Position Paper Assignment


Complete all of the steps below. Be sure to separate each step (indicating clearly which step you are addressing in each section). Be sure as well to address all of the “prompts” provided.  Suggested length:  4-6  (double-spaced, typed) pages.


Step One: Select one of the communication ethics case studies explored this semester. As concisely as possible, provide a narrative detailing the relevant facts in the case. Be sure the narrative is comprehensive, including enough detail to provide readers a clear understanding of the case (carefully avoiding inclusion of extraneous information). Be sure as well that the narrative is fair and representative of the diverse “voices” at the heart of the case.


Step Two:  Provide a concise overview of the communication ethics challenge at the heart of the case. In your overview, be sure to identify the decision maker(s) clearly. Be sure as well to provide thoughtful overviews of the competing values and conflicting obligations confronting the decision maker(s) at the heart of the case.


Step Three: Provide brief overviews of communicative choices available to the decision maker(s).  Be sure to include all viable options meeting the criteria for reasonableness and responsiveness outlined throughout the semester and highlighted in Chapter 10 of the course text.



Step Four: Identify all key values and beliefs shared by all members of the deliberative community. Be sure to include only directly relevant values, assumptions, and related beliefs of importance to deliberations in the case.


Step Five: Provide a brief overview of your perspective on how best to address the communication ethics challenge at the heart of this case.  Based on all that we have learned this semester regarding communication ethics, which of the options outlined in Step Three should the decision maker(s) adopt?  Why?  Briefly summarize your reasons for this assessment. Be sure to include the primary (most compelling) grounds available in support of your proposal.


Step Six: Identify potentially contested claims appearing in your response to Step Five.


Step Seven: On what grounds might a thoughtful and reasonable post-conventional deliberative partner disagree with your perspective regarding the most ethically justified available option? Concisely summarize the partner’s alternative proposal. Be sure to include the most compelling support available for this alternative point of view.