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UF 200: Foundations of Ethics & Diversity

What do All UF 200 Courses Have in Common?

Ethics guide how we ought to live, and we live in a diverse society with other individuals and groups. UF 200 courses help students investigate how we practice our ethics together as engaged citizens creating an inclusive community.

Although individual instructors use different examples, case studies, and course topics (or themes) to guide student exploration, each UF 200 course challenges students to inquire into key ethical ideas and values together, giving equal voice to all who are committed to the public good.

Fall 2023


Search by Faculty or by keywords/big ideas/course themes: (for example: sustainability, human rights, global awareness, information literacy, technology, public health)

Course TopicCourse Description
EthDiv Freedom of ThoughtThere's a growing perception that education and indoctrination are synonymous with one another. This course section addresses that perception by employing the point-counterpoint teaching philosophy to explore the ethics related to the inclusion of ideological diversity. This approach encourages students to consider counterpoints to their points of view, focused not on agreement, but understanding. The expectation isn't that students change who they are, but get to know who they are at a deeper level. Actively practicing our freedom of thought, we'll be covering a myriad of topics from a variety of opposing and conflicting perspectives. A word of warning - enrolling in this course section means understanding that the classroom environment may not always be an emotionally safe space, but an intellectually brave space.
EthDiv & Food ChoicePeople often do not have access to nutritious food due to a variety of social and economic factors. As a result, they continuously fall behind those who may have access to more nutritious, better quality choices. In this course section, we will examine how ethics, diversity, and human rights apply to the specific issue of food access, choice, consumption and the impact of these on human health, wellbeing, and the safety of our planet. We will discuss and analyze questions like: Who does/does not have access to high quality food and why does that matter? What are some ways in which we can increase access to healthy, sustainable food for all communities? What can individuals do to support this and where can we begin? What are some traditional foods in the diets of people all over the world? How does dwindling natural resources impact traditional food cultures? The course does not espouse any particular lifestyle, culture or diet choice.
EthDiv & SustainabilitySustainable communities take on the very difficult challenge of attempting to weigh and balance environmental health, economic security, social equity, and cultural heritage. In this course section, we will explore the critical ethical questions inherent in why we sustain, the significance of diversity in what we sustain and for whom, and the centrality of civic virtue, citizen engagement, civil discourse, discipline expertise, and intellectual humility in how we sustain.
EthDiv & Moral CourageWinston Churchill once stated, "Courage is what it takes to stand up and speak; courage is also what it takes to sit down and listen." This course section melds moral philosophy, eastern and western traditions, creative non-fiction and personal reflection to examine moral courage and the role it plays in our identity as well as our vocation.
EthDiv & "The Passions"This course section examines the various ways that religion and ethics manifest in historical and contemporary contexts specifically when dealing with the phenomena of the passions. This course section will focus on the interaction of Religion and Ethics through systems which are often considered both ethical and religious. Further analysis of these systems will play out in reading John Steinbeck's Tortilla Flat.
EthDiv & ConspiracyBy developing and examining your own code of ethics, metacognition, and informational lens to the world, this course section approaches both the history and current state of misinformation and conspiracism to help you break free of their potentially dangerous effects. In doing so, you will be encouraged to engage with information more ethically and learn the importance of diverse viewpoints for a broader, more inclusive, and in-depth understanding of your world.
EthDiv & Food in the USIn this course section we will investigate how the concepts of ethics, diversity and human rights apply to the specific issue of food access, quality, safety and production. In short, we will examine how food is produced and distributed in the United States and the ethics behind the American food industry and workforce. Through an analysis of food, we will encounter other major ethical debates in modern American life. In addition, we will analyze the meaning of the term "diversity" as it applies to American food workers and consumers.
EthDiv & Refugee CrisisThis course section will use human displacement and the global refugee crisis as topics of discussion and exploration. These issues are present in the Boise community, the United States, and worldwide. We will use the core concept of displacement to examine complex ethical, societal, and economic relationships. Who has access, and who is denied access and why?
EthDiv in Sports Film/LitWhat can we learn about ethics, diverse experiences, and cultural stories in sports films and literature? At the heart of exploring ethics, diversity, and story is exploring the human experience. To broaden our understanding of ourselves and others, in this course section we'll study frameworks for ethical decision-making, ways of knowing, and ways of considering others? experiences by listening to their stories. We'll read and watch sports stories as prisms through which to study these concepts, and we'll use these concepts as prisms to see sports stories.
EthDiv & MemoryThis course section will examine issues of ethics and diversity specifically through questions of how we relate to the past, how our personal and collective memories evolve over time, and how memory and memorialization function both socially and politically. We use our discussions of memory as a way of understanding ethical issues, diversity, and systems of inequality.
