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Code of Ethics Writing Assignment Instructions
HM 2410 – Introduction to Ethics
The first draft of your Code of Ethics paper counts 30 points. Due date: week 7.
The final draft of your Code of Ethics paper counts 100 points. Due date: week 13.
The research log for your Code of Ethics paper counts 100 points. Due date: week 13.
The purpose of the code of ethics writing assignment is (1) to help you understand the
purpose of a code of ethics and (2) to study and recognize the applicability of a code of
ethics in your particular vocation or occupation. So this assignment is divided into two
parts to fulfill this purpose. Your code of ethics paper should be approximately 1 and ½
to 2 pages long, double spaced on 8 and ½ by 11 inch pages. Your code might be
longer than this, but only if you happen to have chosen a long code as your sample
code. Your bibliography needs to have four sources in it. Those sources should be
placed in the Research Log. Now, let’s get started.
Part 1 – Understanding the purpose of a code of ethics.
Go to at least two web sites and read about the purpose of a code of ethics and write a
half of a page on the purpose of a code of ethics as the first part of your paper. You can
find some web sites by going to an Internet search engine and typing in: purpose of a
code of ethics.
Here are some web sites you could use for this.

That was easy. Now that you know why codes of ethics are useful and important, let’s
do the fun part. Let’s apply this to YOU.
Part 2 – A code of ethics for your occupation or profession.
Instead of having you write a code of ethics for your occupation, I want you to do out
and search the Internet and find two codes of ethics for your line of work—either the
occupation you are in now or the one you hope to get into in the near future. The two
codes you find are the other two sources for your bibliography, so copy and paste the
URL into your bibliography at the end of your assignment and also place those in the
Research Log.
“Give me an example?” you say. OK. Suppose you want to work in human resources
development. Go to an Internet search engine and type in: code of ethics for human
resources development. You will find many examples. I have given one below in
Appendix 1. If you are or want to be a pastoral counselor then go to an Internet search
engine and type in: code of ethics for pastoral counselor. Or you could search for a
code of ethics for a “family therapist.” You can do the same for a code of ethics for a
minister, military, computer data manager, business owner, teacher, or whatever
occupation or profession you are in or plan to enter.
What you need to do for part 2 is copy and paste the code of ethics that you like, the
one that you find most helpful to you into your paper and footnote the URL where you
found that code of ethics to give them credit for writing it. Then write one paragraph
about what you find most helpful about this particular code of ethics.
At the end put the two URLs you used to study about the importance and purpose of a
code of ethics. Put the two URLs you used where you found examples of a code of
ethics for your occupation.
Check list:
1. Cover page – your name and this class.
2. One paragraph on the purpose and importance of a code of ethics.
3. A sample code of ethics from the occupation you have chosen with a footnote
from the website where you obtained it.
4. One paragraph where you tell about why you liked this particular code of ethics.
5. Bibliography – four web sites; two on the importance of codes of ethics; two
which have sample codes of the occupation you have chosen.
6. Submit your code as a 1
7. After the 1
draft is graded, make any corrections that are needed.
8. Submit your final copy by week 13.
9. Submit your four sources in the Research Log in week 13 when you do the final
Appendix 1 – A sample code of ethics from Human Resources Management
Core Principle
SHRM Code of Ethics
SHRM Code of Ethical and Professional Standards
in Human Resource Management
As HR professionals, we are responsible for adding value to the organizations we serve
and contributing to the ethical success of those organizations. We accept professional
responsibility for our individual decisions and actions. We are also advocates for the
profession by engaging in activities that enhance its credibility and value.
 To build respect, credibility and strategic importance for the HR profession within
our organizations, the business community, and the communities in which we
 To assist the organizations we serve in achieving their objectives and goals.
 To inform and educate current and future practitioners, the organizations we
serve, and the general public about principles and practices that help the
 To positively influence workplace and recruitment practices.
 To encourage professional decision-making and responsibility.
 To encourage social responsibility.
