In two of his classes, Larry’s professors said that he could work homework problems with other students as long as he turned in his own answers. In another class, the professor said that students could not work with other students. Each time the professor collected homework, students were required to write a statement at the bottom of their assignment that assured the professor that the homework had been the student’s own effort.
Half an hour before class, Larry’s girlfriend Annie asked if he would help her finish the last three homework problems so she could hand them in on time. Larry asked her how she would feel about signing the statement if he helped her.
A. What is the ethical issue here?
B. What alternatives are available to Larry?
C. If the professor discovers that Annie and Larry’s answers are similar in ways that reflect the fact that they worked together, what might happen? What risks are involved?
D. What information is relevant to Larry’s decision?
E. Does Larry’s dilemma have only one correct solution? Why or why not?
F. Explore this problem from different perspectives:
3. The professor
G. How important is it for students to behave ethically?
H. By exploring the ethics of this situation, what could Larry and Annie learn about professional ethics?