EthDiv & PluralityIn this course section we will investigate ethical frameworks and concepts related to diversity. The thematic focus of the course will be on precarity as a way to understand our human relationships to others and plurality as a way of understanding belonging to the world. Both of these concepts reflect how the grounds of our existence include relations with others that shape both how we see ourselves, our everyday relationship with others, and how our view and treatment of others affect both those others and ourselves.
EthDiv & CommunityThis course section focuses on how stakeholders with diverse perspectives, formed by their cultural identities and ethical standards can impact an oppressed community. We will answer the question: "How do different cultural and ethical perspectives impact how and/or whether stakeholders (individuals, groups, organizations, governments, corporations) will respond to the systems of inequality that lead to a lack of safety, justice and equitable opportunity for oppressed communities?"
EthDiv Beyond "Two Sides"In this course section, we will use a variety of readings, activities, and projects to go beyond binary, "two sides?" thinking and discover creative, authentic, inclusive ways to address ethical dilemmas.
EthDiv & HospitalityFor centuries global religions have practiced hospitality as a way to identify their community by defining relationships with others. In this course section, through in-depth studies of ancient religious texts and stories of being guest, host, other, and friend, you will discover your understanding and responsibility of welcoming others in this 21st century global context toward encouraging a personal ethic and living diversity.
EthDiv in Global CulturesThe 21st century presents unique challenges informed by an evolving world that invites rapid changes with each generation. This course section will engage students in research, discussions, and projects on emerging topics connected to the different sets of values and societal norms across the world through the lens of ethics and diversity in a global context. Students will learn skills and tools to navigate the reality of the world as a borderless complex environment that requires transformational thinkers and doers with high levels of emotional and cultural intelligence.
EthDiv & Idaho HistoryWhen folks think of the State of Idaho, "diversity" isn't usually one of the first words that come to mind. Why is that? A look into the past reveals that the Gem State has a rich and unique story to tell. In this course section, we will examine Idaho's history through the lenses of morality, ethics, diversity, and justice. What role has race played in our state's history? What about incarceration and imprisonment? Gender and sexuality? How have Idahoans worked together to fight injustice? A cursory exploration of these topics will help us understand how these big issues occur on a local level - and how we can continue to foster positive change going forward.
EthDiv & Higher EducationIn this course section we will read, discuss and write about diversity and the role of higher education in diversity literacy. The essential questions of this course are: Why does the university require me to take UF200? Should the university require courses like this one for all majors? What are the consequences and benefits of mandating a course on ethics and diversity? How does higher education influence diversity, racism, and bias and reciprocally, how does diversity, racism and bias influence higher education?
EthDiv & GenderMen are from Mars, women are from Venus? Transgender or gender non-binary? Does biological sex determine gender roles and norms? Did you know some cultures have 3, 4, even 5 genders? Can gender change over a lifetime? Gender permeates our identities, relationships, families, faith communities, political and economic systems, and the media and sports we consume. In this course section, we will investigate how concepts of ethics, diversity, intersectionality, and privilege can help us better understand and navigate our own lives and our complex, gendered world.
EthDiv & FolkloreIn this course we will investigate issues related to ethics and diversity through the lens of folklore and fairy tales from around the world. Some of the questions we will explore are: how do fairy tales convey personal and social conflicts? Moral and ethical dilemmas? In what ways can these stories inspire us to produce creative solutions to complex issues such as gender, class, and cultural identity?
EthDiv & Soc-Eco ModelUtilizing stand-point theory as a guide, this course section aims to help students garner an understanding of the interplay between culture, identity, and power. During the first part of the course, students will examine their ethical frameworks as well as their own social identities. During the second part of the course, students will employ the Social-Ecological Model to examine their diverse social positions in comparison to relationships with others close to them, the community, and society at large.
EthDiv & Global KnowledgeLiving in an interconnected world, global knowledge is important in today's classroom and workplace. In this course section we will examine new meanings and perspectives about oneself and the world we live in. We will explore ideas through ethical frameworks and diverse perspectives to reach solutions about complex global issues. Students will engage in the real-time, relevant challenges of civic and community life, as citizens of our local/global communities.
EthDiv Social InequalityIn this course section we will investigate how the concepts of ethics and diversity apply to the issue of social inequality in the world today. The first part of this course addresses the theoretical foundation and application of critical theory. After we provide a theoretical lens for understanding social injustice and inequality, we then begin to investigate various topics of inequality. Special emphasis is given to the following topics of social inequality: social class, globalization, race and ethnicity, gender, and education.
EthDiv & RelationshipsIn this course section, we will investigate a theme that connects to students? personal experiences, yet also has communal and cultural significance: Human Relationships in the Modern World. Who are you? Where are you from? What guides your beliefs, decisions, and actions? How do you treat others? What is the best way to live in a community? When we better understand the forces that shape our values and choices, we can go forward in the world with more awareness, empathy, and consideration.
