Morals and Ethics

Have you ever wondered what is ethics and is there any difference between ethics and morals? The short answer is: yes, there are important differences between the two, they are not synonymous with each other, although they are often used interchangeably in everyday discourse.

Both morals and ethics endeavor to answer the variety of questions related to how to lead a good and virtuous life, how to treat other living beings, and how to base decisions on the right values. Both have normative content, prescribing how we should behave in various contexts.  

Morals

Morals include systems of values and beliefs that shape behaviour of an individual or a community and are usually derived from what is generally accepted practice. It ranges from personal conviction, values transmitted via formal and informal education, to values and beliefs about right and wrong that we share with members of our community based on tradition. Different historical periods and social groups have different morals.

For example, if I am a vegetarian because I believe that it is wrong to eat animals, this is a matter of my personal moral system of values. If my parents taught me that lying is wrong, and I adopt this as my value through education, this is also part of my morals that I share with my parents as well as with other members of my community.         

Ethics

On the other hand, ethics is a philosophical discipline that analyzes morals from a theoretical perspective. Simply put, ethics studies morals, seeking to establish the basic and most universal principles of human moral behaviour and form a coherent and rational system out of these beliefs.

The main branches of ethics include virtue ethics, deontological and utilitarian ethics. Virtue ethics originated in ancient Greece and deals with the question of what are the basic human virtues. Kant is usually taken as the founder of deontological ethics, which deals with the question of duty and obligation in morals. Finally, utilitarian ethics developed by Bentham and Mill suggests that there is a link between what is considered good and what brings more happiness to the greater number of people.  

There is also applied ethics, e.g. in medicine, law, etc, seeking to apply general ethical principles to certain fields of human practice. Ethics is a theory, developed by experts who derive norms of behaviour from well-thought-out arguments and definitions.

Conclusion

To sum up, the most important distinction between ethics and morals consists in the fact that ethics offers a theoretical background for our moral judgements, and is based on rational arguments, whereas morals usually refers to a particular system of beliefs regarding right and wrong that is not theoretical, but rather inherited and spontaneously formed in the course of living within a particular community.

Education for IT Jobs

To begin with, Information Technology is undoubtedly a large field offering a wide spectrum of career paths. Job descriptions may include: programmer, systems analyst, healthcare assistance, technical services, helpdesk, and even things as exciting as the admin of the best slot sites in UK! A very attractive perk that singles out a career in IT is the variety of industries that a worker can be exposed to whether its healthcare, finance, agriculture, manufacturing, and so on. Regardless of the perks, entry requirements need to be fulfilled before you begin job hunting.

Formal Education

If you already have a company or enterprise that you would like to be part of in mind, then you need to take a look at the minimum requirements for each IT role available in order to get a glimpse of what is expected of you. As a general rule of thumb, a bachelor’s degree in a relevant computer field is usually a prerequisite for most jobs in IT. For instance, computer science, information science, or a degree in information systems would fit the bill.

Experience

As a disclaimer, you should be on the lookout for a few years of experience in the industry you would like to work in, as most firms want to see candidates that have already proven their competence alongside their academic achievements. Internships and volunteer work all count as experience and you may also want to be engaged in extracurricular projects during your studies.

Online Courses

If you are done with your education and are looking for employment you need not waste time. There are plenty of courses online that can further your knowledge of computing. Udemy offers courses pertaining to information technology that cost around $15 when on sale and comprise of approximately 25 lectures depending on the program. Moreover, edX has plenty of specialist courses that are verified and popular amongst technologically savvy students. If you really need to take a course in bioinformatics, DNA sequences, or probability distribution models – edX has it all.

Online courses are usually flexible enough that you can work on the material at your own pace, not to mention that they can be done anywhere with internet access. We are not saying that online courses will give you an edge separating you from other candidates, but rather they are a valuable way of spending your time if no work is available for you just yet.

Applying

There may come a point where an attractive job lists more requirements than you can fulfil. It is at this point where you must make a tough decision and think about just how many qualifications you lack as it still may be worth the trouble of applying for the vacancy.

If you cover most of the areas necessary you should send your CV because you may still be considered for the work. Having said that, if you do not meet most of the requirements it is better not to waste someone’s time. We understand that it is tough out there in the labour market but stay positive and persevere.

What is Business Culture and Why is it so Important?

What is business culture?

Business culture is the style or model followed by a company that defines how employees and managers at different levels of the hierarchy interact with one another, as well as how all employees of a company interact with customers. Some of the standards of a company’s business culture are formally written as company policy, although most are not.

For example, business culture could be the way that employees in the customer service department of the business interact with customers, or it could be the way which emails are formed and written between employees and managers. The business culture of the company is gradually formed over time and covers every interaction and communication that happens throughout the business, becoming a standard for communication within the company.

