Students sought to answer tough questions as members of the Ethics Bowl team

Contact: Mark Schwerin

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Western Michigan University's Center for the Study of Ethics in Society is recruiting students for the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl competition and will take up to two teams to represent the University at the regional qualifier Nov. 18 at Oakland University.

An information session is slated for 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 13, in 2072 Moore Hall. The cases for the regional competition will be posted the first week of classes at Students may consult the same website to review cases from previous years, as well as the rules of the competition.

A slot on the team may also involve participation during the spring 2018 semester, depending on whether the team advances to the APPE Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl National Championship on March 4, 2018, in Chicago.

All travel expenses will be covered by the University.

The competition

During the competition, each team is presented with an ethical situation to which it must recommend a course of action. The teams get the cases to study beforehand and must defend its position in response to questions from a panel of judges and from the opposing team. Each team answers one case per round.

Getting a spot on the team involves a commitment to meet once or twice a week for approximately two hours beginning in mid-September until the regional competition. If the team advances to the national competition, it will have a similar meeting schedule in January and February. Being selected to represent WMU in this competition requires regular attendance at these meetings, as well as independent work researching assigned cases and preparing the team’s position on those cases.

Ethics Bowl is an interdisciplinary activity, and students from all programs of study are welcome. Although completion of an ethics course is desirable, it is not necessary for successful participation.

The Intercollegiate Ethics Bowl received a Special Commendation for Excellence and Innovation from the American Philosophical Association and the Philosophy Documentation Center. WMU was the regional champion in 2006 and 2007 and placed in the top 10 nationally in 1998, 2000, 2008 and 2009.

For more information, contact the team's faculty sponsor, Dr. Sandra Borden, at

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