While debating about the ethical dilemma I should write this application paper about, I thought (very briefly) to myself, “why don’t I just recycle a paper that I’ve written for another class… there is no way I could get caught.” I opened up my old school files and then it hit me… this would be a perfect ethical situation to write about. Thinking about both sides of the issue I realized that there would be a couple benefits to reusing an old paper, like budgeting the time it would take me to write this and using it to study for my exams next week or completing homework for another class. On the other hand, it would be wrong of me to pass off a prewritten paper as something original, and I knew that if I did make that choice I would be disappointed in myself.
One theory that came to mind regarding this dilemma is the Blanchard-Peale Model, which is broken down into three sections: 1.
Is it legal?
Is it balanced?
How does it make me feel?
Applying this model to my situation, I realized that it wasn’t really until the third step that the ethical issue came into play. First, I know that reusing one of my own papers is not unlawful. However, it is a bit of a grey area in terms of academic misconduct, as I wouldn’t be plagiarizing anyone but myself, and I’m pretty sure that is not going to land me in jail. Second, in terms of being balanced I understood that it would be somewhat unfair to the students that took the time to write an original paper. On the other hand, recycling one of my previous papers would not necessarily affect the other students because they still need to submit an essay as well. Then I got to the third point, how does it make me feel? Although it is not very enjoyable to spend free time doing homework, I would feel disappointed in myself for taking the cheap, ethically questionable way out.
The second ethical theory that I applied to my situation is Deontology. This method of reasoning concerns the ethical duty or action one...
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