Related AACSB Accreditation Standards
AACSB International continues to enhance its long-standing support for ethics education for all business students. Although AACSB International has insisted on the inclusion of ethics in business
curricula for many years, it has responded to recent revelations of corporate malfeasance by searching for ways to strengthen its role in preparing socially responsible graduates
for business careers.
The AACSB Business Accreditation Standards affirm the importance of ethics education for business graduates and emphasize its position among curricular requirements.
Ethics education is called for in the general knowledge and skills portion of the standards for undergraduates and in the management-specific portion of the standards for
undergraduate and master’s students. (See
Standard 15: Management of Curricula)
Also included in the standards is a criterion for eligibility that requires each school to “establish expectations for ethical behavior by administrators, faculty, and students.” Schools will do this with codes of conduct, values statements, honor codes, procedures for handling allegations of misconduct, and other mechanisms. This provision recognizes that education takes place,
not just in the classroom, but also through observation of the actions of the educational institution’s participants. Related to this criterion is the requirement that faculty and student
participants “operate with integrity in their dealings” with other participants in the learning process. (See
Standard 13: Individual Faculty Educational Responsibility and
Standard 14: Student Educational Responsibility.)
In short, AACSB International recognizes and accepts its role as a standard setter and facilitator
for ethics in business education. It will continue its strong support for ethics education for all business students, and for sustainability and corporate social responsibility in business.
Additional Resources Related to the Accreditation Standards
This document provides sample questions that may be helpful to business schools seeking to evaluate and confirm their commitment and support of ethical conduct and curricular content. The questions, which are related to specific AACSB Accreditation Standards, may help schools to prepare for their work with accreditation peer review teams. Although the suggestions are intended to encourage thought and discussion about ethics education, they do not create new accreditation standards or supercede current standards. Both the questions and the responses that follow them are intended as general guidance that can be tailored to the specific needs of all schools, including those not currently engaged in accreditation.
The document is an excerpt (pages 16–19) from "Ethics Education in Business Schools," the 2004 report of the Ethics Education Task Force to the AACSB International Board of Directors.
Suggested Questions about Ethics Education for Business School Leaders
Frequently Asked Questions about Ethics Education and AACSB Accreditation