Ethics Case Study Assignment Instructions

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Ethics Case Study Resource


The issue of conflict of interest is among the most fundamental ethical situations faced by engineers. During their professional practice, engineers face situations involving conflict of interest on an ongoing basis. Each situation must be evaluated based upon the individual and specific facts in the case as there is no one-size-fits-all rule that can be applied to conflict of interest situations. Some situations involve obvious answers while others are more complicated and require careful analysis and examination. While sometimes the appropriate response is disclosure of all of the facts and circumstances to all parties, in other cases, disclosure is insufficient and other courses of action are necessary. In other situations, the engineer must avoid the conflict entirely or else run afoul of basic ethical principles.



  1. Based on ENGR 105 class discussions, the course text, your knowledge of the NSPE Code of Ethics (found on the Ethics Case Study Assignment page under Ethics Case Study Resources) and your research, reflect on the proper course of action you should take in the scenario presented. Your position should be specifically based on contents of the Code and on upon your worldview. Clearly identify how you would address any potential conflicts of interest. Synthesize the similarities and differences between the Bible’s approach to ethics and the engineering creed as they pertain to this scenario. Keep in mind that you are an employee of the construction firm, not a manager or executive in the company. You must carefully balance your personal views with those of the company and the international standards represented by NSPE.
    1. Prepare a 1200–1500-word report (length of main body, not counting title or reference page) on your evaluation of this situation, taking care to properly cite sources both in- text and in a reference list at the end of the report. Reports that contain verbatim copied passages without proper citation will receive zero (0) credit. In addition, reports that contain lengthy copied passages from sources, even if they are properly cited, will be severely marked down.
    1. Your report is to be to be submitted through Canvas prior to due date / time shown in a doc, docx, or pdf file with the following specifications:
      1. use font styles Arial, Calibri or Times New Roman with a font size of 12
      1. use 1.5 line spacing
      1. use 1-inch margins on all sides
      1. file name format: lastname_firstname_ENGR105-section# (e.g., Engineer_Ima_ENGR105-001)


You are an engineer employed by a building construction firm, assigned to the drainage systems group. You receive the following solicitation from a company:

ACME Building Supply Company would like to invite you to participate in a new program tailored for engineers of septic/drainage systems. To qualify for this plan, attend the complimentary ACME Building Supply Company Seminar on Septic/Drainage Systems. If you are convinced of the value of our system, simply note on your construction plans that ACME carries septic and drainage products.  For the ACME Building Supply Company Rewards Program, your customer makes discounted purchases of ACME septic pipe on your ACME cash account (this is strictly a pay as you go basis). Every month you will receive a rewards certificate. This certificate is based on a percentage of monthly sales. Priority cash coupons may be redeemed at ACME and the East Westville Resort and Country Club.

As a new engineer, you are very interested in increasing your knowledge of the types of systems and technology available and of the potential suppliers of materials for your projects.


  1. Would it be ethical for you to attend the complimentary ACME Building Supply Company Seminar on Septic/Drainage Systems? Why or why not?
  2. Would that decision change if the seminar were being held in Las Vegas, Nevada or on board a cruise ship? Why or why not?
  3. Would it be ethical for you to participate in the ACME Building Supply Company Rewards Program?  Why or why not?
  4. You discover that the owners of ACME are active in the LBGT community. Does that affect your previous decisions? Why or why not?

Note: Your assignment will be checked for originality via the Turnitin plagiarism tool.

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