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Access Type

WSU Access

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name



Criminal Justice

First Advisor

Dr. Jennifer Wareham


With recent corporate scandals bringing attention to the need to improve ethical actions within corporations, business schools have focused more attention on imparting ethical values to their students. This study examined the impact that a business ethics course would have on business students; their responses were compared to a sample of non-business students. The study used a pre-course/post-course survey design and a convenience sample of students from two mid-western universities to test several research questions related to the impact of ethics education. Results of the pre-course survey indicated that business students saw situations regarding the manipulation of corporate records as less ethical than non-business students. The post-course survey indicated that business students viewed issues related to financial inducement as less ethical than non-business students. There were no differences between males and females in either survey period, and post-ethics course business students showed no differences from pre-course business students. The potential impact of the results will be discussed, as well as policy implications and ideas from future research in the areas of business ethics education, and business persons' ethical orientation.

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