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ASU Electronic Theses and Dissertations


This collection includes most of the ASU Theses and Dissertations from 2011 to present. ASU Theses and Dissertations are available in downloadable PDF format; however, a small percentage of items are under embargo. Information about the dissertations/theses includes degree information, committee members, an abstract, supporting data or media.

In addition to the electronic theses found in the ASU Digital Repository, ASU Theses and Dissertations can be found in the ASU Library Catalog.

Dissertations and Theses granted by Arizona State University are archived and made available through a joint effort of the ASU Graduate College and the ASU Libraries. For more information or questions about this collection contact or visit the Digital Repository ETD Library Guide or contact the ASU Graduate College at gradformat@asu.edu.


Subject
Date Range
2011 2019


This dissertation provides a critical analysis of public administration's understanding of the relationship between rational thought and action in its discourse on ethics. It argues that rationalist ethics assume a particular relationship between thought and action: that good knowledge leads to good, proper action. While there have been many critiques of rationalist administrative ethics, scholars have not examined the way in which rationalism persists in the way in which the teaching of ethics is conducted. The use of the case study figures prominently in this. Thus, the dissertation explores the historical and theoretical intersection of rationalism, ethics, and teaching through …

Contributors
Callen, Jeffrey Craig, Catlaw, Thomas J, Corley, Elizabeth, et al.
Created Date
2013

Advocacy groups work across many aspects of “death with dignity” practice and treatment, and provide insight across multiple aspects of “death with dignity”. This study argues that key advocacy groups in the American death with dignity movement influenced the broader conceptualization of death with dignity in a way that makes patients more able to achieve it. This influence has been a dynamic process across different periods of practice starting the discussion of “death with dignity” in 1985 through today, although this thesis extends only to 2011. The question in this study is how do the three main historical advocacy groups …

Contributors
Cohan, Hailey E, Ellison, Karin, O'Neil, Erica, et al.
Created Date
2019

Effective Altruism (EA), a moral philosophy concerned with accomplishing the greatest possible good in one’s lifetime, sees little utilitarian and/or humanitarian value in the arts. EA suggests that amidst so much global strife, the time, energy, and finances expended to create fleeting art would be put to better, more practical use in the fight against poverty. However, EA has yet to sufficiently account for sustainable art practice — an art form deeply rooted in utilitarianism and humanitarianism — and the possibility of its accompanying aesthetics as a constituent of utilitarian/humanitarian theories. The first chapter of this thesis illustrates an intersection …

Contributors
Nemelka, Kevin Wendell, Hoy, Meredith, Mesch, Claudia, et al.
Created Date
2017

Corporations in biomedicine hold significant power and influence, in both political and personal spheres. The decisions these companies make about ethics are critically important, as they help determine what products are developed, how they are developed, how they are promoted, and potentially even how they are regulated. In the last fifteen years, for-profit private companies have been assembling bioethics committees to help resolve dilemmas that require informed deliberation about ethical, legal, scientific, and economic considerations. Private sector bioethics committees represent an important innovation in the governance of emerging technologies, with corporations taking a lead role in deciding what is ethically …

Contributors
Brian, Jennifer Elizabeth Dyck, Robert, Jason S, Maienschein, Jane, et al.
Created Date
2012

Principle-based ethical frameworks, which commonly make use of codes of ethics, have come to be the popular approach in guiding ethical behavior within scientific research. In this thesis project, I investigate the benefits and shortcomings of this approach, ultimately to argue that codes of ethics are valuable as an exercise in developing a reconciled value profile for a given research community, and also function well as an internal and external proclamation of values and norms. However, this approach results in technical adherence, at best, and given the extent to which scientific research now irreversibly shapes our experience as human beings, …

Contributors
Craer, Jennifer Ryan, Ellison, Karin, Sarewitz, Daniel, et al.
Created Date
2017

This dissertation is positioned at the intersection of philosophy, theology, and critical theory in order to explore the way early modern literature may be enlisted as a vehicle for a return to an ethically informed humanism, specifically with regard to how Western culture currently understands the contingent categories of "life" and "the human." While a great deal of critical work is currently being marshaled in the field of biopolitics, scholarly focus continues to be placed on the materiality of the physical body, or what I term "biopolitical materialism." What remains underexplored, however, is the reality that "life" and "the human" …