Why is it so important?

The business culture maintained by a company impacts the way that it is perceived by its employees, as well as the public. Business culture can make or break a company, with a good business culture helping to improve the efficiency of the day-to-day tasks of the organisation, and a poor one leading to the complete breakdown of communication within the organisation.

How you can improve your business culture

Below, we have outlined several methods that you can use to improve your overall business culture and therefore the efficiency and professionalism of your company:

Make employees aware of your desired business culture

To change your business culture, you must first make all employees in the company aware of your desired business culture, as well as what is wrong with the current standard. We recommend holding weekly meetings to outline the progress into achieving your desired business culture and giving your employees targets to help improve it.

Create formal documentation

You should also try creating and enforcing a formal documentation outlining the business culture you are trying to achieve. This will help give your employees a set of undebatable guidelines for how they should carry themselves and behave within the organisation. To effectively make sure employees are aware of this new company policy, you could host training sessions to outline what is involved in this new business culture and how they should go about meeting it.

Lead by example

Training all of your employees on your desired business culture can be very expensive and time-consuming. Another method for implementing your desired business culture is through leading by example. This method involves the managerial staff of your organisation behaving parallel to your desired business culture, with the hope that other employees within the organisation will follow suit.

Overall, business culture is an essential part of most businesses in the modern world,  forming the way that the entire business is run, as well as how it is perceived by the public.  Business managers should make a conscious effort to improve their business culture using the techniques we have listed above.

 

How our Idea of Well-Being is Shaped by our Culture

How come some people can’t go a day without eating pork while some groups of people completely avoid it? Some cultures prohibit gambling in all ways and in some it’s completely normal to search for a Harrah’s Casino promo code for 2019 during any time of night and day. Even the basic needs of people differ greatly from group to group.

So, what is ‘your culture’

Your culture is typically defined as your surrounding environment that you experienced throughout your development and is comprised of many factors.  Culture tends to vary between different countries and different areas all over the world, but can also vary between families living in the same country. Your culture ultimately ends up shaping and guiding your decision-making and belief systems later in life, this is a concept known as the internal working model.  For example, if a child has parents who are happily married, and they experience a stable, loving relationship during the development stage, then they will generally maintain a positive view of love and relationships later in life.

How it shapes your idea of well-being

Many studies have proven that your culture and upbringing shapes and effects your ideas and beliefs about well-being and happiness, below are some of the ways that culture can affect your beliefs about well-being:

Need for positivity

Different cultures around the world appear to have different beliefs and needs regarding positivity.  Most people around the world seek out positive experiences and dislike negative experiences or unwanted negative comments. However, some cultures place less emphasis on seeking out positive experiences than others. For example, a study found that members of the public in America often require two positive events to offset one negative event, whereas many countries such as Japan only required one positive event to offset a negative event and maintain a positive well-being.

Perception of gift receiving

In most western countries, gift-giving is seen as an act designed to bring positivity and happiness to the recipient. However, this is not the case across all cultures.  Some cultures, such as South Korea, do not necessarily see gift-giving as a positive and enjoyable act. In fact, a study found that many people in South Korea who receive a gift view it as a reminder that they are not doing enough for their community.  With a simple cultural variation, an act that is considered positive and often kind in one culture can be considered upsetting, if not offensive in another.

Collective happiness V Individual happiness

A final example of how your culture can affect your views on welfare is the way in which you perceive true happiness cultures can be one of two things, either collectivist (individuals are perceived as part of one large machine- the community), or individualistic (societies where individuals tend to place their own needs above the needs community as a whole). Studies have found that members of the public in collectivist societies tend to find true happiness when most people in a group are happy, whereas in an individualist Society, members of the public tend to find happiness when they themselves are happy rather than everybody else.

Why We Need More Diversity in Schools?

At a time of social and political disarray, the migrant crisis burst the bubble of xenophobes across Europe. Of course there were also positive arguments stating that there are numerous benefits not only in offering aid to the downtrodden but to accepting them into our community. Below we consider a number of advantages to diversity in a community by taking a closer look at the case of education. When we speak of diversity we do not only speak of race but religion, gender, and socio-economic background too.

Knowledge and Tolerance

A student that undergoes education amongst a culturally diverse classroom quite naturally has the advantage of learning about multiple cultures and enhances her general knowledge. Imagine if each student brings along a snippet of his or her country’s culture on a daily basis, then surely by the first semester one would have amassed a compendium of cultural, historical and political knowledge.

The more nationalities in the classroom, the broader the education. Moreover, racially diverse classrooms diminish xenophobic or racist ideologies. Upon socializing with different ethnicities children begin to formulate a much more positive image of their fellow human beings and hence become more tolerant.

