CSCE 390 Fall 2014: Syllabus (subject to change)

Reference materials:

  • Robert N. Barger. Computer Ethics: A Case-based Approach. Cambridge University Press, 2008 (required text, referred to as [B]). Supplementary materials from the publisher are available online.
  • The first day of classes is Thursday, August 21, 2014. The last day to withdraw without failure is Thursday, October 9, 2014. The final exam for the course will last two and a half hours and will take place on Thursday, December 9, 2014, at 1930 in the classroom (SWGN 2A31). This is the regularly scheduled time for courses taught from 1800 to 1850 on Thursdays. (See the university exam schedule.) See here for the fall 2013 academic calendar. The syllabus is subject to change: this is especially true of homework.

    DayTopic Homework
    (1) August 21Philosophical inventory; Introduction; The Computer as a humanizing agent (Chs.1-2 [B]) TBD
    (2) August 28 What is Computer Ethics? Definitions by Walter Maner, deborah Johnson, James Moor, Terrell Ward Bynum, and Donald Gotterbarn (Ch.1 [B] and readings). TBD
    (3) September 4 Talk on careers by Ms. Jennifer Whetstone-Jackson of the USC Career Center: The Value of Experiential Learning TBD
    (4)September 11 Philosophic Belief Systems: Idealism and Realism (Ch 3 [B]) TBD
    (5) September 18 Philosophic Belief Systems: Pragmatism and Existentialism (Ch 3 [B]). The possibility of a unifying ethical theory (Ch. 5 [B]) TBD
    (6) September 25 The ethical decision-making process (Ch. 6 [B]). TBD
    (7) October 2 The ethical decision-making process, ctd. TBD
    (8) October 9 Presentation by Prof. Duncan Buell on Voting Machines TBD
    (9) October 16 Presentation by Dr. Csilla Farkas on Computer Security and Information Assurance TBD
    October 23 Fall Break NA
    (10) October 30 Psychology and computer ethics (Ch.7 [B]). The computing field as a profession (Ch.8 [B]). TBD
    (11) November 6 Computer-related codes of ethics (Ch.9 [B]). Three case studies for the Joint Software Engineer's Code. TBD
    (12) November 13 Presentation by Dr. Ioannis Rekleitis on Ethical Issues in Robotics. TBD
    (13) November 20 Student Presentations TBD
    November 28 Thanksgiving Recess NA
    (14) December 4 Student Presentations TBD