Contributors
Noschka, Michael Joseph, Hawkes, David, Thompson, Ayanna, et al.
Created Date
2014

This study focuses on the principles of caring and respect for persons, and how they are manifested in the preschool classroom. Caring and respect are core ethical principles. When applied, they inform our thinking and guide our behavior. Leading ethicists, including Immanuel Kant and Nel Noddings, have argued that caring and respect are vital elements in ethical human relationships. This dissertation is at the forefront of a new line of inquiry which is seeking to connect the philosophical with the empirical in ways that can be illuminating for both, and for education research and practice more generally. The study connects …

Contributors
Paxton, Kate, Margolis, Eric, Swadener, Beth, et al.
Created Date
2014

The academic literature on science communication widely acknowledges a problem: science communication between experts and lay audiences is important, but it is not done well. General audience popular science books, however, carry a reputation for clear science communication and are understudied in the academic literature. For this doctoral dissertation, I utilize Sam Harris's The Moral Landscape, a general audience science book on the particularly thorny topic of neuroscientific approaches to morality, as a case-study to explore the possibility of using general audience science books as models for science communication more broadly. I conduct a literary analysis of the text that …

Contributors
Johnson, Nathan, Robert, Jason S, Creath, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2013

There is a gap between today's scientific advances and their application--between what is known and what is actually being done. This gap occurs because of the process of knowledge translation required to digest research findings for policymakers and practitioners. Studies have repeatedly shown that because of this "know-do" gap, approximately one-half of patients in the United States and Europe are not receiving care according to the most recent scientific evidence. Children are a medically unique and underserved population that stands to be most affected by this gap. Therefore, in this study, the research-practice gap in the pediatric field was calculated …

Contributors
Babiar, Heather, D'Angelo, Barbara, Brumberger, Eva, et al.
Created Date
2018

This dissertation engages with the philosophical, psychological, and scientific literature on two important topics: empathy and human enhancement. My two broad goals are to clarify the role of empathy in ascriptions of responsibility and to consider how enhanced empathy might alter those ascriptions. First, I argue that empathy is best thought of as a two-component process. The first component is what I call the rational component of empathy (RCE). RCE is necessary for moral responsibility as it allows us to put ourselves in another's shoes and to realize that we would want help (or not to be harmed) if we …

Contributors
Gurney, David Paul, McGregor, Joan, Brake, Elizabeth, et al.
Created Date
2016

Zoos are a unique collection-based institution with deep roots in the social structure of modern society. From their beginnings as elite menageries to display power or wealth, they have evolved into public institutions committed to providing exemplary animal care, and recreational and educational opportunities for visitors. More recently, zoos have developed a series of significant conservation programs and partnerships around the globe, efforts that have proved vital to saving endangered species such as the Arabian oryx (Oryx leucoryx) and California condor (Gymnogyps californianus), among other species. Intrinsic to the development of modern zoo designs are the interwoven concerns of naturalism …

Contributors
Boyle, Kristen Elaine, Minteer, Ben A, Ellison, Karin, et al.
Created Date
2017

Engineering ethics is preoccupied with technical failure. To ameliorate the risk that engineering works might either blow up or fall down, the engineering code of ethics provides guidance of how engineers should conduct themselves. For example, the Fundamental Canons in the National Society of Professional Engineers code of ethics states that engineers should hold paramount the health, safety and welfare of the public. As a result, engineering designs meet basic human needs such as food, water and shelter -- at risks that are generally considered acceptable. However, even safe designs fail to meet our needs ranked higher in Maslow's hierarchy …

Contributors
Vortherms, Kaitlin Sarah, Seager, Thomas, Tracy, Sarah, et al.
Created Date
2016

At present, the ideological bias in the human enhancement debate holds that opponents to human enhancement are primarily techno-conservatives who, lacking any reasonable, systematic account of why we ought to be so opposed, simply resort to a sort of fear-mongering and anti-meliorism. This dissertation means to counteract said bias by offering just such an account. Offered herein is a heuristic explanation of how, given a thorough understanding of enhancement both as a technology and as an attitude, we can predict a likely future of rampant commodification and dehumanization of man, and a veritable assault on human flourishing. Dissertation/Thesis

Contributors
Milleson, Valerye Michelle, Mcgregor, Joan, Robert, Jason, et al.
Created Date
2012