Creativity and Cooperation

 

Yet another benefit to diversity in schools is to prepare the children for the workplace. The early exposure to social queues and cultural sensitivities prepares the child for later collaboration in enterprises that most certainly encourage diversity in the workplace. An environment that encourages a different set of skills in order to accomplish tasks increases productivity immensely.

According to Forbes online, “research on creativity and innovation has been consistent in showing the value of exposing individuals to experiences with multiple perspectives and worldviews. It is the combination of these various perspectives in novel ways that result in new ideas popping up.” Hence, diversity is conducive to blistering creativity both in and out of the classroom.

Having diversity in the workspace at the early stages in a child’s life builds bridges to other countries and makes the world their oyster. In fact, I have made many friendships that enabled me to visit wonderful places all over the world. I guess you could say the world became a smaller place and each year I would make sure to meet my buddies in a new place whether it was in Asia or in Europe.

International Schools

The usual culturally diverse educational hub in every country is commonly called an international school. International schools flaunt the number of nationalities they have – at times they have up to 50 different countries! They have every right in doing so since they most certainly wish to develop global citizens from a very early age. The International Baccalaureate is exactly the kind of programme that does this.

The only downside in countries is that private schools seem to offer such an educational upbringing that is usually only available to children of workers from the upper echelons of management, seldom for those that would normally apply for public schooling. But what can change? We may promote diversity in public schooling in order to gain those benefits already mentioned. Some consciousness raising is needed in order to change the current status quo if we want to instigate change, but it’s possible.

Environmental Influences on Youth Development

What makes a person behave a certain way? There are many aspects that can change over time, but one thing that almost everybody agrees on is that the environment has a huge role in what a person is going to be like and what a person considers normal. It’s not the same whether you grew up in a liberal family which believes that playing bingo is fun and has nothing against using the Heart Bingo bonus code and others to play online, and the family which considers any form of gambling as something unacceptable and banned. This is a more extreme example, but there are noticeable differences in even smaller aspects of life.

How does the environment influence youth development

Many studies have shown that various factors in an environment can have a huge impact on a child’s development. Many have argued that the environment is one of, if not the biggest influencer on youth development. One of the biggest ways that our environment influences our development is the way in which our environmental experiences during the development stage maps and forms our beliefs and behaviours later in life, a concept commonly known as the internal working model. The internal working model is the way that we understand and understand the world. The environment in which we develop in is pivotal in the growth and formation of our internal working model, we often use our experiences as a child to understand our experiences in adulthood.

Examples of environmental impacts on youth development

Example one

One example of how our environment impact youth development is relationships.  A child with parents who are happily married and often publicly display signs of affection for one another may grow up to take a positive view of relationships and love, whereas a child with divorced parents may grow up to take a negative view.

Example two

Another example can be found in how children learn. If a child is exposed to daily challenges which require logic and creativity to overcome, then they may develop to become significantly better at abstract problem solving and thinking later in life in comparison to those who were not presented with these challenges during the development stage.

How parents can use this information

As a parent, there are a variety of actions that you can take to ensure that a different environment is optimal for your child’s development. Below, we have listed a few examples of techniques you could use to do just this:

Create controlled challenges

You can set a variety of challenges for your child to overcome on a daily basis to help prompt and promote the development and formation of strong problem solving and abstract thinking skills that they can use later in life.

Lead by example

As a parent, one of the most important things you can do to help the child youth development is through leading by example. By this, we mean that you should promote positive views and experiences as much as possible to help your child form the same positive views and attitudes towards certain ideas later in life (one good example being relationships).

Treat any experience as progress

Finally, you should treat any experience, good or bad, as progress in your child’s development.  Based on this, you should try not to discourage your child from negative experiences and should instead encourage them to embrace them, as part of promoting their youth development.

Female Education Around the World

There are many benefits of female education, both for the girls and for the entire society. Educated girls have a healthier life, more opportunities, higher earnings, and their skills and competence can significantly contribute to the global economic growth.

However, there are still big systemic barriers preventing millions of girls across the world from having access to safe and quality primary and secondary education. Today, more than 130 million girls are out of schools. Whereas in Europe and North America girls have recently outperformed boys by the number of higher education diplomas and success in school, girls face discrimination especially in the world’s poorest countries, mostly from Sub-Saharan Africa, where the gender gap is also the highest.

Major Obstacles

Major obstacles to girls’ access to education include household responsibilities, poverty, cultural norms that prioritise boys’ education, early marriage, lack of safety in and around schools, sexual harassment and violence, and lack of basic resources and bad hygiene in schools.

Teen pregnancy is also an obstacle for many girls. For example, Tanzania, Equatorial Guinea, and Sierra Leone expel pregnant girls from schools. In contrast, boys who are the fathers are generally not expelled.