1. Adhere to the highest standards of ethical and professional behavior.
2. Measure the effectiveness of HR in contributing to or achieving organizational
3. Comply with the law.
4. Work consistent with the values of the profession.
5. Strive to achieve the highest levels of service, performance and social
6. Advocate for the appropriate use and appreciation of human beings as
7. Advocate openly and within the established forums for debate in order to
influence decision-making and results.
Core Principle
As professionals we must strive to meet the highest standards of competence and
commit to strengthen our competencies on a continuous basis.
 To expand our knowledge of human resource management to further our
understanding of how our organizations function.
 To advance our understanding of how organizations work (“the business of the
1. Pursue formal academic opportunities.
2. Commit to continuous learning, skills development and application of new
knowledge related to both human resource management and the organizations
we serve.
3. Contribute to the body of knowledge, the evolution of the profession and the
growth of individuals through teaching, research and dissemination of
4. Pursue certification where available, or comparable measures of competencies
and knowledge.
Core Principle
HR professionals are expected to exhibit individual leadership as a role model for
maintaining the highest standards of ethical conduct.
 To set the standard and be an example for others.
 To earn individual respect and increase our credibility with those we serve.
1. Be ethical; act ethically in every professional interaction.
2. Question pending individual and group actions when necessary to ensure that
decisions are ethical and are implemented in an ethical manner.
3. Seek expert guidance if ever in doubt about the ethical propriety of a situation.
4. Through teaching and mentoring, champion the development of others as ethical
leaders in the profession and in organizations.
Core Principle
As human resource professionals, we are ethically responsible for promoting and
fostering fairness and justice for all employees and their organizations.
To create and sustain an environment that encourages all individuals and the
organization to reach their fullest potential in a positive and productive manner.
1. Respect the uniqueness and intrinsic worth of every individual.
2. Treat people with dignity, respect and compassion to foster a trusting work
environment free of harassment, intimidation, and unlawful discrimination.
3. Ensure that everyone has the opportunity to develop their skills and new
4. Assure an environment of inclusiveness and a commitment to diversity in the
organizations we serve.
5. Develop, administer and advocate policies and procedures that foster fair,
consistent and equitable treatment for all.
6. Regardless of personal interests, support decisions made by our organizations
that are both ethical and legal.
7. Act in a responsible manner and practice sound management in the country(ies)
in which the organizations we serve operate.
Core Principle
As HR professionals, we must maintain a high level of trust with our stakeholders. We
must protect the interests of our stakeholders as well as our professional integrity and
should not engage in activities that create actual, apparent, or potential conflicts of
To avoid activities that are in conflict or may appear to be in conflict with any of the
provisions of this Code of Ethical and Professional Standards in Human Resource
Management or with one’s responsibilities and duties as a member of the human
resource profession and/or as an employee of any organization.
1. Adhere to and advocate the use of published policies on conflicts of interest
within your organization.
2. Refrain from using your position for personal, material or financial gain or the
appearance of such.
3. Refrain from giving or seeking preferential treatment in the human resources
4. Prioritize your obligations to identify conflicts of interest or the appearance
thereof; when conflicts arise, disclose them to relevant stakeholders.
Core Principle
HR professionals consider and protect the rights of individuals, especially in the
acquisition and dissemination of information while ensuring truthful communications and
facilitating informed decision-making.
To build trust among all organization constituents by maximizing the open exchange of
information, while eliminating anxieties about inappropriate and/or inaccurate acquisition
and sharing of information
1. Acquire and disseminate information through ethical and responsible means.
2. Ensure only appropriate information is used in decisions affecting the
employment relationship.
3. Investigate the accuracy and source of information before allowing it to be used
in employment related decisions.
4. Maintain current and accurate HR information.
5. Safeguard restricted or confidential information.
6. Take appropriate steps to ensure the accuracy and completeness of all
communicated information about HR policies and practices.
7. Take appropriate steps to ensure the accuracy and completeness of all
communicated information used in HR-related training.
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