Journalism 4470- Blog 7

Angel Bell

Ethics and the Decision Making Process

Before taking Journalism 4470, I did not realize that ethical decision making was a step-by-step process. I always thought decision making only consisted of thoughts about a situation and assessing those thoughts using religious values, past experiences etc.  Eventually, I learned that ethical decision making can take on many different forms depending on what a person believes and deems most important.

General review of different ethical models put everything into perspective. The realization that some organizations make means-based decision rather than ends-based decisions allowed me to better understand why certain decisions are made versus others. Many people probably wouldn’t be so quick to judge a decision if they knew all aspects of the decision making process.

Another “wow” moment for me, was realizing how much my decision making process was similar to various ethical models. For instance, based upon my religious beliefs, most of my decisions are communitarian or means- based but they do take into account the outcome (ends-based). Generally, my process can not be exclusively classified as one or the other.

I admit, I thought the class was pointless at the beginning of the semester. I did not see the purpose of teaching adults how to make decisions, when they have been making decisions most of their life. Soon, I realized the significance of teaching a decision making process. Using a process allows one to consider perspectives and stakeholders they may have otherwise disregarded. The process itself is a good way to validate and defend one’s decisions. Employers are most likely to support a well-informed /thought out decision rather than one solely based on intuition. I plan to apply what I have learned to my career decisions as well as my daily life.

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