There are three categories when it comes to normative ethical systems; they are deontological, teleological, and virtue ethics. Deontological, and teleological are considered action based theories of morality; they focus completely on the performance of a person’s action. Teleological or consequentialist is ones action judged morally right based on their consequences. When actions are judged morally right and how they conform to some set of duties, then it’s a deontological ethical theory. Both systems deontological and teleological focus on asking, “What should I do?” however in virtue ethics, it focuses on a completely different question, “What sort of person should I be?” which doesn’t judge the actions based on what’s right or wrong, yet the character of the person; the actions that would make one a good person is based on the moral decisions they make. The focus upon adherence to independent moral rules or duties are what the deontological moral system is characterized by; we simply must understand what our moral duties are, and understand the rules that regulate those duties in order to make the correct moral choice. We behave morally by following our duty, and behave immorally when we fail to do so.
The focus on the consequences is what the teleological moral system is characterized by, which means we must understand the consequences and the results of our actions. For example if I decide not to study for an exam, then my choice will result in incorrect consequences, in other words I will fail, which means I acted immorally. However if I do choose to study, then I will be acting morally and pass. As for virtue ethics, it has les emphasis on which rules people should follow. It focuses more on helping people develop good character traits, such as being generous or kind. When a person develops these traits, it allows them to make the correct choices. This ethical theory also emphasizes on how people should break bad habits, such as hate, anger, or...
Cited: "Deontology and Ethics: What Is Deontology, Deontological Ethics?" About.com Agnosticism / Atheism. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2013. http://atheism.about.com/od/ethicalsystems/a/Deontological.htm
N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2013. .
"Normative Ethical Systems: Deontological, Teleological, and Virtue." About.com Agnosticism / Atheism. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 Nov. 2013. .
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