections, usually
on Fridays. The
purpose of the quizzes is to help you pace your reading and to make sure you have
completed the assigned reading.
There will be one midterm exam, on Monday, February 27, 6:00 - 8:00 p.m.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS NOW!
There will be no final exam in this course.
There will be two types of homework in this class:
(1) Homework for the Ethics of Computing piece will consist of readings, essays and
written responses to questions about the readings. All written homework must be typed.
No handwritten work will be accepted.
(2) Homework for the computer science piece will consist of short written problems or
problems solved using the course software.
Essays and/or projects
There will be three 3 short essays and/or projects assigned during the semester
on topics related to the ethics
Presentation and Participation
You are expected to attend all classes and participate in class discussions.
In addition, students will work in groups to prepare and present to the class at least
once during the semester. The presentations will consist of making a presentation
on a topic, leading class discussion, and/or developing class activities.
Lab assignments and Quizzes: 10%
Midterm exam: 20%
Essays/Projects: 30% (10% each)
Extra Credit Opportunities
You may earn extra credit (3 pts added to the homework grade) by attending
global-society related events
in addition to the required events. To earn the extra credit, you must
attend the event and write a short (about a page) reflection on the event. The reflection
should include a brief summary of the event as well as your reaction to it. The reflection
is due the second class period after the event occurs.
Assignments are due at the beginning of class on the assigned due date.
Late assignments will be marked down 10% for each day late. That is, assignments
turned in after the time they are due will be marked down 10%, assignments turned
between 24 and 48 hours after the due date will be marked down 20%, and so on. The
penalty will be determined when the assignment is physically transferred to the
instructor or signed in by any Math/CS faculty member or the department secretary.
Late work will not be accepted after the graded assignment is returned to the class.
In this course you are encouraged to discuss the material and issues
addressed in the course inside and outside of class. You may even discuss the
topics of essay assignments or presentations with members of the class or with
others. However, when it comes to writing up the essays, responses to homework
questions or presentations, you must do the work yourself. You may not collaborate
on any exams, including any take home exams.
You may consult public literature (books, articles, etc) for information,
but you must cite each source of ideas you adopt. Citing your sources will
have the added benefit of showing me that you took the effort to research the
topic and are justifying your arguments from published literature.
Please familiarize yourself with the department's policy on
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Montserrat 113G--Ethics of Computing
Date Created: August 22, 2011
Last Modified: January 18, 2012
Page Expires: January 18, 2013