EthDiv Refugee/ImmigrantIn this course section, we will explore the concepts of ethics and diversity from a wide range of contexts connected to ethical issues refugees/immigrants face in the United States and around the world. Also, we will explore, in a systematic manner, connections among race-ethnicity, class, and gender, and will examine issues of privilege and difference in U.S. society. Students and the course professor together will explore questions such as: How are values and ethics established in individuals and society? What are some helpful approaches to ethical questions?
EthDiv & PolyculturalismWhat if there was a time and place where groups of people with differing ideologies lived harmoniously side-by-side, blending their cultures to create one of the most artistically intriguing periods in human history? What could this teach us? In this course section we will seek answers to these questions by "visiting" pivotal moments in the 700-year long period of Moorish rule in Spain and exploring the theory of "La Convivencia," which proposes that Muslims, Jews, and Christians co-existed for centuries in relative peace. By considering how past peoples reflected on matters of ethics and diversity, we will better understand and appreciate the significance of these concepts in the present.
EthDiv & DevianceUsing ideas from philosophy, cultural anthropology, and sociology, this course section will explore the moral and ethical implications of how labels and stereotypes perpetuate outmoded or limited ideas about the nature of "acceptable" social traits and behaviors throughout the world. By looking at various "deviant" categories, and studying the social codes and contexts that inform the perception of those categories, we will then look at how the penal system in America is a case study of how those perceptions play out for 2.26 million people every day.
EthDiv & Moral ProblemsIn this course section we begin by thinking through familiar moral codes and problems like "what's right or wrong about eating meat?" or "what is to be a good friend?" and work up to deeper questions about what we mean at all by right and wrong, bad and good, and what the main types of ethical frameworks are and how they may guide us. We shall then focus our moral inquiries on issues of citizenship and immigration, race and gender, and the historical dynamics of power, which we will study at both theoretical and cultural levels.
EthDiv & Tough ChoicesIn this course we will investigate tough choices and the banality of inactivity, specifically addressing the question, "How does a citizen of a global society make 'good' choices, when 'good' potentially means so many things to so many people?" You will make many choices in your life; this course provides frameworks and practice for exploring that process.
EthDiv & Free SpeechWe spend our cyber lives Tweeting, liking, sharing and following strangers in our digital world. And the First Amendment gives us broad freedom to publish what we see fit to print in the online universe. But do our First Amendment rights come with certain responsibilities? This course section uses the digital media landscape as a laboratory to consider the relationship between ourselves, media, ethics, and diversity as we consider the intended and unintended consequences of media production and consumption. In this course we’ll ask questions about representation, online bullying, censorship, misinformation, hate speech, filter bubbles and more as we evaluate media jurisprudence, online diversity and our daily Instagram feeds under the auspices of classic and modern ethical frameworks. In this class we’ll ask, “What is good?” and “What is right?” when it comes to our media appetite.
EthDiv & Living ValuesIn this course section, we will focus on values identification, committed action to one’s values, and mindfulness in relation to issues of importance in ethics and diversity. Emphasis will be on one’s personal obligations in one’s own life and in the larger community.
EthDiv & Hip-Hop/ArtIn this course section, we will investigate ethics and diversity through the lenses of Hip Hop music and Street Art. Some questions may be, “How does Street Art reflect or reject a community’s values?” or “In what ways does Hip Hop/rap music examine ethical dilemmas?” We will also examine how Hip Hop music and Street Art address issues of racial justice, including Black Lives Matter.
EthDiv in Graphic NovelsIn this course section we will explore issues of Ethics and Diversity as represented in graphic novels. Comic books were some of the first media to seriously examine racial issues, drug use, government overreach, the sexualization and objectification of people, violence, and the power of people to make positive and substantive changes in the world around them. We will look at fictional depictions of these issues and use them to analyze the world around us.
EthDiv Reading & EmpathyIn this course section get ready to read (books, essays, poems; and also view/listen to film, podcasts, etc), write, and engage in courageous conversation that helps us know ourselves and each other, reflect on experience, and address complex ethical topics with dignity and possibility.
EthDiv & CensorshipCensorship often affects what, how, and why we read certain texts, watch certain films, listen to a specific type of music, search the Internet in a specific way, and believe in what we believe. This course section will focus on the censorship of literary texts, films, and music while examining the civic and ethical foundations of censorship cases in the United States.
EthDiv & Latin AmericaIn this course section, the essential question is: How has U.S. foreign policy in Latin America affected ethnic diversity in the United States? This question supports the learning outcomes of ethics and diversity by presenting the relation between the history of U.S. political, military, and economic intervention in Latin America and its connection to Latin American migration to the United States. After learning about approaches to analyzing the ethicality of decisions and actions, we will apply these frameworks to specific historical events and policies such as immigration. Through analysis of literary texts by Latin American and U.S. Latinx authors, you will also learn about the challenges that many Latin American immigrants and U.S. Latinx citizens face.
EthDiv & Public HealthThis course section looks at ethics and diversity through the lens of Public Health. It will review topics of health equity and disparity, environmental justice and provide a tool, Health Impact Assessments, which is designed to address and mitigate negative health impacts with proposed developments.