University of Phoenix
June 29th, 2015
The concept of ethics deals with human behaviors and moral development is crucial in today's society. Throughout history, there have been many different theories. When thinking ethically an individual must think about and differentiate between what is wrong and what is right. Virtue Theory, Utilitarianism, and Deontological ethics are all parts of normative ethics. The purpose of this paper is to explain the differences or similarities among these theories. Also, I will share a personal experience where from one of these theories’ I can explain the relationship between virtues, values, and moral concepts.
Virtue Theory Virtue Theory is the ethical approach that states a person's character can or will affect their moral thinking rather than the desire to follow the rules or doing what is considered as one's duty. Traits such as honesty or generosity will shape the morals and help lay the framework for a strong value and belief system. When an individual practices virtue theory they are making decisions based on ideas or knowledge that he or she has gained through their life and experiences. Utilitarianism It is said that utilitarianism is one of the most widely accepted ethical theories to date. In my understanding utilitarianism states that what is ethically correct should produce the greatest possible benefit (the greater good) to the most significant number of people. Utilitarianism is considered a consequentialist theory because it focuses on providing good outcomes or benefits. There are two versions of utilitarianism theory; act utilitarianism and rule utilitarianism. (Ethics Applied, 2013).
Deontological ethics focuses on the wrongness or rightness of the actions themselves not necessarily the outcomes. A good example that I read about was lying. When an individual lies they are not thinking about the consequences of the lie itself, more that they just do not want to be blamed or in trouble at that particular time. One thing I learned as a