Principles of Conduct for Professors
An Academy study group looked at the intellectual and ethical dilemmas faced by U.S. professors as they balance responsibilities to their students, their disciplines, the university, and the broader community.
Professors at U.S. colleges and universities continually grapple with intellectual and ethical dilemmas about professional responsibility to their students, their disciplines, the university and other institutions, and the broader community. Henry Rosovsky (Harvard University) convened an Academy group to examine whether it is possible to create professional standards that would help professors navigate this complex terrain, and how to approach the question.
A smaller working group was invited to prepare case studies of two of the more vexing problems facing professors: grade inflation and the parallel “inflation” in letters of recommendations for students and colleagues. In both areas, professors are faced with ethical and practical, as well as with legal, demographic, and institutional, challenges. An occasional paper, Evaluation and the Academy: Are We Doing the Right Thing?, was published in 2002 to provide a clear and objective explanation of these two contentious and complex issues to a wider audience.
Funding for this project came from the American Academy and the Carnegie Corporation.