How would the philosophers handle the Situation?

How would the philosophers handle the Situation?


Today, many ethical dilemmas are occurring in organizations due to misrepresentation, goal conflict among other causes. Online tutoring is a firm that faces ethical dilemmas, and it needs to consider ethics and morals and to solve the problem. Tutors should act as motivators and mentors, but their roles have changed in that rather than offering tutoring assistance, they complete the assignment for the students. In the case scenario, ethical theorists provide the ethics and morals which the firm require to implement to solve the dilemmas and prevent unethical behaviors.  Kant, Bethany, and,  Rand offer ethical concepts that focus on performing actions that produce happiness, set a standard of values and, more importantly, show the right behaviors without considering the consequences. 

 In the case scenario, the two business dilemmas are; using a citation machine in students’ work and tutors for hire who writes papers for students. The act of using a citation machine to make work easier for students is unethical action because the role of tutors is to help students become an independent learner and support them in academic learning. However, in this scenario. Tutors go beyond the expected responsibility to the point of using citation machine in in-text-citation. Instead of allowing the students cite for themselves, they will enable the device to do the work. Note that students should be engaged in learning and show interest in doing things for themselves.  Besides, students need to do practice to gain experience and more importantly increase literacy skills.  Secondly, hiring a tutor to work for students is unethical action because tutors should not work for the students, but instead, they should use the learning approaches in helping students (Freedomphilosophy, 2015). The facts that make these two actions unethical are First, business put concern on the values and moral behaviors in running the business.  Business also allows the company to understand the ethical dilemmas and make an ethical decision. However, in this scenario, the Tutoring University (TU) has unethical issues due to conflicting values. In other words, the firm does not create a culture where tutors may have an opportunity to have an ethical choice, but they decide to make decisions which will lead to revenue maximization. It is important to note that the firm does not consider the core values which would assist in moving in the right direction and more importantly run the business. Instead, Ang Lee and Josh (top managements) does not give the other members an opportunity to share the ideas and make the conclusion, or determine whether the decision made is desirable or undesirable (Freedomphilosophy, 2015).

 The ‘Tutoring University' had initially established the codes of conduct which its main purpose was to help the employees act professionally. The code of conduct acted as guide and reference and, more importantly, helped the team make an ethical decision. In the scenario, the firm violated two codes of conduct namely; agreeing to do the work or students and creating materials (citation machine) that would cite the student's work. According to Bethany, employees and employers should adhere to the code of conduct to avoid ethical problems (Hood, 1998).  In this scenario, the code of conduct plays a significant role in providing inspiration and guidance where all tutors including the top management understand the ethical conduct as well the main obligations.  Besides, the code of conduct creates a positive image in that the firm was widely known and its growth was remarkable. The code of conduct could also assist in identifying the unethical conduct regarding the business operation.  Given that the code of conduct to guide the team in acting professionally and ethically, it did not create the dilemmas.  The code of conduct states that the role of a tutor is to mentor the students and help them think critically and they should not do the work for them. Also, tutors could not create materials that could simplify the students work (Hood, 1998). As long as the firm created the Code of Conduct, it is the role and responsibility of the tutors act professionally.  The dilemma occurs because the tutors violate the Code and for this reason, the stated Code of Conduct serves as a reference for the dilemma.  In view of the fact that the firm created a Code of Conduct, it indicates that the firm was ready to act responsibly and adhere to the firm's standards. Thus, the Code of Conduct does not create the dilemma but, the tutor created the difficulties due to the failure to adhere to the rules (Hood, 1998).

 The business dilemmas in this case scenario belong to two categories of ethical issue. The first dilemma; the use of citation machine belongs to the organizational level while the second dilemma; tutor for hire belongs to the individual level.  The reason for placing the first dilemma at organizational level is because the industry decided to compete with the new entrants and one of the strategy was to use the citation machine (Marshall, 2014).This dilemma is supported by the entire company because after implementing the model, the marketing department takes a step to advertise the new services to the target customers. Note that this is a resource strategy which is created by the company with an aim of achieving the goals.  Secondly, the second ethical dilemma belongs to the individual level where a tutor is hired by a student to complete assessments. It is also important to understand that this ethical dilemma occur due to competition pressure. For instance, the hired tutor does not support the students in learning but rather he or she completes home tests for students and charges a price per page. Instead of helping the students develop learning skills, a hired tutor acts as homework helper (Marshall, 2014).Thus, dilemmas occur from both individual and organization level and both focus on competing with the new entrant and making profits.  Even though the organization play role in allowing tutors work for the students, the agreement on payment and work completion is between the student and the tutor. All these problems occur simply because there no moral agreement and the tutors makes a moral choice not to adhere to the social responsibility.  In addition, the dilemmas at individual and organization level arises due to failure to adhere to Code of ethics that are set to assist in making ethical decision (Marshall, 2014).These actions are unethical because the tutors and the firm undertake the actions for best interest.