Professional environmental scientists are increasingly under pressure to inform and even shape policy. Scientists engage policy effectively when they act within the bounds of objectivity, credibility, and authority, yet significant portions of the scientific community condemn such acts as advocacy. They argue that it is nonobjective, that it risks damaging the credibility of science, and that it is an abuse of authority. This means objectivity, credibility, and authority deserve direct attention before the policy advocacy quagmire can be reasonably understood. I investigate the meaning of objectivity in science and that necessarily brings the roles of values in science into question. …

Contributors
Appleton, Caroline, Minteer, Ben, Chew, Matt, et al.
Created Date
2012

In the past 100 years pet, zoo/aquarium, and research animals have gained unprecedented legal protection from unnecessary human harm via the creation of strict animal cruelty laws. Due to the work of moral philosophers and compassionate lawyers/judges animal cruelty laws have been improved to provide harsher punishments for violations, had their scopes widened to include more animals and had their language changed to better match our evolving conception of animals as independent living entities rather than as merely things for human use. However, while the group of pet, zoo/aquarium, and research animals has enjoyed more consideration by the US legal …

Contributors
Decoster, Miles, Mcgregor, Joan, Blackson, Thomas, et al.
Created Date
2012

Within ethics, a number of scholars advocate an interdisciplinary approach of combining the two traditionally different professions of science and philosophy with the confidence that this collaboration will be a mutually beneficial experience. Current ethicist-scientist interactions include embedded-ethicists and research ethics consultation services. Both methods are employed with the hope that they will reduce social and ethical problems that could arise from scientific research, and enhance the reflective capacity of investigative teams. While much effort has been put forth in the endeavor of creating ethicist-scientist interactions, there remains opportunity to refine these new interaction models to make them more robust. …

Contributors
Min, Gyongeun Catherine, Ellison, Karin, Robert, Jason S, et al.
Created Date
2012

Technology is rapidly evolving, and mental health professionals are increasingly using technology in their clinical work. In reaction to this shift, it is important that research examines the ethical implications of online behaviors. The current study examined the online practices of graduate students in the mental health field and generated prediction models for online client searches and best practices in informed consent and online disclosure. The sample consisted of 316 graduate students in counseling, clinical, and school programs. Of those with clinical experience, a third had utilized the Internet to find information about their client. Progress in the participants' program, …

Contributors
Harris, Sara Elisabeth, Robinson Kurpius, Sharon E, Tracey, Terence, et al.
Created Date
2012

With new trends in drug development and testing, it must be determined whether the current state of balance of ethos (the moral norm) and regula (the legal framework) can successfully protect patients while keeping the door to scientific innovation open. The rise of the Clinician Investigator (CI) in both academic and private research introduces a challenge to the protection of subjects in the conflicting dual role of physician and scientist. Despite the constant evolution of regulation and ethical standards, questions about the roles' combined effectiveness in relation to this challenge persist. Carl Elliot describes the suicide of a patient-subject enrolled …

Contributors
Waddell, Amanda, Robert, Jason S, Ellison, Karin, et al.
Created Date
2012

Over recent decades, euthanasia has been a topic of increasing debate. With legalization of euthanasia in the states of Oregon and Washington and attempted reform in several other U.S. states and nations worldwide, it has become increasingly important to understand the roles and values of helping professionals who might be working with clients considering this option. The current study targeted 85 undergraduate students, 54 doctoral students in counseling psychology, and 53 doctoral-level professionals in psychology to assess both their personal values regarding euthanasia and their willingness to allow a client the autonomy to make a decision about euthanasia. Several factors …

Contributors
Bevacqua, Frank, Robinson-Kurpius, Sharon, Kinnier, Richard, et al.
Created Date
2011

Recently, philosophers have charged that Aristotelian-based virtue theories are empirically inadequate because the conception of character in which they are grounded is largely unfounded by findings in psychology. These philosophers argue in favor of situationism, the theory from social psychology that situational rather than dispositional differences among individuals are in large part responsible for human behavior. Situationists dispute the existence of traits that remain consistent across time and diverse situations and argue that features of situations can better explain and predict human behavior. After analyzing the psychological literature and historical cases put forth as evidence for situationism as well as …

Contributors
Valadez, Mayra Lizette, Calhoun, Cheshire, Walker, Margaret U, et al.
Created Date
2012