Journal of Academic Ethics

, Volume 10, Issue 2, pp 93-112

First online:

Creating an Interdisciplinary Business Ethics Program

  • Elizabeth TowellAffiliated withCollege of Business, Northern Illinois University Email author 
  • , Kathleen L. McFaddenAffiliated withDepartment of Operations Management and Information Systems, Northern Illinois University
  • , William C. McCoyAffiliated withBELIEF Program, Northern Illinois University
  • , Amy BuhrowAffiliated withCollege of Business, Northern Illinois University

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Driven by recent accreditation mandates, a changing legal environment, and multiple high-visibility corporate ethics scandals, many business schools are responding to the growing movement within higher education to integrate ethics into the curricula. The literature suggests that the amount of attention given to ethics varies widely among institutions, and has not been coherently developed. Moreover, institutions have struggled to tie related projects and instruction to the overall concept of assurance of student learning. The purpose of this paper is to provide a framework for institutions interested in creating an interdisciplinary business ethics program that combines critical success factors, assurance of student learning and continuous quality improvement. Using a nationally recognized business school’s ethics program, we provide an example of how our model can be applied at other institutions based on their own unique vision, mission and goals.


Business ethics Interdisciplinary learning Assessment Assurance of learning