Ethical Question: Should online tutors complete the students' assignments?  In solving this dilemma, Bethany asserts that moral actions adds pleasure to the life of people and minimizes harm or pain.  In this case scenario, an ethical work is an action that produces happiness and reduces damage to the customers and the community (Solomon, 2014).  According to utilitarianism, online tutors should not assist the students in completing the assignment because the tutor engages in academic dishonesty and the consequences will cause great harm not only to the students but also to the community (Brown University, 2018).  Students lack problem-solving skills and critical thinking skills, and this means that the society will be full of undereducated people who cannot bring development.

 Kant states that people should adhere to the moral law or instead they should act in a way that the duty performed is the appropriate thing to do (Teachphilosophy, 2013). Kant focuses on the task performed and in the case scenario, it is unethical to help the students complete the assignment. Even though the action will benefit the students as they will not strain nor waste time, Kant perceives this as wrong. People should fulfill the moral duties while adhering to the rules (Brown University, 2018).

Rand states that people live according to the standard of value. To live a happy life, people must create values and moral standards which guides in achieving the benefits.  In other words, there should be moral questions and ethical principles that govern in attaining the life values.  Since people follow the moral code, it is possible to differentiate between the right things that will sustain life and evil things that will destroy life (Solomon, 2014).Thus, Rand theory is teleological- this means that people need to consider the effect of actions in life and egoistic-means that people should follow own interest in performing activities.  In solving the dilemma, online tutors should not complete the assignments for students. First, tutors should have standard values which will allow them to understand the consequences of the actions in their lives.  The act of violating the code of conduct and helping students complete the assignment destroys the objective conditions that bring happiness (Brown University, 2018).

Two theorists who would solve the two dilemmas in the case scenario are Bethany and Kant.  In addressing the first dilemma, Kant would argue that there is a moral law that guides people's actions. In other words, people need to consider the act itself but not the consequences.  No matter whether the results of the activities will be positive or negative, the actions matters. In doing actions, Kant focuses on the moral character and moral obligation. To put it clearly, Kant argues that people should not follow the moral law in doing right actions, but they should have goodwill and a sense of duty.  In other words, the moral code should not guide on which steps to take or not, but the universal law should govern the people.  Note that the moral law connects with the rational nature, but these should not guide in actions, but rather people should use dignity and autonomy and treat others as ends.  In the case scenario, tutors treat the students as ‘means' merely because they use them to make a profit or in other words, they force them to engage in unethical acts without their free consent. 

Bethany would also solve the second dilemma by arguing that the act of completing the assignments for students is unethical because the results will cause harm not only to students but also to the society.  Rather than helping students solve problems and think critically, tutor spoils the students in that as they enter in the employment, they will cause more harm than benefit.  In doing actions, people should consider two things; pleasure and pain. Even though there are moral rules, the important thing is to act concerning the specific situation to produce happiness and maximize pain.



Ethics are important in life as they help people distinguish between the right and the wrong actions. Code of conducts plays a critical role in assisting people to adhere to moral conduct or specific behaviors by providing ethical guidelines. In the case scenario, the firm has set code of conduct that guides toward ethical behaviors. However, the firm violates the law of conduct and the violation results in ethical dilemmas which affect which affects a multitude of people including tutors, students, and society. In solving the moral dilemma, Kant, Rant, and, Bethany argue that all actions performed should be based on maximizing happiness and minimizing pain.






Solomon Alyson. (2014). Ethical Theory. Retrieved from:


Brown University. (2018). A Framework for Making Ethical Decision.  Retrieved from:


Teachphilosophy. (2013). Kant’s Moral Theory (Part 1 & 2). Retrieved from:


Freedomphilosophy. (2015). How To Make Better Decisions. Retrieved from:


Marshall T. (2014). Do The Right Thing: Making Ethical Decisions In Everyday Life. Retrieved from:


Hood John. (1998). Do Corporations Have Social Responsibilities? Retrieved from:

1925 Words  7 Pages

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