Ethics education is an important goal in higher education overall. It is not clear how well psychology programs are meeting this goal. The American Psychology Association’s Guidelines for the Undergraduate Psychology Major (APA 2013) were created to support high-quality education in psychology. The Guidelines focus on five goals including Ethical and Social Responsibility in a Diverse World. This study is a review of ethics information available online from Franciscan Colleges and Universities. We accessed 24 Franciscan institutions and reviewed the available information provided by 22 of them. We asked several questions: Whether the psychology department provided a mission statement and was ethics addressed in it? What courses focused on ethics or mentioned ethics in their description? Were there other institutional ethics courses required for psychology majors? Was ethics mentioned in the institution mission? The results of this study indicate a need for more intentional inclusion of ethics in university and program mission statements as well as specific courses for the undergraduate psychology major.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Price includes VAT (USA)
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
American Psychological Association. (2013). APA guidelines for the undergraduate psychology major: Version 2.0. Retrieved from http://www.apa.org/ed/precollege/undergrad/index.aspx
Dunn, D. S., Brewer, C. L., Cautin, R. L., Gurung, R. A. R., Keith, K. D., McGregor, L. N., et al. (2010). The undergraduate psychology curriculum: A call for a core. In D. F. Halpern (Ed.), Undergraduate education in psychology: A blueprint for the future of the discipline (pp. 47–51). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association. https://doi.org/10.1037/12063-003.
Halpern, D. F. (2010). Undergraduate education in psychology: A blueprint for the future of the discipline. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Handelsman, M. M. (1986). Problems with ethics training by "osmosis.". Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, 17, 371–372.
Keenan, J. F. (2015). University ethics: How colleges can build and benefit from a culture of ethics. New York: Rowan & Littlefield.
Landrum, R. E., & McCarthy, M. A. (2012). Teaching ethically: Challenges and opportunities. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.
Meacham, J., & Gaff, J. G. (2006). Learning goals in mission statements: Implications for educational leadership. Liberal Education, 92(1), 6–13.
Plante, T. G., & Pistoresi, S. (2017). A survey of ethics training in undergraduate psychology programs at Jesuit universities. Pastoral Psychology, 66(3), 353–358.
Ruiz, A., & Warchal, J. (2014). Ethics as an undergraduate psychology outcome: When, where, and how to teach it. Psychology Learning & Teaching, 13(2), 120–128. Retrieved from. https://doi.org/10.2304/plat.2014.13.2.120.
Selingo, J. (2017). How colleges use big data to target the students they want. The Atlantic. Retrieved from https://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2017/04/how-colleges-find-their-students/522516/
Smith, K. C. (2014). Ethics is not rocket science: How to have ethical discussions in your science class. Journal of Microbiology & Biology Education, 15(2), 202–207. https://doi.org/10.1128/jmbe.v15i2.784.
The Association of Franciscan Colleges and Universities (2017). Members. Retrieved from http://franciscancollegesuniversities.org/members/.
Warchal, J., Ruiz, A., & You, D. (2017). Do psychology department mission statements reflect the APA undergraduate learning goals? Psychology Learning and Teaching., 16(3), 369–374. https://doi.org/10.1177/1475725717723276.
You, D., Warchal, J., & Ruiz, A. (2011). A review of ethics from project syllabus. Psychology Journal, 8(2), 82–86.
You, D., Ruiz, A., & Warchal, J. (2018). The presentation of ethics in undergraduate psychology syllabi. Teaching of Psychology, 45(4), 346–350. https://doi.org/10.1177/0098628318796921.
Conflict of Interest
The Authors declare that there is no conflict of interest.
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
About this article
Cite this article
Ruiz, A., Warchal, J. & You, D. Ethics Education in Franciscan Undergraduate Psychology Programs. J Acad Ethics 18, 223–227 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s10805-019-09329-1
- Undergraduate psychology
- Franciscan education