Below are some examples of gender gap in education around the world.

Chad

Chad is the lowest ranked country in terms of closing the education gender gap, according to the World Economic Forum report. This country has an extremely low literacy rate, with only 31.33% of men and 13.96% of women being able to read. The gap in primary school enrollment sits at 21%.

Afghanistan

Afghanistan, the country that still suffers the consequences of a devastating civil war, girls often don’t have a place to go to school. Instead, they study in tents or in the street, while classrooms are mostly reserved for boys. Most girls drop out of school by the time they are 15 and only 37% of them are literate, compared to 66% of boys. Many get married very early or must find work to help their families survive. Sometimes, families don’t believe that girls should study or fear for their safety.

Pakistan

In Pakistan, where only 70% of men and 46% of women are literate, the wake-up call came in 2012 when a 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai was shot and almost killed because she wanted to go to school. She became the voice of a generation of Pakistani girls who are denied education because of traditional gender roles are being forced upon them.

STEM fields

The gender gap in education exists even in economically developed countries. Girls are significantly under-represented in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Deeply rooted gender stereotypes discourage girls from pursuing these fields of study. Many countries are already actively working on changing the mindset that favours boys in STEM fields, but only 35% of young women today choose these career paths.

These examples and many more show that there is still much to be done to promote and improve access to education for millions of children all over the world.

How To Overcome Culture Shock?

When subjected to an unfamiliar setting we have all felt a feeling of displacement. Whether it is when you see someone freely bet on their phone with the Borgata sportsbook promotions and to you that’s unfathomable, or somebody speaks openly about some things that are just not spoken about where you come from, or anything else. The extent to which we feel a culture shock is different for each individual. We have tried to get to grips with this phenomenon down to the details and we are not alone here because a number of anthropologists, sociologists and psychologist have been examining it since the 1950s.

Lysgaard (1955) outlined a U-curve that seeks to describe the degree of adjustment to the cultural circumstances over time. This simple pictorial representation has seen its use in corporate training regimes and even educational contexts. Elaborations and tweaks have been made to the original theory to this date but we cannot go through all of them because they are far too numerous. But first, let’s introduce the four phases of cultural adjustment.

On Honeymoon

To begin with, when a person is first exposed to an environment that is wholly new culturally it is called the honeymoon period – think about when you went on holiday, gap year, Erasmus program, mandate, work placement, etc. The initial exposure to the novel surroundings does not induce stress but rather entices the person to enjoy the area. Whatever dreams or expectations one has had about the place at first seem to be true or fulfilled. This period lasts from 0-3 months approximately.

Crisis

Very shortly after the honeymoon period people have a tendency to enter a phase of crisis – they feel increased anxiety. The cultural differences are no longer perceived as exotic but rather are becoming a nuisance. Plenty of factors contribute to this stage such as: language barriers, public hygiene, congestion, cuisine, food quality, etc. This crisis tends to last between 3-6 months.

Recovery

After the crisis period, the person becomes accustomed to the environment and slowly begins to adjust to his or her surroundings around 6-12 months. A possible reason seems to be that the subject begins to develop routines and increased knowledge of the area, eliminating uncertainty. Issues that used to be around are now solved with relative ease that pertains to everyday activities.

Adaptation

This phase is commonly called the mastery stage, when individuals begin to feel as if their surroundings have become ‘normal’. Sometimes dubbed the bicultural stage due to the person assimilating nuances from their environment more than ever before. This period naturally begins after a year or so. This is the rightmost tip of the U-curve that is higher than the left tip concerning the honeymoon period.

Conclusion

Interestingly, the phenomenon of reverse-culture shock suggests that this same process may occur for a person when they come back to their domestic environment. Cases include expatriates that have been away for a number of years and come back home yet still feel that familiar feeling of displacement. Culture shock usually addresses a single yet elusive concept, but hopefully the reader has seen, just as much as we have, the complexity of the phenomenon ripe for more interesting research.

How We Learn as Adults

“Small groups of aspiring adults who desire to keep their minds fresh and vigorous; who begin to learn by confronting pertinent situations; who dig down into the reservoirs of their secondary facts; who are led in the discussion by teachers who are also seekers after wisdom and not oracles: this constitutes the setting for adult education the modern quest for life’s meaning.” Continue reading “How We Learn as Adults”

Truth or Myth? Common Gender Stereotypes

The OHCHR defines gender stereotypes in the following way: “A gender stereotype is a generalised view or preconception about attributes or characteristics, or the roles that are or ought to be possessed by, or performed by women and men. A gender stereotype is harmful when it limits women’s and men’s capacity to develop their personal abilities, pursue their professional careers and make choices about their lives.” Continue reading “Truth or Myth? Common Gender Stereotypes”